Honorable Mensch-ion

The Sukkah

Rabbi Guzik and I asked our son this week, “What do you do on Yom Kippur?” He answered, “You build a sukkah.” While he may have been a few days ahead of the rest of the Jewish world, I also think his answer was fairly accurate. As Yom Kippur concluded with the Neilah service, I watched as thousands of our Sinai Temple family draped their tallitot over their children’s heads, and recited the birkat kohanim, the priestly blessing. The only image I could think of was a sukkah, a sheltering presence above our heads.

The Rabbis ask, “If God could surely do anything, why did God only provide temporary dwellings, and not homes above the people of Israel? The sukkah is another reminder that the only eternal dwelling is under God. Over this High Holy Day season, we reunited with old friends and met new ones, we missed the presence of loved ones lost, and celebrated the company of those who were born. We were constantly reminded of the fragility of life, while being cognizant of the blessings before our eyes. Over the next week, we will eat under the stars, enjoying the miracle of God’s natural beauty, reminded once again to be grateful for each day God grants us, permitting us to find sparks of joy. For as we look through the sukkah roof, we once again remember whose shelter of wings we are upon.

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