What is the significance of the goblet גביע during the encounter of Yosef with his brothers? Everything Yosef wanted to accomplish in order to clarify the loyalty of his brothers and their remorse over hating him and selling him to Mitzrayim could have been achieved without its usage. It must be that the usage of the goblet was alluding to his brothers a deeper message that needed their self – introspection.
In Hilchos Chanukah if one lights his menorah and the light extinguishes soon after without burning the given shiur, he has already fulfilled the mitzvah and there is no need at all to relight it again. This halacha is called כבתה אין זקוק לה. The question the meforshim ask is why not? If one can relight it in order for it to burn the required shiur make him do so. The mitzvah is פרסומי ניסא. There will be a greater amount of awareness of the miracle if it would burn half an hour instead of one minute. After all, relighting is not such a tedious act that our Chachamim because of this reason refrained from obligating him to relight once again. What then is the rationale to paskin כבתה אין זקוק לה ?
Rashi in the beginning of Parshas Behaalosche brings the Medrash that when Ahron Hakohen saw the sacrifices that the Neseeim brought for the dedication of the Mishkan his spirit fell for he realized that both he and his Shevet did not participate in the festivities. Hashem comforted him by saying, your participation in lighting the Menorah is greater than all of their sacrifices. What is the explanation for this?
Let us talk about a theme that permeates throughout the story of Chanukah and that is the concept of beauty which appears in many facets. Chazal say that ten measurements of beauty came down to this world and Yerushalayim took nine portions. The source of this beauty was the Bais Hamikdash. The victory of the Chashmonaeem on Chanukah was the reconquering of the Bais Hamikdash from the Greeks, purifying it and rededicating it, causing the Shechina and its beauty to return.
Yosef is described as יפה תואר ויפה מראה. The sefarim tell us that יוסף is gematriah מלך יון and אנטיוכס the Greek King during the period of Chanukah. The Greeks also possessed the relationship to beauty as they are the descendants of יפת. However, both beauties were worlds apart and that is why they clashed with each other.
Rav Moshe Shapiro ztl explains the definition of beauty. Beauty is created by the symmetrical combination of different and varying components which together make a complete form or picture. The more contrast and less conformity of color, and dissimilarity of the varying components, the greater the potential that the finished product of the artist will be beautiful and exquisite.
Rav Hutner ztl once gave an analogy to understand the concept of beauty. Yerushlamis are known for their exquisite dancing at a chasunahs, with their artistic movements of hands, feet, and body. There is something fascinating that catches your eyes watching a Yerushalmi dance, more than others. Rav Hutner explained that music is not something tangible but spiritual. This is in contrast to the body which is very physical and heavy. When music is played all of a sudden the body becomes alive and starts to break into a dance. When the movement of the body aligns itself exactly to the rhythm and melody of the song, together they create a spectacle of beauty that grabs your attention.
This is the unique quality of beauty that Yerushalayim reflects. Dovid Hamelech writes (Tehillim 122) ירושלים הבנויה כעיר שחברה לה יחדו the gemarah in Taanis 5 explains that there are two cities Yerushalaim: one on earth and one in the heavens. Although they seem completely separated from one another, light years away, Dovid tells us they are connected חברה לה יחדו in a spectacular way. See Rashi Bereishis 28, 17 וזה שער השמים. The earthly city of Yerushalayim has an earthly structure and the spiritual city of Yerushalyim possesses a spiritual structure. Two opposites, two complete contrasting edifices, and yet the beauty of it is, that every small detail of the Mikdash of מטה is perfectly aligned with every spiritual detail of the Mikdash למעלה and they nurture each other to form one dynamic symmetrical synergy. The fact that there were ten constant miracles in the Beis Hamikdash on earth was because the spiritual energy of the Heavenly Mikdash trickled down into the earthly one.
The Maharal writes that the fusion between the two is facilitated by the kohanim. As numbers go, seven symbolizes this world, and eight represents above nature. Likewise, the Bais Hamikdash on earth is still a seven however the Bais Hamikdash in the heavens is symbolized by the number eight. Likewise in the tens, seventy represents this world and eighty above nature. Therefore the Maharal says that the individuals who perform the service in the Bais Hamikdash are called כהן which is gematriah 75, halfway between 70 and 80. It is the Kohen who services both worlds by connecting the two Mikdashos together.
The beauty of the Greeks was superficial. With their super intellectual wisdom they delved into the sciences, biology, philosophies, ecology, and all knowledge. True, they tied the external physicality of nature to a deeper existence such as atomic energy, but they were not interested to penetrate further to connect it to its creator. Therefore their beauty remained always external and peripheral, and never consisted of a symmetry and wholesomeness of extreme contrasts such as the spirit of Hashem fused together with dense earthly matter.
