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Seder Takhanun for Days of Rising Hatred and Fear

woman doing a supplication pose by the water

To be recited by the Jews of the United States on January 20, 2017, which is 22 Tevet 5777, and for the four years following on any day which is not a Shabbat or holy day. These prayers are traditionally recited in a minyan, in a room with an Ark holding a Sefer Torah. One who prays alone should change the plural wording to the singular: “My G*d… my prayers come before You.”


אֱלהֵינוּ וֵאלהֵי אֲבותֵינוּ ואמותינו. תָּבוא לְפָנֶיךָ תְּפִלָּתֵנוּ וְאַל תִּתְעַלַּם מִתְּחִנָּתֵנוּ. שֶׁאֵין אֲנַחְנוּ עַזֵּי פָנִים וּקְשֵׁי ערֶף לומַר לְפָנֶיךָ ה' אֱלהֵינוּ וֵאלהֵי אֲבותֵינוּ צַדִּיקִים אֲנַחְנוּ וְלא חָטָאנוּ. אֲבָל אֲנַחְנוּ וַאֲבותֵינוּ חָטָאנוּ: 

Our G*d, G*d of our past and our future, our prayers come before You, may they not be meaningless. We are not stubborn and arrogant enough to insist we are righteous and have done nothing wrong; we and our people have done wrong.

Our G*d, G*d of all that we believe and all that we long for, we are afraid of the work of our hands. We turn away from our desire to be blameless and admit: we allow evil to happen to others, we separate ourselves from our neighbors out of fear; we turn our faces away in indifference, asserting that all is well when we are well.

“There is no limit to the concern one must feel for the suffering of human beings, that indifference to evil is worse than evil itself, that in a free society, some are guilty, but all are responsible.” —Abraham Joshua Heschel

אָשַׁמְנוּ. בָּגַדְנוּ. גָּזַלְנוּ. דִּבַּרְנוּ דפִי. הֶעֱוִינוּ. וְהִרְשַׁעְנוּ. זַדְנוּ. חָמַסְנוּ. טָפַלְנוּ שֶׁקֶר. יָעַצְנוּ רָע. כִּזַּבְנוּ. לַצְנוּ. מָרַדְנוּ. נִאַצְנוּ. סָרַרְנוּ. עָוִינוּ. פָּשַׁעְנוּ. צָרַרְנוּ. קִשִּׁינוּ ערֶף. רָשַׁעְנוּ. שִׁחַתְנוּ. תִּעַבְנוּ. תָּעִינוּ. תִּעְתָּעְנוּ: 

.We are guilty. We betray; we steal; we are not careful with our promised word

We manipulate; we cause evil; we act with malice aforethought; we tolerate moral chaos;  we slander. We lead others astray; we fake the news; we tolerate mockery, rebellion, and abuse. We do wrong. We deliberately do wrong. We create discord. We are arrogant.

We do evil; we allow butchery. We spoil things. We have gone astray; we have led others astray.

סַרְנוּ מִמִּצְותֶיךָ וּמִמִּשְׁפָּטֶיךָ הַטּובִים וְלא שָׁוָה לָנוּ. וְאַתָּה צַדִּיק עַל כָּל הַבָּא עָלֵינוּ. כִּי אֱמֶת עָשיתָ. וַאֲנַחְנוּ הִרְשָׁעְנוּ: 

We dismiss our obligations and the righteous justice we should pursue, and it has gained us nothing. We know that above all there is that which is right and good and just in truth—yet we have caused evil.

We have created the chaos we fear; we have participated in the cynicism that demeans us; we are complicit in the callousness that will destroy us too. 

