Questions tagged [sukkot]

Sukkot begins on the 15th of Tishrei and lasts for 7 days, plus an additional day (two outside of Israel) of Shmini Atzeret/Simchat Torah. It is the festival of booths ("tabernacles"), one of the three main chagim.

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When can you build the sukkah?

My wife and I love the holiday of Sukkot, as do many of our friends. We build the sukkah every year and have friends over for an evening meal, preferably on Shabbes - if someone else in our group of ...
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15 votes
3 answers
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Do we say a mitzvah bracha before reading Kohelet? What about other (non-Purim) megillot?

I had been under the impression that for all five of the megillot you say a bracha before the reading, and this is the practice I've observed. When preparing for Shabbat chol hamoed Sukkot this year ...
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10 votes
2 answers
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Can too many decorations render a sukkah invalid?

I've seen some sukkahs (especially ones where they've had big "make sukkah decorations" kids' projects) where there are tons and tons and tons of decorations hanging down from the schach. At what ...
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why do the festivals of sukkot and pesach last seven days

What is the reason for the festivals of sukkot and pesach lasting seven days. Is there a significance/reason to the number seven here?
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11 votes
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Shehechiyanu on Lulav

Why is it that we make Shehechiyanu both nights of Sukkos at candle lighting and Kiddush due to Sefeika DeYoma yet we only make Shehechiyanu on the Lulav on the first day?
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8 answers
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How do you maximize your aravot's period of freshness?

Every Sukkot any aravot that I start the holiday with tend to get dried up by the end of the holiday, if not to the point of being unfit for service, at least enough to be ugly. What do you do to ...
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How do Etrogs grow, pitom-up, or pitom-down?

I've done a bit of research here, but I still have some questions. To start with, for anyone who isn't familiar with this, we can't say the brucha for lulav & etrog after completing the mitzvah, ...
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Sukkah: Why not tough it out?

Why specifically by Sukkah is there a concept of מצטער פטור מן הסוכה הוא (Shulchan Aruch OC 640:4) someone who is in pain in by being in the Sukkah is exempt? We don't have such a low threshold for ...
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Why is Hallel different in Sukkot and Pesach (chol ha-moed)?

During chol ha-moed (intermediate days) of Sukkot we recite a full Hallel but during chol ha-moed of Pesach (and also Rosh Chodesh and some other days) we recite a "half Hallel" (really more ...
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10 votes
1 answer
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Why is the wording of the beracha upon shaking the arba minim only on lulav?

The beracha upon shaking the arba minim is 'על נטילת לולב'? Why is the focus on the lulav specifically rather than a more general blessing like 'על נטילת ארבעה מינים'?
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Why do we read Kohelet on Sukkos?

We read Kohelet either on the Shabbos Chol Hamoed of Sukkos or Shemini Atzeres. Why do we specifically read this on Sukkos? What is the connection between Sukkos and Koheles?
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Must the top of a sukkah be level?

I saw this question about a portable sukkah and I immediately thought of those pop-up canopies that you sometimes see at picnics and the like. The canopy has a metal or plastic frame that folds up ...
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13 votes
1 answer
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How do I do the car-door-sukkah trick?

I know in theory, people on the road don't need to eat in a sukkah; at the same time, you're not supposed to go put yourself in that situation on purpose. ("Let's go take a chol hamoed trip -- oops ...
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Should women eat in the Sukkah?

Is there any inyan for a woman to eat in the sukkah. I know they're not required (after all, it's a mitzvas asei shehazeman grama [מצות עשה שהזמן גרמא]), but I still know many women who do. Is this ...
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12 votes
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How to keep bees out of the Sukkah?

Many years (but not all), we have had bee problems in the Sukkah. This is probably caused by the fact that we continue to use honey for dipping the Challah throughout Sukkos. What are some practical ...
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10 votes
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Eating outside of a Sukkah - Negative or Positive commandment?

On Sukkoth we are required to dwell in a Sukkah, which is generally minimally defined as at least eating our meals (which in turn is generally minimally defined as grain-based products) inside the ...
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1 answer
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Eating in sukkah before or after sukkot

Is there anything problematic about eating in a sukkah after building it but before Sukkot starts? Or I guess likewise after Sukkot is over?
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Can I use velcro to tie a Lulav?

