(1) Shacharit [can be said] until midday. Rabbi Yehudah says until four hours into the day. Mincha [can be said] until the evening. Rabbi Yehudah says until the middle of the afternoon. Ma'ariv has no set time and Musaf can be said all day. Rabbi Yehudah says until seven hours into the day. (2) Rabbi Nechunya ben HaKanah would offer a brief prayer when he entered the study hall and when he left. They said to him: What is the nature of this prayer? He told them: Upon my entrance, I pray that no mishaps should occur because of me; and upon my departure, I offer thanksgiving for my portion. (3) Rabban Gamliel says: Every day a person must pray eighteen [blessings of Shemoneh Esrei]. Rabbi Yehoshua says: [One may say] an abbreviated [form of the] eighteen [blessings]. Rabbi Akiva says: If his prayer is fluent in his mouth, he must say eighteen; and if it is not -- an abbreviated eighteen. (4) Rabbi Eliezer says: One who makes his prayer "set" [as though it is burdensome to him], his prayer does not constitute "pleading" [for Divine mercy]. Rabbi Yehoshua says: One who is traveling in a dangerous place should offer a brief prayer [and] say: Save, Hashem, Your people, the remnant of Israel; at every period of transition let their needs be before You. You are the Source of all blessing, Hashem, Who heeds prayer. (5) If one was riding a donkey, he should dismount from it [while he prays]. And if he is unable to dismount, he should turn his face [towards Jerusalem]. And if he is unable to turn his face, he should focus his heart toward the Holy of Hollies [in the Temple in Jerusalem]. (6) If one was sitting in a boat, or in a wagon, or on a raft, [when he prays] he should focus his heart toward the Holy of Hollies. (7) Rabbi Elazar ben Azaryah says: [One does] not [say] the prayer of Musaf except in the presence of a Minyan. And the sages say: [One should always say the prayer of Musaf,] with a Minyan or without a Minyan. Rabbi Yehuda says in his [Rabbi Elazar ben Azaryah's] name: Any place in which there is a Minyan praying, the individual is exempt from the prayer of Musaf.
1. When you pray, do you choose traditional words or extemporaneous prayer?
2. How does prayer change when you are stressed, anxious, or sad?
3. What role do people (family, friends, community) play in your prayer experience?
(א) הֲלָכָה, אָדָם מִיִּשְׂרָאֵל שֶׁלֹא הִתְפַּלֵּל תְּפִלַּת הַשַּׁחַר אוֹ תְּפִלַּת מוּסַף אוֹ תְּפִלַּת הַמִּנְחָה, הַרְבֵּה פְּעָמִים שֶׁלֹא פָּנָה לְהִתְפַּלֵּל אוֹ מִקֹּצֶר שֶׁהָיָה עוֹשֶׂה צְרָכָיו, אוֹ שֶׁהָיָה מְהַלֵּךְ בַּדֶּרֶךְ וְשָׁכַח לְהִתְפַּלֵּל, אֵי זוֹ שָׁעָה מֻתָּר לוֹ לְהִתְפַּלֵּל וְיֵצֵא בָהּ יְדֵי חוֹבָתוֹ, כֵּיצַד הוּא צָרִיךְ לַעֲשׂוֹת, כָּךְ שָׁנוּ חֲכָמִים תְּפִלַּת הַשַּׁחַר עַד חֲצוֹת, תְּפִלַּת הַמִּנְחָה עַד הָעֶרֶב, תְּפִלַּת הָעֶרֶב אֵין לָהּ קֶבַע, אֲבָל שֶׁל מוּסָפִין כָּל הַיּוֹם. אָמַר רַבִּי אֶלְעָזָר שָׁכַח וְלֹא הִתְפַּלֵּל תְּפִלַּת הַמּוּסַף וּבָא לְהִתְפַּלֵּל תְּפִלַּת הַמִּנְחָה, מִתְפַּלֵּל תְּפִלַּת הַמִּנְחָה, וְאַחַר כָּךְ תְּפִלַּת הַמּוּסַף, לָמָּה, הַכֹּל בְּעִתָּהּ מִתְבָּרֵאת, וּתְפִלַּת הָעֶרֶב אֵין לָהּ קֶבַע עַד שֶׁיַּעֲלֶה עַמּוּד הַשָּׁחַר, לָמָּה, שֶׁכֵּן כְּתִיב (משלי ח, יז): אֲנִי אֹהֲבַי אֵהָב וּמְשַׁחֲרַי יִמְצָאֻנְנִי, וְכָל מִי שֶׁמִּתְפַּלֵּל וּמְכַוֵּן לִבּוֹ בַּתְּפִלָּה, סִימָן טוֹב לוֹ שֶׁתְּפִלָּתוֹ נִתְקַבְּלָה, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (תהלים י, יז): תַּאֲוַת עֲנָוִים שָׁמַעְתָּ ה', גְּדוֹלָה הִיא הַתְּפִלָּה לִפְנֵי הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא, אָמַר רַבִּי אֶלְעָזָר רְצוֹנְךָ לֵידַע כֹּחָהּ שֶׁל תְּפִלָּה, אִם אֵינָהּ עוֹשָׂה כֻּלָּה חֶצְיָהּ הִיא עוֹשָׂה, קַיִן עָמַד עַל הֶבֶל אָחִיו וַהֲרָגוֹ, יָצְאָה גְּזֵרָה (בראשית ד, יב): נָע וָנָד תִּהְיֶה בָאָרֶץ, מִיָּד עָמַד וְנִתְוַדָּה לִפְנֵי הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (בראשית