Questions about Jewish prayer (the fixed order of typically-thrice-daily prayers, or prayer generally).

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14
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2answers
228 views

Who is the composer of Haneiros Halolu?

When we light the Menora we say Haneiros Halolu. Who composed these words?
13
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3answers
480 views

Can you ask God to kill you?

I know that out of desperation Moshe asks God to kill him and I don't necessarily see any reason it would be forbidden but I was curious if there was any discussion, halachic or otherwise, as to ...
12
votes
1answer
251 views

Sneezing during davening

I have read in the Gemara (Berachoth 24B) that sneezing during the Shemonei Esrei is a sign that your tefillot have been accepted. "Just as you have been granted relief below, so you have been granted ...
11
votes
5answers
4k views

how do Jews pray?

I am an Indian (from India) and there are hardly any Jews here, except for some Israeli tourists. There are more than 150 million Muslims however. I want to know if the Jews pray and how they pray. I ...
10
votes
4answers
2k views

How precisely oriented towards Jerusalem should we face for praying?

I know we're supposed to face towards Jerusalem when praying/davening. For most of us in the Europe or the Western Hemisphere, we're used to facing "Mizrach", east. How precise should we be? If ...
10
votes
3answers
399 views

Best practices for praying in public with talit and tefilin

I just learned that a flight out of New York was diverted because a flight attendant saw a passenger putting on tefilin and freaked out, thinking that he was strapping on bombs. So, do you have any ...
9
votes
2answers
132 views

Priority rules for abridging Selichot

If the minyan doesn't have enough time allotted for Selichot to finish everything listed in the Selichot book for today, so you need to cut some parts out, what are the rules of priority for what ...
8
votes
0answers
211 views

Any good sources for Ashkenazi prayer modes and melodies for the whole year?

Anyone know of any good sources for Ashkenazi prayer modes and melodies for the whole year? I'm looking for traditional Ashkenazi nusach, but perhaps not embellished like concert chazzanut. A good ...
8
votes
3answers
183 views

How to inspire tears in davening?

Rebbe Nachman said that it is especially powerful to allow tears to flow during the Amidah. How does one come to tears? What thoughts should one have while davening to allow tears to flow in order to ...
7
votes
1answer
94 views

Does Maimonides Allow Prayer to Angels?

In his Mishna Commentary to Sanhedrin 10:1 Maimonides lists as his 5th principle the prohibition to pray to an angel even as an intermediary. He counts this in his enumeration of his 13 principles in ...
7
votes
1answer
94 views

Why is Amen exclusive to the Chazzan during Tefillah?

Normally, if I hear my good friend Shimon say a bracha, I answer Amen. Nonetheless, if it's during davening, and I hear him finish a bracha, it appears to be common practice to not say Amen. In other ...
7
votes
1answer
538 views

Keeping in mind the meaning of every word of prayer, vs. being mindful of general concepts

If I were to sit down with my prayer book, I could translate it. I know what the words mean, and I know what they are saying conceptually. However, when I'm praying, if I try to translate in my head ...
6
votes
2answers
134 views

Can the Torah be read in shul if a minyan is present after the point in the service designated for Torah reading?

There have been instances where we had 9 people in the shul, and we began to daven Mincha Shabbat afternoon. We finished our individual Shmoneh Esreh, when the 10th person appeared. Can we go back and ...
6
votes
4answers
293 views

Seeking a German Siddur

I was wondering if there is a 'Minhag Ashkenaz' siddur presently in print. I have an older one at home, but it has sentimental value and as a university student, I would rather avoid using such a ...
6
votes
2answers
151 views

What does cantillation do to prayer's status?

I recall seeing recommendations, in multiple Halachic discussions, that someone who's reciting a Scripturally-derived prayer alone that normally requires a minyan, e.g. the 13 Attributes of Mercy, one ...
6
votes
3answers
123 views

Why do we Daven for (יראת שמים) fear of heaven twice?

In the Birchas HaChodesh that we say monthly the Shabbos prior to Rosh Chodesh we say as follows: Chaim Sheyesh Bohem Yiras Shomayim V'Yiras Chet and then in the same paragraph we later say Chaim ...
6
votes
2answers
713 views

How to pray in public places?

