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Encyclopedia > Shema Yisrael

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Shema Yisrael (or Sh'ma Yisroel or just Shema) (Hebrew: שמע ישראל; "Hear, [O] Israel") are the first two words of a section of the Torah (Hebrew Bible) that is used as a centerpiece of all morning and evening Jewish prayer services and closely echoes the monotheistic message of Judaism. It is considered the most important prayer in Judaism, and its twice-daily recitation is a mitzvah (religious commandment). “Hebrew” redirects here. ... It has been suggested that Tawrat be merged into this article or section. ... 11th century manuscript of the Hebrew Bible with Targum Hebrew Bible is a term that refers to the common portions of the Jewish canon and the Christian canons. ... Jewish services (Hebrew: תפלה, tefillah ; plural תפלות, tefillot ; Yinglish: davening) are the prayer recitations which form part of the observance of Judaism. ... For the Celtic Frost album, see Monotheist (album) In theology, monotheism (from Greek one and god) is the belief in the existence of one deity or God, or in the oneness of God. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Mary Magdalene in prayer. ... This article is about commandments in Judaism. ...


Its main content is loving the one and only God with all one's heart, soul and might, and the rewards that come with this. Conversely, it also includes an admonishment concerning failing to heed the commandments of God lest we arouse the wrath of God.


The term "Shema" is used by extension to the whole part of the daily prayers that commences with Shema Yisrael and comprises Deuteronomy 6:4–9, 11:13-21, and Numbers 15:37–41. Deuteronomy is the fifth book of the Hebrew Bible. ... The Book of Numbers is the fourth of the books of the Pentateuch, called in the Hebrew ba-midbar במדבר, i. ...

Contents

History

Originally, the Shema consisted only of one verse: Deuteronomy 6:4 (see Talmud Sukkot 42a and Berachot 13b). The recitation of the Shema in the liturgy, however, consists of three portions: Deuteronomy 6:4–9, 11:13–21, and Numbers 15:37–41. These three portions relate to central issues of Jewish belief. This article does not cite any references or sources. ... The first page of the Vilna Edition of the Babylonian Talmud, Tractate Berachot, folio 2a. ... Deuteronomy is the fifth book of the Hebrew Bible. ... The Book of Numbers is the fourth of the books of the Pentateuch, called in the Hebrew ba-midbar במדבר, i. ...


Additionally, the Talmud points out that subtle references to the Ten Commandments can be found in the three portions. As the Ten Commandments were removed from daily prayer in the Mishnaic period, the Shema is seen as an opportunity to commemorate the Ten Commandments. The first page of the Vilna Edition of the Babylonian Talmud, Tractate Berachot, folio 2a. ... This article is about a list of ten religious commandments. ... The Mishnah ( Hebrew משנה, Repetition) is a major source of rabbinic Judaisms religious texts. ...


The Hebrew text of the first two paragraphs of the Shema, as they are written on a mezuzah: Mezuzah (IPA: ) (Heb. ...

Image:Mezuzahklaf.jpg

Notice that the two larger-print letters in the first sentence ('ayin ע and daleth ד) spell "עד" which in Hebrew means "witness". The idea thus conveyed is that through the recitation or proclamation of the Shema' one is a living witness testifying to the truth of its message. Modern Kabbalistic schools, namely that of the ARI, teach that when one recites the last letter of the word 'ehadh' (אחד), meaning "one", he/she is to intend that he is ready to "die into God". Image File history File links Mezuzahklaf. ...


Content

Shema Yisrael

The first, pivotal, words of the Shema are: שמע ישראל יהוה אלהינו יהוה אחד


Judaism teaches that the Tetragrammaton (י-ה-ו-ה) is the ineffable name of God, and as such is not read aloud in the Shema but is traditionally replaced with אדני, Adonai ("my Lord"). For this reason, the Shema is recited aloud as: It has been suggested that Yahweh be merged into this article or section. ... To say that something is ineffable means that it cannot or should not be spoken. ...

