When I first conceived this series for the holiday of Hanukkah, I wanted to focus on the Negev and Beer Sheva. Problem is, no part of the Hanukkah story happens in the Negev. The hills and mountains around Jerusalem are where all the action is. Even with the establishment of the Hasmonean dynasty after the victory of Judah Maccabee and his merry men against the Greeks, Jews don’t spread out into the Negev. The farthest south settlement of Jews from the Second Temple Period is north of Beer Sheva (read about those findings here).
Yet, the familiar refrain of Hanukkah, Nes Gadol Haya Po, a Great Miracle Happened Here, can be applied to Beer Sheva and the Negev throughout history and until today. This 8-part series will examine this connection.
*The first two articles will focus on Nes – Miracles. Miracles signify the aligning of conditions to be just right for something amazing to happen. Many surprising circumstances in Beer Sheva and the Negev have had miraculous outcomes. First post on Nes here Hydrogen Energy Storage. Second post on Lahav Forest here.
*The next two posts will focus on Gadol – Greatness. In these two, I examine two great mayors of Beer Sheva and their contributions to the city. Third post on David Tuviyahu. Fourth post on Yitzhak Rager.
*We will then look at Haya – the Past. In these I will look at some interesting events in the Negev’s past.
*Our series will be rounded out with Po – Here. We will look at the here and now in Beer Sheva and the Negev through the people who live here.