Thursday, September 28, 2006

Proper Kapparot Procedure

Because I suspect many of you are unfamiliar with the Kapparot tradition, perhaps it is helpful to supply the specific text of the kapparot prayer, for the uninitiated. Nay, It would be remiss of me not to do so!
Text of Kapparot

At dawn or early in the morning before Yom Kippur, take a live chicken, fish or money which will then be given to charity and recite the following three times. Recite the first paragraph, due the rotations and then recite the paragraph again etc.

“Children of man who sit in darkness and the shadow of death, bound in misery and chains of iron --- He will bring them out of darkness and the shadow of death, and will sunder their bonds. Foolish sinners, afflicted because of their sinful ways and their wrongdoings; their soul loathes all food and they reach the gates of death --- they cry out to the Lord in their distress; He saves them from their afflictions. He sends forth His word and heals them; He delivers them from their graves. Let them thank the Lord for His kindness, and [proclaim] His wonders to the children of man. If there be for a man [even] one interceding angel out of a thousand [accusers], to speak of his uprightness in his behalf, then He will be gracious to him and say: Redeem him from going down to the grave; I have found expiation [for him]."

When reciting the first three words below, rotate the chicken, fish or money over your head.

“This is my exchange, this is my substitute, this is my expiation. This chicken shall go to death and I shall proceed to a good, long life and peace.”


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