Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Chanuka - Jewish Christmas? /Aish HaTorah


  1. If Aish is proselytizing
    Gentiles, then is very effective.

    Personally, for me, Xmas carols don't do it.

    I follow the donuts. If only I could taste one of my mother's "frittelle" again.

    I make them, but they come out heavy and greasy; my mothers were amazing.

  2. Since when does "kiruv" mean "bringing people closer to their Jewish destiny" ?(6:16 in the video).

    Is there a source for this belief in Judaism?

    Perhaps it comes from:

    "Every one of us is a missionary in the line of Jesus Christ Himself. It is vocation to preach the blessings of Jesus Christ, to gather people to receive the Holy Sacraments and in so doing, the Kingdom of God is extended.

    Just as the Son moved outward to bring people into close communion with the Father, so also must our ministry take us outward to all nations."

    Jews don't proselytize.

  3. I'm sure Aish's rationale is that they are reaching out to the poorly educated Jews who think of Chanuka as the "Jewish Christmas."

    Sadly, the video does nothing to dispel this notion. It makes Chanuka parallel Christmas in that a holiday of religious significance is replaced by a meaningless gift-giving holiday instead.

    I think it's insulting to the intelligence of the potential BT to use a Christmas song to lure them into an interest in Chanuka.

  4. This is actually an excellent video and Jersey girl is clearly over-reacting and mis-casting what this video is about.

    Sure, Aish HaTorah is not above criticism, but this video is not what they should be attacked for.

    The reality is that by the far the vast majority of secular, and Reform and Conservative, and probably almost all modern Orthodox Jews, by virtue of their and their parents and grandparents total immersion into secular/Christian American culture, especially via TV, electronic games and devices, and movies and the Internet, and of course most are in public school or in gentile private schools, they are therefore more familiar with the Christmas and carol themes and carols than they are with ANYTHING Jewish, and crazily most DO regard Chanuka as some sort of "Jewish Christmas" with the gifts and whatnot even calling these holidays "ChrisMukah" with "Hanuka Bushes" side by side with Menoras, and lights and all, this is just the reality of where things stand in the USA today!

    So this is precisely where the genius of Aish HaTorah and this video comes in, at the very point in assimilitaed Jews' pshyches and emotions and at that time of year where they are tightly surrounded and enwarapped by the goyish culture and they are hitting them at the point they least expect it, with the rhythm and rhyme of a "Trojan horse carol" BUT turning the entire season on its head and letting it become the springboard for presenting the true Chanuka story, whcih is what most of the vidoe is about.

    The video was obvioulsy made by a person who undrstands contemporary culture with all the whisltles and bellls of good cartoon production, so to picj points and to expect that it does not look like a Brisker made this video is going to far.

    There may be problems with its dialogue, but no doubt if one really wanted to one could point it out respectfully to the producers and point it out and ask them to modify whatever may be incorrect in the dialogue, which is really minor. But attacking them as if they were committing "mass murder" ch"v will not change their minds and only harden them in their ways when they are hopefully still opne to input from the outside

    So in this case, Aish HaTorah should be commended for this ingenious and brilliant short video that has nothing to do with appealing to gentiles which would be false but rather this is an attempt to reach out to all the millions of lost Jews in America, many of whom by the way, many hundreds of thousands are already in the clutches of missionaries and practice as either Hebrew Christians/Jews for Jesus or as full Christians, so this is also an excellent counter-missionary production.

    Kudos to Aish HaTorah on this one!

  5. I agree with RaP. This really is an excellent production in many ways. Really my only criticism is that only one of the Jewish men in the video is wearing a Yarmulke. Which I am hoping was simply an oversight by the illustrator.

    Aside from that, this is an overall decent video. If you go the Aish Website, where this video is hosted, you will notice that is only one of a series of videos put out, encouraging the observance of Hanukah across a fairly wide spectrum.

    While I may disagree with Chabad on many things, the last Lubavitcher Rebbe once said, "We never bring the Torah down to the people, we go to the people and bring them up to the Torah." That is what I think this video is attempting, quite well in my opinion, to do. It reaches out to a definite non-haredi sector(most of whom don't give gifts on Hanukah anyway) and tries to educate them from the point they are at.

  6. Yes RAP,

    I would just add that most jews know the name of the mother of Christ than the name of the mother of moishe rabeinu


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