ד, יג): גָּדוֹל עֲוֹנִי מִנְשׂוֹא, אָמַר לְפָנָיו רִבּוֹנוֹ שֶׁל עוֹלָם כָּל הָעוֹלָם אַתָּה סוֹבֵל וְלַעֲוֹנִי אִי אַתָּה סוֹבֵל, כָּתַבְתָּ (מיכה ז, יח): נֹשֵׂא עָוֹן וְעֹבֵר עַל פֶּשַׁע, סְלַח לַעֲוֹנִי שֶׁהוּא גָדוֹל, מִיָּד מָצָא חֶסֶד לִפְנֵי הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא וְנִמְנַע מִמֶּנּוּ נָע חֲצִי הַגְּזֵרָה, שֶׁכֵּן כְּתִיב (בראשית ד, טז): וַיֵּשֶׁב בְּאֶרֶץ נוֹד, מִכָּאן אַתָּה לָמֵד שֶׁגְּדוֹלָה הַתְּפִלָּה לִפְנֵי הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא. וְכֵן חִזְקִיָּהוּ הַנָּבִיא בְּשָׁעָה שֶׁאָמַר לוֹ (ישעיה לח, א): צַו לְבֵיתְךָ כִּי מֵת אַתָּה, מִיָּד (ישעיה לח, ב): וַיַּסֵּב חִזְקִיָּהוּ פָּנָיו אֶל הַקִּיר, אָמַר לוֹ הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא (ישעיה לח, ה ו): שָׁמַעְתִּי אֶת תְּפִלָּתֶךָ וגו' [והוספתי] הִנְנִי יוֹסִף עַל יָמֶיךָ חֲמֵשׁ עֶשְׂרֵה שָׁנָה, שֶׁכֵּן כְּתִיב (תהלים קמה, יט): רְצוֹן יְרֵאָיו יַעֲשֶׂה וְאֶת שַׁוְעָתָם יִשְׁמַע וְיוֹשִׁיעֵם.
(1) Law: A Jewish person who does not pray the morning prayer, or the Musaf prayer, or the afternoon prayer, many times; that he didn't have time for prayer, or he abridged it to take care of his [toilet] needs, or he had traveled and forgot to pray: Which time is permitted for him to pray and fulfill his obligation? What is he required to do? So taught the sages: The morning prayer is til midday, the afternoon prayer til nightfall, evening prayer has no fixed [time]. But for the Musaf [prayers], all day. Rabbi Elazar said: [If] he forgot and did not pray the Musaf prayer, and he came to pray the afternoon prayer, he should pray the afternoon prayer and afterward the Musaf prayer. Why? For everything was created for its time. The evening prayer has no fixed [time], until dawn. Why? As it is written, (Proverbs 8:17), "I love those who love me and those who seek me find me." And all those who pray and set their hearts [in concentration] for prayer, it is a good sign that his prayer is accepted, as it says, (Psalms 10:17) "You hear the desire of the afflicted..." Great is prayer before the Holy One, blessed be He. Rabbi Elazar said, "Do you want to know the power of prayer? If it does not accomplish the whole [request], it accomplishes half of it. [To illustrate, when] Cain overtook his brother Abel and murdered him, a [divine] decree went out, (Genesis 4:12) 'You will be a restless wanderer (na v'nad) on earth.' Immediately, he stood and confessed before the Holy One, blessed be He, as it says, (Genesis 4:13) 'My punishment is more than one can bear.' He said before Him: Master of the World! You bear the whole world, yet my sin You cannot bear? You wrote, (Micah 7:18) 'Who bears sin and forgives the transgression,' forgiving the great sinner. Immediately, he found kindness before the Holy One, blessed be He, and He held back the "restlessness" (na), half the decree, and so it is written (Genesis 4:16) 'And he dwelled in the land of Nod [wandering, but not na, restlessness]. From here you learn that prayer is held great before the Holy One, blessed be He. And so for Hezekiah, when He told him, (II Kings 20:1) 'Put your house in order, because you are going to die...' immediately (II Kings 20:2) 'Hezekiah turned his face to the wall [and prayed to God]...' The Holy One, blessed be He, said to him: (II Kings 20:5-6) 'I have heard your prayer... I have added 15 years for your life...' So is it written, (Psalms 145:19) 'He fulfills the desires of those who fear him; he hears their cry and saves them.'"
The rabbis knew people would miss their window for obligatory prayer so they created a system for "make-ups" that reveal something about Rabbinic encouragement and God's compassion.
1. What should you do if you miss your window to pray? What is God's response?
2. Does this shift how you think about your personal prayer practice?