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There is an interesting metaphor used in the bracha for Kiddush Levana (Sanctification of the moon):

עֲטֶרֶת תִּפְאֶרֶת לַעֲמוּסֵי בָטֶן

translated (loosely) as "A crown of beauty to those carried in the womb".

I think that the ending of the phrase refers to the Jewish people, but why are they called "those carried in the womb". What does this metaphor mean, and how did it originate?

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  • "שִׁמְעוּ אֵלַי בֵּית יַעֲקֹב וְכָל שְׁאֵרִית בֵּית יִשְׂרָאֵל הַעֲמֻסִים מִנִּי בֶטֶן הַנְּשֻׂאִים מִנִּי רָחַם" (Y'sha'yahu 46:3).
    – Fred
    Jun 26, 2015 at 19:48

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Excerpt from Be'urei Hatefila citing Maharsh"a on Sanhedrin 42a:

The word: “crown” as used in this prayer is a reference to the lost monarchy of King David. We pray for it to return. That is why we include a line that refers to the monarchy of King David as being inviolate, as we explained earlier. The word: glory in this context represents the glory of the Jewish People which will once again shine after having been lost. That is also the explanation for the words: those carried in the womb. We find that the Prophet Yeshayahu chose the words: those carried in the womb, to refer to the Jewish People, who will be renewed in the future like a new born baby. Both the Jewish People and the monarchy of King David will be renewed through the glory of G-d so that they will praise their Creator as a declaration of His honor, as it is written: and G-d will be recognized as King of the world.

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  • I totally don't get it. Maybe this is a problem with the translation? Does it make sense to you?
    – Seth J
    Jun 26, 2015 at 15:04
  • @SethJ To me, it does make sense, but, since I answered my own question, I admit some myopia. The translation may be weak. What seems confusing?
    – DanF
    Jun 26, 2015 at 15:23
  • It sounds like the moon is the one carried in the womb. What does that have to do with Bnei Yisrael?
    – Seth J
    Jun 26, 2015 at 15:36
  • @SethJ I got it. Yes, I think that there may be something within the translation. I'll try to edit before Shabbat.
    – DanF
    Jun 26, 2015 at 16:07
  • @SethJ See my edit. I copied / pasted another paragraph from the same article. The Hebrew and English are vague, and I agree that you thought what I initially thought - that it referred to the moon. Hopefully, the edit explains the ambiguity.
    – DanF
    Jun 26, 2015 at 20:13

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