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Shulchan Aruch O.C. Siman 128 discuses the qualifications of a Cohen to recite bircas kohanim. Disqualification include having consumed too much alcohol, having a severe speech impediment, blindness, having taken a human life, having married a disqualifying wife (such as a divorcee) and the recent death of a close relation. The Shulchan Aruch (Sif 39) writes ...


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The source for mentioning dreams in Birkas Kohanim comes from the Gemara in Berachos 55b האי מאן דחזא חלמא ולא ידע מאי חזא, ליקום קמי כהני בעידנא דפרסי ידייהו ולימא הכי The William Davidson (Koren Steinsaltz) translation: One who saw a dream and does not know what he saw should stand before the priests when they lift their hands during the Priestly ...


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The Gra holds that you spread out all the fingers and don't do the "windows" thing (Maaseh Rav 167).


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Rashi says why this change turns the blessing into a curse pretty clearly in his comment on Megillah 24b. He says: מפני שקורין לאלפין עיינין ולעיינין אלפין. ואם היו עושין ברכת כהנים היו אומרים יאר יער ה׳ פניו ולשון קללה הוא כי יש פנים שיתפרשו לשון כעס כמו פני ילכו (שמות לג) את פני (ויקרא כ) ומתרגמינן ית רוגזי ומעי״ן עושין אלפי״ן ופוגמין תפלתן Because ...


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It's based on the Zohar Nasso 146b and is noted as an old minhag in both Ashkenaz and Sefarad by the Beit Yosef (OC 128). In the Shulchan Aruch he codifies this practice in OC 128:6. It seems the reasoning in the Zohar is that the Kohanim need to somehow up their kedusha level by washing as a preparation for the blessing, and by having a Levi, who has his ...


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They are indeed disqualifications for serving in the Beis Hamikdash (Rambam, Hil. Bias Mikdash 8:1,11). This doesn't apply to birkas kohanim, though; there, a kohen is disqualified only by blemishes that are visible and will distract the congregation. (And even then, not if everyone in town is already familiar with him and his physical defects, or in places ...


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A man who has undergone a vasectomy is most likely in the category of Petzua Daka (crushed testicles) who is forbidden to marry a regular Jewess per Devarim 23:2 (although this might depend on the specific medical technique used). (See Shulchan Aruch EH 5:8,10.) The Talmud (Yevamot 76a) discusses whether a Kohein who is a Petzua Dakah can marry a convert. (...


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This idea is brought down in Shulchan Aruch Orach Chaim 128:23: בשעה שהכהנים מברכים העם לא יביטו ולא יסיחו דעתם אלא יהיו עיניהם כלפי מטה כמו שעומד בתפלה והעם יכוונו לברכה ויהיו פניהם כנגד פני הכהנים ולא יסתכלו בהם: הגה וגם הכהנים לא יסתכלו בידיהם על כן נהגו לשלשל הטלית על פניהם וידיהם חוץ לטלית ויש מקומות שנהגו שידיהם בפנים מן הטלית שלא יסתכלו העם ...


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Responsa Shevet Halevi 8:172 rules that such a person is allowed to duchen, because the verse that is the source of the prohibition, as well as the Rambam and Shulchan Aruch imply that the issue is that hands used to murder cannot also be used to duchen. In this case however the 'murder' was not done with his hands, so the prohibition would not apply.


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A friends of mine who is a Kohen told me that he once ended up in Washington Heights for Yom Tov and showed up at Breuer's (German minhag) on Yom Tov morning. The Gabbai asked him if he was a Kohen, and after answering affirmatively, the Gabbai sighed, and called over another Kohen to give him a quick lesson in how the tune goes. Apparently, in addition to ...


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This is cited by Raavad in his commentary to Tamid (end, s.v. He'chelu): ובספר מקצועות מצאתי כתוב היכא דאיכא נדה בביתא דכהן אסור אסור ליה למסיק לדוכן כל אימת דאיתא בנדתה דחייש דלמא נגע במידי דנגעה היא ואתי לאטמויי דאמר רבי יודן כל כהן שנושא את כפיו ואמו או אשתו או בתו טמאה ונכנס הוא באותו בית שנדה לשם הרי תפילתו על ישראל תועבה ואף גורם לזרעו שיאבד מהעולם ...


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Yalkut Shim'oni, parashat Naso, remez taf shin yud, expounds Song of Songs verses 3:7-8 in relation to birkat cohanim: Behold, it is the bed of Solomon; sixty mighty men are about it, of the mighty men of Israel. They all handle the sword, and are expert in war; every man hath his sword upon his thigh, because of dread in the night. The sixty mighty men ...


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The Shulchan Aruch discusses this issue in OC 130. He rules that one who saw a frightening dream should say the "Ribbon" prayer when the Kohanim bless the people. The Biur Halacha there notes that this should only be done by someone who actually saw such a dream. However, he notes that the custom is for all to say it always because in the Diaspora (in ...


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Sure! The Rama recommends saying it every day (for those who don't say the full Birkat Kohanim every day) after the in lieu prayer. Shulchan Aruch OC 130:1


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When a Koehein is called to duchan ("Kohanim!"), there is a mitzvah d'oraysa for him to go up and say the blessings. For somewhat unclear reasons, this practice was abandoned among Ashkenazi Jewry except for on yomim tovim. This means that Kohanim are missing the opportunity to fullfil the mitzvah, but they are not going against the mitzvah as long as they ...


