Tuesday, February 06, 2007

A True 'Chanuka Miracle' Story:

Since Chanuka, we've had the leftover olive oil that was used for the menorah just lying around. We knew that we were not allowed to throw it out but we didn't know what to do with it so it just stayed in the cups of the menorah.

Finally, yesterday afternoon, my friend says "Zehu, I'm going to burn it already".

Surprised, impressed, happy and relieved, I watched as she poured the pure olive oil from the burnt glasses into a new clear glass.

"I'll just let it burn till all the oil is out", she turned to me. "There's tons in here..it will last forever. It will burn longer than a yahrtzeit licht does".

I nodded my agreement.

"You know", she said, struck by a sudden thought, " There are so many Jews. I'm sure there is someone out there who's yahrtzeit it is today. However many years ago, whichever country it may have been...so this candle can be in their zechus..it will be a yartzeit candle for them".

"Sababa!" I exclaimed enthusiastically, loving the idea. "Y'know, even anyone who was murdered in the Holocaust or burnt during the Inquisition period-let this be for them! What's the date today? Yud Zayin Shevat? Ok, whoever passed away on Yud Zayin Shevat and needs it-this candle will be a yartzeit licht for them."

We were both quiet for a few seconds, thinking, contemplating, musing. I don't know about her, but I was certainly overwhelmed. Overwhelmed that I was so easily part of a race that allowed something so little to represent and to accomplish something so huge.

And then the quiet drama was over, and we went our separate ways.

Hours later, she accosts me breathlessly- "You'll never believe it! I just got off the phone with my brother and he told me oh my gd..!"

Nearly 23 scenarios run through my head during the few seconds it took her to catch her breath and finish her sentence...

And then she said, "He told me that tonight, Yud Zayin Shevat, is our great-grandfather's yartzeit!!"

Now think, dear readers, think of all the components that turned this into a Small Miracle.
-the oil was lying around for weeks and weeks and was not taken care of until BIDIYUK that day
-we were going to give it to our rabbi to deal with, but she 'randomly' and suddenly took things into her own hands.
-she lit the candle just after the sun was set....and the 16th of shevat faded away, welcoming the 17th.
-she mentioned how it burns as long as a yahrtzeit licht which brought her the idea of dedicating this as a yahrtzeit licht
-it was specifically HER that lit it..and not anyone else that was responsible for the oil/the mess.
-she spoke to her brother, which is not a common occurrence, and he 'happened' to mention about the yartzeit.

now don't give me coincidence maisos, you hear?

p.s. My mum always says "Whatever you do, you do for yourself".


Nemo said...

You don't have an annual bonfire on Zos Channuka?? Oh, it was Shabbos this year...

Anyway, interestingly enough, my grandmother's Yahrtzeit is today 18th of Shvat. Simona Chaya bas Leontine Z"L.

chanie said...

Taka a chanuka miracle. Living entails seeing everyday things like this as miracles form Above. May you find them every day.

ma said...

wowie zowie !!

Anonymous said...

its incredible
you should write it in the "small miracles book"
know wut am talkin about?

Anonymous said...

the small miracles stories there are not necessarily true....

Dovid said...

Gorgeous story. Shkoyach!

Chasidishe Shaigitz said...

Awesome story, and the miracle of chanukah carries on.

Hopefully this might even inspire dovid to burn all the leftover wicks and oil laying around his basement ;)

m said...

this is really Hash-ga-ka Pra-tis!

anonym00kie said...

wow amazing

anonym00kie said...

btw.. when you say a "true" miracle.. you mean as opposed to...? :)

elisabeth said...

That postscript about what your mom always says is a little unsettling. Reminds me of what a different friend said her mother always says "don't get involved in people with issues." Sort of like a fend-for-yourself and its-all-about-you-in-the-end motive, no? While i imagine that your mom's line is meant to be understood as that you reap the benefit of even those acts you considered impersonal and without intentions for a reward, you end up with good -- if a person knows that then how can he ever really be doing something other than for himself?

