Halacha for Tuesday 22 Sivan 5779 June 25 2019

The Laws of Bowing During the Amida Prayer

Question: At what points of the Amida should one bow and what is the correct method of bowing?

Answer: Our Sages that one should bow several times during the Amida prayer.

The blessings during which one must bow within the Amida are as follows: At the beginning and end of the “Magen Avraham” blessing (the first blessing of the Amida) and at the beginning and end of the “Modim” blessing. One should not bow at the beginning or end of any other blessing of the Amida prayer.

How much must one bow? One should not suffice with a small bow; rather, one must bow to the extent that all of the vertebrae in one’s spine protrude. One should not keep one’s head straight while bowing; rather, one should bend one’s head while bowing as well, as the Rambam (Chapter 5 of Hilchot Tefillah) states that while bowing, one must resemble and arc, meaning that besides for bowing until one’s vertebrae protrude from one’s back, one must likewise bend one’s head.

Nevertheless, one should not bow so excessively that one’s mouth is directly across one’s belt. Rather, one should bow as prescribed by Halacha, i.e. that all of one’s vertebrae be protruding from one’s back.

If one is elderly or ill and cannot bow until one’s vertebrae protrude, one need not bow to such an extent and it is sufficient to nod one’s head slightly, for this shows that one wishes to bow fully and one is not doing so merely because of the pain or discomfort involved.

Some have the custom to bend their knees while bowing, as we shall discuss in the following Halacha.

8 Halachot Most Popular

The Laws of Glassware and Pyrex Regarding the Prohibition of Milk and Meat Mixtures-Continued

In the previous Halacha we have written that according to Maran Ha’Shulchan Aruch, glassware does not absorb any flavor from foods placed in it and thus, there is no prohibition to use a glass vessel for meat and then after it is washed well, to use it for dairy (although the Rama does rule st......

Read Halacha

Question: Must one designate two different sets of glassware for dairy and meat as one would with other utensils?

Question: Must one designate two different sets of glassware for dairy and meat as one would with other utensils? Answer: We have already established in the previous Halacha that one is obligated to designate two separate sets of dishes and flatware for dairy and meat, for dishes used with either......

Read Halacha

The “Shehecheyanu” Blessing on a New Garment

Question: When is the appropriate time to recite the “Shehecheyanu” blessing on a new garment, at the time of purchase or the first time one wears it? Similarly, must one recite this blessing for every new piece of clothing one purchases? Answer: The Mishnah (Berachot 54a) teaches us ......

Read Halacha

The Laws of Milk and Meat Dishes and the Laws of Giving Putrid Taste

When one cooks meat in a pot, the walls of the pot absorb some of the food cooked in it and is therefore considered “meat”. If dairy is later cooked in the same pot, the pot will release some of the meat flavor contained in its walls into the dairy food and will therefore prohibit the en......

Read Halacha


Reciting the “Shehecheyanu” Blessing on Similar Types of Fruit

In the previous Halacha, we have established that one should recite the “Shehecheyanu” blessing on citrus fruits, such as grapefruits or oranges, which are not so readily available throughout the year. When one merits eating from these fruits the first time during the year and the fruits......

Read Halacha

Reciting the “Shehecheyanu” Blessing on Grafted Fruits

Question: May one recite the “Shehecheyanu” blessing the first time during the year one eats citrus fruits, such as grapefruits or oranges? Answer: We must first preface this discussion with the law that when one eats a new fruit that one has not yet partaken of that year, after recit......

Read Halacha

The Prohibition of Milk and Meat Mixtures

The Torah states three separate times (Shemot 23 and 34; Devarim 14): “You shall not cook a kid in its mother’s milk.” Our Sages (Chullin 114a) expounded that each of the times this prohibition is mentioned comes to teach us another law: The first time it is mentioned teaches us ab......

Read Halacha

The “Three Weeks”

The three-week period between the Seventeenth of Tammuz and the Ninth of Av is dubbed by our Sages “Between the Straits,” based on the verse (Eicha 1, 3), “All of her enemies overtook her between the straits.” Our Sages tell us that these three weeks between the Seventeenth o......

Read Halacha