Tuesday, 25 September 2007

Sukkah Sensitivity

Originally published 9/25/07, 7:10 PM, Eastern Daylight Time

Sukkah Sensitivity

Sukkah Sensitivity (c) 2000 by Rabbi Richard Wolpoe

One of the laws of the Sukkah roof {aka SCHACH} tells us that if the shade is less than 50% it is invalid. And, on the other hand, any thatched SCHACH that is so thick that rain cannot permeate is also not valid. So the cover must be more shade than Sun, yet not so shady that neither rain nor the Starlight can penetrate.

This can be considered a metaphor for how a Jew should deal with the outside world.

A protection or barrier of less than 50% is invalid, as it is too prone to assimilation. It is by definition more outside than inside, it is too permeable to be considered valid protection. However, any barrier that does not allow rain drops or Starlight, that is so thick-skinned as to be totally insensitive to the outside world, is also no good. IOW, avoiding assimilation does not entitle us to erect barriers that completely eliminates sensitivity to the outside world at large.


1 comment:

Rabbi Richard Wolpoe said...

I gave this d'far Torah in Cong. Beth Aaron tonight after Mincha.
One of the scholars in the shul said that a simlar paralle can be made with regard to the WALLS of the Sukkah. The Best wall has jsut a door openinb but goes from floor to celing. Other walls are less complete but still kosher.