אֵל אֶרֶךְ אַפַּיִם אַתָּה וּבַעַל הָרַחֲמִים נִקְרֵאתָ. וְדֶרֶךְ תְּשׁוּבָה הורֵיתָ. גְּדֻלַּת רַחֲמֶיךָ וַחֲסָדֶיךָ תִּזְכּור הַיּום וּבְכָל יום לְזֶרַע יְדִידֶיךָ. תֵּפֶן אֵלֵינוּ בְּרַחֲמִים. כִּי אַתָּה הוּא בַּעַל הָרַחֲמִים. בְּתַחֲנוּן וּבִתְפִלָּה פָּנֶיךָ נְקַדֵּם. כְּהודַעְתָּ לֶעָנָו מִקֶּדֶם. מֵחֲרון אַפְּךָ שׁוּב. כְּמו בְּתורָתְךָ כָּתוּב. וּבְצֵל כְּנָפֶיךָ נֶחְסֶה וְנִתְלונָן. כְּיום וַיֵּרֶד ה' בֶּעָנָן. תַּעֲבר עַל פֶּשַׁע וְתִמְחֶה אָשָׁם. כְּיום וַיִּתְיַצֵּב עִמּו שָׁם. תַּאֲזִין שַׁוְעָתֵנוּ וְתַקְשִׁיב מֶנּוּ מַאֲמַר. כְּיום וַיִּקְרָא בְשֵׁם ה' וְשָׁם נֶאֱמַר: 

.Our lives depend upon so much patience; without compassion we would not last a day. We have been shown the way of teshuvah, of return, and we are grateful 

May we find our way to compassion, we who depend upon compassion.

In our search for the way to wholeness let us see the face of hope, 

let us remember the sound of encouragement.

Let us find ourselves sheltered in the shadow of wings of peace, of wholeness, of love.

May we find our way to release for our guilt,

let forgiveness lighten our feet to run toward the good.

Let it be as on the day when G*d said…

(יחיד אינו אומר זה ולא הי"ג מדות: one who prays alone does not recite the following section but continues with Nefilat Apayim below)

וַיַּעֲבר ה' עַל פָּנָיו וַיִּקְרָא:

Then G*d said, IF YOU WANT TO KNOW ME THEN KNOW THIS: 

ה'. ה'. אֵל רַחוּם וְחַנּוּן. אֶרֶךְ אַפַּיִם וְרַב חֶסֶד וֶאֱמֶת: נצֵר חֶסֶד לָאֲלָפִים. נשא עָון וָפֶשַׁע וְחַטָּאָה. וְנַקֵּה: 

HaShem, HaShem, El rakhum v’hanun, erekh apayim v’rav hesed v’emet. Noseh avon vafesha v’khata’ah v’nakeh

Compassion and mercy, patience, loyalty, dependability and truth—as we live these qualities, they lift us up past our sins toward wholeness.

וְסָלַחְתָּ לַעֲונֵנוּ וּלְחַטָּאתֵנוּ וּנְחַלְתָּנוּ:

V'salakhta la’avoneynu ul’khatoteynu un’khaltanu

As we forgive and are forgiven, we will no longer feel alone.

סְלַח לָנוּ אָבִינוּ כִּי חָטָאנוּ. מְחַל לָנוּ מַלְכֵּנוּ כִּי פָשָׁעְנוּ. כִּי אַתָּה ה’ טוב וְסַלָּח וְרַב חֶסֶד לְכָל קרְאֶיךָ:

S’lakh lanu avinu ki khatanu; m’khal lanu malkeynu ki fashanu; ki atah HaShem tov v’salakh v’rav hesed l’khol k’ra’ekha.

There is sin; forgive it. There is wrongdoing; erase it. Let goodness and forgiveness and great mercy embrace all who cry out.

נפילת אפיים

These prayers are recited quietly in the position of Nefilat Apayim—with one’s head down, face covered by one’s arm. (One praying alone continues here.)  

Shomer Yisrael - שומר ישראל  

Shomer, shomer Yisrael

Sh’mor she’arit Yisrael.

v’al yovad, v’al yovad Yisrael

v’al yovad, v’al yovad Yisrael

Ha’omrim, ha’omrim

Ha’omrim Shema Yisrael.

 

Shomer, shomer goy ekhad

sh’mor she’arit am ekhad

v’al yovad, v’al yovad goy ekhad

v’al yovad, v’al yovad goy ekhad

Ha’myakhadim shimkha, Ha’myakhadim shimkha,  ‘ה eloheynu ‘ה Ekhad

 

Shomer, shomer goy kadosh, sh’mor she’arit am kadosh

v’al yovad, v’al yovad goy kadosh, v’al yovad, v’al yovad goy kadosh

Ham’shalshim b’shalosh kedushat l’kadosh

Guardian of Israel, guard the remnant of Israel; don’t let Israel disappear, these people who say the Shema—Guardian of this unique people, guard the remnant of this people; don’t let this unique people disappear who unite Your Name with Eloheynu and Ekhad—Guardian of this holy people, guard the remnant of a holy people; don’t let this holy people disappear which three times a day sanctifies Your Holiness.

