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What is the minimal required text to say for the bedtime shema? Is it sufficient to say only Hamapil and the first paragraph of shema?

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2 Answers 2

Deoraita, the obligation is to say "Shma Yisroel.." through the first paragraph (until "Vehayah im shamoa"). It can be said in any language, and "Shma" through "echad" requires extra kavanah. (somewhere within the first 15 pages of Missechet Bruchot)

I'm not sure if Hamapil is required Derabanan, or just a strong suggestion.

more info: http://www.torah.org/learning/halacha/classes/class264.html#

pdf download: http://yctchevre.blogspot.com/2008/04/milin-havivin-volume-3-online.html (from : http://drewkaplans.blogspot.com/2008/04/birkat-hamapil-article-published.html)

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Do you mean there's a requirement mid'oraysa to say part of "Sh'ma" even if one already did so as part of maariv? –  msh210 Jul 8 '11 at 18:05
    
Sh'ma is only d'orayta if you didn't yet say it after the correct time. Ideally, one shouldn't delay the mitzvah until going to sleep. According to many opinions, the second parsha is also part of the mitzvah (and the third would fulfill the mitzvah to remember yetzias mitzrayim). –  Ariel K Jul 10 '11 at 2:42

Technically all one needs to say is shema/veahavta and hamapil (That's what one says on the first night of pesach).

The rest of krias shema is for protection against mazikin.

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