I am not a fan of transliteration since I think it becomes a crutch and a means to avoid learning Hebrew, but I understand how it can enable people who are not fluent Hebrew readers to participate along with everyone else for services. Maybe it is just as well that I don't find transliteration all that easy to follow either (sometimes I think maybe I have slight dyslexia). But here is what looks like a nice siddur for Friday night services with transliteration (Israeli pronunciation) and an easy to follow layout: Siddur Chaveirim Kol Yisraeil
I assume that it has the full traditional services, with alternatives indicated, such the sample page for Aleinu that gives an alternative wording that avoids the particularism of "choseness". As a valued customer of Haggadahs R Us, I was also sent links that show more of the text. PM me if you want those.
I become confused on the types of prayers mentioned in the Reform Siddur. And there are these notations on the upper left of each page . What are these notations for and what is the relation to each prayer . Is there a sequence to follow .
The only "notations" that I can see are the bent arrows at the bottom on the left side of the displayed pages, at the end of some Hebrew lines. Those arrows seem to indicate that the section of prayer is continued on the next page. This is most easily seen on the pages of "maariv" since many pages are shown: Siddur Chaveirim Kol Yisraeil: Maariv (Note that the pages as displayed would be facing sides of two pages in a book with the spine down the middle.) The first time the symbol shows up is on the bottom of page 18 which is in the middle of the Shema. "The Shema" is made up of the initial declarative statement (plus a phrase only said out loud for certain situations---not sure why this tradition is not noted) followed by three "paragraphs" from the Torah. The first is often referred to by its first word "V'ahavta", the second one starts with "V’ha·yah im sha·mo·a" and is usually not recited out loud because it mentions punishment for worshiping other gods, and the third one starts with "Va·yo·mer A·do·nai" and is the one that mentions tzitzit ("tassels"). In the above pages, the second and third paragraphs get divided onto two pages, so the arrow symbol shows at the bottoms of pages 18 and 19. On the English translation side, the Torah citation is noted, for example "— Deuteronomy 6:5-9" for the first paragraph.
I am not familiar with this siddur, but posted the link to it in case others would be interested in it. I have considered buying a copy to have on hand so that the partner of a Minyan member who is a new convert might be able to follow along when she comes to my house when we host our congregation's monthly Kabbalat Shabbat and potluck Shabbat dinner. I've noticed that she is left out because she cannot read the Hebrew of the siddur printouts that we use.
nnjj - the Reform siddur currently in use is Mishkan Tefillah, and the column on the upper margin of each page lists the sequence of major prayers in THAT SECTION, with the prayer on the current page in BOLD TYPE. If, of course, this is the siddur you are referring to, and that list is the marginal notes you are talking about.
Yes prayers have names, and yes they are in a certain order (the word 'siddur' literally MEANS 'order')
I suggest you get a personal copy of the siddur used by the congregation you attend, and read the INTRODUCTION, which will explain the methodology and 'mechanics' of getting around in that prayerbook.
For example - in my copy of Mishkan T'fillah - and I have the one with both weekday and Shabbat prayers - the one your synagogue uses might only have Shabbat - there are different editions - in this copy, on page 39, the header says 'Weekday morning' indicating this section of the siddur contains the service for a weekday morning. On the left most margin is a list of prayers in the weekday morning service, as follows:
Modeh/Modah Ani Tzitzit T'fillin Mah Tovu Asher Yatzar Elohai N'shamah Nisim B'chol Yom Laasok V'haarev Na Eilu D'varim Kaddish D'Rabanan
The bold line item (Nisim B'chol Yom) is the prayer which is on THIS page. Looking back in the siddur, I find that Nisim B'chol Yom begins on page 37 and continues to page 41. Some prayers are long and others are shorter.
nnjj: The siddur that I posted links to is a siddur created specifically by a particular congregation. I assumed that you were referring to it since you posted on this thread and that references to a "Reform siddur" were because the siddur I linked to does have some non-traditional alternative passages. If you want to ask about a different, but related item, it is best to start a new "thread" for a new conversation.
Simcha has more information specific to the siddur currently used in many (most?) Reform congregations. I have seen the "Mishkan Tefillah" siddur and it is designed to be able to be used for a more traditional services (which is what was done when it was used for the shiva I attended) as well as for more abbreviated and revised services, so it has many extra pages with different pages being used or skipped according to a congregation's preference. Therefore, it especially needs a way to show users how to navigate through it.
