The tradition of lighting the menorah for the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah is a beautiful and meaningful celebration. The eight candles are lit according to an ancient ritual and are done in a special pattern, so let’s take a look at exactly what order the Hanukkah candles are lit.
The Order Of Lighting
The first night of Hanukkah starts with the lighting of the shamash (the helper candle). After the shamash candle is lit, it is used to light the first candle for that night, which is then placed on the far right side.
For the second night of Hanukkah, you light two candles. First, you light the shamash candle, and then use it to light the second candle and place this candle to the left of the first candle.
For the third, fourth and so on up to eighth night, you repeat this same process. Light the shamash candle and then use it to light successive candles, starting from the right side, and moving left. A total of eight candles will have been lit by the last night.
Which Candle Is Lit First?
The first candle for each evening is lit after lighting the shamash candle. It is always lit on the far right-hand side and is referred to as the candle of ‘increasing holiness’. The candle on the far left of the menorah is referred to as ‘the candle of climax’, and is lit last.
How Do I Remember It?
The best way to remember the order in which the candles are lit is to remember the phrase “Right to Left, Increasing Holiness”. This phrase is a convenient reminder that helps to keep the order of candle lighting in mind each evening of Hanukkah.
Hanukkah is a time of great joy and celebration. Lighting the menorah in the correct order is an important part of this time. As such, it is very important to understand the order and the process of lighting the menorah. Keeping the phrase “Right to Left, Increasing Holiness” in mind can help one to easily remember the order of the candles from night to night.
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Last update 2023-11-27. Price and product availability may change.