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The Mezuzah

The Mezuzah

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No, it’s not a Jewish doorbell. It's a home security device called a mezuzah, and it’s wired into the Ultimate Protection Agency.

The software inside this gadget is a scroll with the words beginning, “Hear O Israel, the L‑rd is our G‑d; the L‑rd is one.” Those powerful words sum up the mandate of a Jew: to infuse the world with G‑d’s oneness. We place the mezuzah on our doorposts, and G‑d’s oneness surrounds us and protects us.

You’ll need:

  1. A mezuzah scroll. The mezuzah must be hand-written by a scribe, on specially prepared parchment, with specific types of quill and ink. The market is filled with printed or improperly prepared mezuzahs, so make sure to purchase yours from a reliable source.
  2. We place them on our doorposts, and G‑d’s oneness surrounds us and protects usA protective case.
  3. Hammer and nails, strong glue or double-sided tape.

Where:

On every doorway in your home or office leading into a proper room—a space at least 6.5 × 6.5 feet—except for the bathroom. This includes hallways, walk-in closets, etc.

On the right doorpost—going with the direction towards which the door opens. If the door leads into a house, affix it to the right of a person entering, even if the door swings outwards. In a doorless doorway, think about importance and function, and place to the right of the entry to the more important room.

At the bottom of the top third of the doorpost, on a diagonal, with the top pointing inwards.

How:

Recite:

Blessed are you, L‑rd our G‑d, King of the universe, who has sanctified us with His commandments and commanded us to affix a mezuzah.

Affix the mezuzah(s). One blessing suffices for all the mezuzahs affixed in one uninterrupted session.

Touch the mezuzah as you enter and leave, and then kiss the fingers that touched it.

At least twice in seven years, have your mezuzahs professionally checked, to ascertain that they are intact and that no letters have been cracked or erased.

Illustrations by Yehuda Lang. To view more artwork by this artist, click here.
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Claudia Mara Adler florida June 2, 2017

I like to have the mezuzah in my house, I feel more secure, I love to kiss it when I come home and when I go out. It reminds me that I am not alone. Reply

Anonymous Ca February 13, 2017

Office I found confirmation in your site as to security device purpose on office doors. The 24/7 workplace is the most harmonious place I've been despite polyglot of languages. It works! I noted that some disturbed people found the place intolerable and could hardly wait to leave. Reply

Mlk Brockton Ma December 19, 2016

Mezuzah I never heard of a Mezuzah that's security device I have just learnt something new . Try make it practice to learn something new every day thank you . Have Mezuzah on my front door . Reply

Simcha Bart for Chabad.org Los Angeles July 13, 2016

It is good to hear that you will be doing this Mitzvah. The scroll is rolled so that the text is on the inside. You begin to roll the Mezuzah from end to beginning - i.e. from left to right. For more on this please see here the section entitled The Mezuzah Case.
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Anonymous New York July 7, 2016

how to put the scroll in the mezuzah As a reform Jew, I didn't grow up with a mezuzah, but want to install one now. Do I roll my scroll (hand written in Israel) so that the words are rolled facing in or facing out? Reply

Marvin Finkelstein Kew Gardens Hills, Queens July 7, 2016

More frequent inspections in humid climates I had my mezuzahs checked recently, and one was found to be pursul.
In extremely humid climates, i.e. Florida, South America and other humid regions, mezuzahs may need to be checked much more frequently.

Is more frequnt checking suggested for humid climates? Reply

Eliezer Zalmanov for Chabad.org July 29, 2014

To E. Levi The mezuzah on the door leading into the house from outdoors is always placed on the right of the person entering the house. Reply

E. Levi July 28, 2014

If the outside door opens into the house on the left side do you d[still affix mezuzah on right side? Reply

Rachel Eale Ca May 8, 2014

what if you live in a apartment and you have to move, do you take it with you? Reply

Anonymous london, UK August 12, 2012

Re: Re Physical Protection The fact that it is in the Talmud doesn't make it true. After all, one of the medicines quoted would give you worms, e.coli and lead poisoning at the very least. The Talmud is not, after all, the bible. Reply

