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Halachot of Berachot

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Halachot of Berachot  

Prerequisites Before the Beracha

  1. In front of Erva
    1. One may not recite a beracha in front of Erva (nakedness). Erva is defined for males as private parts once 9 years of age and older. For females, 3 years and older, as anything elbow and up; knee and up; neck and down; as well as hair for a married woman. This applies to Jews and non-Jews alike, to strangers and family members alike.
    2. In such cases, one must turn his head and whole body in order to make the beracha. If, however, one is concerned that turning will either cause embarrassment or offence – he may inconspicuously glance down or close eyes briefly.
    3. Be’deEved the beracha in front of Erva counts and a second one isn’t necessary.
  2. Wearing Clothes
    1. One must be wearing appropriate clothing to recite a beracha. This includes covering of the private parts as well as a separation between one’s heart and the Erva by use of a belt, pants, or underwear.
    2. Men must have a head covering while saying a beracha. One’s own hands cannot count as a covering, but someone else’s hands on his head could count. Additionally one could use his arm (past the palm) or shirt as a covering.
  3. Odors
    1. The 4 amot (7 feet) area around a person must be free of actual wastes (like dirty diapers), unless the waste material is enclosed and then it is permitted as long as there is no odor.
    2. For odors - one must be seven feet away from where the odor stops (not just seven feet away from the source of the odor)
  4. Other Prerequisites
    1. Can’t be any food in one’s mouth during beracha (but Be’deEved Yotzei)
    2. If hands are dirty, or scratched hair, or touched body which is normally covered then need to wash hands. If cant, then rub on hard surface.
    3. If you have to go to bathroom, than can’t say a beracha (but Be’deEved Yotzei)




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