January 15, 2006

by Reb Yudel
Davening with Reb Zalman

Velveteen Rabbi reports on a recent Aleph semicha ceremony. Here's Reb Zalman recapturing ancient davening tradition:

First we prayed mincha, the short afternoon prayer service. Reb Zalman was the prayer-leader, draped in his beautiful rainbow tallit, and he did something wonderful with the amidah: we chanted the first three blessings together in Hebrew, and then for each of the latter blessings he spoke extemporaneously on the blessing's theme. We sang the final blessing for peace to the familiar tune of "Dona Nobis Pacem," in Hebrew, Arabic, Latin, and English.


You know, I hadn't thought about this practice as a recapturing of ancient tradition, but you're right; the amidah began as a series of freeform petitionary prayers on set themes. :-)

Posted by: Rachel at January 15, 2006 7:34 PM
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