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Questions tagged [kavana-concentration]

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7
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2answers
239 views

Inappropriate kavanah during “asher yatzar”

I don't know if other people have experienced this, but when reciting asher yatzar immediately after going to the bathroom, I find that if I meditate upon the meaning of the words I cannot help but ...
3
votes
1answer
127 views

swaying and bowing

In the Aryeh Kaplan Reader (page 192) Rabbi Kaplan zt"l says, "Many people - during Shemonah Esrei - have the habit of swaying and bowing. However, the Shelah HaKadosh writes, such movements may ...
5
votes
0answers
25 views

How does one “keep something in mind”?

On my way in to shul, I was stopped by the rabbi. He told me that so-and-so was unavoidably detained and would not be able to say kaddish for his father-in-law. He gave me the deceased's name and ...
13
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2answers
400 views

Are you Yotzei Mikrah Megillah if you're spacing out?

The Mishnah in Megillah (2:2) says that one who reads the megillah while semi-asleep ('מתנמנם') is yotzei. The gemara comments (18b): מתנמנם יצא וכו': היכי דמי מתנמנם אמר רב אשי נים ולא נים תיר ...
34
votes
25answers
1k views

Experience-based advice for focusing and slowing down prayers?

I tend to daven (pray) without sufficient focus and very quickly. In particular, I find that most of the time that I'm praying, my mind is on things other than the words that I'm saying. And, not that ...
3
votes
2answers
92 views

Spiritual Boredom

Because of all the routines, standard prayers, repeating cycles etc, someone told me that going to the synagogue became quite boring for him. He still saw the value of those things, but he didn’t ...
0
votes
2answers
129 views

Correct kavanah in certain words in the first bracha of shemoneh esrei

When one desires to concentrate on every word of the first bracha of Shemoneh Esrei, as required, in order to fulfil the obligation of daily prayer, when he gets to the words "magen Avraham," should ...
2
votes
2answers
191 views

'Kavannah' of Shem Havayeh in the first line of Kriat Shma

The requirement when saying the name 'Havayeh' to have in mind both the meaning of 'adon ha-kol' and 'hayah hoveh ve-yihyhe' takes me some time: longer than almost anybody I see in shul taking to ...
4
votes
2answers
101 views

Is having kavanah me'akev in the verse "Hashem sifatay tiftach ufi yagid tehilatecha?

One must have kavanah (intent/concentration) in the first bracha of Shemoneh Esrei. And if he didn't, he would have to repeat it. See the g'mara in B'rachos 34b: איכא דמתני לה אברייתא: המתפלל צריך ...
8
votes
1answer
302 views

Is there any reward for the intent or attempt to do a mitzvah?

As per the title, does one earn any reward/s'char for the attempt (or even just the intent) to perform a mitzvah? This evening, we all piled out of shul to say Kiddush Levana only to find that the ...
9
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2answers
135 views

Properly focusing attention on Hashem

Recently I've been travelling to places, where I couldn't daven minchah in a synagogue, and in many cases I couldn't determine where mizrach was. In another question we saw that, based on Berakhot 30a,...
0
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0answers
35 views

Having two conflicting kavannot at once

Regarding putting on Tefillin on Chol Hamo'ed, after mentioning the opinions which say to put them on and those who say not to, and those who say to say the blessing in a whisper, the Mishna Berurah ...
4
votes
2answers
345 views

Walking in front of someone saying kaddish

I have heard that in addition to the prohibition of passing in front of someone who is davening shemoneh esrei, it is also forbidden (or at least improper) to walk in front of someone who is saying ...
5
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0answers
152 views

May I daven wearing headphones?

There are many paths to concentration. I have known students who doodle because it helps them focus on a lecture more effectively. Others like to listen to music while they study either to help them ...
3
votes
1answer
166 views

Why does the Oruch HaShulchan tell the number of words in the blessings of the Amidah?

