Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Preparing ourselves to pray

26th of Tebet, 5770
The Amida is the most important prayer. It is said every day, three times a day, morning, afternoon, and evening.
In preparation for the Amida we have to visualize that we are in front of the King of Kings. This is one of the reasons we say the Amida facing Jerusalem. Because it is in Yerushalaim where the divine presence dwells.
The name of this prayer Amida means “standing” because in the Jewish the protocol a servant stands in front of his King, hisfeet firmly together and bowing down his head a little. (For the same reason, some people would also place their hands on the middle of the chest, the right hand holding the left closed fist). Strictly speaking, Amida means: standing at Your service/waiting for Your command.
Normally, you should hold a Siddur in your hands and read the Amida, word by word from it. However, if you know the Amida by heart, you should close your eyes to better concentrate in the words that you're saying.
The Amida is said quietly, so low no one else could hear your words, so loud you could hear your own whispering.