There's a Soul In Your Fire... ­ Article ­ BINA

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There's a Soul In Your Fire...

by Rabbi Aron Moss

Question:
 
I notice that lighting candles is a big part of Judaism. We light candles every Friday for Shabbos, we light candles on every festival, and Chanukah is all about candles. What is the connection between candles and spirituality?
 
Answer:
 
There is something about a flame that makes it more spiritual than physical.
 
When you use something physical, it is diminished. The more money you spend, the less you have. The more petrol you use, the emptier your tank becomes. The more food you eat the more you need to restock your pantry.

But spiritual things increase with use. If I use my wisdom to teach, the student learns, and I come out smarter for it. If I share my love with another, I become more loving, not less. When I give a spiritual gift, the recipient gains, and I lose nothing.
 
There is no better illustration of this than a candle. When you use one candle to light another, the original candle remains bright. Its light is not diminished by being shared, on the contrary, the two candles together enhance each others brightness and increase light.
 
We sometimes worry that we may stretch ourselves too thin. In matters of spirit, it isn't true. The more goodness we spread the more goodness we have. By making a new friend you become a better friend to your old friends. By having another child you open a new corridor of love in your heart that your other children benefit from too. By teaching more students you become wiser. And by spending time on meaningful pursuits, you realise how precious each day is, and use your time better.
 
Keep lighting your candles. There is a fire in your soul. You will never run out of light.

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