If you're stuck in a public place (e.g. airport, mall) and need to daven (pray) -- usually it's Mincha, right before sunset: what's the best way to do it?
6
votes
4answers
273 views

Priority of Davening with a Minyan

Is it better to Daven [pray] with a earlier large minyan or better to wait to daven later with a much smaller minyan where I will be needed as the tenth?
5
votes
4answers
473 views

Is there a halachik problem with wearing shorts while davening?

I have often heard that one should not wear shorts while davening. This makes intuitive sense to me that we should do this out of respect. But is there any halachic reasoning behind this? Is it ...
5
votes
1answer
247 views

When does a chosson free the congregation from saying tachanun?

A chosson frees the congregation with whom he davens from saying tachanun. What sources are there for this in the following tefillos: 1) Shacharis on the day of the wedding 2) Mincha before the ...
5
votes
1answer
247 views

Why does shacharit repeat kaddish yatom?

Ashkenazi nussach ends the weekday shacharit service with two kaddish yatoms: one after "Aleinu" and another after the psalm for the day (and seasonal insertions if applicable). Ismar Elbogen's ...
5
votes
1answer
224 views

What exactly do you do and say when you fall Korim?

Some people have a custom of bowing during Musaf on Yom Kippur ("Korim"). What exactly do you do and say when you fall Korim on Yom Kipur?
5
votes
1answer
206 views

Can a man fulfill his obligation by listening to a woman's Birchos HaShachar?

Can a man fulfill his obligation by listening to a woman's Birchos HaShachar (morning blessings)? What about vice-versa? I suppose my question breaks down into three parts: Do women have a lesser ...
5
votes
2answers
593 views

Starting Shabbat early during the summer

Is there an earliest time one may begin Shabbat during the summer months? We were traveling south and stopped at a Jewish community for Shabbat. The Shul there davened Mincha friday at 6:10, then ...
4
votes
1answer
121 views

Must I ceremonially dispatch a non-kosher animal meant for Gentile consumption?

I raise non-kosher animals (rabbits) primarily for manure for my garden and fur for clothing. I give the meat away to non-Jews. I understand all domesticated animals are to be humanely killed, ...
4
votes
2answers
141 views

whoever leads s'lichos should lead the rest of the day's prayers: why s'lichos?

Rama 581:1 says whoever leads s'lichos should lead the rest of the day's prayers, and Magen Avraham, followed by others including Mishna B'rura, says this is due to "hamaschil b'mitzva om'rim lo ...
3
votes
1answer
148 views

How Should I Pray When Alone?

Using the notes in my Siddurs to direct my prayers, I am trying to figure out exactly what to pray, what is required, what is not permissible, etc., when praying solo. There is not always the right ...
3
votes
1answer
780 views

Transliteración de la Amidá en Español - Transliteration of the Amidah into Spanish

Estoy buscando una transliteración del rezo Shemoné-Esré en la lengua español. ¿Puede usted, por favor, ayudarme? Yo también quiero los rezos y cánticos para el Shabat. I'm looking for a ...
2
votes
1answer
134 views

reasons for standing for kaddish

Generally most people stand up to say and to respond to kaddish; why do we do this? Is there anyone with a minhag to sit for either saying or responding to kaddish and the reason behind doing so?
2
votes
2answers
337 views

Can one make a mi'shebeirach for animals?

Is it proper to conduct a mi'shebeirach prayer (which is a prayer normally said by a synagogue official, at a communal Torah reading, for the health and recovery of a sick person) for the ...
2
votes
2answers
306 views

Should a woman wear a gartel?

My understanding of the halachic need for a gartel is very limited; is there any reason a woman should or should not wear one during prayer?
2
votes
1answer
111 views

Reasons for the laws of the prayers in Aramaic

Parts of the davenning are in Aramaic. I understood that the Malochim (Angels) do not understand Aramaic. Since HKB”H does not “attend” prayers with less than a Minyan, one does not say the Aramaic ...
2
votes
1answer
145 views

What does “rov am hadrat melech” mean?

