Hannukah Spirit Dec 11, 2006

just reposted an article about the true spirit of Christmas and the supposed war thereon. This, of course, got me thinking about the winter holiday from my own culture.

In order to get you all properly in the Hannukah spirit, I present the lyrics to a song I learned from my father. It is the only song I have ever heard that properly expresses the true, historical, spirit of Hannukah.

Mattathias (aka "He Struck the Traitor To The Earth")

(Disclaimer: This song might be copyrighted. I don't know. Googling for the first line comes up with no results. If you do know that it's copyrighted, please let me know so I can stop violating someone's copyright, although why someone would want to admit to having written this song…)

He struck the traitor to the earth He raised his sword that all might see His words rang like a trumpet blast: "All who are faithful, follow me!"

From near and far all Israel came They rallied to his battle cry They prayed unto the God of peace And for their faith, went forth to die

To die - and yet today they live Far down the cent'ries flaming! See That beacon sword - hear that bright cry, "All who are faithful, follow me!"

(Update: my father informs me that the lyrics are even dumber than I remembered. It's not "Far down the cent'ries flaming sea," it's "Far down the cent'ries flaming! / See". Corrected above. Also, he tells me the origin of the song: Fairmount Temple in Cleveland. I wonder if they still sing it.)