Shema Yisrael Adonai Eloheinu Adonai Echad.

The literal word meanings are roughly as follows:

Shema (A three part word) — listen, or hear and "act on"
Yisrael — Israel, in the sense of the people or congregation of Israel
Adonai — often translated as "Lord", it is used in place of the Tetragrammaton
Eloheinuour God, the word "El" or "Elohei" signifying God (see also: Elohim), and the plural possessive determiner suffix "nu" or "einu" signifying "our"
Echad — the Hebrew word for "1" (the number)

In common with many other ancient languages, connective words such as "is", and conventions regarding punctuation, are usually implied rather than stated as they would be in modern English. It has been suggested that Yahweh be merged into this article or section. ... Ēl (אל) is a Northwest Semitic word and name translated into English as either god or God or left untranslated as El, depending on the context. ... Elohim (אֱלוֹהִים , אלהים ) is a Hebrew word which expresses concepts of divinity. ... The English language is a West Germanic language that originates in England. ...


The first portion relates to the issue of the kingship of God. The first verse, "Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God is one Lord," has ever been regarded as the confession of belief in the One God. Due to the ambiguities of the Hebrew language there are multiple ways of translating the Shema: For other uses, see Monarch (disambiguation). ... “Hebrew” redirects here. ...

"Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God! The LORD is One!" and
"Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God — the LORD alone."

Many commentaries have been written about the subtle differences between the translations. There is an emphasis on the oneness of God and on the sole worship of God by Israel. There are other translations, though most retain one or the other emphases.


V'ahavta

V'ahavta in Hebrew.
V'ahavta in Hebrew.

The following verses, commonly referred to by the first word of the verse immediately following the Shema as the V'ahavta, meaning "And you shall love...", contain the commands to love God with all one's heart, soul, and might; to remember all commandments and "teach them diligently to your children and speak of them when you sit down and when you walk, when you lie down and when you rise" (Deut 6:7); to recite the words of God when retiring or rising; to bind those words "on thy arm and thy head" (interpreted as tefillin), and to inscribe them on the door-posts of your house and on your gates (referring to mezuzah). Image File history File links Vahavta_2. ... Tefillin (Hebrew: תפלין), also called phylacteries, are two boxes containing Biblical verses and the leather straps attached to them which are used in traditional Jewish prayer. ... Mezuzah (IPA: ) (Heb. ...


V'haya im shemoa

The passage following the "Shema" and "V'ahavta" relates to the issue of reward and punishment. It contains the promise of reward for serving God with all one's heart, soul, and might (Deut 11:13) and for the fulfillment of the laws. It also contains punishment for transgression. It also contains a repetition of the contents of the first portion -but this time spoken to the second person plural, (Where as the first portion is directed to the individual Jew, this time it is directed to the whole community, all the Jews).


Vayomer

The third portion relates to the issue of redemption. Specifically, it contains the law concerning the tzitzit as a reminder that all laws of God are obeyed, as a warning against following evil inclinations and in remembrance of the exodus from Egypt. For the prophets and rabbis, the exodus from Egypt is paradigmatic of Jewish faith that God redeems from all forms of foreign domination. It can be found in the portion "Shlach Lecha" in the book of Numbers. The tallit (Modern Hebrew: ) or tallet(h) (Sephardi Hebrew: ), also called talles (Yiddish), is a prayer shawl cloak that is worn during the morning Jewish services (the Shacharit prayers) in Judaism, during the Torah service, and on Yom Kippur. ... For other uses, see Paradigm (disambiguation). ...


Summary

In summary, the content flows from the assertion of the oneness of God's kingship. Thus, in the first portion, there is a command to love God with all one's heart, soul and might and to remember and teach these very important words to the children throughout the day. Obeying these commands, says the second portion, will lead to rewards, and disobeying them will lead to punishment. To ensure fulfillment of these key commands, God also commands in the third portion a practical reminder, wearing the tzitzit, "that ye may remember and do all my commandments, and be holy unto your God." Tzitzit (Ashkenazi Hebrew: tzitzis) are fringes or tassels (Hebrew: ציצת (Biblical), ציצית (Mishnaic)) found on a tallit worn by observant Jews as part of practicing Judaism. ...


