Hoshana Raba, the day the judgment is sealed

Hoshana Raba, the day the judgment is sealed

"Hoshana Raba"

This is the last day in which we will comply with the precepts of the four species and to dwell in the Sukkah, this day is called Hoshana Rabá literally "The Great Hoshana" because in it they are recited more Hoshana prayers than other days.

When the Beit Hamikdash (the Great Temple) was still standing, large willow branches were carried and supported on the altar during Sukkot. The shofar sounded and the Kohanim walked around the altar and recited the prayer of "Hosha na" - "Please save us".
Then the people would come in and wave the aravot ( willow leaves).

On the seventh day of Sukkot (the last day of chol hamoed), these branches were carried even if it was Shabbat, and the altar was surrounded seven times. (circling the Altar).
Today we do it in the Synagogue to remember this great and beautiful precept, we walk around the bimah once every day and seven times on the seventh day of Sukkot "Hoshana Rabba". This day is known as the day on which "the Arava" is struck (the willow branches, as it is a custom dating from the time of the Prophets)

On this day, the people of Israel do not rely on their righteousness, nor on the merits they have obtained in the course of the year, nor on the merits of their ancestors, but rather they ask for life "for himself and for all humanity" Only through the merit of his prayers, addressing the Eternal:

"Master of the Universe, we appear before You poor, and with empty-handed. We lack everything, we have no knowledge of Torah, Mitzvot, good deeds, or the merit of our parents.
We only have our mouths, with which we pray only to You. You also answer us, because of this prayer that we offer with broken and contrite hearts "

Hoshana Rabá, marks the day in that the judgment that began on Rosh HaShanah, at the beginning of the period "Rosh Hashanah - Yom Kippur", is finished. t, everyone is judged regarding water, fruits and agricultural production.

The seventh day of the festival, "Hoshana Rabba" is when this sentence is sealed and confirmed, since human life depends of water, and everything is based on the final decision, Hoshana Rabba is invested with an essence similar to that of Yom Kippur, characterized by prayers and profuse repentance.

This custom dating from the time of the Prophets Jagay, Zejariá and Malaji, consists of taking a bunch of Aravot (kosher River willows) and reciting a special prayer, then slamming it to the ground.
Unlike other Rabbinic obligations, no Bracha is recited on this practice as it was promulgated more as a custom than as a Mitzvah (command).

It is customary to stay awake the night of Hoshana Rabba and recite a special Tikun and read the book of Devarim (Deuteronomy) as well as reciting the entire book of Psalms, "uniting" in this way the day and the night by means of study and prayer, some very scrupulous in Mitzvót immerse themselves: the la Mikvé (ritual bath) before dawn.

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