I have seen books (to be honest they were novels) like Bodie Thoene use the SH'ma as if its used in battle, or it gave them a sense of strength in peace time, like a reminder. Like in America they say "remember the Alamo" during battle MAYBE it seems to be the same kind of team booster during peace time yet also it seems to be used in other moments.

How is Sh'ma used in what cases would it be used?

  • The Shma is the affirmation of monotheism; the most fundamental component of Judaism, and an affirmation of God's relationship to the world; also extremely fundamental. It is traditionally recited by Jews before death. Could this be the context in said novels? Were the characters scared of imminent death? – mevaqesh Nov 13 '17 at 0:19
  • 1
    Welcome to Mi Yodeya Aaron! – mevaqesh Nov 13 '17 at 0:19
  • Your allusion to war is a good one. I just read, yesterday, that Goliath would taunt the Israelite army "early morning and evening", meaning at the time that they would recite the Shema. It seems, then, that reciting Shema was a confidence booster for the army, as Goliath specifically chose that timing in order to dsiturb their concentration. – DanF Nov 13 '17 at 1:16
  • @DanF Sounds like a derash, not something historically significant. Note that according to some opinions the recitation of shema is rabbinic. – mevaqesh Nov 13 '17 at 2:21
  • @mevaqesh It was mentioned in Art Scroll Sefer Shmu'el. It is, apparently a Midrash. I don't recall his source, offhand. – DanF Nov 13 '17 at 16:25

You must log in to answer this question.

Browse other questions tagged .