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Temple Emanu-El of Palm Beach

Spiritual. Egalitarian. Welcoming.

Blessings

“I am grateful for what I am and have. My thanksgiving is perpetual.”

Henry David Thoreau

 

Blessings internalThere are many ways to say “thank you”.  In Judaism, one of the ways we express gratitude is by reciting a B’racha (a blessing).

Some Berachot (blessings) are expressions of thankfulness, such as for the food we eat, or a wonderful moment in our lives. Some are acknowledgments of the beauty of the world around us. And some are simply expressions of appreciation where we thank God for the proper functioning of our bodies, or for giving us a safe journey.

Reciting such blessings is surprisingly simple, since most of the blessings – usually – begin with the same six words!

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech HaOlam…
Blessed are You Adonai, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe…

Each blessing then concludes with a few words (usually there are just a few, sometimes there are more!) specific to that to which we are expressing our gratitude.

Judaism teaches that we should each recite 100 blessings each day. Here are few basic blessings to get you started! Enjoy!

Recite the following blessings
immediately before eating each item:

 

iStock_000082518497_Small1. When eating anything that contains bread, bagels, challah, matzah, pita and rolls, say:

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech HaOlam HaMotzi Lechem Min Ha’Aretz.

Blessed are You Adonai, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe Who brings forth bread from the earth.

(Once you say the HaMotzi, you do not have to say any of the following blessings over foods that you might eat during that meal. One blessing does it all!  If you are not having bread, then say any of the following blessing individually as they apply.)

 

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2. For cakes, cereals, cookies, cupcakes, donuts, and pasta, say:

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech HaOlam Borei Minei Mezonot.

Blessed are You Adonai, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe Who creates various types of nourishment.

 

 

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3. For wine and grape juice, say:

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech HaOlam Borei Pri HaGafen.

Blessed are You Adonai, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe Who creates the fruit of the vine.

 

 

Apple

4. For all fruits from trees, say:

 

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech HaOlam Borei Pri Ha’Eitz.

Blessed are You Adonai, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe Who creates the fruit of the tree.

 

 

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5. For all vegetables and greens from the ground, say:

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech HaOlam Borei Pri Ha’Adamah.

Blessed are You Adonai, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe Who creates the fruit of the earth.

 

 

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6. For everything else (such as candy, cheese, eggs, fish, drinks, meat, etc…), say:

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech HaOlam She’Ha’Kol Ni’hiyeh Bid’varo.

Blessed are You Adonai, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe by Whose word everything came to exist.

RainbowUpon seeing a rainbow in the sky, say:

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech HaOlam Zocheir HaBrit, v’Ne’eman Biv’rito, v’Kayam B’Ma’amaro.

Blessed are You Adonai, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe Who remembers the Covenant, and fulfills the Covenant.

 

Upon seeing the ocean, say:

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech HaOlam She’asah et HaYam HaGadol.

Blessed are You Adonai, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe Who made the great sea.

 

 Dawn at Maroon Bells With Autumn Aspen Trees and Maroon Lake in the Rocky Mountains near Aspen ColoradoUpon seeing large mountains, or a great river, say:

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech HaOlam Oseh Ma’aseh Vereishit.

Blessed are You Adonai, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe Who has created the works of creation.

 

 


Upon seeing exceptionally beautiful people, trees or landscapes, say:

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech HaOlam She’Kacha Lo B’Olamo.

Blessed are You Adonai, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe Who has created such things in the world.

 

CatsUpon seeing exceptionally strange looking creatures or landscapes, say:

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech HaOlam Misha’neh HaBriyot.

Blessed are You Adonai, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe Who makes the creatures different.

 

 

 

Upon seeing fruit trees in bloom in Spring (this blessing is recited only one time each year), say:

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech HaOlam She’lo Chisar B’Olamo Davar, U’varah Bo Briyot Tovot v’Ila’not Tovim, L’hanot Ba’hem B’ani Adam.

