Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Who needs kavanah?

Per my Arab friend Jameel, the Sages of the (inferior and second tier Jerusalem) Talmud would count clouds, daydream about meetings and so on during prayer.

Which makes sense, if you think about it.

In our day, we treat the words of the prayers like they are some sort of magic spell. We believe that an incorrectly articulated word, or loss of focus can invalidate the entire exercise. If we do it wrong the Creator of Heaven and Earth won't be budged. If kavanah is missing -or in any way deficient - the prayer is worthless.

I'm not at all surprised to learn that the Sages of the Talmud were free from the grips of such narishkaeit.

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