*IDF soldier praying. (Photo: Libi/Israel365)
The Shema is the oldest and greatest, the very heart, of Jewish prayer. It has been part of the liturgy since Temple times and is recited morning and evening. Its opening line, sung here in the link below, is among the first words taught to a Jewish child and among the last a Jew speaks before death. It truly resounds as the shofar cry of a human heart!
Rabbi Jonathan Sacks (z”l) describes: “The word Shema itself means ‘listen’ and the recital of the Shema is a supreme act of faith-as-listening: to the voice that brought the Universe into being, created us in love and guides us through our lives.” (Koren Siddur, 98)
Download Shema Yisrael – Hebrew, Transliteration, and Translation here.