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Learn to Bench

A Traditional After Meals Service by Casey Topol Pressberg

Opening Paragraph for Shabbat and Festivals

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Shir Hama'alot שיר המעלות

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A song of ascent:
When God restores the prosperity of Zion, we will feel like dreamers. Then was our mouth filled with laughter, and our tongue with exultation: then said they among the nations, The Lord has done great things for them. The Lord has done great things for us: therefore we rejoiced.
Return our exiles, God, as You return streams to the south, and let those who sow in tears reap in joyful song. Those who go out weeping, bearing the burden of seeds, shall return joyfully with the harvested grain.

Shir Hama-a-lot, b’shuv Adonai et shivat Tzion
hayinu k’cholmim.
Az y’malei s’chok pinu ul-shoneinu rina,
az yomru vagoyim: Higdil Adonai la-a-sot im eileh.
Higdil Adonai la-a-sot imanu, hayinu s’meichim. Shuva Adonai
et sh’viteinu ka-afikim banegev. Hazor’im b’dima
b’rina yik-tzoru. Haloch yeileich uvacho, nosei meshech hazara.
Bo yavo v’rina nosei alumotav.

שִׁיר הַמַּעֲלוֹת, בְּשׁוּב יְיָ אֶת שִׁיבַת צִיּוֹן, הָיִינוּ כְּחֹלְמִים. אָז יִמָּלֵא שְׂחוֹק פִּינוּ וּלְשׁוֹנֵנוּ רִנָּה, אָז יֹאמְרוּ בַגּוֹיִם, הִגְדִּיל יְיָ לַעֲשׂוֹת עִם אֵלֶּה. הִגְדִּיל יְיָ לַעֲשׂוֹת עִמָּנוּ, הָיִינוּ שְׂמֵחִים. שׁוּבָה יְיָ אֶת שְׁבִיתֵנוּ, כַּאֲפִיקִים בַּנֶּגֶב. הַזֹּרְעִים בְּדִמְעָה, בְּרִנָּה יִקְצֽרוּ. הָלוֹךְ יֵלֵךְ וּבָכֹה נֹשֵׂא מֶשֶׁךְ הַזָּרַע, בֹּא יָבֹא בְרִנָּה נֹשֵׂא אֲלֻמֹּתָיו.

When it is not shabbat we say:
Hineni muchan unmzuman(3x)
I'kayam mitzvat aseh K'mo shekatuv
baTorah v'achalta v'savata uveirachata, K'mo
shekatuv ba Torah hineni muchan
umzuman

meaning: I am prepared to fulfill the mitzvah of reciting Birkat Hamazon as it is written in the Torah, "When you have eaten and are satisfied, you shall praise ( the lord your G-d).

Zimun: Invitation to Say Birchat Hamazon

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Rabotai Nevarech רבותי נברך

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When a group of three or more have eaten together, it is customary for one to invite the others to join in the blessing after the meal. When a minyan is present, include the words in parentheses.

Friends, Let us thank God. Blessed is the name of God now and forever. With your permission, let us thank God whose food we have eaten. Blessed is God whose food we have eaten and through whose goodness we live. Blessed is God and Blessed is God’s name.

Leader: Rabotai n’vareich.
Group: Y’hi sheim Adonai m’vorach mei-atah v’ad olam.
Leader Repeats: Y’hi sheim Adonai m’vorach mei-atah v’ad olam.
Leader: Birshut rabotai n’vareich Eloheinu she-achalnu mishelo.
Group: Baruch (Eloheinu) she-achalnu mishelo uv-tuvo chayinu.
Leader Repeats: Baruch (Eloheinu) she-achalnu mishelo uv-tuvo chayinu.
All: Baruch hu u-varuch sh’mo.