Actually, now that I think about it, most siddurim require skipping around in use because there are many prayers that are used for some days or occasions and not others. It is an aspect of Jewish prayer that makes it challenging for newcomers. Some congregations have a person at the front with a board with page numbers that are flipped for display during the service to avoid having constant page number announcements for people who aren't already familiar with the service.
I remember being in a small private Orthodox service actually held at a hotel the day before a wedding of a friend's son and sitting next to the friend's mother. She showed me that she just went to a particular page in the siddur and waited until the service got to that point. I realized with astonishment that as an Orthodox woman, she was not used to daily prayer like Orthodox men are and was less familiar with the service than I was. I was able to find exactly where the service was by listening, knowing the approximate order of the service, and skimming the Hebrew quickly. (In fact, if I were Orthodox and joining the service after it started, I would quickly read from the beginning so as to still do the entire service. That's what a few members of my congregation do, but most simply join in wherever the service is when they enter.)
Most siddurs include numerous OPTIONS for prayers at certain points - they can be skipped entirely, or the congregation may choose one or more from the selection - this is especially common in the 'preliminary' portion. The Mishkan T'fillah prayerbook (prayerbooks, I should say) often provide options even for the 'obligatory' prayers - you can recite the traditional Hebrew (on the right hand page usually) OR use a selection in English as a reading INSTEAD, and those are typically on the left hand facing page - same 'theme' but different thoughts expressed - often a selected poem, or other reading. There are - as a result - multiple PAGES of basically the same 'prayer', from which the leader of the service chooses which parts to recite and which to skip. I find that especially annoying with Aleinu - there are at least three or four DIFFERENT versions, and usually this congregation chooses the second one (which is the traditional text at least) but then skips two thirds of Aleinu altogether and leaps forward multiple pages to the VERY end. Also the entire congregation usually sits down immediately after kedushah in the Amidah, as if they don't even know there are several more pages of it to go through. Well. The singing is pretty good, though.
Thanks Simcha and Debbie, Your inputs are of great help. The Siddur which I have is with Shabbat + daily prayers.
Please can you advise me on the following:
1)There are many morning payers in the siddur with different group of notations. Page 1 to Pg 49 is the one Simcha provided. Then from pg 50 to Pg 78 we also have morning prayers but the group of notations on the Left are different starting from Bar'chu, Maariv Aravim ....., Lastly Chaatzi Kaddish. Then there is one more section for morning payers after that . Please guide as to how can I set up my prayer regime and which sections/groups are recommended to do in morning / evening prayers .
2)How many times does one need to pray everyday : there are morning and evening prayers in the Siddur.
3)Is there a requirement in terms of personal hygiene viz one can pray after bathing only.
EVERY siddur from every stream will have a 'Shabbat and daily' edition. Are you looking at Mishkan T'fillah or some other prayerbook? I own at least six 'Shabbat' or 'Shabbat and weekday' prayerbooks, plus some that are Shabbat only and one that is Sefardic instead of Ashkenaz, and I also have a prayerbook that is only daily (not Shabbat) and a couple that are machzorim, for the High Holy days. Plus I have two or three editions of Sim Shalom, which is the Conservative prayerbook, which I like very well - the edition I like best is the one which is full-on commentary on the whole thing. Although I'll admit it is a bit heavy.
IF you are talking about Mishkan T'fillah (the current standard Reform prayerbook) - and by the way, it will be replaced in the not too terribly distant future, because a lot of people find it gives too MANY alternative readings - anyway - IF that is the prayerbook you have, in order to refer to page numbers, we would ALSO need to know if you have the one with transliterations as well as translations and alternate readings, or the one without transliterations...
Seriously. There are a LOT of prayerbooks.
I actually think - if you are in Mishkan T'fillah (and I think you are) that there is a typo on page 51/52 - you are not in 'Morning Service' but in Minchah (early afternoon).
It is 'weekday afternoon' in the Table of Contents.
So. How often do Jews pray? Traditionally, three times daily: evening, morning, and afternoon. How often to REFORM Jews pray? Chiefly, Friday evening only.
Which prayers are 'mandatory'? Fewer than you think.
