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Learn all about the Priestly Blessing: Who blesses and when, the preparations, the procedure of the actual blessing, the congregation’s role, and the Kabbalah behind it all.

The Priestly Blessing

The Priestly Blessing

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“Speak to Aaron and his sons, saying: This is how you shall bless the children of Israel . . .” (Numbers 6:23)

The Hebrew term for the Priestly Blessing is Birkat Kohanim, also known as Nesi’at Kapayim, the “lifting of the hands,” because of the priests’ uplifted hands, through which the divine blessings flow.

Join us as we delve into this biblical commandment. The links below will give you the basic what, why, when, where and how of this ancient ceremony.
When is the Blessing Administered?
On which dates and during which prayers is the blessing administered?
Preparing for the Blessing
How the priests prepare themselves for the blessing
The Blessing
A step-by-step guide leading the priest through the blessing
Role of the Congregation
What does the congregation do during the blessing?
Various Laws Pertaining to the Kohen
What does the priest think during the blessing? Does a child priest join the blessing? And more . . .
In Lieu of the Blessing
Remembering the priestly blessing in our everyday communal prayers
The Spiritual Dimension
Several takes on the inner dimension of the blessings of the priests
Birkat Kohanim Melody
One of the traditional melodies for the priestly blessing
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