Normally I use rings made out of lulavim to tie around the Lulav on Sukkos. Would rings made out of velcro be fine for this purpose?
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6 votes
3 answers
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Buying pasul arba minim or non-arba minim for your small child

The Shulchan Aruch in siman 657 says that a child which knows how to shake the lulav properly, his father is obligated to buy a lulav for him (because of chinuch). The Beur Halacha d"h keday ...
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Why are the commandments for the holiday of Succot interrupted by commandments regarding sacrifices in general?

Vayikra 23:33-36 discuss the celebration of Succot. Then, verses 37-38 interrupt the discussion by saying a general statement that these are the holidays when you should offer sacrifices. Then, verses ...
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4 votes
3 answers
440 views

Leishev Basukkah before Shehechiyanu or after?

According to my minhag: on the first night of Sukkos by Kiddush, Leishev Basukkah [לישב בסכה] is said before the bracha of Shehechiyanu [שהחינו]. On the second night, however, Shehechiyanu is said ...
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2 votes
5 answers
256 views

Chanuka Succos connection

What connections does Chanuka have with Succos?
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9 votes
1 answer
583 views

How big does a pentagonal Sukkah have to be?

What is the minimum length requirement for each of the walls of a 5-sided sukkah? What about 6 sides? What about 7? ... What about ∞ sides (i.e. a circle)?
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12 votes
3 answers
854 views

Can I use a Lulav or Esrog from last year?

Suppose I'm able to perfectly preserve one (or all) of the Arbaah Minim from last year so that they are still in "mint condition." Can I use them again this year?
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11 votes
4 answers
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Washing for bread before Kiddush. Convenient for sukkos?

There is a custom followed by Jews of German extraction to wash for Hamotzi before making Kiddush. See OC 271 (12) MB{61}. This is very convenient for those who have an outside sukka and don’t want ...
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7 votes
3 answers
2k views

What does having a Mehudar Etrog and Lulav mean over just having a kosher set?

I often hear the word 'Mehudar' used during this time of year to refer to special Lulav-and-Etrog sets. What does Mehudar mean?
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7 votes
2 answers
505 views

Does the Date of Sukkot Correspond to Any Particular Event?

As far as I can tell every single Jewish Holiday celebrates a particular event that happened on the date we celebrate it. Namely: Rosh Hashanah - (Tishrei 1) Creation of Man Yom Kippur - (Tishrei ...
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5 votes
2 answers
110 views

Waving the lulav

Why do we wave the lulav forward by הודו, right by כי, back by טוב, left by כי, up by לעולם and down by חסדו?
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4 votes
1 answer
113 views

Is there a source for inverting the lulav while shaking it in different directions?

I was always told that when shaking the lulav towards the north, for instance, you keep the lulav oriented as usual (pointing towards the ceiling), just turn your body northwards first, and then ...
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0 answers
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Contrast Hol Hamo'ed Torah readings for Pesach vs. Hol Hamo'ed Succot

I realize that the sacrifice for each day of Succot was different, whereas on Pesach they were the same for all days of Pesach. Somehow, this affects the Torah reading during Hol Hamo'ed. For ...
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3 votes
2 answers
339 views

How could they stone with esrogim without a court case?

The mishnah in Sukkah (48b) tells of a Tzadukki who, on Sukkot, performed a service in the temple incorrectly and all the people in the temple stoned him to death with their esrogim. I would like to ...
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16 votes
2 answers
2k views

If the lulav and etrog are biblically mandated, how were people in cold climates able to obtain them before modern times?

The use of the 4 species in the lulav and etrog is biblically mandated. Therefore, when Jews left Israel and moved to cold climates such as northern and eastern Europe, they would have needed to ...
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14 votes
3 answers
346 views

Why do we do hosha'nos and hakafos counterclockwise?

I have attended services in a number of different Ashkenazic synagogues on Sukos and Sh'mini Atzeres/Simchas Tora. When going around the bima for hosha'nos on Sukos, and, in most cases, when doing so ...
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14 votes
1 answer
2k views

Can I do the Hoashanas service if praying alone?