The full content verse by verse, in Hebrew, English transliteration and English translation, can be found here.


The second line quoted, "Blessed be the Name of His glorious kingdom for ever and ever", was originally a congregational response to the declaration of the Oneness of God; it is therefore often printed in small font and recited in an undertone, as recognition that it is not, itself, a part of the cited Biblical verses. The third section of the Shema formally ends at Numbers 15:41, but in fact traditionally Jews end the recitation of the Shema with the following word from the next verse, Emet, or "Truth", as the end of the prayer.


Recitation and reading

The Hebrew Bible states that "these words" be spoken of "when you lie down, and when you rise up" Deuteronomy 6:7. 11th century manuscript of the Hebrew Bible with Targum Hebrew Bible is a term that refers to the common portions of the Jewish canon and the Christian canons. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ...


The first book of the Talmud, tractate Brachot, opens with a discussion of when exactly the Shema needs to be recited. The Mishna connects the time of recitation with details of the rhythm of the life of the Temple in Jerusalem, saying that the Shema should be recited in the evening when the Kohanim (Jewish priests) who were Tamei (ritually impure) (and had been unable to serve) enter to eat their Terumah (heave offerings). The Gemarrah contains a wide-ranging discussion of exactly when this occurred, with general agreement that it occurred in the evening, either after sunset or after three stars were visible. A similar discussion describes the morning Shema, which can be recited at first light prior to sunrise, as soon as colors can be discerned. The first page of the Vilna Edition of the Babylonian Talmud, Tractate Berachot, folio 2a. ... Berakhot (Hebrew: ברכות, Benedictions) is the first masekhet (tractate) of Seder Zeraim (Order of Seeds) of the Mishnah, the first major text of Jewish law. ... The Mishnah (Hebrew משנה, Repetition) is a major source of rabbinic Judaisms religious texts. ... The Temple in Jerusalem or Holy Temple (Hebrew: בית המקדש, transliterated Bet HaMikdash and meaning literally The Holy House) was located on the Temple Mount (Har HaBayit) in the old city of Jerusalem. ... Cohen (disambiguation) Position of the kohens hands and fingers during the Priestly Blessing A kohen (or cohen, Hebrew כּהן, priest, pl. ... Tumah is a state of ritual impurity in Halakha (Jewish law). ... A heave offering (Hebrew: terumah), is a type of Korban (Biblical sacrifice), specifically a sacrifice which was a tithe. ... A heave offering (Hebrew: terumah), is a type of Korban (Biblical sacrifice), specifically a sacrifice which was a tithe. ... The Gemara (also Gemorah) (גמרא - from gamar: Hebrew [to] complete; Aramaic [to] study) is the part of the Talmud that contains rabbinical commentaries and analysis of its predecessor, the Mishnah. ...


The Shema does not have to be recited in Hebrew. It may be recited in any language the worshipper understands (Berakhot 2:3). However, it is an almost universal custom among observant Jews to recite it in Hebrew. “Hebrew” redirects here. ...


In Orthodox and Conservative Judaism, the Shema should be recited twice daily, whether or not one is able to attend services with a congregation, wherever one is. Even a requirement of decent surroundings (e.g. not to recite it in the bathroom) can be waived if necessary, as occurred for example at Auschwitz. Orthodox Judaism is the formulation of Judaism that adheres to a relatively strict interpretation and application of the laws and ethics first canonised in the Talmudic texts (Oral Torah) and as subsequently developed and applied by the later authorities known as the Gaonim, Rishonim, and Acharonim. ... Conservative Judaism, (also known as Masorti Judaism in Israel predominantly), is a modern stream of Judaism that arose out of intellectual currents in Germany in the mid-19th century and took institutional form in the United States in the early 1900s. ... A minyan (Hebrew: plural minyanim) is traditionally a quorum of ten or more adult (over the age of Bar Mitzvah) male Jews for the purpose of communal prayer; a minyan is often held within a synagogue, but may be (and often is) held elsewhere. ... Auschwitz, in English, commonly refers to the Auschwitz concentration camp complex built near the town of Oświęcim, by Nazi Germany during World War II. Rarely, it may refer to the Polish town of Oświęcim (called by the Germans Auschwitz) itself. ...