מִתְרַצֶּה בְּרַחֲמִים וּמִתְפַּיֵּס בְּתַחֲנוּנִים. הִתְרַצֶּה וְהִתְפַּיֵּס לְדור עָנִי. כִּי אֵין עוזֵר:  

אָבִינוּ מַלְכֵּנוּ. חָנֵּנוּ וַעֲנֵנוּ. כִּי אֵין בָּנוּ מַעֲשים.עֲשה עִמָּנוּ צְדָקָה וָחֶסֶד וְהושִׁיעֵנוּ: וַאֲנַחְנוּ לא נֵדַע מַה נַּעֲשה. כִּי עָלֶיךָ עֵינֵינוּ: זְכר רַחֲמֶיךָ ה' וַחֲסָדֶיךָ. כִּי מֵעולָם הֵמָּה: יְהִי חַסְדְּךָ ה' עָלֵינוּ. כַּאֲשֶׁר יִחַלְנוּ לָךְ: אַל תִּזְכָּר לָנוּ עֲונות רִאשׁונִים. מַהֵר יְקַדְּמוּנוּ רַחֲמֶיךָ. כִּי דַלּונוּ מְאד: חָנֵּנוּ ה' חָנֵּנוּ. כִּי רַב שבַעְנוּ בוּז: בְּרגֶז רַחֵם תִּזְכּור. כִּי הוּא יָדַע יִצְרֵנוּ. זָכוּר כִּי עָפָר אֲנָחְנוּ: עָזְרֵנוּ אֱלהֵי יִשְׁעֵנוּ עַל דְּבַר כְּבוד שְׁמֶךָ. וְהַצִּילֵנוּ וְכַפֵּר עַל חַטּאתֵינוּ לְמַעַן שְׁמֶךָ: 

לתענית צבור:  For a public fast day, or when there is a minyan

אָבִינוּ מַלְכֵּנוּ. זָכְרֵנוּ לְחַיִּים טובִים:

 Avinu Malkeynu, Zokhreynu l’hayim tovim

.Source of our Memory, help us to remember how to build a good life

אָבִינוּ מַלְכֵּנוּ. זָכְרֵנוּ לִגְאֻלָּה וִישׁוּעָה: 

Avinu Malkeynu, zokhreynu lig’ulah vishu’ah

Source of our Inspiration, help us create relief and safety.

אָבִינוּ מַלְכֵּנוּ. זָכְרֵנוּ לְפַרְנָסָה וְכַלְכָּלָה: 

Avinu Malkeynu, zokhreynu l’farnasah v’kalkalah

.Source of our Support, help us help all to make a good living

אָבִינוּ מַלְכֵּנוּ. זָכְרֵנוּ לִזְכֻיּות: 

Avinu Malkeynu, zokhreynu liz’khuyot

.Source of our Lives, help us guard human rights for all

אָבִינוּ מַלְכֵּנוּ זָכְרֵנוּ לִסְלִיחָה וּמְחִילָה: 

Avinu malkeynu, zokhreynu l’slikhah um’khilah

.Source of our Wholeness, help us find our way past recrimination, guilt and blame and toward forgiveness, peace, and wholeness

.May we gain forgiveness as we grant it

May we know peace as we make it.

May we see the better world that we summon.

Answer us - עננו

May we feel a sense of answer while we yet seek the question;

before we know we are asleep, let us awake;

while we wander in the wilderness, show us light.

 

הוֹשִׁיעַ נָע, הוֹשִׁיעַ נָע, הַצְלִיחָה נָע 

Hoshia na, hoshia na, hatzlihah na

Save us, save us, rescue us

 

עֲנֵּנוּ עֲנֵּנוּ בְּיוֹם קוֹרֵינוּ

Anenu, anenu b’yom koreynu

answer us, answer on the day we call

 

Prayer