Ceremonies /
Sukkot
Tractate Sukkot

Bustan Group, 5768

The Sukkot holiday invites us, friends, families, adults, children and infants, to sit together in the Sukkah, to rejoice with what we have, and to greet the daily routine of the year ahead of us with appreciation, love, and great joy.

"In Sukkot you shall dwell for seven days. All the citizens of Israel shall dwell in Sukkot, so that your generations may know that in Sukkot I had settled the children of Israel when bringing them out of the land of Egypt" (Exodus 23)

When the children of Israel left Egypt, they went through the desert many days and nights before they reached the Land of Israel. In those days they had no vehicles besides their strong feet, and sometimes also donkeys, camels and horses helped them on the long journey to the Land of Israel. When they stopped for intervals and for several days of rest they built sukkot - like the one we are sitting in now.  In the sukkah they prepared food, ate and slept. Even when they arrived in Israel they lived in Sukkot and tents. In different periods (until not too long ago) people came to the Land of Israel and lived in sukkot or in tents in which they settled and were satisfied with the little they had.

 

We celebrate the holiday of Sukkot in order to remember each year anew that we can manage with very few things and appreciate what nature provides (branches for shelter and fruit for food)

 

 

A Hammer, A Nail

A hammer, a nail              

We'll take rapidly,

A Sukkah to build

Both Boys and girls you see

 

A Sukkah of Peace

A Sukkah is also called "A Sukkah of Peace". It symbolizes the yearning for peace of all of humanity.

We shall gather planks and branches for Sechach and

decorate the Sukkah cover in honor of the festival

 

Rush, rush, be quick

No time to delay

Tomorrow evening - is the holiday

 

"Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore"

In the time of peace, people will turn their war tools into construction tools because there will be no need for war tools. We too yearn for peace between countries and among people.

Shlomit is building a Sukkah of Peace-Naomi Shemer
 

Full of light and greenery

That's why today she's so busy.

But it's not simply a Sukkah

Full of light and greenery -

Shlomit is building a Sukkah of peace

She will not forget to lay out

The lulav and the myrtle leaves

A branch of green willow,

A pomegranate within its leaves,

And all the fruits of autumn,

With its fragrance of orange groves.

 

And when Shlomit says

Look! It's already finished!

Suddenly something wondrous will happen:

All the neighbors will come,

It will be a swarm -

And there will be room for everyone!

Then, through the roof of branches,

With a bright glow as though it were a diamond

She will spot a star, saying:

-Shalom, wondrous Sukkah,

How fine and how pleasing it is -

That Shlomit build a Sukkah of peace.


 

During Sukkot, it is customary both to visit and to host others. Friends, family and acquaintances gather together in various Sukkot and carry out the important custom of being hospitable.

 

* Relate a short anecdote about a place you were a guest at and about guests you have hosted.

 

A Guest/ Naomi Shemer

 

If at the gate a guest appears

One who arrives from overseas

What is it that we have to offer

To the guest who came from far

 

Chorus: A basket of greens, a white flower

Red wine, and bread dipped in salt

Is all we have to offer

You are welcome here and may have what is ours

 

Sit here with us, this is our house

A shutter faces the desert yonder

Sit here you're welcome as one of us

And not as an unknown wanderer

A basket of greens...

And this heart, the simpleton

That does not acquire wisdom

Is aroused and cheers once more

To far out lands – galore

 

A basket of greens...

 

The company is gone

The shutters open and close again

The lively table now barren

And this is what remains:

 

A basket of greens...

 

Quiz:

  1. Which holidays precede Sukkot? (Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur)

  2. (for very small children) What do we build on Sukkot? (A Sukkah)

  3. With what do we decorate the Sukkah? )Palm Fronds, fruit, plants and other items..)

  4. What can we see through the Sechach? (The covering of the Sukkah) (the sky, the moon and the stars)

  5. What name do we use to refer to the guests who visit the Sukkah? (Ushpizin)

 

And you Shall Rejoice in your Holiday and You shall be only Happy

(Read dramatically and humorously...)

And how was this joy: the flute and the violin were played as well as the harps and the cymbals, and each and every one, made marry with a musical instrument he knew how to play, and whoever sang well, sang. And they danced and sprang and whirled and swayed, each and every one to the best of his ability, and they filled their mouths with songs and praise...

It is a positive commandment to increase this merriment. And it was not joined by the illiterate, and just anyone who felt like participating, rather, those who took part in it were the prominent scholars of Israel, and those who stood at the head of yeshivas, members of the Sanhedrin and the Hassidim and elders and those known for their many deeds, those were the ones who would dance and spring and whirl and sway and rejoice in the temple throughout the Holiday of Sukkot; But the rest of the people, the men and the women: all came to see and to hear:

 

That the joy that ought to fill a person at the time he performs the commandments and with the love of G-d who ordered them, is a great service; and whomever denies himself of this joy, ought to be punished, as it is written, "Since you have not served G-d your Lord with joy and with a goodness of heart". And whoever is arrogant and honors himself, and seeks his own honor in these places: is a transgressor and a fool...

(The laws of Lulav chapter 8)

 

 

Let us sing, dance, play musical instruments and jump for joy:

My Sukkah , The Sukkah / Jacob Orland

My Sukkah, the Sukkah that's

Amazing and all green

Just for me, it is waiting for me

To get in

 

I have a grandfather so dear

With a beard white and pure

He who loves me – nonstop

Will put the Sechach on top

 

In the shade, where it's just right

It stands proud all day and night

And it's full of decorations

All  prepared for celebrations

 

My Sukkah, the Sukkah

 

Fill our Granaries with Grains

Fill our granaries with grains and our vineyards - with wine

May our houses be blessed with children and our cattle multiplied

Hey! What else do you ask of us - our homeland

What else do you ask yet?

 

Shemini Atzeret

Shemini Atzeret- is the 8th day of Sukkot in which the entire annual Torah reading is completed and a new cycle of Torah reading commences, beginning with the portion of Bereishit, which symbolizes the fact that from this day onward the everyday routine begins anew.

On Shemini Atzeret it is customary to pray for blessed rains to fall that would irrigate the soil, the trees the plants and provide us with water.

 

Let us sing and learn this dance:

And You Shall Draw Water/ traditional

And you shall draw water with joy from the wells of salvation. X2

Water, water, water, water, hey water with joy. X2

Hey, hey, hey, hey,

Water, water, water, water, water, water with joy. X2

 

Quiz:

  • In which season do we celebrate the holiday of Sukkot? (Autumn)

  • What plant symbolizes the advent of Autumn? (squill)

  • Which bird? (wagtail)

  • What is another name for the Holiday of Sukkot? (the harvest festival)

  • (for small children) How do we call the drops falling from the sky? (rain)

  • What is the Hebrew term for the first rain of the season? (Yoreh)

The Four Species

Hand them out to be felt and smelled, Recital: by two narrators alternatively

The four species are four types of plants grown in Israel: Etrog - Citron Fruit, Lulav -Palm Frond, Haddas – Myrtle Branch, Arava – Willow Branch

"What are the features the Etrog? It has taste and smell –

- So, Israel has those who have both Torah and good deeds.

Lulav – is Israel, what are the features this date? It has taste but no smell.

- So, Israel has those who have good deeds but no Torah.

Willows of the river are Israel. What are features of the willow? It has no taste nor smell.

- So, Israel has those who have no Torah and no good deeds.

May they all be combined in a single bundle and atone for each other".  (Vayikra Raba, 30, 12)

 

End the program with this song, sung in canon style:

Behold how good and pleasant it is when brothers sit together

More >

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