Jacob settled, vayeishev, is a telling title for the name of our Torah portion this week. Jacob, now interchangeably known by the name Israel, has settled both into a physical place and into who he is as a person. Having witnessed his children move into adulthood facing similar struggles to those he endured, he is in a place to take stock of his legacy.
Why is it that we read this portion each year at Chanukah? As we celebrate light and miracles during the darkest time of the year, Torah reminds us that we are invited to settle in and take stock of where we are. Like Jacob, we can look back at family stories and rededicate ourselves to a life that brings light into the darkness.
– Rabbi Kate Speizer