Leader who says Grace starts with this:
רַבּוֹתַי נְבָרֵךְ.
The others respond:—
יְהִי שֵׁם יְיָ מְבֹרָךְ מֵעַתָּה וְעַד עוֹלָם.
The leader continues with this:
יְהִי שֵׁם יְיָ מְבֹרָךְ מֵעַתָּה וְעַד עוֹלָם. בִּרְשׁוּת רַבּוֹתַי,
נְבָרֵךְ שֶׁאָכַלְנוּ מִשֶּׁלּוֹ.
The others respond:—
בָּרוּךְ (אֱלֹהֵינוּ) שֶׁאָכַלְנוּ מִשֶּׁלּוֹ וּבְטוּבוֹ חָיִינוּ.
He who says Grace replies:—
בָּרוּךְ (אֱלֹהֵינוּ) שֶׁאָכַלְנוּ מִשֶּׁלּוֹ וּבְטוּבוֹ חָיִינוּ.
בָּרוּךְ הוּא וּבָרוּךְ שְׁמוֹ.

In BBYO we use " Chaveriye n'varech", instead of "Rabotai Nevarch". Remeber to make the change in the prayer.

Birkat HaMazon ברכת המזון

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Baruch Atah Adonai...Hazan Et HaKol ברוך אתה יי...הזן את הכל

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Blessed is Adonai our God, Sovereign of the universe, who sustains the entire world with goodness, kindness and mercy. God gives food to all creatures, for God’s mercy is everlasting. With abundant goodness we have never lacked, and may we never lack sustenance forever in God’s great name. God sustains all, does good to all, and provides food for all the creatures created. Blessed is Adonai, who provides food for all.

Baruch atah Adonai Eloheinu melech ha-olam,
hazan et ha-olam kulo b’tuvo
b’chein b’chesed uv-rachamim,
hu notein lechem l’chol-basar, ki l’olam chasdo,
Uv-tuvo hagadol tamid lo chasar lanu
v’al yechsar lanu mazon l’olam va-ed.
Ba-avur sh’mo hagadol, ki hu Eil zan um-farneis lakol,
u-meitiv lakol u-meichin mazon l’chol-b’riyotav asher bara.
Baruch atah Adonai, hazan et hakol.

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, אֱלֹהֽינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, הַזָּן אֶת הָעוֹלָם כֻּלּוֹ בְּטוּבוֹ בְּחֵן בְּחֶסֶד וּבְרַחֲמִים, הוּא נוֹתֵן לֶחֶם לְכָל בָּשָׂר כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. וּבְטוּבוֹ הַגָּדוֹל תָּמִיד לֹא חָסַר לָנוּ, וְאַל יֶחְסַר לָנוּ מָזוֹן לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד. בַּעֲבוּר שְׁמוֹ הַגָּדוֹל, כִּי הוּא אֵל זָן וּמְפַרְנֵס לַכֹּל וּמֵטִיב לַכֹּל, וּמֵכִין מָזוֹן לְכָל בְּרִיּוֹתָיו אֲשֶׁר בָּרָא. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, הַזָּן אֶת הַכֹּל.

Learn the Dance:
- After "Baruch atah Adonai", you hit the table three times with you hand: Bang Bang Bang
- On the "lam" of the ha-olam you stretch out the lam and bang the table three times as you say it.
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V'al HaKol ועל הכל

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For all these blessings we thank Adonai our God with praise. May God’s name be praised by every living being forever, as it is written: “When you have eaten your fill, give thanks to Adonai your God for the good land which God has given you.” Blessed is Adonai for the land and its produce.

V’al hakol Adonai Eloheinu anachnu modim lach um-varchim
otach yitbarach shimcha b’fi chol chai
tamid l’olam va-ed,
kakatuv: V’achalta v’savata uveirachta et Adonai Elohecha
al ha-aretz hatova asher natan lach.
Baruch Atah Adonai, al ha-aretz v’al hamazon.

וְעַל הַכֹּל, יְיָ אֱלֹהֵינוּ, אֲנַחְנוּ מוֹדִים לָךְ, וּמְבָרְכִים אוֹתָךְ, יִתְבָּרַךְ שִׁמְךָ בְּפִי כָּל חַי תָּמִיד לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד. כַּכָּתוּב, וְאָכַלְתָּ וְשָׂבָעְתָּ, וּבֵרַכְתָּ אֶת יְיָ אֱלֹהֶיךָ עַל הָאָֽרֶץ הַטֹּבָה אֲשֶׁר נָתַן לָךְ. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, עַל הָאָֽרֶץ וְעַל הַמָּזוֹן.

