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

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Does anyone have any resources on voluntary prayer/tefillah n'dava?

I was recently learning Rambam's hilchot tefilah from Mishneh Torah. After outlining the five kinds of statutory recitiations of the Amidah, he states that just as an individual (but not the tzibur) ...
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2answers
171 views

Is it better to pray at a synagogue where you feel comfortable praying, or to go where your father prays?

This is a common problem with guys living near or with their parents. Do you fulfill Kibud Av Ve'aim and go to shul with your father, or is it preferred to pray at a place where you feel more ...
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203 views

Bracha of V'Lamalshinim

Brachos 28b Shmuel Hakattan coined the Bracha of V'Lamalshinim. Brachos 10a mentions a story where Rabbi Meir was being bothered by people and prayed for their demise. His wife Bruria tells him do ...
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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 ...
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333 views

Organized prayer in the synagogue with less than 10 people - community or not?

Inspired by this question. There are parts of prayer that are not said when praying alone. Some examples (please add any I missed): Friday Night: Birchat Me-in Sheva Shabbos Day before Mussaf: ...
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154 views

Tachanun on Monday and Thursday

Why do we say a longer Tachanun on Mondays and Thursdays compared to the other days of the week?
7
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222 views

The origins of davening

So according to the Rambam (I believe that it is only him, but would be more than interested in other people that also hold the same view), it is a mitzvah de'oraita daven every day (I believe its one ...
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166 views

What can I skip after Amida in Shacharit?

I have very little time for shacharit, because I have to go to work. The minyan in the city where I live is very late. So I try to daven everything before the Amida and the Amida itself with a Tzibur, ...
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143 views

Can I do the Hoashanas service if praying alone?

If one is not able to make it to a minyan one day during sukkos, can he still say or do any of the day's Hoshanas services? Would it be different on Hoshanah Rabbah because of the additions?
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158 views

Does praying at the wrong time count for anything?

(This question might be a prerequisite to be able to answer this question.) Does praying at the wrong time count for anything? What does it accomplish? Sources, please.
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99 views

Half Aleinu outside a shul

Has anyone heard of the minhag to say Aleinu only until "Al ken Nekave Lach" (only the 1st paragraph) if one is not praying in a synagogue? I've been told a number of times about this practice in ...
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67 views

What is the precise difference between Kakatuv and Shene'emar and

The davening on the Yamim Nora'im references many verses and the machzor introduces those verses in a variety of ways. A quick glance at the davening for Yom Kippur shows v'ne'emar she'ne'emar ...
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90 views

Commonly ommited from Arur Haman

Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 690:16 says One must say "Accursed is Haman, blessed is Mordechai, accursed is Zeresh, blessed is Esther, accursed are all who hate HaShem, blessed are all who believe ...
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5answers
528 views

Our Father who art in heaven

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we ...
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2answers
353 views

Is repeating the chorus in Lecha Dodi problematic?

Some tunes for Lecha Dodi are conducive to repeating the chorus ("Lecha dodi ...") twice each time. I've noticed that some people, when using one of these tunes, repeat, while others avoid repeating ...
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5answers
498 views

Effect of Maariv being originally optional

Is there any practical application of the fact that maariv was originally instituted as an optional prayer, and only later became binding because it was universally accepted? Full disclosure: I ...
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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 ...
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3answers
5k views

Text of S'lichos Online

Is there any fully digital (i.e. searchable) edition of the סליחות? Is it publicly available online?
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290 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 ...
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2answers
166 views

Are you supposed to do the responsive parts of Hallel at the Seder?

At a Pesach Seder, when you get to the parts of Hallel that are done responsively in a congregation, are you supposed to do them responsively? Does the answer depend on how many people are at the ...
6
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3answers
272 views

Why is Shmoneh Esreh referred to as 18 blessings when there are actually 19?

Originally Shmoneh Esreh only had 18 blessings, thus the name "Shemoneh Esreh." However, subsequently a 19th blessing was added of Velamalshinim regarding the heretics. If there are 19 blessings now, ...
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168 views

What can a Gabbai do if no one wants to Daven from the Amud?

As a Gabbai Sheni I have noticed that often the Gabbai has a difficult time getting someone to daven from the Amud. Some Shuls have paid Chazonim, yet others can not afford that. What can a Gabbai do ...
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934 views

Saying Ulichaporas Pasha in Musaf of Rosh Chodesh

During Musaf of Rosh Chodesh the words Ulichaporas Pasha is added on during a leap year. Why is this done? And what is the significance of it?
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4answers
177 views

Why do we stand when we do toward the end of Tachanun?

In the Tachanun prayer, it's traditional to sit for most of the core of Tachanun, but then to stand three words into the last paragraph, between "Va-anachnu lo neida'" and "ma na'aseh" ("And we won't ...
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783 views

Wearing a gartel

Where did the minhag of wearing a gartel come from?
6
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1answer
231 views

Why no repetition of the Shema in shul?

We repeat the amida in shul for the sake of those who do not know the amida. We read the birkat hamzaon aloud for the sake of those who do not know the blessings. In both cases, we assume that many ...
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3answers
381 views

Why is There No Tachanun on Tu b'Shvat?

