I've noticed that Ashkenazi synagogues pronounce some words differently than Sefardi synagogues. What is the halachic status of these two variants? Do Ashkenazim who speak "Israeli" on a daily basis act...More
Meaningful High Holiday Services?-
I know we don't confess to rabbis, but I have a confession! Even if I can read some of the prayers on Rosh Hashanah, I still don't understand what I'm saying. Honestly I'd rather take a quiet, reflective...More
Notes in The Wall-
I live in America and was wondering if you really put into the Western Wall all the e-mail letters you receive. I have a friend who is visiting Israel and would like her to see my message. If you could...More
Earliest Time for Morning Prayers (Shacharit)-
I’ve noticed that our synagogue has morning services (Shacharit) quite early during the workweek, after which most of the congregants hurry off to work. During the winter months it is still dark outside...More
I read in the Kitzur Shulchan Aruch (2:1) that when sleeping, an unclean spirit dwells upon the body, and that's why we wash our hands in the morning. What does washing have to do with getting it off our...More
Most Important Prayer-
I have heard many different opinions and would like to know which prayer is the most fundamental to Jews, the Amidah or the Shema?
Blessing for New Rabbi-
I am the cantor's wife and I make the candle blessing before Rosh Hashana. We have a new young rabbi. Do you have a suggestion for a prayer or greeting that would include our new rabbi for me to say along...More
Driving to Synagogue on Shabbat-
I enjoy attending synagogue services on Shabbat, but the rabbi told me that it's better to pray at home than to violate a prohibition of Shabbat. I couldn't really see how that’s more important than...More
Kaddish - Minyan-
What should an individual do if he cannot say Kaddish on a regular basis? Is it better to pray from home if you must drive to Shul on Shabbat?
Completion of Kaddish-
My father passed away on June 14, which was 24 Sivan, but was not buried until the Sunday after, 27 Sivan. Until when should I recite the kaddish?
Women Saying Kaddish-
Lately I have been attending a new synagogue and I’ve noticed that the women do not say Kaddish. My father’s yahrtzeit is coming up and this has me wondering about the reason for this.
Completing a Book of the Torah-
I am a lay leader at my temple. Since our rabbi is away, I will be leading this week’s Shabbat service. I have beginner-intermediate skills for chanting Torah. Your pasha page was very helpful....More
Double Torah Portion-
I enjoy attending synagogue every Shabbat morning. When it comes to the weekly Torah reading, sometimes we read two parshas. Why is that?
Mismatched Torah Portions-
I flew to Israel last week and on Shabbat they read a different Torah portion than the one they were reading at my synagogue back home. What gives?More
Blessing on Bananas-
I was taught that the blessing before eating a fruit is “borei p’ri ha’aitz.” Yet the blessing for bananas is what we say on vegetables, “borei p’ri ha’adamah” When I asked around, no one seemed clear on...More
Blessing on Medicines-
I am currently taking a liquid medication which has a flavoring but does not exactly taste good. Do I recite a blessing over it?
I am proud of the fact that at my advanced age I am learning to recite the blessings over food for the first time. However, probably also due to my age, I occasionally forget to say the blessing until I...More
Blessing on Natural Wonders-
We will be traveling to Switzerland on vacation. When you visit the gorgeous mountains, is there a special blessing to recite?
Blessing on Sex-
I know about many of the blessings recited for various events and daily occurrences, but in all my studies, I have yet to find mention of a blessing for marital intimacy. We have a blessing for using the...More
One Hundred Blessings a Day-
I recently spent some time with my friend, the singer Matisyahu (yes, the famous one), and his beautiful family in their tour bus before a concert in Dallas. I was telling his kids a story about the...More