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From Generation to Generation: Video

October, 2012

There is a song called L'dor Va'dor (From Generation to Generation) that is often sung during the Shabbat prayer service. The verse from the song was taken from the Kedusha, which is the last prayer in the Amidah, the main prayer section in the service.

The verse says in English:

"To all generations we will declare Your greatness, and for all eternity proclaim Your holiness."
(Translation from Mishkan T'fila: a Reform Siddur.)

This verse could be proclaimed with authenticity by many family members who are not Jewish. It is important to know what the words to this song mean and how you and your relatives understand the phrase "from generation to generation." Joining in saying this verse could be a unifying experience for a family on Shabbat, and all the more so at a bar or bat mitzvah.

For the words to this song in English, Hebrew and transliteration, as well as an audio file to help you learn the pronunciation of the Hebrew, please visit our From Generation to Generation resource.

Hebrew for "daughter of the commandments." In modern Jewish practice, Jewish girls come of age at 12 or 13. When a girl comes of age, she is officially a bat mitzvah and considered an adult. The term is commonly used as a short-hand for the bat mitzvah's coming-of-age ceremony and/or celebration. The male equivalent is "bar mitzvah." Hebrew for "holiness," refers to the prayer of holiness (the third section of the Amidah, or The Standing Prayer). The Jewish Sabbath, from sunset on Friday to nightfall on Saturday. Tefilat Amidah, Hebrew for "The Standing Prayer," is the central prayer of Jewish liturgy. It is recited during every prayer service. Traditionally it's recited individually in silence, then repeated aloud as a congregation; some congregations omit the silent recitation and/or abbreviate the repetition. A language of West Semitic origins, culturally considered to be the language of the Jewish people. Ancient or Classical Hebrew is the language of Jewish prayer or study. Modern Hebrew was developed in the late-19th and early 20th centuries as a revival language; today it is spoken by most Israelis.
Hebrew for "prayer book," the plural is "siddurim."
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