Blessed are You Adonai, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe, for nothing is lacking in Your Creation, for You have created in it beautiful creatures and lovely trees, to cause humanity pleasure by means of them.

 

A cute baby in her mother's armsUpon experiencing a wonderful moment in your life, say:

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech HaOlam Shehechehyanu, v’kiy’manu, v’higianu laz’man hazeh.

Blessed are You Adonai, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe for giving us life, sustaining us, and enabling us to reach this season.

 

Upon putting up a Mezuzah on a door:

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech HaOlam Asher Kid’shanu B’mitz’votav V’tzi’vanu Likboa Mezuzah.

Blessed are You Adonai, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe Who sanctified us with Commandments and commanded us to affix the Mezuzah.

 

Good NewsUpon hearing good news, say:

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech HaOlam HaTov v’HaMeitiv.

Blessed are You Adonai, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe Who is good and does good.

 

 

 

 

Upon hearing exceptionally bad news, say:

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech HaOlam Dayan HaEmet.

Blessed are You Adonai, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe, the true Judge.

CoffeeUpon waking up in the morning, say: 

(Women recite:)

Modah Ani Lifa’necha Melech Chai V’kayam She’hech’eh’zar’ta Bi Nish’mati B’chem’la; Raba Emuna’techa.

(Men recite:)

Modeh Ani Lifa’necha Melech Chai V’kayam She’hech’eh’zar’ta Bi Nish’mati B’chem’la; Raba Emuna’techa.

I offer thanks to You, living and eternal God, for You have mercifully restored my soul within me; great is your faithfulness.

 

After going to the bathroom, say:

Blessed are You, Adonai, our God, Ruler of the Universe, Who formed human beings with wisdom and created within them many openings and hollows. It is obvious and known before You that if but one of them were to be ruptured or if one of them were to be blocked it would be impossible to survive and to stand before You. Blessed are You, Adonai, Who heals all flesh and makes it possible to exist.

(Note: People tend to laugh when they hear there is a blessing for this. That would be a mistake. This might very well be the most important blessing of all those listed because our very lives depend on the proper functioning of our bodies. Imagine for one moment how you might feel if you suddenly weren’t able to perform one of the bathroom tasks that we so often take for granted. It would make for a very bad day indeed. So, be grateful that everything is working, and say the blessing! Rabbi R)

 

iStock_000075935405_SmallBefore going to sleep, say the Bedtime Shema:

Master of the universe, I hereby forgive anyone who angered or antagonized me or who sinned against me — whether against my body, my property, my honor or against anything of mine; whether they did so accidentally, willfully, carelessly, or purposely; whether through speech, deed, thought, or notion; I forgive everyone. May no person be punished because of me. May it be Your will, Adonai, my God and the God of my ancestors, that I err no more. Whatever errors I have done before You, may You wipe clean in Your abundant mercy. May the expressions of my mouth and the thoughts of my heart find favor before You, Adonai, my God and my Inspiration.

Blessed are You, Adonai, our God, Ruler of the universe, Who casts the bonds of sleep upon my eyes and slumber upon my eyelids. May it be Your will, Adonai, My God and the God of my ancestors, that You lay me down to sleep in peace and raise me up again in peace. May bad dreams and upsetting thoughts not disturb me this or any night. Blessed are You, Adonai, Who illuminates the entire world with light.

Shema Israel, Adonai Eloheinu, Adonai Echad.

Hear, 0 Israel: the Lord is our God, the Lord is One.

 

Before taking a journey, say Tefilat HaDerech (the Wayfarer’s Prayer):

May it be Your will, our God and the God of our ancestors, that You should lead us in peace and direct our steps in peace, and guide us in peace, and support us in peace, and cause us to reach our destination in life, joy, and peace. Save us from every enemy and mishap, from robbers and wild beasts on the trip, and from all kinds of misfortune that can come upon us. May You bless the work of our hands and grant us grace, kindness, and mercy in Your eyes and in the eyes of all who see us, and bestow upon us abundant kindness, for You hear the prayers of all. Blessed are You, Adonai, Who hears prayer.

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