ࡱ> WZX` bjbjss 02nnnnnnnN N N N T z  $0hn` ``nn 4`Vn n `V!@nny s+N Za J0zm @@y@nyh +    z```` D $nnnnnn0 Florence Melton Adult Mini-School Section: Rhythms of Jewish Living http://mcohen02.tripod.com/rhythms.html Instructor: Marsha B. Cohen E-mail: marbcohen@gmail.com http://mcohen02.tripod.com/rhythms.html Topic: Sukkot Key Idea: Sukkot ("Booths" or "Tabernacles") is referred in the kiddush and liturgical festival inserts as "z'man simchateinu"the season of our joy. Historically it commemorates the Exodus from Egypt, after which the Israelites dwelled in booths during their wandering in the desert (Lev. 23:42-43), and agriculturally it marks the final harvest before the onset of the winter rains in the Land of Israel. Sukkot is the first harvest festival of the new calendar year but the third and last of the cycle of harvest/pilgrimage festivals (shalosh regalim) which began with Pesach (Passover) in Nisan. It begins on the 15th of Tishrei, on which is there is a full moon. The full moons beginning Pesach and Sukkot are exactly 6 lunar months apart. The first and last day(s) of Sukkot is (Reform)/are (traditionally) observed as full holidays (lighting candles, abstention from work, festival service at the synagogue) followed by 5 intermediate days. (Numbers 29:17-34). Additionally, Sukkot is uniquely observed by dwelling in a sukkah, a fragile shelter made of natural materials, and by the gathering and waving of the arba minim (4 species): lulav (palm branch), hadas (myrtle), aravot (willows) bound together, and an etrog (citron). These species were abundant and readily available to everyone in Israel. Many symbolic explanations have been given of the sukkah and of these 4 species, which generally are seen as symbolizing God's protection, bounty and blessings. Maimonides suggests they symbolize the change from life in the wilderness to life in a land of rivers and fruit trees. With its emphasis on nature and Gods protection of his creatures, Sukkot is the most universal of the Jewish holidays, and it is customary to invite guests, both living and ancestral, into the sukkah. The 7th day of Sukkot, Hoshana Rabba, is marked by the beating of the willows of the lulav at the synagogue, and is considered to be the day upon which the final seal is placed on the Yom Kippur verdict. Our discussion of the texts: Text 1. Deuteronomy 16: 13-17. Sukkot as a pilgrimage festival. Text 2. Leviticus 23:39-44. The biblical commandments to observe Sukkot by dwelling in booths and taking the arbah minim (4 species). Suppl. text. Nehemiah 8:13-18. Ezra (458 BCE) and Nehemiah (c. 444-432 BCE) come to Jerusalem from Persia, bringing with them the teachings of the Torah. (According to rabbinic Seder Olam based chronology, Ezra came to Jerusalem in 348 BCE and Nehemiah in 335 BCE.) Text 3. Blessing (beracha) recited on dwelling in the sukkah. What ritual action(s) does dwelling in the sukkah require in order to fulfill the mitzvah? Text 4. Babylonian Talmud, Sukkah 28b. The obligation to dwell in the sukkah. Text 5. RaSHBaM (Rabbi Shmuel ben Meir, 1085-1158). The sukkah is a reminder of the gratitude owed to God for the land, for homes, for material prosperity and for well-being. Israelites. Text 6. Rabbi Irving (Yitz) Greenberg. Sukkot: the Reenactment of the Exodus Journey. Lessons that can be learned from the construction requirements of a sukkah. Text 7. Rabbi Marc Angel, The Pilgrim Festivals. Recapturing the feeling of wandering experienced by the ancient Israelites by dwelling in the sukkah. Text 8. Rabbi Rebecca Alpert and Jacob Staub, The Rhythm of the Calendar. The shift of mood between Yom Kippur and Sukkot. Text 9. Monford Harris, A Dwelling in History. The sukkah as historic space. Text 10. Blessing (beracha) recited before waving the arbah minim (four species). Text 11. Midrash Rabbah, Leviticus 30. The symbolism of the lulav and the etrog Text 12. Ari Goldman, The Four Species. An anthropological approach to the lulav and etrog. 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