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Sukkah In Downtown Skokie Reminds Jews Of Nature, Connection, Unity


By Pam DeFiglio

A sukkah is sitting in the park at Oakton Street and Niles Center Road in downtown Skokie this week, ready to accommodate those who want to celebrate the Jewish holiday of Sukkot.


Rabbi Chaim Telsner of the Lubavitch Chabad of Skokie synagogue was at the sukkah Monday, ready to welcome visitors who might want to eat their meals there.

He explained that Jews eat meals in, spend time in and may even sleep in these impermanent structures, which do not have real roofs, but only twigs and branches on top. The rudimentary structures remind people of their connection to nature and God.

"For this week, we're reminded it's not about the physical and materialistic," he said. "It's about the spiritual. It's to remind us everything in this world is temporary. The important things that last will remain forever."

He held a bundle of plant leaves and a citron, called etrog in Hebrew, explaining that the plants-- myrtle, willow and palm-- are all different, a reminder God calls people to welcome those who are different.

"It's a holiday of unity. All of us are children of God, created in God's image. We all have a spark of God," he said.

The Sukkot holiday runs through Wednesday, Sept. 25.

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