bloggie

wednesday, october 22, 2014 2:37 pm zst

people in glass houses sink ships

hyperlinkopotamus

franco cbi left a comment at 5:54 am 10/18
franco cbi left a comment at 2:45 pm 10/13
evariste @ large is also here
kianb left a comment at 11:19 am 10/21
evariste @ large, franco cbi, zorkmidden, and RIP Ford have also commented
franco cbi left a comment at 4:10 pm 10/11
packen left a comment at 6:32 am 10/13
evariste @ large, zorkmidden, and franco cbi have also commented
franco cbi left a comment at 12:27 am 10/09
evariste @ large is also here
franco cbi left a comment at 1:21 pm 10/09
packen left a comment at 6:35 am 10/08
evariste @ large and zorkmidden have also commented
franco cbi left a comment at 6:36 am 10/07
evariste @ large is also here

Sukkot; Symbols & Symbolism

Sukkot (or Succos, for Ashkenazim), comes right on the heels of the somber and reflective "High Holy Days" of Rosh HaShana and Yom Kippur. Jews are commanded - twice - to be happy: (Deuteronomy 16:13-15) You shall make the festival of Sukkos.. You shall rejoice on your festival .. A seven day period shall you celebrate to Hashem .. and you will be completely joyous. ("V'samachta BeChagecha .. V'Hayita Ach Sameyach"). Now that we have repented our sins and been judged favorably, we celebrate - joyously. Many have the custom to begin building the Sukka on the night that Yom Kippur ends.

Judaism is replete with symbols. But most of these are either Rabbinic or custom-based. Sukkot is notable for its many biblically mandated symbols: (Leviticus 23:40) On the first day, you will take for yourselves a fruit of a beautiful tree, palm branches, twigs of a braided tree and brook willows, and you will rejoice before the L-RD your G-d for seven days.. We call these the "Arba Minim", the four species: the Etrog, a citrus-like fruit; the Lulav, the center-branch from a date-palm tree; 3 Hadasim, myrtle branches; and 2 Aravot, branches from a willow. We bind the branches together and hold them together with the Etrog and wave them in the six directions: forward, right, back, left, up, and down - symbolizing that G-d is all around us. Some say (based on their shapes) that the Lulav symbolizes the spine; the Etrog, the heart; the Hadas the eyes; and the Arava, the lips, showing that we serve Hashem with our entirety. Others point out that the Etrog has both a beautiful fragrance and taste, where the hadas has a beautiful fragrance and but is inedible, the lulav (at least the dates) can be eaten, and the Aravos have neither quality - symbolizing that all Jews - those with Torah and Good Deeds, Good Deeds but no Torah, Torah but no Deeds and those devoid of either, must all join together in the service of G-d.

lulavEsrog.jpg
The "Arba Minim", or "four species": Etrog, Lulav, Hadasim and Aravot


Of course, the name of the holiday itself comes from the Sukkos, or huts, that we are commanded to live in: (Leviticus 23:42) You shall dwell in booths for seven days; every natives in Israel shall dwell in booths. This is a rare time we are told why: (ibid, 43) So that your generation will know that I caused the Children of Israel to dwell in booths when I took them from the land of Egypt; I am Hashem, your God. The Talmud (Sukka 11b) cites a disagreement (naturally) if this refers to actual booths or to the "Ananei HaKavod", the Clouds of Glory that surrounded the Jews during their 40 years in the desert. One thing is clear: the construction of the Sukka, with it's flimsy roof, serves to remind us that this world is temporal, and even if we think we are safe from the elements, it's really God that controls our destiny. And this lesson is clear after seeing all of the "natural" calamities of the past year.

succa outside.jpg
Succa-exterior view (click to see full sized image)
succa inside.jpg

Succa-interior view (click to see full sized image)


You might ask, if that's so, why is the holiday now - shouldn't it be right after Passover, when the Jews left Egypt?

Some commentators explain that if we left our houses in the spring-time, it looks like we're just going out to enjoy the weather. Going out now, when summer is over and it's starting to get chilly and threatening rain - now, that makes our gentile neighbors scratch their heads at these "crazy Jews"!

The Ga'on Rabbi Eliyahu of Vilna explained that after the sin of the Golden Calf, the Clouds of Glory departed. There followed a period of intense T'shuva (repentance). Moses returned up the mountain two more times to try to gain God's complete forgiveness, finally returning with the second Luchos (tablets) on Yom Kippur [see Rashi, Sh'mos 23:11], with the directive to build the Mishkan (Tabernacle). The next day, they started collecting materials, and that lasted for three days. The day after that, the 15th of Tishrei, construction began, and that's when the Clouds returned. So, explains the Gr"a, Sukkot symbolizes God's acceptance of our T'shuva, both then and now.

This is just scratching the surface. There is much to be said about the Mussafim (extra offerings) and the 70 nations, the Ushpizin ("guests") that we welcome each night, and the theme of water that permeates the holiday, but we'll save that for another time.

This year, Sukkot begins at sundown on Monday, October 17th.

Chag Samayech!

Posted by guest author: joem on Oct 16, 2005 3:30 pm

no comments yet

recent comments

Have you noticed that 99% of the headlines about this finding didn't include King Philip 2's own name? They were
Key points: ' - Bolivia's economy grew an estimated 6.5 percent last year, among the strongest rates in
By state: [img]
By generation: ' A look at generational differences demonstrates that this is only the beginnings of a major
[img]
[ And Arizona and Alaska. ]/ ' A federal judge has just ruled that Arizona’s ban on
The bartender tells him, "we don't serve time-travelers here". A time-traveler walks into a bar...
' VATICAN CITY (AP) — Catholic bishops showed unprecedented openness Monday to accepting the real lives of many Catholics
[ What the time traveller told Steve Ballmer ]/
I like Satya Nadella much better than his predecessors.
[ #8 ]/ evariste @ large: And you were right. I tried that method before with white vinegar and
And Alaska. On October 12, 2014, Judge Timothy M. Burgess [US District Court, District of Alaska] ruled that Alaska's
[ #6 ]/ zorkmidden: a shih tzu only hears what he chooses to hear, as long as it was
[ #5 ]/ packen So my only recourse dealing with gnat problem Have they evolved
The local landowners are fixing to make bank off of tourism now.
Aww, I loved our Greek protest dog Loukanikos, only ten years old :-(
RIP Sausage, RIP Sears, and now, RIP Ford. Sweet! :)
[ #5 ]/ packen: Aww :-( I don't know how much longer Tartuffo will be with us
Glad it was Vergina that made you think of me and not Ebola :-)
Radio Shack March 2010 - 23.65 Friday - 0.90
April 2007 - 192 April 2010 - 122 Friday - 24.78. Down 87% since 2007, 80% since
Sears stock fell by 19% between Wednesday and Friday, amid rumors that suppliers are cancelling shipments due to liquidity concerns.
And North Carolina, yesterday. District Court Judge Max O. Cogburn, Jr., ruling in General Synod of the United Church
Thought of you immediately, Zorkie. Y'all have a good one. College football Saturday beckons.
Awww... My girls are getting old. They are pushing 13, which in GSD years is close to 100. They

home

this & that

bloggie pulse: circulation
last 15 minutes:
11
last hour:
37
last 24 hours:
92
bloggie pulse: comments
since midnite:
0
last 24 hours:
0
in our lifetime:
6071