Shehechiyanu Blessing

October 25, 2011

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The Shehecheyanu is a blessing said in thanks for life, for being sustained, and for letting us get to this holy moment. It is a blessing said over any new experience. Got a new pair of shoes? Say Shehecheyanu! Lost your first tooth? Shehecheyanu! First meal in a new home with your family? Shehecheyanu!

This is a popular tune for singing the Shehecheyanu blessing, written by Debbie Friedman:

The words are:

Baruch Atah Adonai Eloheinu melech ha’olam
Shehechiyanu, v’kimanu, v’higianu, lazman ha’zeh.
Baruch Atah Adonai Eloheinu melech ha’olam
Shehechiyanu, v’kimanu, v’higianu, lazman ha’zeh.
A-a-a-a-amen, amen!

The blessing can be translated a couple different ways, including:

Blessed are You, Lord our God, Ruler of the Universe, who has kept us alive and sustained us and permitted us to reach this moment. [A translation that keeps to a traditional understanding of the Hebrew, from The Jewish Catalogue.]

Blessed be the Eternal One, Source of Life, Who has given us life, helped us to grow, and enabled us to reach this moment. [An alternative translation that tries to make the English feel more contemporary, from How to Raise a Jewish Child.]