Chapter: Chapter 09: Preparing the Body for Prayer

01. Netilat Yadayim

One who prays the Amida must cleanse herself; it is therefore a mitzva to wash one’s hands before prayer. However, there is a distinction between a situation in which she knows that her hands are sullied and the normal case … Continue reading

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02. Preparing One’s Body for the Amida

The Sages teach that one who needs to use the bathroom, be it to urinate or to defecate, may not pray (Berakhot 23a). There are two reasons for this: 1. The need for relief is likely to disrupt one’s kavana … Continue reading

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03. One Who Must Relieve Herself While Praying

There are two levels of need: 1) a need so pressing that the person praying estimates that it is impossible to wait even the amount of time it takes to walk a parsa (approximately 72 minutes); 2) a need to … Continue reading

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04. One who Needs to Relieve Herself in the Middle of the Amida

If one began praying when she had no need to relieve herself but a great need arose in the middle of her prayer, since she began praying in a permitted state, she may continue her prayer for as long as … Continue reading

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05. The Status of One Who Needs to Relieve Herself vis-à-vis Other Sacred Matters

Just as one who needs to relieve herself and cannot wait 72 minutes is forbidden to pray, so too she may not recite berakhot, say Shema, or study Torah, for it is not proper to engage in sacred matters when … Continue reading

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06. One Who Is Drunk or Tipsy

One must be clearheaded when she prays. Unlike many idol worshipers, who perform their rituals using drugs and alcohol to attain a state of ecstasy, our petitions to God are achieved through seriousness and deep thought. That is why the … Continue reading

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07. The Status of a Nida

A nida (a woman who has menstruated and not yet purified herself by going to the mikveh) is obligated to recite all the berakhot and prayers and may study Torah, for words of Torah cannot become impure, as it is … Continue reading

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