Joe Rosenstein

Unique Features of Siddur Eit Ratzon

Siddur Eit Ratzon is a traditional prayerbook (“Siddur” in Hebrew) designed for those who seek spirituality and meaning beyond what they have found in conventional prayerbooks

  • It presents the morning prayers as a spiritual journey, and guides you through that journey.
  • It discusses directly your philosophical concerns with traditional prayers, and offers alternative theological perspectives on these prayers.
  • It provides a translation that speaks to the modern reader and that can readily be used for “davenning” (that is, praying, aloud or silently) in English as well as Hebrew.
  • It refers to God using contemporary English terms that are relevant to our experience, and addresses God primarily in the second person, so that the prayers are more personal as well as gender-neutral.
  • It includes guideposts for beginners and for those seeking to broaden their prayer experience.
  • It provides a line-by-line transliteration of the entire Hebrew text to help you participate more fully in the service.
  • It provides new prayers and meditations that can be used for personal or communal prayer.

In addition to these global features of Siddur Eit Ratzon, there are a number of local features that you will want to explore.

  • A discussion of the spiritual journey of Jewish prayer, with guides to the stages of the journey interspersed throughout the morning service
  • A discussion of meditations and their role in a prayer service
  • A new closing prayer for the Amidah that focuses on how we can remind ourselves of God’s presence on an everyday basis
  • A translation of Psalm 23 that focuses on what it means to live in God’s house
  • Translations that attempt to recapture the “Wow!” experience that the authors of sections of the prayerbook tried to capture in their prayers
  • Translation of the Kedushah in which we imagine ourselves as the heavenly choir
  • A new prayer in the Amidah in which we ask God for assistance in our daily lives
  • Special thanksgiving blessings that can be inserted into the Amidah on various occasions
  • Discussions of issues such as reward and punishment, chosenness, God’s existence, God’s reliability and our responsibility
  • Alternative versions of the opening lines of Aleinu and the closing line of Ein Keiloheinu that can be sung to the traditional melodies
  • Alternative versions of passages in the Siddur that deal with chosenness, resurrection, and redemption, as well as the traditional texts of these passages
  • “Mi shebeirach” prayers for various occasions – births, engagements, marriages, birthdays, bar/bat-mitzvahs, anniversaries, and accomplishments
  • A new “Mi shebeirach” prayer for those in need of healing
  • New prayers for shalom, for Israel, for our leaders, and for the future
  • Yizkor service that provides for mention of colleagues, teachers, and friends as well as relatives, and for partners as well as spouses, and that does not romanticize our relationships with those we have lost
  • Special prayers said on festivals, including Hallel, T’fillat Tal, hakkafot for Simchat Torah (and songs for parading with the Torah scrolls), an egalitarian T’fillat Geshem, and a partial translation of Akdamut that can be sung to the traditional melody
  • An “Al Hanissim” prayer for Israel Independence Day and Hatikvah
  • A guide for the service leader, including a sample traditional service
  • A guide for the meditation leader, including a sample meditation service
  • A glossary of terms used in the Siddur
  • Indices of “perspectives”, “meditations”, and “guideposts” that appear in the Siddur
  • A complete list of references to the Bible, Talmud, and other sources

If you already have a copy of this Siddur, you can download a PDF version of the above list List of Features that includes page numbers for each of these features.