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    Water & redemption

    Rain_on_grassJewish history has decided that Sukkot – z’man simchatenu, “our time of rejoicing” – is the way we climb down from the spiritual peak of Yom Kippur and become earthly beings once again.

    This does not seem to sit well with the Mishnah in Tractate Rosh HaShanah that speaks of the serious side of Sukkot when man is once again being judged On High, this time in relation to water.

    Of course in the northern hemisphere it is especially appropriate to speak of water since it is the beginning of the rainy season, though in the southern hemisphere spring it all looks a bit bizarre.

    But regardless of where we live, the question of water gains added point when we consider the idea in the Zohar that water symbolises redemption.

    Water in the literal sense revives the earth as well as human beings. In the metaphorical sense it stands for a new age of joy and fulfilment.

    From whence does the new age of redemption emanate? On one level it is a mark of God’s grace, but human beings have to deserve it and help it along.

    The question we all have to ask ourselves on Sukkot is, “What will I do this year to make the world ready for redemption?”

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