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 The Reasons for the Dispute Menorah In The Courtyard

The Difference Between the Reasons

"Beit Hillel says, "The first night light one and add one more each succeeding night... one given reason is that it corresponds to the days that passed... (another reason is that) in matters of holiness, one should always increase and not decrease." (Shabbat 21b)


What is the halachic difference between the two approaches to explain the opinion of Beit Hillel?

One difference may be as follows: When someone is extremely limited with resources, and on the second night of Chanukah lights only one candle, if on the third night he has sufficient resources, how many should he kindle?

According to those who assert that Beit Hillel's opinion is based on the days that passed, he would have to light three candles. According to the explanation that it is necessary to increase in holiness and not decrease, it would be sufficient to light only two candles, since the night before he only lit one.

Another difference would be in the event that on the third night of Chanukah one had resources sufficient only for two candles, how many should he light? If Beit Hillel's opinion follows the days that passed, in this case, since one cannot light three candles, one will light only a single candle, in order to fulfill the basic obligation of lighting a candle each night of Chanukah.

According to the other explanation, one would light two candles. Though one cannot accomplish the increase in matters of holiness, at least one will not violate the command of not to decrease in matters of holiness.

 The Reasons for the Dispute Menorah In The Courtyard

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