The Oruch HaShulchan (eg here) mentions how many words there are in each of the blessings of the weekday Amidah and gives a reason why that number of words is used. For example for the blessing of T'...
2
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0answers
61 views

Saying kaddish vs. Davening slower

This is the flip side of this question. Related to this. If someone has an obligation to say kaddish yatom (in this hypothetical, he is not davening for the amud and he is saying ma'ariv) should he ...
3
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3answers
228 views

Prayer Meditation; help understanding terms

Could someone explain the terms of kavanah, hitbodedut and hitbonenut in relation to Tefilah (prayer)? I know that these are all forms of meditation of some kind; but are they integrated in the way ...
1
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0answers
44 views

The difference between terms for mitzvot

Before certain parts, my siddur (Tefillah Hashalem, Ashkenaz) has "Yehi Ratzon" sections to help one prepare. These paragraphs (found AFTER the bracha for Tzitzit, but before the others) outline the ...
14
votes
2answers
261 views

How do I say vidui in Selichos in a meaningful way?

We say vidui three times in selichos. Many words are uttered in a relatively short time. How can we do this in a meaningful way that is not "vidui peh"? I have heard tell of one of the gedolei ...
7
votes
3answers
387 views

Too fast or no minyan?

Suppose the only minyan available for someone to attend is one which moves far too fast for him. Even with arriving early and starting ahead of time, he only has time to say a fraction of psukei d'...
28
votes
5answers
527 views

Glasses and Shema

The Shulhan Aruch records the custom of placing one's hand over his eyes in Shema in order to increase concentration. What about someone who wears glasses? Must he move them or remove them?
1
vote
1answer
77 views

Davening with Kavanah vs Starting Shemonah Esray with the Tzibur

If the tzibur is about the start shemonah esray however Reuven isn't up to Shemonah Esray yet, and Reuven knows that if he speeds up his davening he will be able to start with the tzibur, is it better ...
2
votes
2answers
91 views

Holding children during shemoneh esrei

Sukkah 41b says a person shouldn't hold certain things while praying shemoneh esrei: א"ל מר בר אמימר לרב אשי אבא צלויי קא מצלי ביה מיתיבי לא יאחז אדם תפילין בידו וספר תורה בחיקו ויתפלל...ואמר שמואל ...
6
votes
1answer
293 views

Using a Fidget Spinner During Davening

In Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chaim 96) it is stated that one is not allowed to hold any object while davening because it will worry him that it may fall and take away from his kavana. However one is ...
3
votes
2answers
123 views

May one say a prayer while driving?

In the vein of this question How to say Tefilas HaDerech while on the road alone -- I am wondering whether it is appropriate to say a prayer or make a brocha while concurrently operating a car. ...
4
votes
3answers
206 views

“Think about love for fellow Jews before praying” - source?

At the risk of being a guessing-game, I thought I had read that before starting prayers (the beginning? The Amida?), one should take a minute to think about the mitzvah to have love for fellow Jews. ...
12
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6answers
861 views

Should I be shuckling?

I was told that shuckeling (sp?) is an indication of the love-fear relationship that we have with God. You move forward showing that you want to be close to God and then backward out of fear of his ...
1
vote
0answers
54 views

Is it permissible to listen to something while tying tzitzit?

Let's be real: Tying tzitzit on a beged takes a long time. It's also a big mitzvah that enables an even bigger mitzvah every day. So is it appropriate to listen to something for entertainment — a ...
5
votes
1answer
97 views

ADD and kavana in tefilla [duplicate]

I want to davven- but my mind goes elsewhere. Any advice for girls/women like me with ADD? Can I talk to Hashem straight? although I know the meaning of the words and am fluent in reading I cant ...
4
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3answers
411 views

What should I think about when reciting this blessing?

In the birchot hashachar we say every day, we recite a number of blessings to thank G-d for different things. I like to think about how grateful I am to G-d for every specific thing each blessing ...
1
vote
5answers
539 views

List of Kavanot for ANA BE-KHOACH

What are some of the things one should have in mind (kavanah) when saying Ana B'Khoach?
0
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0answers
52 views

Bedikat Chametz in the Bathroom

One cannot think about Torah in the bathroom, as per http://www.torahmusings.com/2011/08/bathroom-etiquette/ which cites Berachot 26a, Shabbat 150a, Rambam Kriat Shema 3:4. This "thinking" seems to ...
7
votes
1answer
471 views

Repeating words in prayer

If I have a lapse in concentration during a few words in davening, it improves my davening tremendously to be able to go back and force myself to immediately say those words again, properly. I find ...
2
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0answers
11 views

