Daily Halacha

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The Weekly Halachic Analysis

Summary of the Daily Halacha's

  1. The Gemara notes that there is an apparent contradiction between two pesukim in Tehillim. On one hand, the pasuk says that Hashem owns the world, yet, the other pasuk describes how the land was given to manking. Chazal explain that indeed, everything belongs to Hashem, but once a person recites a bracha over a certain worldly pleasure, he acquires it. [1] Chazal, therefore, instituted a series of brachot to be recited every morning, each blessing corresponding to another of the various worldly benefits and pleasures.
  2. Many poskim rule that while reciting Birchot HaShachar, the morning Berachos, and while reciting blessing of praise or thanks, one does not need to stand. Others recommend standing. Some say that this only applies if it will not detract from one's concentration. [2]
  3. In Talmudic times each of the Birchot HaShachar were recited when the particular benefit for which it was composed occurred: One would open his eyes and recite the blessing Poke'ach Ivrim; when one would sit up he would say, Matir Asurim; etc. Nowadays, because of a concern of unclean hands when reciting the blessings, as well as the prevalence of those without sufficient knowledge of Halacha, we recite all the Brachot at one time, after preparing oneself for Teffilah. [3]
  4. In three of the Birchot HaShachar, we thank Hashem for not making us a non-Jew, who isn't obligated in any mitzvot or a slave who is limited in the mitzvot he is obligated in. Men also recite a bracha thanking Hashem for not being created a woman who is not as obligated as men in certain mitzvot. At this time, women also affirm their unique status in Judaism and recite SheAsani Kirsono.[4]

Sources

  1. Gemara Brachot 35a
  2. Pri Megadim (Peticha LeHilchot Brachot #18 and M"Z 432:3, Halichot Shlomo ch. 20, Teshuvot VeHanhagot 2:37
  3. Shulchan Aruch 46:1-2, Aruch HaShulchan 46:9
  4. Tur and Shulchan Aruch 46:4