This Ritual Life Archive

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Here you will find out about ways to enhance your holiday experience, to celebrate or mark a meaningful life cycle event, and to deepen your experience of the everyday.

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Building a Sukkah

Jewish Tradition does not require that we build a sukkah, merely that we dwell in one. It’s as if our sages anticipated the pre-fabricated sukkot we now have, which allow those of us who are not handy to have sukkot of our own, too. And while we are not obligated to decorate our sukkot, the concept of hiddur mitzvah—making a mitzvah as beautiful and artful as possible—persuades us to decorate our sukkah, making even mass-produced sukkot truly our own, a reflection of who we are and what we believe in.



May this sukkah reflect the uniqueness of my family and friends. As the light of the stars shine through the skhakh, illuminating us as we celebrate this holy time, so may the light of our hearts, minds, and creative talents shine out through the sukkah walls, illuminating all who pass by.



Before constructing and decorating the sukkah, gather those who participate and invite them to imagine a vision of what the sukkah might look like. It might be an image or place—like Paradise or Jerusalem—but it could also be a theme—like the bountiful harvest, or the faces of our ancestors. Agree on a plan that can synthesize various visions, and get to work!


Creator of our boundlessly beautiful universe, grant us the creativity, care and talent to create this sukkah for the sake of sanctifying your name and beautifying your mitzvot.

Barukh atah chonen hada’at

Blessed are You who grants us wisdom




You shall live in sukkot seven days; all citizens of Israel shall live in sukkot, in order that future generations may know that I made the Israelite people live in sukkot when I brought them out of the Land of Egypt. (Leviticus 23:42-43)

I have singled out Bezalel …I have endowed him with a divine spirit of skill, ability and knowledge of every craft…And I have assigned to him Oholiav…and I have also granted skill to all who are skillful, so that they may make everything that I have commanded you. (Exodus 31:1-3, 6)


(CLAL Faculty)



CLAL's National Jewish Resource Center develops and publishes rituals that help to bridge the gap between our contemporary lives and the ancient wisdom of the Jewish tradition. We invite you to become a partner with us in thinking about the place of ritual in our lives and in developing new ritual resources for our time. If you are interested in being part of this exciting endeavor, visit with us in the Ritual Resource Area of the CLAL website by clicking here.

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