The Hidden Light
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This is the place!
הכרות הללו קודש הם ואין לנו רשות להשתמש בהם אלא לראותם בלבד
When Hashem created the world, on the first day He created a G-dly light (ohr haelokut), and when He saw that the world wasn't ready for this light, he hid it in the Torah. This light is called ohr haganuz, the hidden light, and in the pasuk כי נר מצוה ותורה אור, Torah ohr is referring to this light, which is kadosh and cannot be used. Since the light was hidden in the Torah, the Torah cannot be used for personal benefit, rather it can only be learned lishma, for its own sake.
This light is eternal. When Aharon saw that all of the leaders of bnei yisrael gave korbanot and he didn't, Hashem told Moshe that Aharon's job of lighting the menorah in the Beit Hamikdash is greater because the light of the menorah will last forever. Ramban explains that even after the menorah stopped being lit, the kedusha and light of the menorah remained, through the chanukah candles. So the chanukah candles have kedusha, since they are a continuation of the light of the menorah, which is the ohr haganuz. Just as the Torah, which contains this light, cannot be used for personal benefit, so too there is a halachah that the chanukah candles cannot be used for personal benefit.
The light of the candles cannot be used, but there is an essential part of the mitzvah which is reiyah, seeing the candles. This is not found regarding any other mitzvah. The neshama is meant to be illuminated with the sight of this G-dly light. The war with the Greeks was, in essence, not a physical war, rather a spiritual one- their purpose was to darken bnei yisrael's eyes so that they could not see this light of the neshama. So we have the chanukah candles, which are meant to light up the neshama, contrary to the goal of the Greeks. It is specifically the light of the menorah, out of all the parts of the beit hamikdash, which lasts forever because without this G-dly light, bnei yisrael would not have the strength to endure the galut. So the mitzvah of chanukah, which was the last mitzvah which was established by the chachamim before the galut, is meant to help bnei yisrael last throughout the darkness of galut. By seeing the chanuka candles, the "eyes" of the neshama are meant to be opened in order to see the G-dly light that is illuminated in the candles.
By: Danit Alman
This dvar torah was taken from Netivot Shalom.
The Hidden Light