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I see in the Sidur HaRasa"g that he makes a seemingly strange comment about the b'rakha(oth) of t'philin. He states:

התפילין כשמהדקים של היד על היד ושל ראש על הראש צריך לברך אקבמ"ו להניח תפילין

ha-t'philin k'sh'm'hadhqim shel yadh al ha-yadh w'shel rosh al ha-rosh ssarikh l'varekh "asher qidshanu b'misswothaw w'ssiwanu l'haniah t'philin"

Translation: "T'philin: When we fasten the Shel Yadh to the arm and the Shel Rosh to the head it is necessary to make the b'rakha 'Who sanctified us with His commandments and commanded us to set t'philin [in place].' "

The note at the bottom of the page in the sidur says that he essentially holds like Rav Amram Gaon (i.e. the standard shitta of the Sepharadim) that a b'rakha is made on the shel yadh only, but it seems to me that a simple diyuq in his wording yields the possibility that he held like the shitta of making two b'rakhoth on t'philin, but the same b'rakha each time (i.e. l'haniah t'philin).

My question is: How does the Rasa"g truly hold in this reagrd? Do we know from anywhere else in Geonic literature? Is the language in his sidur clear on this fact?

  • The second part of your question is clearly answered in the background information: he is ambiguous. :) – Yitzchak Dec 11 '13 at 14:57
  • I understand about the ambiguity, but I was more questioning my own analysis. As in, "Perhaps I am reading it incorrectly?" Kol tuv. – user3342 Dec 11 '13 at 20:41
  • kotar.co.il/KotarApp/… – Double AA Feb 2 '16 at 5:23
  • it sounds more like he is saying you make the one bracha for both the tefillin shel yad and the tefillin shel rosh rather than the same bracha twice. – Dude Jan 6 '17 at 5:20
  • The Geonim held to say both brachot, like the ruling of the Beraita in the Talmud Berachot and was common practice until the time of the Rif(I saw it in a compilation of teshuvot from the Geonim; can get title if you want). There was alsoa minhag to say a third bracha when taking them off and I explicitly remember that the Gaon being asked replied that it was permitted to bless the third bracha, if one wished. L'ma'aseh, nowadays, we(sepharadim) still bless only one bracha like the ruling of the Rif. – chacham Nisan Sep 8 '18 at 20:46

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