A candle is a small thing.
But one candle can light another.
And see how its own light increases,
as a candle gives its flame to the other.
You are such a light.
— Moshe Davis and Victor Ratner from The Birthday Of The World
At this time of year, when the sun is most hidden, the holiday of Hanukkah celebrates the rays of hope and light. Indeed, the physical darkness of this time of year can be a metaphor for the darkness that often envelopes us at times of illness and loss of a loved one, when the world sometimes feels dark and cold. At such times, we yearn for the sun, and the light and warmth that it provides. Often, it is through simple and unrecognized miracles that we are able to feel the warmth of hope and light.
— Rabbi Rafael Goldstein
In lighting our menorah, we ignite the flame in our souls, the spark that cannot be extinguished that will burn not for eight days but for eternity. We place the menorah in our windows to be visible to those passing by, just as our inner light must shine against the darkness of evil and indifference and must kindle the spirits of our fellow humans. The menorah reminds us of the miracle that no matter how dark life may be, there remains a source of light deep inside us. The light in our souls reflects and refracts the light from the One who is all brightness.
— Michard Strassfeld from A Book of Life: Embracing Judaism as a Spiritual Practice
As long as Hanukkah is studied and remembered, Jews will not surrender to the night. The proper response, as Hanukkah teaches, is not to curse the darkness but to light a candle.
— Irving Greenberg from The Jewish Way: Living the Holidays