Shema (including some paragraphs before and after) the Amidah Aleinu
SOME prayers are only recited aloud with a congregation. By yourself, you skip them, or read silently. Kaddish. Kedushah (part of Amidah). Barechu.
Most people familiar with the daily services can knock out the morning and minchah services in about 15 minutes. It will take you longer, but don't worry about that. You can read the English if you need to.
Evening service is similar, but longer on Shabbat (typically).
Torah service is a separate service - it is inserted in between morning service (called Shacharit) and afternoon service (called Mincha) on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays. It is longest on Saturdays. This is also a service which is only done with a congregation. Reform usually has a VERY abbreviated Torah service on Friday nights, and possibly no Saturday service at all, unless there is a bar or bat mitzvah.
But the very heart of EVERY prayer service is the Shema, and the Amidah.
Go and look at the table of contents. You will see, under 'Prayers for Shabbat', two entire service options for Shacharit and for Ma'ariv (evening service).
Look at the Amidah for Shabbat, and then turn back and look at the Amidah for weekdays. These are different.
Aleinu is way out on page 586 - and in Mishkan T'fillah there are something like FOUR different options for Aleinu - and I've never known any Reform service to recite ALL of Aleinu.
Listen to the prayer at the synagogue you are visiting and figure out WHICH version they are using. Typically they will do the first paragraph, then leap several pages ahead to the last couple of lines.
Part of the synagogue service will be the 'preliminary prayers' - some prayers and songs which are 'warmup' for the 'real' service, which starts with the call to worship (Barechu) which you skip when praying alone - then the Shema, and V'ahavta (considered part of 'Shema and its blessings') followed by the Amidah - either the daily or the Shabbat version, depending on what day it is.
Those are the prime prayers of every service, and an observant Jew will recite those three times a day.
warm up stuff - could be ten minutes, could be thirty. Songs, some psalms, some prayers Barechu (call to worship) Shema and v'ahavta Amidah kaddish (a separator - not the mourner's version) insert the Torah service here, if it is Shabbat, Monday or Thursday. If there is a sermon, the rabbi talks here. Aleinu Mourner's Kaddish announcements, maybe Mi Shebeirach (prayer for the sick) assorted songs - usually something like Adon Olam, or maybe Ein Keloheynu
You may hear a version of kaddish more than once. Hatzi Kaddish (half kaddish) marks a division between one 'section' and another 'section'. Mourner's kaddish is similar but stands alone and has some different final statements.
The basic prayers you should learn are: Shema and its blessings (about two paragraphs before, plus V'ahavta and the next paragraph after) the Amidah - two major versions: daily, and Shabbat Aleinu - your Reform prayerbook has several variations in the text which the prayer leader at your congregation will choose from - you will do ONE but I don't know which one.
Standard popular 'songs': Lecha Dodi (sung before service starts or as a starter) Shalom Aleichem (optional) Ein Keloheynu (usually at the end) Adon Olam (alternative at the end) Oseh Shalom (very often sung)
Unlike most Christian hymns, most of these songs have more than one tune, or can be sung to almost any tune (Adon Olam is particularly notorious for having been sung to almost everything. For instance, you can sing it to the tune of the Oscar Mayer hot dog song. Or to the tune from the Lone Ranger. Or almost anything else with a good four part beat.)
So learn the LYRICS, and pick up the typical tune or tunes used at YOUR synagogue - and know that other tunes do exist, and your shul might decide to switch things up once in a while.
A popular tune to sing almost ANY synagogue song or prayer to, is the tune to Hatikvah. Learn that.
Other songs you might (or might not) hear: Yah Ribon Olam Sim Shalom
Also most prayers are chanted, which are a bit like singing - and many prayers have short sections which ARE sung - notably Mi Chamocha (who is like you, O Lord?).
You might like to have this:
Shabbat for Starters - a CD of many traditional Shabbat songs and prayers, by Mayer Davis.
Thanks for the detailed explanation. Yes I have the CCAR / URJ Transliteration Mishkan T'fillah and covers all the prayers. Its a consolidated volume. I thought I was never a prayer person but now I cannot hold my self from it.
Finally , I could not find the Amidah in the morning prayer section . To begin with will start with each group and alternate it and update here . Have found the following videos on You tube ref prayers :