Judaism in Kerala

Festival of Thanksgiving

The Festival of Thanksgiving is known as Sukkot in the Hebrew language. The first ten days of the Jewish New Year are spent internal cleansing where the devout seek divine forgiveness for the wrongs committed in the past and ask for spiritual strength to face the challenges in the days ahead. After this atonement and self-reflection, it is time to express gratitude for the good harvest with a festival called Sukkot, or the Jewish Thanksgiving.  

The Jewish family prepares a Sukkah, a festive booth, or a small hut made out of tree branches and decorated with fruits and flowers. Typically, the family has their meals inside it, except when rainy weather prevents such a celebration. This is to suggest that even as the members of the family see the stars on the sky through gaps in the branches that form the roof of their hut they feel protected under the gaze of God.  Sukkot is also known as the Feast of the Tabernacles.