The Shema, or as much of the first verse of it as can be said under the circumstances, is traditionally recited by a dying person as part of an affirmation of faith upon death. It is also recited at the end of Ne'illah service on Yom Kippur. Yom Kippur (IPA: ; Hebrew:יוֹם כִּפּוּר, IPA: ) is the Jewish holiday of the Day of Atonement. ...


Women and the Shema

In Orthodox Judaism, women are not required to recite the Shema, as with other time-bound requirements which might impinge on their traditional familial obligations, although they are obligated to pray at least once daily without a specific liturgy requirement and many discharge that obligation through prayers like the Shema. Since 2002, Conservative Judaism has regarded Conservative women as generally obligated to recite the Shema at the same times as men. Reform Judaism and Reconstructionist Judaism do not regard gender-related traditional Jewish ritual requirements, including obligations for men but not women to pray specific prayers at specific times, as necessary in modern circumstances; instead, both genders may fulfill all requirements. The role of women in Judaism is determined by the Hebrew Bible, Talmud (oral law), tradition and by non-religious cultural factors. ... Orthodox Judaism is the formulation of Judaism that adheres to a relatively strict interpretation and application of the laws and ethics first canonised in the Talmudic texts (Oral Torah) and as subsequently developed and applied by the later authorities known as the Gaonim, Rishonim, and Acharonim. ... Conservative Judaism, (also known as Masorti Judaism in Israel predominantly), is a modern stream of Judaism that arose out of intellectual currents in Germany in the mid-19th century and took institutional form in the United States in the early 1900s. ... Reform Judaism can refer to (1) the largest denomination of American Jews and its sibling movements in other countries, (2) a branch of Judaism in the United Kingdom, and (3) the historical predecessor of the American movement that originated in 19th-century Germany. ... Reconstructionist Judaism is a modern American-based Jewish movement, based on the ideas of the late Mordecai Kaplan, that views Judaism as a progressively evolving civilization. ... Halakha (Hebrew: הלכה; also transliterated as Halakhah, Halacha, Halakhot and Halachah with pronunciation emphasis on the third syllable, kha), is the collective corpus of Jewish religious law, including biblical law (the 613 mitzvot) and later talmudic and rabbinic law as well as customs and traditions. ...


Accompanying blessings

The Benedictions preceding and following the Shema are traditionally credited to the members of the Great Assembly. They were first instituted in the liturgy of the Temple in Jerusalem. The introduction to this article provides insufficient context for those unfamiliar with the subject matter. ... The Temple in Jerusalem or Holy Temple (Hebrew: בית המקדש, transliterated Bet HaMikdash and meaning literally The Holy House) was located on the Temple Mount (Har HaBayit) in the old city of Jerusalem. ...


According to the Talmud, the reading of the Shema morning and evening fulfils the commandment "You shall meditate therein day and night". As soon as a child begins to speak, his father is directed to teach him the verse "Moses commanded us a law, even the inheritance of the congregation of Jacob" (Deut. 33:4), and teach him to read the Shema (Talmud, Sukkot 42a). The reciting of the first verse of the Shema is called "the acceptance of the yoke of the kingship of God" (kabalat ol malchut shamayim) (Mishnah Berachot 2:5). Judah ha-Nasi, who spent all day involved with his studies and teaching, said just the first verse of the Shema in the morning (Talmud Berachot 13b) "as he passed his hands over his eyes" which appears to be the origin of the Jewish custom to cover the eyes with the right hand whilst reciting the first verse. Judah haNasi, or more accurately in Hebrew, Yehudah HaNasi, was a key leader of the Jewish community of Judea under the Roman empire, toward the end of the 2nd century CE. He was reputedly from the Davidic line of the royal line from King David, hence his title Prince (Nasi...