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Kohanim are blessed by Hashem while the Kohanim bless the people. See Bamidbar Rabbah (end of parsha 11): מי מברך את הכהנים? תלמוד לומר: ואני אברכם, הכהנים מברכים את ישראל ואני אברך אלו ואלו. הוי, ואני אברכם.‏


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A Cohen may divorce his wife. The Mishna and Halacha mention special rules for the divorce procedures of a Cohen, so it follows that may do so: For example, in the laws of how to write the names of the husband in a Get (a divorce document) in Shulchan Aruch, Even HaEzer 129:19 - סימן קכט - דיני שם - it says: לֹא נָהֲגוּ לִכְתֹּב בַּגֵּט לֹא כֹּהֵן וְלֹא ...


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See SA OC128, 23 in annotation of the Rama. הגה: וגם הכהנים לא יסתכלו בידיהם על כן נהגו לשלשל הטלית על פניהם וידיהם חוץ לטלית. ויש מקומות שנהגו שידיהם בפנים מן הטלית שלא יסתכלו העם בהם (בית יוסף):‏ The function of the Talit is not to cover the hands according to the first minhag, because the hands are out of the Talit. At first glance, it seems ...


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This question is addressed by several acharonim. R. Jacob Reischer argues that since a kohen who does not perform the blessing is as if he has violated three positive commandments, the Sages said that a safek kohen should do it. And since he is doing it m'd'rabanan, there is no problem with making a beracha: Shu"t Shevut Yaakov 1:93 אלא ודאי צ"ל אף על גב ...


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I'm not sure the Elya Rabba really has a 'position'. He writes (669:20): פה פראג נוהגים לעלות במוסף, רק בבית הכנסת פנחס נוהגים בשחרית כמ"ש המנהגים [הל' שמיני עצרת]:‏ Here in Prague the custom is to go up at Musaf, except in the Pinchas Synagogue they only go up at Shacharit. He is just observing the custom in the different synagogues in his town. ...


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The Mechaber rules (OC 65:1) that if someone pauses in the middle of a mitzva an amount of time in which he could have performed the entire mitzva (henceforth: a long pause) he does not have to start over with the exception of Tefillah (ie Shmoneh Esrei) where one would have to go back. The Rama rules that for deoraita requirements, one would have to go back ...


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I posed this question today to HaRav Shammai Gross Shlit"a. He is one of the Gedolei HaPoskim here in Eretz Yisrael (and happens to be a Cohen as well.) He said while there were poskim that said once the Ashkanazi Kohen is in a Sephardi minyan in chutz l'aretz that does duchen that he may join them. Still one shouldn't lichatchila go to such a shul in order ...


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The Rambam (Tefillah 14:8) says explicitly it's the Chazzan who calls. Tosfot (Berachot 34a) quote Rabbeinu Tam who says that the Chazzan cannot call out "Kohanim" as it is a Hefsek. He proves this from the Sifri (Naso 39) which says Kohanim is said by the "Chazzan" (in context "Chazzan" there is like what we call "Gabbai"), and from the Talmud in Sotah (...


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Chashukei Chemed - Megila - page 314 says that it is better for the Kohain not to Duchan rather than covering himself with another object. Yalkut Yosef 5764 edition - Tefila Volume 2 - 128:100 also says that a Kohain should not Duchan if he has no Talis. אם אין לכהן טלית, וגם אין טלית בבית הכנסת, אין לכהן לישא כפיו בלא טלית


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The reason kohanim remove shoes before nesiat kapayim is due to a concern that a strap may break while the kohen is going up, causing him to stop to fix it and thus miss nesiat kapayim (Sotah 40a). Aruch HaShulchan 128:12 rules that non-leather footwear with the same type of straps would also be forbidden, for the same reason. (It’s not clear to me whether ...


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The Rambam addresses your concern directly, in Hilkhot Birkat Cohanim, chapter 15, law 7: ואל תתמה ותאמר, ומה תועיל ברכת הדיוט זה--שאין קיבול הברכה תלוי בכוהנים, אלא בהקדוש ברוך הוא: שנאמר 'ושמו את שמי, על בני ישראל; ואני, אברכם' --הכוהנים עושים מצוה שנצטוו בה, והקדוש ברוך הוא ברחמיו מברך את ישראל כחפצו "Do not be perplexed and say, 'What ...


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The prohibition seems to refer only to the time that birkas kohanim is actually taking place (Shulchan Aruch - Orach Chayim 128:23) and to serve the purpose of allowing the onlookers to maintain focus on being the object of blessing by standing at attention and looking down. Though one should always COLOR, this would imply that watching a video would not ...


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The כף החיים explains this as follows: Birkat Kohanim when recited by the priests is a blessing of the priests to the the congregation; thus, the appropriate response, as it is with all blessings, is אמן. However, when recited by the chazzan, there is a difference of opinion on how the Birkat Kohanim should be viewed. Some still see it as a ברכה, and ...


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R. Ephraim Bilitzer (Yad Ephraim no. 5), in addressing the question how could Phineas perform the priestly service after killing Zimri & Kosbi, admits as obvious that only a kohen who was not performing a commandment by killing another is subject to disqualification - not a kohen who was performing a commandment, as Phineas was (cf. Rema CM 425:4). In ...


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If you open for example the Artscroll siddur (in my case p. 698 of the Ashkenaz-English version), you'll see that there's a 22 letter Divine Name hidden in it that is not read, but just scanned with the eyes. The cited verses contain the letters of this name in the proper order, and by reading them you'll pronounce them correctly. פסים is a part of this name,...


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