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ילדות מדליקות נרות חנוכה
צילום: פלאש90

Yuval Avramovich is an author, lecturer, and actor. He writes as follows:

"On Sukkot I asked my daughters to decorate the sukkah. I prepared for them colored paper, a stapler, glue, scissors, and enthusiastically gave them instructions about what to do. When I returned home I found just one little paper chain hanging in the middle of the sukkah. 'We didn't have the strength to do it,' the girls said, even though they usually have the strength to do a lot of things.

That evening my oldest daughter told me she would soon be organizing a Halloween party at a friend's and how lucky that Christmas falls on a weekend this year so they could have another party. At the same time, I received a message from a neighborhood WhatsApp group telling me to get candy ready for Halloween.

I do not like labels but admit to being a secular Tel Avivian who makes Kiddush. I am a big believer in tradition and biblical values, and it makes my heart ache when I am expected to get along with other people's holidays. Yes, Christmas is a truly cool and illuminating holiday, but Hanukkah is no less cool and illuminating. And Purim too. And Pesach. And Tu BiShvat.

When the girls asked if we could host a Halloween party at home, I said no. This is not our holiday, I explained, and I see no reason to celebrate it in our home.

There are those who will say I am not progressive, open-minded, or enlightened. It's just that I get this strong impression that Jews are always looking sideways and want what other people have. It's an inferiority complex, as if our holidays are not glamorous enough. But there is such a thing as a backbone and I will be glad if my daughters have a strong one.

It would be interesting to know if there are Christians and Moslems who similarly long to celebrate Sukkot or Hanukkah, or if it's just the Jews who long for what other people have."

Shabbat shalom.


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