I walk around my sparkling bright city of Modi’in and everywhere I see sukkot. I see them on balconies, in front of houses, in plazas next to apartment buildings, in front of restaurants, even at the health club. And you don’t have to be traditionally observant to have one. Lots of our non-traditional neighbors have built them too– some using the same materials we use, others draping sheets or cloth across wood or metal and placing decorations inside.
I find these sukkot to be captivating. I began to think about what it was that captivates me and I realized that for me it is analogous to seeing a very tiny baby. Who doesn’t feel love and compassion and especially protectiveness toward a little baby? And why? Because babies are so very vulnerable. They are completely and totally dependent on someone else to care for them.
The sukkot, to me, represent that same vulnerability. We are strong, we live in big stone buildings. We have indoor plumbing and washers and dryers and air conditioners– but one week a year, we are vulnerable. We represent ourselves out there on the street or balcony or shopping center as vulnerable. And as I looked at am yisrael, the people of Israel, putting ourselves out there, open and vulnerable, I thought of two things: how despite the fact that we live under a constant state of threat, we are willing to make ourselves vulnerable and how it is only because of a deep and abiding faith that we continue to do it.
I pray that our Protector will continue to protect us and that sukkot will be a holiday of pure joy when we can know that despite the frailness of our dwellings, we are safe.