Physical Movement in Jewish Prayer

Speaking to God through the body.

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Other body movements are harder to understand. Some people raise their pinky fingers in the air during the Torah service, for the line “And this is the Torah that God gave to Moses”; the source and meaning of this action is unknown. Similarly mysterious is the V-shaped hand configuration used during Birkat Kohanim, the Priestly Blessing.

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Joshua Rabin

Rabbi Joshua Rabin is the Director of Kehilla Enrichment at the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism. He received his Rabbinic Ordination and an MA in Jewish Education from the Jewish Theological Seminary in 2011, where he served two terms as student president of the Rabbinical School. Josh lives on the Upper West Side with his wife, Yael, and their daughter, Hannah.