Yosef was described as beautiful. Yosef’s role within the formation of Am Yisrael in its beginning stage of twelve Shevatim, was to be the bridge between the Three Avos and the Shevatim. The Pachad Yitzchak writes that this is the reason why we find that the Torah writes Yosef’s demise twice, once at the end of sefer Bereishis and the other at the beginning of Shmos. Yosef, by serving as a bridge between the Avos and Shevatim, belongs not only to the sefer of the Avos Bereishis, but also to the sefer of Shmos, the story of the seventy souls and the creation of the 600,000 Yidden that left Mitzrayim.
Yosef possessed the spiritual characteristic of beauty of connecting the Avos who can be compared to Yerushlayim in heaven together with the Shevatim and the Seventy souls that descended to Mitzrayim who were the Yerushalayim on earth. The gematriah of העיר ירושלם למעלה 1046 equals אלו אברהם ויצחק וישראל. 1045. The Shevatim and the seventy souls that descended to Mitzrayim paralleled the Bais Hamikdash on earth. It was Yosef who was the in-between serving Yisrael, just as the Kohen served in the Bais Hamikdash. Therefore Yosef merited the title of יפת תואר ומראה because he connected and aligned the Shevatim to the Avos and elevated them to a very spiritual high level. Because of his trying ordeal with the wife of Potiphar all Yisrael were protected from illicit relations while they were slaves to the Egyptians. Yosef made Yisrael connect to the inner beauty of Mitzrayim and realize that Hashem was with them in Mitzrayim and they were not alone שמני אלקים לאדון בכל ארץ מצרים I placed Hashem as master in the entire land of Egypt.
This was the role of Yosef’s goblet. Yosef wanted the Shevatim to realize even subliminally, that his only purpose was to connect the Shevatim and the Seventy Souls to the Avos, which was parallel to bonding the Bais Hamikdash of earth to the one in heaven. The more they become negated to Yosef the tzadik the fuller the flow of ruchniyus would be sent between the Avos Shevatim and the Seventy. The allusion to this explanation is in the words גביע. The letter ג symbolizes the three Avos, the יב symbolizes the twelve Shevatim, and the ע symbolizes the Seventy Souls. All three segments of Klal Yisrael are directed and supervised by Yosef. He alone has the title יפת תואר – יפה. The goblet הגביע with its five letters spell יפה. The יפה of Yosef is demonstrated by his orchestration of aligning with perfect symmetry the Shevatim and Seventy with the Avos. Yes, this goblet of Yosef has a different יפה than any other goblet that ever was.
The Tasher Rebbe ztl writes that when a Yid lights his menorah in his house he miraculously lights the Menorah in the Bais Hamikdash above. Because of his lighting, Hashem showers down to earth the Hidden Light אור הגנוז that existed during the Six Days of Creation but was later concealed. On Chanukah, this special light is once again revealed. The main mitzvah, therefore, is to light the Menorah in the upper Bais Hamikdash to bring down the Ohr Haganuz. That is why we find the Halacha is כבתה אין זקוק לה that once one lit his menorah in his house there is no need to relight it even those it became extinguished before the minimum time. The reason being that once you lit it on earth, the Menorah in Shamayim was also lit and that is the essence of the Mitzvah.
So when Ahron Hakohen lit the Menorah in the Mishkan it was tantamount to lighting the Menorah in the Bais Hamikdash in Shamayim. There is no other mitzvah that we find that if one fulfills it on earth it is as if one fulfills it in the Bais Hamikdash in heaven. This was Hashem’s message to Ahron that your mitzvah of lighting the Menorah is tantamount to you lighting the Menorah in the Bais Hamikdash above, a level that even the korbanos cannot attain.
This concept is alluded to in the words אל מול פני המנרה יאירו שבעת הנרות see Rashi (Bamidbar 8,2). When Ahron will kindle the Menorah in the Mishkan, its lights will align with the lights of the Menorah in the Beis Hamikdash Shel Maalah (אל מול פני המנורה).
Our sefarim tell us that when our Chachamim established this mitzvah that everyone should light the Menorah by his house, they were really conveying the message that on Chanukah everyone has the capacity to be Ahron Hakohen and one’s house has the kedusha of the Beis Hamikdash. אין לנו רשות להתשתמש בהם אלא לראותם בלבד As the Ran explained that our Chachamim gave our regular menorah the din of the Menorah in the Beis Hamikdash that it is prohibited to benefit from its light. If so, when one lights his menorah in the capacity of Ahron in the Beis Hamikdash he must also look at himself as if he is lighting the Menorah in the Bais Hamikdash shel maalah and that light never extinguishes.