Not because suburban native Matthew Miller named himself after Mattathias, head of the family that took back the Temple in Jerusalem from the Assyrians, giving us the holiday. Not because he became a Chassidic reggae superstar. Not because last Hanukkah he shaved his beard and announced: “No more Chassidic reggae superstar.” Not because this Hanukkah his latest album Spark Seeker is Number 1 on the Billboard Reggae chart, a position it has held for weeks. Not even because his single Happy Hanukkah is a joyous and irresistible rap reggae celebration about all that is good about the holiday, from which all proceeds go to Hurricane Sandy relief:
I wanna give a gift to you
Light up the night, my love shine through
From Mount Zion, this is what we do
Bring love to you
Matisyahu is a miracle because he did and is doing what we are supposed to do. Follow your light where it takes you, wherever it takes you. Wherever that is, when you get there, if you get there, shine a light of your own. It is a chance to make yourself happy and to make other people happy. And even if you are not sure you are there, or even sure where you are, celebrate anyway. It’s Hanukkah.