The Social Media Sukkah

After the intensity of the High Holy Days, Sukkot – to me, at least – is a welcome shift. I’ve always felt that Sukkot was a bizarre and wonderful holiday that really captures the essence of autumn; like beginning the day at night, there’s something kind of magical about beginning the year when the world seems to be going to sleep. It’s a beautiful stretch of days that are hard to let go of.

Luckily for us, social media help us bring the feeling of Sukkot into our lives and work year-round. Social media, in many ways, are like a sukkah!


  • Both are open by design. A sukkah forces you to let go of just one wall, to bring down traditional barriers. It forces you to experience the elements with a roof that both allows the stars to shine through and the rain to fall into your kiddush cup. So too with social media. Without a certain level of openness, of transparency, efforts in social media tend to fall flat or feel inauthentic. That openness exposes you to the occasional cold wind or nasty comment, but the value it brings in sunshine and deepened relationships is worth the risk.

    • How are you opening yourself up through social media?

  • Both are meant to be built together. Sukkot both recalls the years the Israelites wandered through the wilderness, dwelling in impermanent structures, and the harvest-time. Both of these events require an entire community – we can’t get through the desert alone, we’re dependent on one another for sustenance. And there’s nothing like a good sukkah-raising to bring a community together! Likewise, social media is exactly that: social. It’s about the people and the connections among them. A sukkah, a social network…both are scaffolding for bringing people together to make meaning.  

    • Who helps you build your sukkah, and who is generous and supporting to you through social media?

  • Both are all about hospitality. On Sukkot, we welcome everyone, including the mystical ushpizin, holy guests like Abraham and Sarah who join us from across time and space. We can’t necessarily see these visitors, but we connect with them and we feel their presence. That is often the case online. While we may not always see our guests, but we sense them, we welcome them, and we help them feel at home.  

    • How do you welcome people into your sukkah, and into your social media spaces?

  • They’re both supposed to be fun! I once heard an adorable 3 year-old give the following d’var Torah, “On Sukkot…you should be happy…and dance.” Not only was he cute, he was right! V’samachta b’chagecha, the Torah teaches – be joyous in your holiday. Have fun with it. Why not do the same in social media? Facebook and Twitter shouldn’t be an onerous burden. They are an opportunity to share, to connect, to bring a little something special into the world. Make it yours, and make it fun!  


The holidays are a time to think about our practice and start doing better. This year I challenge each of us to make our social media spaces more like a sukkah – open, collaborative, welcoming, and joyful. Shanah tovah, a happy and successful new year to us all!





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