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Jewish community celebrates Sukkot

  • Arthur Seligman with the lulav at the mobile Sukkah.

Published: Sep 26, 2013

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The Bahamas had its first ever mobile Sukkah this year, to honor the Jewish holiday of Sukkot.

“After the more introspective holidays we had recently, like Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, Sukkot is considered a festive holiday of jubilation and rejoicing,” said Rabbi Sholom Bluming, leader of the Nassau Jewish community, explaining the meaning of the holiday that ended on Wednesday.

Sukkot commemorates the 40 years that the Jews were protected by God, during their exodus from Egypt. A Sukkah is a small temporary shelter that is symbolic of this protection.

The Sukkah provides rich metaphors for our daily lives.

As much as modern technological innovations provide meaning, stability and permanence to life, the Sukkah reminds people that just as the fragile booth can be blown away by the wind, so can we, urging us to realize how precious life is.

The Sukkah provides an opportunity to step back, to think about a simpler time of life, and realize how blessed we truly are.

“For seven days, Jewish people eat, drink and celebrate in their Sukkots,” Bluming said.

A Sukkah is traditionally built from wood and branches and is most commonly found in fixed locations, such as a backyard.

Bluming said his mobile Sukkah, which is housed on the bed of a pickup truck, was intended to share the message of joy and festivity to all.

“In today’s fast-paced world, we must make religion mobile and accessible to everyone,” he said.

Celebrants inside the Sukkah recite a prayer as they hold the lulav, a tightly closed palm frond and branches of myrtle and willow tied together. Celebrants also hold an etrog, which is a yellow citron fruit that looks similar to a lemon.

“The different plants represent the different kinds of Jewish people and having them together symbolizes all people united as one,” Bluming said.

•For more information on the mobile Sukkah, contact Bluming at rabbibluming@yahoo.com.

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Last Updated on Friday, 11 October 2013 21:07


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