Thursday, October 01, 2009

The less than permanent Sukkot in the West Bank

A guest post by OJ

"Members of the Land of Israel Faithful movement have come up with a new way to fight a proposed building freeze in Judea and Samaria. The movement is asking residents of the area to build the traditional temporary Sukkot dwellings – and to leave them up long after the holiday is over."

From a religious point of view, this is a little strange as a sukkah is not supposed to be a permanent structure. It is supposed to be built with the holiday of Sukkot in mind. According to the lenient opinion, a permanent structure can be turned into a sukkah fit for the holiday if its roof is partly loosened and refastened (assuming it meets the structural requirements). Nonetheless, it would seem to me that building something for the holiday with the intention of making it a permanent structure would be to create it with the intent to decrease its sanctity, which I find troubling.

If these settlers should 'leave their sukkot up' after the holiday and the government comes in and destroys them as illegal construction, would they be destroying a sukkah or just a building? What are the implications of that?

Your thoughts?

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