Questions about short prayers called b'rachos ("benedictions" or "blessings"), generally said to thank God for specific events.

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11
votes
1answer
351 views

Should I say “amen” to a malformed bracha?

If I hear somebody substantially mispronounce a bracha, should I say amen anyway (recognizing the intent) or remain silent? I'm not talking about nuances like pronouncing 'ayin or distinguishing ...
12
votes
6answers
721 views

Mezonos ? Bread

Is there such a thing as Mezonos bread?
8
votes
1answer
195 views

Is there an exhaustive list of astronomical/environmental events for which there are blessings?

Inspired by: What Bracha should you say on a Hurricane? What Blessing Does One Make on a Solar Eclipse? Bracha for the transit of Venus? What b'racha do you say on seeing the Aurora Borealis (if ...
5
votes
3answers
288 views

“Amen” to informal blessings and wishes

There are various strict rules regulating the manner and timing of saying "Amen" following a blesing. In fact, the Gemara (Berachot 47a) lists some pretty severe punishments for people who violate ...
8
votes
2answers
532 views

Why do you make a Bracha on seeing a monkey?

Why do you make the Bracha Mishaneh Habriyos on seeing a monkey?
7
votes
7answers
245 views

All the many, many details

I understand a number of reasons why the Jewish community keeps so many rules to the level of minutiae. But why SUCH a level of intricacy in some of these laws? I looked through a large book on the ...
9
votes
1answer
381 views

Do married men stop saying a bracha on their *tallit katan*?

This question concerns the Ashkenazic practice. I was always told that the tallit katan (worn under clothing, every day, starting in preschool years) got the bracha of al mitzvat tzitzit, but the ...
9
votes
2answers
287 views

Berachos over food mixtures

My breakfast regularly presents me with a beracha conundrum. It usually consists of a bowl of bran flakes (mezonos), often sprinkled with raisins (etz) and/or sunflower seeds (adama), and ...
4
votes
1answer
205 views

Will a “lower” Berachah made MiSafek exempt a different food that requires that Berachah (and vice versa)?

Let's say you aren't sure which Berachah to make on a food before you eat it. Generally the rule of thumb is that you make the most specific Berachah that you know will capture the essence of that ...
6
votes
2answers
191 views

Why Does Hashem Bless Us Like Efraim And Menashe?

I know there are lots of reason's why but What is the main reason Hashem made it so that we get blessed like them?
5
votes
3answers
293 views

Continuing to drink a Beverage after Birchas HaMazon?

Perhaps this is a simple matter that I should be embarrassed not to know (which I am even if it isn't because I need to learn hilchos b'rachos better and always forget to look this question up) ...
5
votes
1answer
789 views

What is mazonot?

Could someone kindly explain to me what Mazonot means? I recenlty attended a charity do where the bread rolls were described as mazonot. Another person at the table explained to me that this meant ...
8
votes
2answers
124 views

Hefsek (interruption) between the blessing on food and eating the food

Is it considered a hefsek to play with one's fingers or silverware or such while waiting for the challah to be passed around on shabbat, after the blessing made on it? Even though it isn't talking, it ...
6
votes
2answers
221 views

Tallit Katan and Tallit brachot

Why is that when you wake up you put on a Tallit Katan and then you go to shul and put on a Tallit Gadol? How is it that you can say two different brachot? If it is in fact, that each peice of ...
4
votes
2answers
172 views

Is there a blessing on anointing?

Based on this question and the ensuant discussion, I would like to know if a person makes a blessing upon anointing himself for pleasure. If not, why not?
4
votes
1answer
379 views

Beracha on lighting yom tov candles : before or after?

There are two minhagim concerning the time the beracha should be said on lighting yom tov candles for a woman, before or after (like shabbos neros). I've read arguments like these : before, because ...
3
votes
1answer
141 views

Making a Bracha on pleasurable things

A couple lines up from the bottom of the first daf of Keitzad Mevarchin, the Gemarah gives its reason for making Brachas. Its answer (my translation) is "It is forbidden for a person to get pleasure ...
3
votes
2answers
151 views

Who Commanded Us, and For What?