The first verse of the Shema is recited aloud, simultaneously by the hazzan and the congregation, which responds with the rabbinically instituted Baruch Shem ("Blessed be the Name") in silence before continuing the rest of Shema. Only on Yom Kippur is this response said aloud. The remainder of the Shema is read in silence. Sephardim recite the whole of the Shema aloud, except the Baruch Shem. Reform Jews also recite the whole of the Shema aloud, but including the Baruch Shem. A hazzan or chazzan (Hebrew for cantor) is a Jewish musician trained in the vocal arts who helps lead the synagogue in songful prayer. ... Yom Kippur (IPA: ; Hebrew:יוֹם כִּפּוּר, IPA: ) is the Jewish holiday of the Day of Atonement. ... Sephardim (ספרדי, Standard Hebrew Səfardi, Tiberian Hebrew ardî; plural Sephardim: ספרדים, Standard Hebrew Sfaradim, Tiberian Hebrew ) are a subgroup of Jews, generally defined in contrast to Ashkenazim and/or . ... Reform Judaism can refer to (1) the largest denomination of American Jews and its sibling movements in other countries, (2) a branch of Judaism in the United Kingdom, and (3) the historical predecessor of the American movement that originated in 19th-century Germany. ...


Bedtime Shema

Before going to sleep, the first paragraph of the Shema is recited. This is not only a commandment directly given in the Bible (in Deuteronomy 6:6–7), but is also alluded to from verses such as "Commune with your own heart upon your bed" (Psalms 4:4). This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Psalms (from the Greek: Psalmoi) (originally meaning songs sung to a harp, from psallein play on a stringed instrument, Ψαλμοί; Hebrew: Tehilim, תהילים) is a book of the Hebrew Bible, Tanakh or Old Testament. ...


Other instances

The exhortation by the Kohen ("priest") in calling Israel to arms against an enemy (which does not apply when the Temple in Jerusalem is not standing) also includes Shema Yisrael. (Deuteronomy 20:3; Talmud Sotah 42a). Cohen (disambiguation) Position of the kohens hands and fingers during the Priestly Blessing A kohen (or cohen, Hebrew כּהן, priest, pl. ... The Temple in Jerusalem or Holy Temple (Hebrew: בית המקדש, transliterated Bet HaMikdash and meaning literally The Holy House) was located on the Temple Mount (Har HaBayit) in the old city of Jerusalem. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ...


Rabbi Akiva patiently endured while his flesh was being torn with iron combs, and died reciting the Shema. He pronounced the last word of the sentence, Echad ("one") with his last breath (Talmud Berachot 61b). Since then, it has been traditional for Jews to say the Shema as their last words. Akiba ben Joseph (or Rabbi Akiva, Rebbi Akiva, c. ... The Last Words - Malcolm Baxter (vocals), Andy Groome (guitar), Leigh Kendall (bass), John Gunn (drums) - were one of the first Australian punk bands. ...


Arnold Schoenberg used it as part of the story to his narrative orchestral work A Survivor from Warsaw (1947). Schoenberg redirects here. ... A Survivor from Warsaw, Op. ...


Roy Kline, a major in the IDF, said the Shema before jumping on a live grenade, in accordance with the traditional Jewish practice of reciting the Shema when one believes one is going to die. Roi Klein (Hebrew: רועי קליין, Roi Klein) (pronounced Ro-ee Klein) (1975-July 26 2006) born in Raanana, Israel was a Major in the Golani Brigade of the Israeli Defense Forces. ... Emblem of the IDF The Israel Defense Forces are part of the Israeli Security Forces. ... Grenade may refer to: The well-known hand grenade commonly used by soldiers. ...


