Jewish Journal

Tag: Sukkah

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  • Hurricane Joaquin: Can Jews take down their sukkahs for a storm?

    1 week ago

    As Hurricane Joaquin gains steam off the southeastern coast of the United States, the question has begun to circulate online: Are Jews allowed to take down their sukkahs in the case of a storm?

    The holiday of Sukkot, which began last Sunday, runs through this Sunday evening....

  • Sukkot in Nepal

    By Danielle Berrin

    1 week ago

    Right now in Nepal, a group of Tibetan Buddhist nuns is trapped in the city of Katmandu, living in sukkot.

    Not the beautifully decorated, religiously infused sukkot — or “dwellings” — erected as part of the Jewish High Holy Days. Not the kind in which delicious meals are served,...

  • The backyard pilgrim

    By Rob Eshman

    1 week ago

    Just after I built our sukkah this year, my wife and I sat on the swing bench that faces it and admired my handiwork.

    As far as I know, there is no blessing to say when a husband who isn’t especially handy builds a sukkah, but there ought to be. The one I always recite in my head...

  • Dwelling in divine providence: An introduction to Sukkot for 2015 / 5776

    By Rabbi Yonah Bookstein

    2 weeks ago

    As the sun sets on Sunday, September 27th, we begin Sukkot, a spiritual harvest festival commemorating the historic journey of the ancient Hebrews across the desert, the bounty of the fall harvest, and our reliance on God. The first two days are Yom Tov, followed by five days of...

  • Rooted in the land, creating contemporary community

    By Esther D. Kustanowitz

    2 weeks ago

    Traditionally, the sukkah is a symbol of shelter, a shade from the elements, that simultaneously conveys both safety and impermanence. By building and sitting in a sukkah every year during the harvest holiday of Sukkot, Jews everywhere acknowledge this duality — creating the space...

  • HOME: Eco-friendly disposable tableware for Sukkot

    By Jonathan Fong

    2 weeks ago

    When you’re dining under the stars in your sukkah, the last thing you want to think about is washing dishes. Fortunately, an array of stylish, eco-friendly, disposable plates and cutlery is available to dress up your table while making cleanup a breeze. 

    Because Sukkot is a...

  • Inside the sukkah: Reflected light

    2 weeks ago

    What is it about lights twinkling in the darkness that is so … transporting? Is it the contrast between dark and light, or the subliminal message that nothing is ever entirely dark after all?  Is it a primal reminder, wired into our souls via its association with stars and the...

  • The value of touch

    By David Suissa

    2 weeks ago

    One of the most overlooked aspects of Judaism is its obsession with material things. Yes, it’s true that our tradition is full of powerful stories, ideas and values. But those are cerebral. For me, the hidden beauty of Judaism is in the concrete — the things we can touch.

    We can...

  • Power to the table

    By David Suissa

    October 20, 2014 | 5:59 pm

    While we were having our meals in the sukkah this year, I kept thinking about another holiday. This is odd because Sukkot has a strong and distinctive personality. The very idea of building a sukkah is unusual. For eight days, this little hut is the center of our lives, which, in...

  • Fasten your seat belts: The drive-thru sukkah awaits

    October 13, 2014 | 3:41 pm

    Last week we reported on the pedi-sukkah — essentially a tricycle rickshaw with a sukkah attached, designed to bring the holiday of Sukkot to the people.

    But for those on-the-go types who prefer to travel through, rather than in, their (very) temporary dwelling, there’s another...

  • What’s Your Sukkah?

    By Beit T'shuvah

    October 10, 2014 | 9:47 am

    By Rabbi Paul Steinberg

    Jews argue.  It’s written into our history; it’s written into how we approach life.  Why is that? Well, Judaism wisely understands that the truth is manifold.  A does not have to equal A.  A can be B, A can be C, or any other number of possibilities, and...

  • Building a stable sukkah, building a stable L.A.

    By Rob Eshman

    October 8, 2014 | 10:14 am

    Many years ago, my wife and I lived in a ground-floor apartment in the Ocean Park section of Santa Monica, on a hill with a view of the bay.

    When Sukkot came around, my wife naturally expected me to build the hut — the sukkah — in which Jews are commanded to eat, and even...

  • Sukkot: The most romantic of Jewish holidays

    By Danielle Berrin

    October 7, 2014 | 2:27 pm

    Sukkot is my holiday.

    It’s been obvious since my girlhood, even before I saw “Titanic” a dozen times, that love stories ignite me and are my preferred mode of engagement with the world. I’m partial to eros, of course, but any love will do: filial, platonic, philosophical,...

  • Time to build a Sukkah

    October 7, 2014 | 1:43 pm

    After you break the fast, it’s time to break out the tools. One of the most authentic ways to celebrate this ancient harvest festival is to build a sukkah (booth) of your own. 

    Today, the celebration of Sukkot is a way to connect with our Jewish past — to commemorate the 40 years...

  • Desperately seeking Sukkot supplies on Pico-Robertson

    By Tess Cutler

    October 7, 2014 | 1:18 pm

    Yeshiva boys don’t sell lemonade; they sell etrogs. 

    “Etrog! Get your etrog!” a pre-pubescent voice shouted as I ventured down Pico Boulevard on Oct. 5, when sidewalks became home to an etrog bidding war that would make Sotheby’s cower in shame. I’ve bartered at shuks in...