Whenever a Jew performs an activity that is mandated by the Torah, s/he recites the blessing that acknowledges God, "אשר קדשנו במצוותיו" (who sanctified us with his commandments), and who commanded us ...
11
votes
3answers
412 views

Shalom Aleichem in Kiddush Levanah

Why do we say Shalom Aliechem in Kiddush Levanah? And what should one do if there are no other people around (or not enough people around)?
14
votes
3answers
320 views

How long can you say Asher Yotzar if you forgot?

If you forgot to say Asher Yotzar and remember a while later, is there a time limit as to when you are allowed to say it?
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Bracha on Food for Life Ezekiel 4:9 Sprouted Grain Bread

Food for Life manufactures a bread under the Hashgacha of the Kaf-K called Ezekiel 4:9 Sprouted Grain Bread This bread is flourless and has the following ingredients. Organic Sprouted Whole Wheat, ...
6
votes
1answer
181 views

Do I make a bracha on smelling marijuana?

When we smell a nice plant, we make a blessing on it -- either בורא מיני בשמים, or בורא עשבי בשמים, depending on what kind of plant it is. (Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 216) Ignoring, for the moment, ...
15
votes
3answers
332 views

Why are there two different forms of the mitzvah brachot (“l-” and “al”)?

Some mitzvah brachot are of the form ...vitzivanu "l'X" ("to X", infinitive verb), and others are of the form "al X" ("upon X", gerundive verb). I particularly noticed this during Sukkot with two ...
14
votes
4answers
226 views

How to say go-al Yisroel before Shacharis Amida

When the leader gets to just before the Shacharis Amida, how should he say the blessing go-al Yisroel: aloud or saying the word Yisroel so the end of it cannot be heard?
11
votes
1answer
374 views

What Blessing Does One Make on a Solar Eclipse?

What Blessing Does One Make on a Solar Eclipse? I will be in Nevada next week and would like to make a blessing over the May 21 Solar Eclipse. Thanks!
9
votes
1answer
160 views

Beracha on Intravenous

There Gemara Berachot 35 says "anyone who enjoys from this world without a Beracha is stealing." Does one make a Beracha on intravenous feeding?
8
votes
2answers
234 views

How seriously do we take the finger-inspection in Havdala?

After saying the blessing over fire during Havdala, we do something (customs vary) involving looking at our fingers by the light of the Havdala candle. I'm wondering how seriously we take this part of ...
7
votes
4answers
202 views

Amen for Recorded Brochos

Many times I listen to recorded Shiurim (lectures) where the speaker says a Brocho (usually Shehakol on a drink). Should one answer Amen to such Brochos?
6
votes
2answers
388 views

Is the midrash about the moon and sun being the same size intended literally?

The Rambam in his introduction to perek Chelek discusses midrashic literalist, and classifies different approaches of different groups to midrash. He writes: You should know that as to ...
6
votes
3answers
367 views

Amen on the Telephone

Can you answer amen to a Baracha that was made over the telephone?
5
votes
1answer
415 views

The single male and shabbat

Is a single male permitted to light the shabbat candles and say the blessing? And if so, how many candles? Do the rules change based on whether alone or in the company any single females?
4
votes
2answers
434 views

What bracha is made on Seaweed?

If seaweed would be eaten by itself, what bracha is made on it? It's defined as, "Large algae growing in the sea or on rocks below the high-water mark." See Wikipedia here for more. It's not ...
4
votes
2answers
142 views

"Oseh ma'aseh braishis” on a rainbow. Is this a brocho levatoloh?

Someone made the brocho of “oseh ma'aseh braishis” on a rainbow. Is this a brocho levatoloh? What sources deal with this issue please? (I have posed the shaaloh to my Rav.)
4
votes
1answer
135 views

How do different communities practice regarding women's saying a b'racha on s'firas haomer?

Mishna B'rura 489:3 says women do not say a b'racha on s'firas haomer; Aruch Hashulchan 489:4 says they do. What is the practice of various Ashk'nazi communities (for example, chassidic (various ...
3
votes
1answer
111 views

What to do if you realize while Bentching that you want more to eat or drink?

