Chanukah is the only holiday that extends over two months, from the month of Kislev to the month of Tevet. Its name derives from the Hebrew words meaning security and guarantee.
The month of Kislev — Month of Rains, Lights and Archers
Kislev is witness to the manifestation of two states of faith, one active and the other passive (bitachon, confidence). The miracle of Chanukah shows the active confidence of the Chashmonaim (Maccabim) in their ability to rise up and fight against the Hellenistic empire and its culture.
Indeed, the concept of “sleeping” associated with Kislev reflects the complacent belief that God will always protect Israel.
Kislev 19, the day of Reb Shneur Zalman’s deliverance and redemption, is referred to in Chassidic tradition as “the New Year of Hasidut”. Reb Shneur Zalman was a student of the Maggid of Mezerich, the successor of the Baal Shem Tov and the author of the classic text of Chassidut Tania.
His release suggests that the inner wisdom of Chassidut and the ability to incorporate this wisdom into our daily lives come into this world through the spiritual channel of this day. He was imprisoned for communicating the deepest mysteries of the Torah.
Trust and faith in the omnipresence of God and the omnipotence of His divine providence constitute the cornerstone of the Chassidic path.
Violet blue color – The letter Samech
Samech means in Hebrew “to support” or “to sustain”. The feeling of being sustained is comparable to the faith and trust in divine providence related to the month of Kislev, as mentioned above.
Thus, the Psalms express it as follows:
Even if he falls, he will not crash to the ground because God will hold him in His hands. “God upholds (Somej) all the fallen and straightens all the stooped.”
The circular shape of the Samach symbolizes God’s omnipresence and His omnipresent divine providence. The “great circle” of God’s infinite light, as described by the Kabbalah and the Hasidut, is his “right arm,” embracing (and sustaining, from below) all reality with enormous and infinite love, as it is said:
“And the arms of the universe from below”.
Mazal: “keshet”, (sagittarius, the bow).
Maccabees use the bow of Kislev. It represents their active trust in God to fight against the empire and culture that ruled the country at that time. The “art” of archery is attributed to the tribe of Benjamin, in particular, the tribe of the month of Kislev, although the Hasmoneans were the tribe of the priests of Israel.
The Cohanim (and Leviim)
They are not considered one of the tribes associated with each month of the year (according to the Arizal). The Kohanim contain and reflect the spiritual source of each of the tribes as an “all-encompassing” manifestation of the Jewish soul.
This is particularly true for the tribe of Benjamin because the holy Temple, where the Kohanim performed their functions, was located in their region of Israel. Consequently, the link between these two tribes is comparable to that between the soul and the body.
Therefore, the sacred conflict represented by the arc of Benjamin was fought by the Kohanim. As mentioned above, the war bow of Kislev is a projection (or “shot”) of the bow of peace (between God and Creation) of Cheshvan, which is represented by the rainbow.
The complete circle of the samach of Kislev is formed by the union of the two arcs (semicircles)…