A GUIDE TO THE LAWS OF SUCCOS

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Chapter Twenty

Halachos of the succah on the seventh day

1. How should one conduct himself on the seventh day of Succos the last day (in Eretz Yisroel) that one sits in the succah?

After the morning seudah, even if one does not intend to eat any more in the succah, nevertheless the succah should not be destroyed. The reason being that one still has an obligation to use the succah the entire day, for sleeping and learning and, if the opportunity comes up to eat again, he would have to use the succah. However from the time of minchah ketanah (about three quarters through the day, in mid afternoon) one can remove his utensils from the succah, in order to prepare the house for Yom Tov (Shulchan Aruch section 1, M.B. section 1-2).

2. What would the halachah be if someone disires to eat in the succah on the eighth day which is Shmini Atzeres?

Those living in Eretz Yisroel should not eat in the succah on Shmini Atzeres as it appears like he is making an addition to the mitzvah of succah and thereby transgressing a Torah prohibition. This would even apply when there is no real Torah prohibition, namely, he does not have the intention of sitting in the succah for the fulfillment of the mitzvah.

Someone who has no other shelter and must use the succah on the eighth day in Eretz Yisroel should do the following: Before Yom Tov, he should remove a four by four tefach section of the s'chach, thereby showing that his use of the succah on the eighth day is not for the mitzvah. As a result it would not appear that he is transgressing the prohibition of making an addition to mitzvos succah (Shulchan Aruch section 1, Aruch Hashulchan section 2).

3. How should someone act if he wishes to use his succah after the holiday is over?

It would not be necessary to remove an area of the s'chach, because it only appears like he is adding to the mitzvah on the eighth day, but not after the holiday (Ramoh 1).

4. How should someone living outside of Eretz Yisroel conduct himself on the eighth day?

Outside of Eretz Yisroel, where we use the succah on the eighth day, upon completing the seudah, from the time of minchah ketanah (about three quarters through the day, in mid afternoon) one can remove his utensils from the succah, in order to prepare the house for the Yom Tov of Simchas Torah (Shulchan Aruch section 1, M.B., section 8-9).

5. What would the halachah be outside of Eretz Yisroel if someone must use the succah on the ninth day of the holiday which is Simchas Torah?

In this case he obviously can not remove any of the s'chach since the eighth day is also Yom Tov. How can he show that he is not using the succah for the mitzvah? If we are referring to a small succah in which there is a prohibition to bring in a lamp, then let him bring one in (see above chapter 15 question 4). If it is a large succah in which the lamp may be brought in, let him bring into the succah pots and pans which are normally left out (see above chapter 15 question 2-3). This is all done in order to show that he is not using the succah for the mitzvah.

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