Saturday, October 18, 2008

A thought that occurred to me as I was building the Succah

There is a joke that goes:

Q: Why did God command Sukkot?

A: So that Jewish men would learn to use tools.

There may be something in that - that we should never forget how to build portable dwellings or a tabernacle. We note, after all, that Sukkot is a remembrance of being brought forth from Egypt. The holiday is commanded so that God had us dwell in booths when we left Egypt. Its not a bad skill for a Jew to have - the ability to create a dwelling with ready to hand materials, to make homes for ourselves even as we depart from whatever Egypt we happen to find ourselves in. The Sukkah is an instrument of our deliverance, and I never understood properly God's instructions to Moses concerning the building of the tabernacle until I had built a Sukkah.

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