Religious and Spiritual Life

What is that hut in the middle of campus?!?

That is a Sukkah!

A Sukkah is a booth or hut that Jews dwell in during the week-long celebration of Sukkot. In Jewish tradition, these temporary dwellings represent the huts used by the Israelites in the wilderness after escaping from slavery in Egypt. The festival of Sukkot is one of the three pilgrimage and harvest festivals of the Jewish year, and we recall the changing seasons by gathering four different species: the lulav (date palm), etrog (citron), arava (willow) and hadas (myrtle).

On a spiritual level, the Sukkah reminds us of the fragility of the body, the home and life as a whole. The roof of the Sukkah must provide adequate protection from the sun, while also allowing the stars to be seen at night. Through the Sukkah, we cultivate empathy and appreciation for those without a permanent roof above their heads, those who yearn to return home as well as those who struggle with visible and invisible disabilities and illnesses.

Please feel some welcome to use the Sukkah as a dwelling place for eating, relaxation and reflection. May it remind us of the ways we seek shelter and provide it for others, and may it help us nurture the feelings, relationships and places we call home.

For programs during the festival please click here.

Please contact Kohenet Bekah Starr, Jewish Life Coordinator, Office of Religious and Spiritual Life, for more info!, Bomburger 024