Adam Milstein, the well respected Jewish philanthropist and activist, is also a well known writer. He writes for major Jewish publications, such as the Times of Israel. In a recent article on the Times of Israel blog, Adam Milstein wrote that pride and courage are the two biggest gifts we can give to our children.
He talked about the Maccabees. The Maccabees is the name for a group of Jews during the time of the second Temple. The Greeks had decreed that the Jews should be forbidden to conduct their religious ceremonies. The Maccabees were just a small group of Jews, but they did not shy away from standing up for their rights and their way of living. In the miracle that is celebrated by Jews every year on Hanukkah, the Maccabees managed to defeat the Greeks, even though the Greeks had a much larger army than them.
Adam Milstein says that we have to emulate the Maccabees. We have to stand up for ourselves and for the Jewish people. We need to give over to our children the gifts that will help the Jewish people continue to exist and thrive.
The first of these gifts is pride. You have to have pride that you are Jewish. Adam Milstein says that when he grew up, he was proud to be a Jew. That is how he was raised. He wrote in the Times of Israel that if you can not be proud of your heritage, you will find no reason to stand up for yourself and to continue in the traditions that have kept the Jewish people alive for so many years. That is why we need to install pride in our children. We need to teach them how to be good Jews. We need to show them how fortunate they are to be Jewish. This way, they will continue our tradition and keep the flame alive. We also have to install in our children a sense of pride about the State of Israel. After all, it was founded against all odds, despite all the things that stood in its path.