What should I do if I accidentally faced the wrong direction during the Amidah? Should I repeat it? How important is facing the Kotel in the Amidah according to Halacha?


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Shulchan Aruch Orach Chaim סימן צד - צריך לכון נגד ארץ ישראל, ודין הרוכב או יושב בספינה

If you're facing the wrong way, then turn your head towards the correct direction.

ב אִם מִתְפַּלֵּל לְרוּחַ מִשְּׁאָר רוּחוֹת, יְצַדֵּד פָּנָיו לְצַד אֶרֶץ יִשְׂרָאֵל אִם הוּא בְּחוּץ לָאָרֶץ; וְלִירוּשָׁלַיִם, אִם הוּא בְּאֶרֶץ יִשְׂרָאֵל; וְלַמִּקְדָּשׁ, אִם הוּא בִּירוּשָׁלַיִם‏

Nobody mentions having to repeat the Amida if you faced the wrong direction. It's not a prerequisite, and if you have no idea which way to face you still pray in any direction you want, and direct your prayers to Hashem in heaven, as it says in Shulchan Aruch (ibid) in the next line:

ג מִי שֶׁאֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לְכַוֵּן הָרוּחוֹת, יְכַוֵּן לִבּוֹ לְאָבִיו שֶׁבַּשָּׁמַיִם.‏

Note that we don't really face the Kotel, as we saw in above:

  • Outside Israel you face Eretz Yisrael
  • In Israel you face Jerusalem
  • In Jerusalem you face the [place of the] Mikdash
  • 1
    When you are at the kotel, I know that people face the kotel. But considering that there is currently no mikdash, what are they facing, in actuality?
    – DanF
    Jul 9, 2019 at 14:31

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