What do you do if you realize while you are Bentching that you want more to eat or drink? Let's say you realize you are thirsty, or you are Bentching early, and the host brings out the next course and ...
3
votes
1answer
343 views

Where can I get “Afarsimon” oil?

The Shulchan Aruch rules in OC 216:4 that there is a special blessing to say upon smelling "Afarsimon" oil. (The blessing is ברוך אתה ה' אלוקינו מלך העולם בּוֹרֵא שֶמֶן עָרֵב) The Mishna Berura there, ...
2
votes
3answers
127 views

Should I improvise a b'racha in a case of doubt?

I didn't grow up on "b'racha bees" and I know there's a lot I don't know, so I sometimes find myself in a situation where either I know there's a b'racha for something but I don't know it, or I don't ...
19
votes
7answers
2k views

Washing hands for eating pizza

How many slices are required to make you responsible to wash on Pizza?
14
votes
4answers
592 views

Why aren't Purim and Channuka considered a violation of לֹא תֹסִפוּ?

It says in Devarim 4:2: לֹא תֹסִפוּ עַל הַדָּבָר אֲשֶׁר אָנֹכִי מְצַוֶּה אֶתְכֶם וְלֹא תִגְרְעוּ מִמֶּנּוּ לִשְׁמֹר אֶת מִצְוֹת יְ־הֹוָ־ה אֱלֹהֵיכֶם אֲשֶׁר אָנֹכִי מְצַוֶּה אֶתְכֶם ...
9
votes
4answers
326 views

Source for pairing l'chaim with alcohol?

What is the source or reason that a l'chaim is often said over a drink of alcohol instead of any other beverage, or over other foods, or even over no food at all?
16
votes
1answer
559 views

Blessing the Children on Friday Night

I have noticed that many families (including my own) have the custom for the father to bless all the children on Friday night before kiddush. When and where did this custom originate, and by whom, ...
13
votes
3answers
207 views

A rabbi asked me to light candles before weekday Mincha/Ma'ariv. Is this customary? Is there a bracha?

Last night, I was pulled in off the street to help an unfamiliar shul make a minyan for Mincha/Ma'ariv. The rabbi greeted me, and when he learned I do not speak Hebrew, he gave me a very nice blessing ...
11
votes
1answer
179 views

Making a Bracha on disliked foods

If you, for some reason, must eat food you despise and will gain no enjoyment from it do you still need to make a bracha?
10
votes
2answers
349 views

When I wake up before Alot Hshachar and won't go back to sleep, what can/can't I do?

If I wake up early in the morning, like any time from 2am to 6am, before Alot Hashachar, and I'm pretty sure I'll start my day and not go back to sleep, at least not before a possible afternoon nap, ...
10
votes
3answers
380 views

What Bracha did they make on the Mahn?

Did the Jews make a Bracha on eating the Mahn? Which Bracha did they make?
10
votes
3answers
496 views

Why do we say Pesach seder brachot both nights?

During the Pesach seder, but not during the rest of Pesach, we say b'rachot for the mitzvot of matzah and maror. (I mean the "asher kidshanu b'mitzvotav" b'rachot.) So it seems that we are only ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

When do we say Baruch Hu Uvaruch Shemo?

I'm somewhat confused on when Baruch Hu Uvaruch Shemo (ברוך הוא וברוך שמו) should be said after Hashem's name in a B'racha (I'm taking for granted that it is only said in the context of a bracha, but ...
6
votes
1answer
136 views

Re-reciting morning Berachoth

If someone recites the morning Berachoth, are they also situational Berachoth that might require one to re-recite them in a certain situation? Some are definitely regarded as situational, and some ...
6
votes
2answers
321 views

Proper bracha on Chanuka candles: lhadlik ner (shel) Chanukah

Why do some people have the custom to say, in the blessing on the Chanukah lights, the word "Shel" before "Chanukah" and some do not? And I have been told some people put the words together as ...
5
votes
1answer
154 views

Blessing on Shabbat candle lighting for men

Should a man say the blessing then light the shabbos candles or light the candles first then say the blessing?