I was asked at the Friday Night meal what was the last thing i did without anything "in it for me."

meet the button man's chauffeur :)

the sabra said...

yuppers. that's why i capitalized it and wrote it such. derech agav, i wrote a post a while back at how i met one of the authors :)

HEHE. i also hope. then u guys can write ur own miracle story.



aaaaaaaaaaand check this out guys! omg this story gets even better!! i showed this page with all the comments to my friend that it happened to (yknow so she can shep some nachas) and as soon as she saw m's comment she said "HEY!! yknow the one who explains what hashgocha pratis is,(on the video) so its that guy's father whos yartzeit it was!"

k now don't tell me ur not weirded out even more!

as opposed to a made up one :)

it took me so long to figure out who u are!! thank gd my mother helped me out using the last line..and she had no clue what she was talking about even. ha!!

as for ur comment-yes, that's what she meant-that even when doing for others, you will end up gaining from it. i think of it more as a midah kineged mida thing.

re the fri night question/challenge-i don't think thats so difficult to answer. unless of course u consider 'bringing moshiach closer' as a personal benefit.

good to hear from you man. (tell me, how are the cheeseburgers in new york?)

Rochel said...

wow that is relly amazing
btw my great-grandmothers yarzeit is 19-20 shvat not relly sure wich one

Timothy said...

...he found this episode rather cool.
Nemo: Zol ireh neshomo hoben an aliya.
Rochel: Ditto... and all those who can use it - down here as much as not - amod, amod, amod!

blogmentor said...

..zol EER neshoma....

Anonymous said...

Please sign this petition to bring back gonzo...


the sabra said...

yuhr tzeit

blogmentor said...


Reb timoty said...

And it's "ireh" too. I'm assuming you read it "Aireh" instead of "eereh." Iss hokey. We love you still.

blogmentor said...

reb whatever- you gonna love me more after this ;

yiddish lesson #1 :
eereh(ireh) means hers
eer means her

okay now lets figure this out together:
let hers neshoma have an aliya OR
let her neshoma have an aliya.

actually this will be your homework, no cheating, no hiding in the bathroom or sharing this with a friend.

blogmentor said...

oh and reb t.
its okay. you're still funny/corny whtever.

Someone who's not soooo surprised his aliases are worthless but still hopes the smarties won't tell said...

Using that same logic, "Eer" means "her" the noun, equal to saying "Genendel"; hers is the possesive form of the same word - like "Genendel's" and the like.
So: If you say "Her neshomo should have an aliya" and I ask "whose neshomo?" you say "Genendel's neshomo." Oh hersssssssssss!

So yes, let hers neshomo have an aliya. Amen.

. (you know this name too?) said...

Oops on the name there, ran a little long. It said "Someone who's not sooooo surprised his aliases were worthless but still hopes the rocket scientists won't tell the rest of 'em."

Chaya said...

WOWEE awesome story

blogmentor said...

reb aliases-
do you wnat yiddish lesson #2?

and oh
mum's the word.

sabra shhh..

the sabra said...

the blogmentor is correct

and don't worry bout me saying anything more-mums the word, i tell ya.

and hey, patty, i didn't know . was you, did i? i gotta go back n check the other one..

the sabra said...

and shmendrick-
theres a diff b/w smarties and rocket scientists

totally blank... imagine!... said...

We're discussing if Blogmentor's logic holds or not. (Really THAT's what we're discussing!) It doesn't. Plus, Yiddish is sooooo frickin' colloquial, that... ahhh heck, you guys are right.

ooooh! Ricardo rodriguez... nah blank is better said...

I'm the pintele somewhere. I forget exactly where.

I gave the abridged name so it would fit on the line... I meant Rocket Scientist. :)

the sabra said...

wow the comments in those days--bayamim haheim b'zman hazeh....

mishmum said...

ya, sheesh! I can't believe myself.

the sabra said...

hehe i could :)