Last Days of Sukkot

Pop ChassidA Bukhari family celebrates Sukkot circa 1900 in Jerusalem.


Sunday  night we start celebrating the last days of Sukkot.  I love the picture above, it makes me think of my father’s family, Mountain Jews from Grozny, Chechnya, which is close to the Bukharian Jews.  I also love that it is in Jerusalem in 1900, Jews have been in Israel long before all of the empires and the current countries of today.


First tonight we will celebrate Shabbat, and one of the things I love most besides food and quality time with family and friends are the lessons.  Our physical, mental, emotional and financial health are necessary for our spiritual health.


Shabbat Shalom,
Chag Sameach,
Coach Yulia


During the final moments of his life, Moses gave several blessings to
the Jewish nation. He blessed them that they should have a militarily
secure country and that they should be granted health and wealth.
What’s interesting is that, with his final words to the nation, Moses
did not implore them to keep the mitzvot; rather, he used his final
chance to speak to the nation as an opportunity to bless them in
seemingly mundane matters. It could be that Moses understood how
difficult it is to think about G-d and to do mitzvot when we are in
pain or danger — whether physically, emotionally, or financially. The
Rambam seems to echo this idea in his 14-volume encyclopedia of Jewish
law. In the first volume, he describes the importance of taking care
of our bodies and achieving financial stability. He even teaches us
how to eat healthy and exercise. He states that when a person is sick,
it is almost impossible for him to understand anything about G-d. What
Moses, and later the Rambam, are trying to teach us is that without
security, health, and peace of mind, it is so hard to strive to grow
spiritually. They understood that even the seemingly mundane aspects
of our lives (such as caring for our health and finances) can really
be mitzvot.

Shabbat Shalom!
Rabbi Jawary

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