We all know someone (and by someone, perhaps we mean ourselves) for whom Saturday is needed to fulfill the week’s obligations, or whose weekdays are so packed with activities that their calendars resemble the arrivals screen at Pearson. Yet those of us who have found a way to join in the Daily Minyan, or even just put a little Shabbat in their Saturday, have come to appreciate the rhythm of a life punctuated by prayer, and to experience the gift of God’s commandment that we do so. 

The English word, “pray” is an imprecise translation for the original Hebrew word, hitpallel. The former stems from a root which means to beg or entreat, whereas the latter is the reflexive of the root verb which means to judge or inspect. Thus, we come together to look in to ourselves and find a deeper meaning to our lives. Across time we grow in mindfulness and compassion, and we see that to daven is to become more aware of our blessings and to have more of our blessings revealed. With understanding and perspective, we discover that everything is not as it seems and nothing need stay as it is. Indeed, as we become more fully ourselves, our lives become more as we pray they may be. 

Give yourself a break from the hustle and bustle of your life in the big city and come inside to the warmth of a community service — if only on the off chance that a practice that has survived the ages might have something to offer you. Think. Feel. Sing. And then join us for a nosh. 

From Rabbi Flanzraich

Rabbi Flanzraich writes, "Is there a word in our language that means so much, but is more challenging than prayer?"
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Every house of worship has it's own unique customs and practices. We offer an overview of ours to help you feel at home here at Beth Sholom.
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