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 the Holiday of Sukkot

As per the request of many of our members and as a public service, we shall now list a synopsis of some laws which are essential for the upcoming Sukkot holiday: The Sukkah must be made of three walls and Sechach (the roof). The walls may be made of any material which can withstand a normal wi......

Read Halacha

Laying a Mouse Trap on Shabbat

Question: May one lay a mouse trap on Shabbat? Answer: In the previous Halachot we have discussed that one of the forbidden works on Shabbat is trapping; one who traps an animal on Shabbat is liable for the Torah prohibition of Shabbat desecration. We have written that if one traps animals which ......

Read Halacha

Setting a Trap on Shabbat

Question: May one set a trap for animals when the trap continues to operate on Shabbat? Answer: In the previous Halacha we have established that one of the thirty-nine works forbidden on Shabbat is trapping. This means that if one traps a living creature on Shabbat, one is liable for Shabbat dese......

Read Halacha

Taking Tylenol, Advil, and Sleeping Pills on Shabbat and the Tenth of Tevet

Question: May one take Tylenol or sleeping pills on Shabbat? Also, may Tylenol be administered to an infant who is running a fever on Shabbat? Answer: In the previous Halachot we have explained that an individual who is not truly ill (i.e. lying down in bed) may not take medication on Shabbat. We......

Read Halacha


Taking Vitamins and Non-Medication Pills on Shabbat

We have explained in the previous Halachot that our Sages prohibited one who is not truly ill to take medicine on Shabbat. Only if one feels ill throughout his body or must lie down in bed may one take medication to heal one’s self. We have discussed several details regarding this law. Conc......

Read Halacha

Bandages on Shabbat

Question: May one stick an adhesive bandage onto a wound on Shabbat? Answer: Regarding using adhesive bandages on Shabbat, there are three issues we must discuss: The first issue is healing on Shabbat, for as we have already explained in previous Halachot, our Sages have forbidden performing a......

Read Halacha

Taking Medicine on Shabbat

The Laws of Taking Medicine on Shabbat Our Sages teach us in Masechet Shabbat that performing any sort of healing, including taking medication to heal any sort of illness, is forbidden on Shabbat. The reason for this prohibition is because the Sages of the Talmud understood that when one was in dis......

Read Halacha

The Laws of Taking Medicine on Shabbat-Continued

In the previous Halacha, we have explained in general that our Sages enacted that one may not take any sort of medication on Shabbat, for they were concerned that as a result of one’s distress when a family member is ill, one may transgress Torah prohibitions in order to heal him, such as by g......

Read Halacha