This week is the holiday of Succot, the Feast of Tabernacles, and the middle of Sukkot falls on Shabbat, so once again the regular Torah reading is suspended and a special portion for the holiday is read instead.
This week we celebrate one of my favorite holidays… Succot, the Feast of Tabernacles. It is quite remarkable that the Torah readings discuss sacrifices brought to the Temple thousands of years ago.
The first month of the Jewish year is always an exciting one. Rosh Hashana, the Jewish new year, catapults us right into a festive celebration of this year’s potential – we say special prayers, we blow the shofar, and we eat special foods that symbolize the blessings we hope to benefit from and bring with us into the new year.
But beyond the joy that we all feel in the birth of a new baby, the Brit itself has such a special significance to us as individuals and as a people. Some 4,000 years ago, an old man named Abraham heard the call from G-d to leave his home and go forward to the Land of Israel. Some years after his arrival in the land, G-d commanded him to circumcise himself as an act of covenant between him and G-d, an act of covenant that would be repeated by his descendants forever. At the original covenant with Abraham, G-d changed Abraham’s name from Abram to Abraham.
October 2011 I found myself daydreaming last night while washing the dishes from dinner. My sink looks out onto our porch where our Feast of Tabernacle booth, our Sukka, stands, slightly darkening the kitchen. The Feast of Tabernacles is one of my favorite Jewish holidays. Maybe because it comes on the heels of the High … Read more