If one is not able to make it to a minyan one day during sukkos, can he still say or do any of the day's Hoshanas services? Would it be different on Hoshanah Rabbah because of the additions?
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11 votes
2 answers
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Does one need a sukkah to eat bread/mezonot at work

If one goes to work on the days of Chol HaMoed Sukkot, is he deemed to be travelling and exempt from the sukkah? If there is no sukkah that he can reach from work on his lunch break, may he eat bread ...
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10 votes
4 answers
2k views

Lubavitch not sleeping in a Sukka?

If Lubavitch is careful not to eat or drink anything outside of the sukka, why does Lubavitch not sleep in the Sukka?
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8 votes
1 answer
644 views

Kiddush on Sukkos before tzeit?

The first night of Sukkos we make kiddush after tzeit (Rama 639:3). My understanding is that this is purely because of the bracha of לישב בסוכה which you can't say until it's definitely night (Magen ...
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8 votes
2 answers
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Sukkos and Chanukah Connection

There are many parallels between Sukkos and Chanuka: The Gemara in Shabbos 21b gives an explanation for Beis Shammai's opinion that one should count down candles throughout Chanukah that it's just ...
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7 votes
1 answer
153 views

What is the origin and/or earliest use of the Ushpizin prayer (invitation of the 'exalted guests') during Sukkot?

While reading about Sukkot1 I came across a mention of a prayer recited during Sukkot, during which a celebrant invites the seven 'exalted guests' (well-known heroes and leaders of the Hebrew people/...
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7 votes
2 answers
183 views

shnayim mikra on succos for Parshas Breishis

Can you say Shnayim Mikra for Parshas Breishis prior to Simchas Torah?
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7 votes
1 answer
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What's the reason behind the minhag of shaking the lulav in the sukkah?

I understand that not everybody has this minhag, but at most Sephardi shuls I've gone to, there's a definite minhag to walk outside after chazarat haShatz, go to the sukkah, say a beracha on the lulav ...
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6 votes
2 answers
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Taking down Sukkah decorations before the end of holiday

I know that if I am going to be traveling during Chol Ha'Moed, I know that I can not halachically take down my Sukkah or the Schach early. Does the same prohibition apply to the decorations?
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6 votes
2 answers
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Koishele on Lulav

Is there any significance, halachic or otherwise, to the holder (or koishele) for the hadassim and aravot on the lulav? Who is the earliest source to describe it? Who (other than Chabad) doesn't use ...
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5 votes
0 answers
79 views

Sukkah decoration parameters [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Can too many decorations render a sukkah invalid? What are all the rules concerning decorations that are hung overhead in a sukkah? In other words, within what measurements (...
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5 votes
1 answer
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Why do we read the same torah passage for shabbatot during Sukkot and Pesach?

All other shabbatot have unique torah readings (aside from the regular cycle, of course), but Shabbat during Sukkot and Shabbat during Pesach read the same passage from Ki Tisa (with varying maftir ...
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5 votes
2 answers
1k views

Can you build a succah on Sukkot?

After reading How do I do the car-door-sukkah trick?, i wondered: isn't this building it on Sukkot? So, is it permissible to build a succah on Sukkot? I originally thought no, because i know that ...
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5 votes
1 answer
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Onah and Sukkos?

Does the Mitzvah of sleeping in the Sukkah supersede the mitzvah of Onah? (one would think not, as it is a chov to someone else.) If not, is one supposed to fulfill mitzvas Onah and then retire to the ...
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5 votes
1 answer
641 views

May one eat outside of the sukkah during chol hamoed if there isn't a sukkah nearby where one works?

If someone is at work during chol hamoed and is not nearby a sukkah may he eat outside of the sukkah and if so is there any limitation to what that includes?
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4 votes
3 answers
924 views

Differences of Opinion in the Order of the Ushpizin

The order of the Ushpizin according to the Zohar (Thank you Mekubal!) corresponds to the order of the Sefiros each one represents. Why does the Shelah disagree and place Yosef before Moshe, Aharon, ...
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3 votes
1 answer
484 views

Which plants are most suitable for sukkah roofing?

In South Africa palm branches are very popular as schach because they stay green for long and cover a lot of space per branch. Many palm branch sellers advertise around sukkot time, and every year the ...
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