Chanted Prayer

Liseten to the sound of sung Hebrew prayer.

Photograph of synagogue with pale walls, high ceilings, wooden benches and a large white ark.

Traditionally prayers in Judaism are chanted or sung rather than being read. Some people train to become a hazzan or hazzanit, which means they are trained to lead services and read the Torah using the traditional nusach or trope (tunes for prayers and reading the Tenakh). There are different types of nusach or trope depending on different Jewish backgrounds, whether a community is Sephardi, Ashkenazi or Mizrahi or even whichever specific country they come from. This recording is of Ashkenazi nusach.

The prayer that is being chanted in this audio is said every evening just before the Shema, a central prayer in Judaism which is a declaration of faith. This is the translation of the prayer:

With everlasting love have You loved Your people, the House of Israel. You have taught us Torah and commandments, decrees and laws of justice. Therefore, Eternal our God, when we lie down and when we rise up we will speak of your decrees, rejoicing in the words of Your Torah and Your commandments forever. For they are our life and the length of our days; on them we meditate day and night. May You never take away Your love from us. Blessed are You, Eternal, who loves God’s people Israel.

Translation based on Authorised Daily Prayer Book, 2007.

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