Hearing Vs. Listening and Reading vs. Reciting [duplicate]

The obligation for the megillah reading is for one to read the scroll. If one cannot read it, one listens to the blessing and then listens to the reader read it. But what is the nature of "listening"?...
2
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0answers
98 views

Kavana vs. Minyan

If I find myself in a situation where davening with a particular minyan will be detrimental to my kavana, should I daven b'yechidut but with a better focus and concentration, or should I stay with the ...
12
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3answers
299 views

Finding the quiet section of the synagogue

When you enter an unfamiliar synagogue, how do you find a seat in a section that's likely to have the least talking?
4
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2answers
70 views

What should I think of when reciting Birkot HaShachar?

Many of the prayers of the Birkot HaShachar are in third person. Such as: "...who opens the eyes of the blind." Or "...who frees the captive." I've always thought about personally thanking G-d (for ...
6
votes
5answers
956 views

May we intervene with Religious OCD sufferers?

On what level may we (or may we not) intervene with OCD sufferers when they are not related to you in any way? I am referring to a sizable demographic of religious OCD sufferers, who don't ...
4
votes
3answers
235 views

What kavanah should you have during *Atah Kadosh*?

The third blessing of the amidah, Atah Kadosh, seems mysterious to me: You are holy and your name is holy, and the holy ones bless you all day. Blessed are you Hashem, the Holy God. Is there any ...
4
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0answers
85 views

Are there circumstances when one should repeat a prayer in which he had no kavana the first time?

Halichipedia writes One should have kavana (proper concentration) when praying Shemonah Esrei. If one is unable to have kavana for all of Shemonah Esrei one should make an extra effort to have ...
1
vote
2answers
170 views

meaning of words and tefillah

The Kitzur Shulchan Aruch (6:1) tells us, “When one makes a berachah he should have in mind the meaning of the words.” Is there any halachic source (i.e. Kitzur Shulchan Aruch, Shulchan Aruch or ...
11
votes
11answers
740 views

How do you improve your Kavvanah [concentration]? [duplicate]

Building on my blog post here, I ask: How do you improve your concentration when davening?
1
vote
2answers
208 views

What kavana (intention) should you be having while reciting the Shema?

What kavana (intention) should you be having while reciting the Shema? It is a biblical obligation to recite the shema twice a day so it would be worthwhile to do it the right way. If you can provide ...
6
votes
2answers
167 views

What are the Levels of Kavanah?

In Rabbi Donin's book, To Pray As A Jew, he says that reading a prayer book to find out what it says, or to relish its beauty of poetry, does not qualify as prayer. He says that to transform reading ...
2
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0answers
54 views

May a woman think about another man during relations? [duplicate]

I understand the talmud says that a man may not think about another woman during marital relations, does the same prohibition apply to the woman?
3
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0answers
83 views

Kavanah while washing hands

When washing the hands, either before bread, or in the morning, must you have the correct kavanah (intent)? For example, if i pick up the cup in the morning thinking i'll do 2-2 (like washing for ...
8
votes
3answers
233 views

How to inspire tears in davening?

Rebbe Nachman said that it is especially powerful to allow tears to flow during the Amidah. How does one come to tears? What thoughts should one have while davening to allow tears to flow in order to ...
7
votes
2answers
244 views

Why does the mitzvah of Sukkah have a stated meaning that its practitioner must have in mind?

The pasuk states (Vayikra 23:43): לְמַעַן, יֵדְעוּ דֹרֹתֵיכֶם, כִּי בַסֻּכּוֹת הוֹשַׁבְתִּי אֶת-בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל, בְּהוֹצִיאִי אוֹתָם מֵאֶרֶץ מִצְרָיִם in order that your [ensuing] ...
13
votes
3answers
271 views

How can I find meaning in saying selichot?

I have always had a problem connecting with the selichot. In my shul they are said in a very rushed, impassionate fashion, mainly due to the need for people to get to work. I don't understand most of ...
0
votes
2answers
77 views

beracha, kavanos and words

When making a berachah must one have certain kavanos on certain words in the berachah that he is saying in order to be יוצא it?