I was under the impression that from the literal word for word interpretation, that רוב עם הדרת מלך meant literally most of nation respects the king. Does this mean that it applies when only three ...
1
vote
2answers
432 views

How was Tevilas Ezra effective in limiting conjugal relations?

Many go to mikve (perform ritual immersion) every morning. One reason for this is voluntary continuation of a cancelled decree, Tevilas Ezra, meant to limit conjugal relations by requiring immersion ...
14
votes
2answers
264 views

Is there tashlumin for n'ila?

Can one make up n'ila at the next prayer or the previous one at n'ila?
13
votes
3answers
306 views

Praying in “multifaith spaces” in airports and other institutions

In airports and hospitals and such, you can often find "multifaith spaces". Is it permitted to pray in them? These "interfaith prayer chapels" are not churches: they're completely neutral rooms and ...
13
votes
3answers
224 views

Can I omit ברוך השם לעולם אמן ואמן to catch up in Maariv?

If the Shaliach Tzibbur for maariv (outside of Israel) goes too quickly for me to start the Amidah with him, is there a source which would allow me to omit the section ברוך השם לעולם אמן ואמן? This ...
13
votes
1answer
191 views

How do I say vidui in Selichos in a meaningful way?

We say vidui three times in selichos. Many words are uttered in a relatively short time. How can we do this in a meaningful way that is not "vidui peh"? I have heard tell of one of the gedolei ...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

What are “universal minimum” standards of tznius for halachic purposes?

What are the minimum standards of tznius for halachic purposes? By "halachic purposes" I mean Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 75, which forbids praying in the presence of ervah. I am raising the question ...
12
votes
1answer
680 views

Praying for rain in the Diaspora

Why on this year (and on other years that precede civil leap years) do we start praying for rain in the Diaspora (by inserting the phrase 'Vetein tal umatar") at maariv of December 5 and not maariv of ...
12
votes
1answer
208 views

Why do non-orphans leave during Yizkor?

In all the Shuls (Synagogues) I've Davened in over the years, I noticed that all those whose parents are alive leave the shul during Yizkor. Why is this so?
11
votes
1answer
477 views

Does one choose one or two pesukim for names?

What posuk does one choose at the end of shmonei esrei if one has two names? do you use two pesukim? or take the posuk that starts with the first initial of the first name and ends with the last ...
11
votes
3answers
244 views

Finding the quiet section of the synagogue

When you enter an unfamiliar synagogue, how do you find a seat in a section that's likely to have the least talking?
10
votes
4answers
687 views

spitting in aleinu leshabeach

Does anyone know the origin of the custom to spit in Aleinu after the words שֶׁהֵם מִשְׁתַּחֲוִים לְהֶבֶל וְלָרִיק? Where did it start? And in which seforim is it mentioned? I have seen in the ...
10
votes
3answers
212 views

Proper age to take a child to Shul

What is the proper age for children to begin being taken to Shul?
9
votes
2answers
127 views

Modeh Ani - When to say the blessing

When is the proper time to say the Modeh Ani blessing? Sometimes people wake up at 4 or 5 am to use the bathroom and then go back to sleep. Is it correct to say the blessing only when waking up for ...
9
votes
2answers
307 views

Do Jews pray to deceased forefathers?

Shalom, I would like to know if Jews consider it acceptable to pray to deceased ancestors, forefathers, or "saints" like some Christians in the Catholic tradition do. Deuteronomy 18:11 would seem to ...
9
votes
2answers
280 views

Must a Divorced Man Wear a Tallis While Davening?

According to a common custom among Ashkenazim, a man only starts wearing a tallis while davening after he gets married. Does a divorced man continue to wear a tallis when davening? Or could/should he ...
9
votes
4answers
781 views

Lecha Dodi (לכה דודי) - Last Stanza

At Boi Veshalom (in Lecha Dodi), we turn around to greet the Shabbos queen. Firstly, to which direction are we supposed to turn? Is it towards the door of the synagogue, always to the rear of the ...
8
votes
2answers
125 views

Davening for the interminably ill

I'm using the example of a coma for this question, but there are plenty of similar examples that could follow the same structure. Let's say someone goes into a coma, and begins recovering. At a ...