Be the Light Amidst the Darkness

December 14, 2023
Sofie Glassman

Long Island, New York, United States

Class of 2025

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In the BBG chapter opening ceremonies, the Red Book states, “The light of the menorah symbolizes the knowledge and strength of our Order.” While we hear this at every BBG chapter meeting, we do not always think about the meaning. So, what does this mean?

When lighting the Chanukah menorah, we light the Shamash (middle candle) first and use that to light the others. The flame from the first candle lights the other candles without compromising the light of the Shamash. Each and every individual candle burns brightly and has the potential to spread its flame to countless other candles. The more flames lit, the brighter the light. Just like candles, each and every one of us has a light inside of us, and we can shine on an infinite number of people. 

Like the rest of the entire Jewish community, since October 7, it has been immensely more difficult to find that light inside of myself. With antisemitism increasing by over 400 percent across the United States, it is even more important that our light shines more brightly than ever. We, as Jewish teens, have a voice, and it will be heard. Post on social media and boost positive posts about Israel, share, like, comment on, and repost them. Attend rallies in your local community, and show your Jewish pride in every way possible. Most importantly, do not live in fear. Together, let’s speak out, no matter what.

Going into BBYO’s centennial year, the international order of  BBYO has defied the odds, surviving through centuries of hate and bigotry towards the Jewish people. We, as individuals have the same knowledge and strength to do the same. BBYO would not have survived and thrived for 100 years without every single Aleph and BBG putting in their effort to make BBYO what it is today. Just like BBYO, we each play an imperative role in the Jewish community.  The more united we, as the Jewish people, are, the brighter our collective lights will shine, overshadowing the hatred and darkness in the world.

Sofie Glassman is a BBG living in Long Island, New York. She spends all of her time outside of school getting more involved in the Jewish community and fighting Antisemitism.

All views expressed on content written for The Shofar represent the opinions and thoughts of the individual authors. The author biography represents the author at the time in which they were in BBYO.

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