Shema in Christianity

Main article: Great Commandment

Shema is one of the sentences that are quoted in the New Testament. The Gospel of Mark 12:29 mentions that Jesus considered the Shema the beginning exhortation of the first of his two greatest commandments: "And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, 'Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord'" (KJV). Jesus also refers to the Shema in The Gospel of John 10:30. A group of Jews in the Temple in Jerusalem at the Feast of Dedication, or Hanukkah, asks him if he is Messiah, the anointed one of God. Jesus concludes his response with the words "I and my Father are one" (KJV). This is an allusion to the Shema, which the Jews immediately recognize and pick up stones to stone him. Overview The Great Commandment is found in the Bible in Mark chapter 12 verses 28-31. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... This article is about the Christian scriptures. ... The Gospel of Mark (literally, according to Mark; Greek, Κατά Μαρκον, Kata Markon),(anonymous[1] but ascribed to Mark the Evangelist) is a Gospel of the New Testament. ... This article is about Jesus of Nazareth. ... The Great Commandment is found in the Bible in Matthew chapter 22 verses 37-40. ... The King James or Authorized Version of the Bible is an English translation of the Christian Bible first published in 1611. ... This article is about Jesus of Nazareth. ... For other uses, see Gospel of John (disambiguation). ... Temple of Hephaestus, an Doric Greek temple in Athens with the original entrance facing east, 449 BC (western face depicted) For other uses, see Temple (disambiguation). ... Grand Rabbi Israel Abraham Portugal of the Hasidic group Skullen lighting Hanukkah lights Hanukkah (‎, also spelled Chanukah), also known as the Festival of Lights, is an eight-day Jewish holiday beginning on the 25th day of the month of Kislev, which may fall anytime from late November to late December. ... In Judaism, the Messiah (Hebrew: , Standard  Tiberian ; Aramaic: , ; Arabic: , ; the Anointed One) at first meant any person who was anointed with oi on rising to a certain position among the ancient Israelites, at first that of High priest, later that of King and also that of a prophet. ... This article is about Jesus of Nazareth. ... The King James or Authorized Version of the Bible is an English translation of the Christian Bible first published in 1611. ...


In addition, the apostle Paul reworks the Shema in 1 Corinthians 8:6 vis-à-vis the risen Christ: "yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist."[1] Look up Paul in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... (Redirected from 1 Corinthians) See also: Second Epistle to the Corinthians and Third Epistle to the Corinthians The First Epistle to the Corinthians is a book of the Bible in the New Testament. ...


Greek: ἀλλ᾿ ἡμῖν εἷς θεὸς ὁ πατὴρ ἐξ οὗ τὰ πάντα καὶ ἡμεῖς εἰς αὐτόν, καὶ εἷς κύριος Ἰησοῦς Χριστὸς δι᾿ οὗ τὰ πάντα καὶ ἡμεῖς δι᾿ αὐτοῦ (cf. to LXX of Deut. 6:4: ἄκουε Ισραηλ κύριος ὁ θεὸς ἡμῶν κύριος εἷς ἐστιν).


Footnotes

  1. ^ cf. N.T. Wright, The Climax of the Covenant, 1994

References

See also


  Results from FactBites:
 
Shema Yisrael - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1330 words)
Shema Yisrael (or Sh'ma Yisroel or just Shema) (Hebrew: שמע ישראל; "Hear, [O] Israel") are the first two words of a section of the Torah (Hebrew Bible) that is used as a centerpiece of all morning and evening Jewish prayer services and closely echoes the monotheistic message of Judaism.
The term "Shema" is used by extension to the whole part of the daily prayers that commences with Shema Yisrael and comprises Deuteronomy 6:4-9, 11:13-21, and Numbers 15:37-41.
Shema is one of the sentences that are quoted in the New Testament.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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