Laws of Chanukah

  1. In Jewish Law the night comes before the day. We light the Menorah the night before the first day of Chanukah.

  2. The first night we light one light, the second night two lights, the third night three lights, and so on until the eighth night when we light all eight lights.

  3. The first light is put on the right side and each night we add one to the left of it. The lighting is done left to right. This way each night we light the newest candle first.

  4. Sephardic custom is to light one Menorah per household. Ashkenazi custom is to light one Menorah per person (excluding wife).

  5. The Shamash is an extra light lit to ensure that we do not use the light of the Menorah. Lighting a Shamash is not necessary if there is additional light in the room, including any electric lighting.

  6. Parties on Chanukah are not a requirement.

  7. The time to light is anytime from sunset to dawn, although if one must, he may light as early as Plag HaMincha (as listed on your calendar).

  8. It is preferable to light when the family is around.

  9. The place to light is inside your house, preferably in the dining room or where you will see it most.

  10. Any oil or candle that can light for a half hour is usable for lighting. It is not limited to olive oil.

  11. If one cannot light a regular Menorah, you can light an electric one with a Beracha.

  12. The lights should last about a half hour. Afterwards it is permitted to blow out the lights.

  13. If the lights go out early, it is not required to relight them.

  14. Women are also required to light the Chanukah Menorah unless they are married, in which case they are included in their husband’s lighting.

  15. We say “Al HaNissim” during prayers and in Birkat Hamazon. If you forget you do not repeat it.

  16. We say a full “Hallel” with a Beracha and we read the Torah during morning prayers.

  17. Someone who is traveling should light wherever he/she is and not rely on the lighting at home.

  18. When one is a guest at another’s home, and either the guest or the host is a Sephardi, the guest may give 25 cents to the host and chip in to his lighting.

  19. Bachurim in Yeshiva can light in their room or in the Yeshiva building.

  20. Each night we say 2 blessings on the Menorah lighting (Lehadlik Ner Shel Chanukah and She’asah Nisim La’avotenu) and on the first night of lighting we also say a third blessing of “Shehecheyanu.”

  21. Immediately after lighting all the lights we say “Haneros Halalu”.

  22. On Friday we may light before or after Shabbat candle lighting but before sunset.

  23. On Saturday night we may light before or after Havdalah.

See אור יצחק ח’'ב


:+1: happy Chanukah

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