Or, more specifically, what is/are the reason(s) for not saying tachanun on various occasions and how does Tu b'Shvat fit in. (I'm looking for classic reasons, not 'it's got to be somebody's birthday ...
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2answers
188 views

Avinu Malkienu on Shabbos

Why do we not say Avinu Malkienu on Shabbos and why is the Teffilah of Neilah the exception to this very rule?
6
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3answers
376 views

Who says the Ribbono shel Olam in Birkas Kohanim?

I've "seen" many Talmidei Chachamim not saying the Ribbono shel Olams following each bracha of Birkas Kohanim. At least, I hear them chanting with the Kohanim from start to finish. Are these tefilos ...
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2answers
61 views

What are the Levels of Kavanah?

In Rabbi Donin's book, To Pray As A Jew, he says that reading a prayer book to find out what it says, or to relish its beauty of poetry, does not qualify as prayer. He says that to transform reading ...
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3answers
97 views

Holding a child during bentching,kiddush,havdallah

Is there any reason to say that its problematic to hold a child during bentching and so on... because one is thinking about not dropping what he is holding,like by Shmoneh Esrei (96:1) one should not ...
6
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1answer
105 views

A meshabarach prior to going on aliyah

My family and I will be making Aliyah in a couple of weeks. Is there a customary meshabarach for a person who is about to make Aliyah?
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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?
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4answers
272 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?
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68 views

Do mourners change their seats in shul today?

The g'mara on Moed Katan 23a says that after shiva, when the mourner stays at home, he can return to shul but does not sit in his usual seat. (According to this g'mara, he returns to his usual seat a ...
6
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1answer
77 views

Final Nun vs. Final Mem in “Madlikin”

In the Hanerot Halalu that we recite when lighting the Hanukkah candles, it says "anachnu madlikin." Why madlikin and not madlikim? Why is a final nun used and not a final mem? I have searched ...
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3answers
340 views

Bringing little girls into the men's section in Shul

It has become the norm in mosts shuls I've been to, that fathers bring little girls into the men's section of synagogues on Shabbos and Yom Tov. Until what age should girls still be allowed to ...
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765 views

Posuk for name at end of Shemona Esrei

Many people say a Posuk at the end of Shemona Esrei that begins and ends with the same letters as their name. What does someone do if he can not find a Posuk that begins and ends with his name?
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180 views

When do you say Hashem sefatai?

Before saying shemoneh esrei we say "Hashem, sefatai siftach u'fi yagid tehilasecha". Are you supposed to say those words A) Before you take the 3 steps back to start your shemoneh esrei B) One word ...
6
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1answer
182 views

How to find if a particular pasuk is used in davening

My father is trying to find out if a pasuk is ever quoted in any davening and I don't know of a specific resource which would help in a search. Other than using ctrl-f after downloading each ...
6
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2answers
223 views

When do we start reciting Psalm 27?

Yesterday being the 30th of Av (and Rosh Chodesh Elul), prompted a question at shul: exactly when do we start saying Psalm 27—on the first day of Elul or the first day of Rosh Chodesh Elul? Most ...
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225 views

Bowing during Barechu

Many Sepharadim have a custom to take a slight bow when saying Barechu both during Shacharit and Arvit. Others insist on standing. Is there any source for such a minhag in the sifrei Halacha (or ...
6
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1answer
161 views

Answering Amen to kaddish for a dog

I once attended a synagogue regularly where a particular congregant was infatuated with his dog. Upon the passing of the dog the congregant began to say kaddish. He was unclear of his reasons for ...
6
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3answers
146 views

Why do we pray for our prayer to be accepted?

The sixteenth blessing of the Shmoneh Esrei says, שמע קולנו...וקבל ברחמים וברצון את תפילתנו: "Hear our voice...and accept our prayer with compassion and favor." It seems redundant and circular to ask ...
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2answers
236 views

My hands are cold in synagogue. May I put them in my pockets? May I wear gloves?

If my hands are cold when praying in synagogue: 1) may I put them in my pockets? Is it just disrespectful, as I was brought up to think, or are there more important issues? 2) may I wear gloves? ...
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132 views

Barchu or Kavana

If you are late to Maariv and miss barchu and you normally daven slowly should you... Daven faster, even if it means saying the words with little to no Kavana so that you can say Barchu at the end. ...
6
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1answer
99 views

Are you required to say YiHyu LeRatzon before Elokai Netzor?

After Sim Shalom/Shalom Rav in Shemoneh 'Esreh, many Siddurim print YiHyu LeRatzon (Tehillim 19:15) before Elokai Netzor. Not every Siddur prints this. I don't recall which editions I've seen without ...
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2answers
283 views

Where do Ashrei's intro sentences in the liturgy before Psalm 145 (Ashrei) come from?

The sentences "Joyful are the inhabitants of Your House, constantly praising You. Joyful are the people for whom this is so" preface Ashrei. They aren't in the psalm that David wrote, 145, but a ...
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342 views

Davening not in Hebrew

Isn't it better to daven in your first language rather than davening in Hebrew and only knowing part of what you're sayig?
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375 views

How do people daven so quickly, and what's the support for it?

I learned that one must clearly enunciate every word of tefila. At the least this would include Shemoneh Esreh and Shema, but one might presume it includes the entire prayer service. This question ...