  • Torah portion: Embracing impermanence during Sukkot

    By Rabbi Anne Brener

    October 7, 2014 | 11:08 am

    When I was visiting Albuquerque, N.M., a number of years ago, a friend brought me to visit the nearby Native American community to observe the annual corn dance. As we entered the space where this harvest ritual would be performed, I noticed that all of the participants began by...

  • Limitation Drives Innovation: A Sukkot Message

    October 6, 2014 | 10:54 am

    Give children everything, and you give them nothing. 

    In a world where endless information and the world’s leading experts on a myriad of topics are literally a quick click away, it is easy to assume that unbounded learning environments are critical to both creativity and...

  • Tu b’Shevat: Pom Wonderful

    By Rob Eshman

    January 10, 2014 | 1:10 pm

    We moved into our house in Venice almost 18 years ago this week. We’d been house hunting for months and had despaired of finding anything on the Westside for less than a bazillion dollars. When we drove up to our future home, my wife, who was pregnant at the time, was too tired to...

  • Cracking open our hearts

    By Rabbi Laura Geller

    September 24, 2013 | 3:50 pm

    Tradition tells us that the Gates of Repentance stay open until the end of Sukkot. The intensity of Yom Kippur has diminished, but we still remember the hours together, knocking on our hearts, trying to do spiritual CPR, to wake us up to the truth of our lives. On Yom Kippur, we...

  • Sukkah Hill Spirits: The spirit of Sukkot

    By Jared Sichel

    September 18, 2013 | 3:14 pm

    Howard Witkin sleeps only about three hours each night. He has a wife and four children, runs a life insurance company, is the lead organizer of the Los Angeles Community Eruv and has spent the last 14 months battling cancer.

    Oh, and he and his wife, Marni, just released an etrog...

  • Sukkot veggie heaven

    September 18, 2013 | 3:05 pm

    Sukkot is a wonderful time of year to incorporate seasonal ingredients into your cooking. Beets, cabbage and squash are vegetables that are especially delicious at this time of year and work well in many recipes. Sukkot also reminds me of savory sweet and sour dishes that we ate in...

  • A homeless heart for Sukkot

    September 18, 2013 | 1:36 pm

    I want to tell you about a man I’ll call Jack. Jack was a man who slept under the 405 underpass that I cross on my walk to synagogue every Shabbat. For a long time, I didn’t really see him. He was tucked away in the bushes next to the on-ramp. But that’s not what kept me from...

  • Feast or Famine: Sukkot

    September 18, 2013 | 12:30 pm

    According to the rabbis, the holiday of Sukkot commemorates the 40 years of wandering in the Sinai Desert, and we eat and sleep in a sukkah — that temporary structure made with a roof of dried vegetation, such as palm fronds — because the Israelites slept in sukkot (the plural of...

  • Sukkot Calendar 2013

    By Laura Donney

    September 18, 2013 | 11:18 am

    SUN | SEPT 22


    Get your harvesting on in Malibu! The Shalom Institute is offering a day filled with organic gardening, ziplining, nature walks and music. Families can also indulge in arts and crafts and meet animals in the Pinat Chai Animal Center. Kosher...

  • Making the sukkah beautiful

    September 17, 2013 | 3:26 pm

    I built my first sukkah three years ago. It was your typical sukkah in a kit — a metal pole and tarp structure, stark white and generic. As I decorated it, I realized that no matter how many plastic fruits and vegetables I hung from the sides and ceiling, they seemed to get lost in...

  • Is beauty a Jewish value?

    By David Suissa

    September 17, 2013 | 11:01 am

    When we talk about Jewish values, we usually refer to things like justice, compassion, generosity, humility, honesty, faith, wisdom and so on. We rarely talk about beauty.

    Beauty is vain and superficial, we’re so often told.

    And yet, the word “beautiful” is prominent on this...

  • Mitzvahland: For all your Jewish needs

    By Rob Eshman

    September 17, 2013 | 10:43 am

    On Sunday, my wife and I drove out to the Valley to buy a new sukkah. It was time. I’d bought our old sukkah from an Armenian Catholic who supplied booths to vendors in farmers’ markets. When his orders began to spike in September, he realized he could have a good little side...

  • At Sukkot, turning oy into the season of joy

    September 9, 2013 | 12:03 pm

    In open opposition to Kohelet (Ecclesiastes), which tells us on Sukkot “there is nothing new under the sun,” I decided to build a solar sukkah this fall. To energize my plan, I went to the 99 Cent Store to buy some solar yard lights to adapt for use on the roof.

    However, while...

  • Buy a sign, build a sukkah

    September 4, 2013 | 11:21 am

    Four Jewish institutions have teamed up to build a sukkah composed entirely of homeless signs. They are asking the public to purchase and donate the signs in time for the Jewish holiday of Sukkot.

    New Community Jewish High School, Milken Community High School, Valley Beth Shalom...

  • I am buying homeless signs for Sukkot this year

    By Rob Eshman

    August 15, 2013 | 9:57 am

    I started building my sukkah in December. To those of you who are sukkah DIYers, you know how ridiculous this sounds.

    A sukkah is the ritual hut that Jews build each year on the holiday of Sukkot, which begins this year on the evening of Sept. 18. You set it up after Yom Kippur,...

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