017: When Life Gives You Lulavs: It’s a Mitzvah to be happy on Sukkot

It’s the first holiday after the high holy days – so yes, the third holiday this month. At Sukkot, the fall harvest festival, it’s a mitzvah to be happy. But I’m not happy.

“Lately, the world has felt like a dark and chaotic place. At night, you fall asleep to news of military attacks in Syria, and in the morning you wake up to images of a mass shooting at a synagogue in Germany, or a shopping center, or a country music concert. On top of all of this is the constant drumbeat of corruption, lies, and hard-heartedness coming from our nation’s capital.”

Kveller

I’ve been sick more often than not this month. Money is tight. The President of the United States is an anti-semitic, anti-Muslim fool. He just took an action in Syria that cemented the fact that he’s a Russian agent, doesn’t care about anyone but himself, and will openly joke about innocent people being murdered in the streets (they have “plenty of sand to play with over there”). Asshole.

And then I went to Friday night Shabbat service at Nefesh during Sukkot. We were outside; it’s nice out and it’s a mitzvah to be out in the sukkah during this 8-day harvest holiday. I found myself filled with more music and joy than I had been at any other service.

I smiled, I connected, and I even tried to remember some Hebrew instead of always looking at the page (more on that last time, with mixed results).

It felt good. For a brief while, Shabbat did what it’s supposed to do. You unplug, you gather, you sing, you eat, you pray, and you replenish.

More Shabbat, please.

Posted Friday, November 8, 2019. Shabbat Shalom!


Concepts from When Life Gives You Lulavs: It’s a Mitzvah to be Happy

And a little humor for you about HaShem and huts.