Rabbi Shmary Brownstein Chabad.org August 12, 2012

Re: Physical Protection The concept that the Mezuzah protects has its source in the Talmud and in the subsequent writings of many of our great sages, who emphasize that the property of this mitzvah (Torah mandated duty) is to offer protection. Some point out that G-d's name written on the outside of the scroll (spelled Sha-D-AI) stands for Shomer Daltei Yisrael, Guardian of the doors of Israel. However, the protection comes not from some kind of amulet, but from the merit of fulfilling G-d's command to affix the Mezuzah. Nevertheless, there is no problem in knowing and intending to receive the benefit of protection through doing this Divine command. This idea is illustrated in the story found here: www.chabad.org/1671534 As far as a connection between Mezuzah and the Pascal blood, our sources do not indicate that the two are more than tenuously related. Reply

Jon Hornstein Bentleigh, vic via jewishmelbourne.com.au July 30, 2012

Mezuzah does not physically protect you The Mezuzah contains the Shema.

In the Shema Moses is indicating you can, much the same as we would use a mnemonic device to remember all the time that Hashem is the one and only G-d.

I assume the word "Israel" alludes to the women, which is why perhaps it also further highlights to teach it in their home, outside their home to the children.

Tzitzit with the name of G-d spelled on it is another mnemonic device and not a bullet proof vest. Similarily the Mezuzah will not physically protect you.

I think the confusion here is as a result of the Paschal Lamb's blood on the door posts in the final plague somehow now the Mezuzah provides the occupants with protection. Reply

Bryan NYC March 18, 2012

The real power of the mezzuzah @Julietta: the mezzuzah is not an idol; it is a reminder of our commitment to G-D and to Judaism. It's there to remind us as we enter our home that we are to make it a sacred space by honoring our covenant there by keeping and performing mitzvot; when we do so, we make our homes a kind of miskkan (dwelling place) for G-D's presence. It reminds us when we leave, that we are to bring holiness to the world and honor G-D there to bring the Divine into our whole lives. The protection is provides is that is a mnemonic (memory) device. The command to take care of it by having it checked keeps us from just putting it up and forgetting about it, as does the tradition of touching it and kissing one's fingers. Reply

Genevieve Sawyer Denville, NJ March 13, 2012

Thank you Menachem Posner! Reminds me of a line from my siddur. In English (sorry, my Hebrew is so limited!): Your horses are an illusion of security, they provide no escape. Reply

Mrs. Chana Benjaminson via mychabad.org March 6, 2012

Purchase A Judaica store or Synagogue in Cape Town should be able to assist you in purchasing a mezuzah. You can use our center search to find a Chabad synagogue in your area at chabad.org/centers Reply

Anonymous cape town, sa March 6, 2012

Mezuzah Shalom

where may I purchase the mezuzah? Reply

Menachem Posner for Chabad.org October 19, 2010

To Ilana I would certainly use this as an opportunity to have the mezuzah checked by a skilled scribe. Even if you have had it checked before, you should still do so again. Sometimes one scribe will catch an error that another scribe missed, and the mezuzahs sometimes deteriorate with age. Reply

Ilana Plantation, FL October 18, 2010

mezuzah falling my mezuzah falls off my bedroom door all the time? it is mounted well...is this a sign of anything ? Reply

Menachem Posner for Chabad.org June 2, 2010

RE: Removing a Mezuzah If the next residents of your home will be Jewish, you should leave your mezuzhas for them--unless they have their own. If non-Jews will be moving in, just take them down. Before affixing them to the doors of your new home it is advisable to have the mezuzahs checked by a scribe to make sure that they are intact and in good condition. Reply

Julietta Wilder bRONXVILLE, nY June 2, 2010

mezuzahs as protective devices Please don't be offended, but reading this article makes me think of ancient rituals amongst many primitive people to protect them from evil spirits, etc. Amulets and gris-gris bags have been part of primitive religions to protect people througout history. The mezuzah is a lovely cultural tradition, passed down through generations, but the protection and love of the Almighty is not contingent upon a scroll and box surrounded by rituals and rules -- it is there, and to affirm it we use our hearts and minds. The last sentence about the twice in 7 years having them checked -- nice touch, but a bit over the top I find it a little too idolatrous. Seems to allude that the mezuzah itself has power, and thus loses sight of the real importance and power of our individual faith and love to make our lives better and safer. Reply

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