Why don't we make a shehecheyanu blessing on counting the Omer? It is a mitzvah which we get to do after a very long break (more than 300 days)?

Some arguments I have heard:

  • In a similar situation we make a shehecheyanu on the lulav
  • Perhaps Purim could serve as a counter-example - we make a shehecheyanu on reading the Megillah to include all other commandments of the day - so maybe here it's similar. But you usually count for the first time before kiddush, where we make our shehecheyanu. And also mitzvos of Purim day have no independent blessing...
  • Also there is no kiddush when the omer is first counted after first day yom tov – Double AA Mar 31 '13 at 22:12
  • There's no shehechiyanu in Israel. – msh210 Apr 3 '13 at 6:41
  • @msh210 See my first comment above. – Double AA Apr 10 '13 at 3:49

The Levush (489, end of 1) writes: 1) It's part of Yom Tov so it's included in the Shehecheyanu of Yom Tov, 2) Since Sefira was in anticipation for Matan Torah which is the main Simcha, it doesn't make sense to say Shehecheyanu on something we are anticipating for before that day arrives!

The Ba'er Heitev (5) brings that the reason is that Shehecheyonu is only said for a Mitzvah that has pleasure and an action. 4/29/2019, correction, "... a Mitzvah that has joy and benefit (simcha and hano'oh)". The word "action" does not appear in the text of the Ba'er Heitev.

The Da'as Torah brings other reasons from the Rishonim.

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The last בעל המאור on פסחים says that we can't make שהחיינו on ספירת העומר because the whole point of the count is to lead to the קרבן שתי הלחם, and being that we don't have the בית המקדש nowadays, counting is just ''אגמת נפש'' for us, and we don't make שהחיינו on things that cause us anguish.

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  • This is the one my rav gave as well. – gt6989b Apr 3 '13 at 14:49
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    This is also the explanation the Aruch Hashulchan cites from the Rashba in O.C. 489:5. – Alex Apr 29 '19 at 23:16

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