By Tim Newcomb, TIME
(TIME)– Even though listed officially as a “minor” Jewish holiday, Hanukkah has turned into the most celebrated Jewish holiday in the U.S. There’s nothing minor about Hanukkah anymore.
Rabbi Kerry M. Olitzky, executive director of the Jewish Outreach Institute in New York City, says the notion of calling Hanukkah “minor” really presents a misnomer and it is only a term used when discussing holidays that impart major restrictions on people’s behavior.
Major holidays include Passover, Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur and Sukkot, and require restrictions on eating and other behavior, giving them titles of major holidays. But just because Hanukkah offers a festival void of the restrictions, it doesn’t make it any less important, Olitzky says. “Outside of the technical framework of Jewish law, Hanukkah is a major Jewish holiday,” he says. “We have really done ourselves a disservice by using the term minor.”
Read the original article at CNN Belief Blog 2011-12-21 »