Sukkot embodies theme of unity
After reading the Chronicle’s cover article about lessons of Sukkot (“Lessons of Sukkot shared by Pittsburgh’s clergy and educators,” Sept. 29), I wanted to share some timely thoughts. A core theme of Sukkot is unity. The mitzvah is done with your entire body at once by just sitting and eating there. Every Jew does this mitzvah the same: Moses would not do it any better than a simple unlearned Jew.
The theme of unity continues with the lulav and etrog: The four species (date palm branch, willow, myrtle and etrog) are symbolic of different types of Jews at various levels of knowledge and observance. All Jews are represented by these species. This mitzvah requires the binding and holding together of all of them. We shake them together in all six directions with the intention of bringing peace into our world.
This is a lesson for all of us in these challenging times: Despite divergent observances and opinions, we must see ourselves as one unified, mutually respectful family. We must stay mindful of this within our own communities and regarding Israel. As we say three times a day in the Amidah: “Bless us, our Father, all of us as one, with the light of Your countenance…with Your peace.”