-Skip to "Kakatuv" and bang the table on the beat and stop after "Elohecha"
- At "Baruch" Make a wave motion with your hand, top of the wave at "Ba", bottom of the wave at "ruch"
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U'vnei Yerushalyim ובנה ירושלים

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May God rebuild Jerusalem, the holy city, speedily in our lifetime. Blessed is Adonai, who restores Jerusalem with mercy. Amen

Uv-nei Y’rushalayim ir hakodesh bimheira v’yameinu.
Baruch atah Adonai, boneh v’rachamav Y’rushalayim. Amen.

וּבְנֵה יְרוּשָׁלַיִם עִיר הַקּֽדֶשׁ בִּמְהֵרָה בְיָמֵינוּ. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, בּוֹנֵה בְרַחֲמָיו יְרוּשָׁלָיִם. אָמֵן.

-See above for "Baruch"

-After Amen we say:

MAY G-D WHO MAKES PEACE IN HIGH PLACES(point up to the sky)
MAKES PEACE FOR US(point to yourself with both hands)
FOR ALL ISRAEL (take both hands palms faces away from you, forearms crossed infront of your chest, and make a big circle outward in opposite directions following your right and left pinky finger)
AND FOR ALL HUMANITY(same as "FOR ALL ISRAEL")
V'IMRU AMEN (motion as though your are writing the words in script in the air).
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Yiru Et Adonai יראו את יי

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Be aware of God, you who are consecrated; those who are aware of God will be sustained. Those who deny God are lacking and hungry. Those who seek God shall not lack anything that is
good. Give thanks to God, for God is good; God.s mercy endures forever. God opens God.s hand and satisfies every living thing with favor. Blessed is the one who trusts in God, for God will be their protection.
I have been young, and I have been old, but I have not seen a righteous person abandoned, nor that person.s seed destitute. May God give strength to our people; may God bless our people with peace.

Y.ru et-Adonai k.doshav ki ein machsor lirei-av.
K.firim rashu v.ra-eivu v.dorshei Adonai lo yach-s.ru chol-tov.
Hodu Ladonai ki tov, ki l.olam chasdo.
Potei-ach et-yadecha u-masbia l.chol-chai ratzon.
Baruch hagever asher yivtach b.Adonai, v.haya Adonai mivtacho.
Na-ar hayiti gam zakanti, v.lo ra.iti tzadik ne-ezav v.zar-o m.vakesh-lachem. Adonai oz l'amo yeetain, Adonai y.vareich et amo vashalom.

יְראוּ אֶת יְיָ קְדוֹשָׁיו, כִּי אֵין מַחְסוֹר לִירֵאָיו. כְּפִירִים רָשׁוּ וְרָעֵבוּ, וְדוֹרְשֵׁי יְיָ לֹא יַחְסְרוּ כָל טוֹב. הוֹדוּ לַייָ כִּי טוֹב, כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. פּוֹתֵחַ אֶת יָדֶךָ, וּמַשְׂבִּיעַ לְכָל חַי רָצוֹן. בָּרוּךְ הַגֶּבֶר אֲשֶׁר יִבְטַח בַּייָ, וְהָיָה יְיָ מִבְטַחוֹ. נַעַר הָיִיתִי גַם זָקַנְתִּי, וְלֹא רָאִיתִי צַדִּיק נֶעֱזָב, וְזַרְעוֹ מְבַקֶּשׁ לָחֶם. יְיָ עֹז לְעַמּוֹ יִתֵּן, יְיָ יְבָרֵךְ אֶת עַמּוֹ בַשָּׁלוֹם.

- Staring at the begining of this portion of the prayer you will here a natural beat that you will bang the table to. Listen to the other BBYO members around you. It will seem like a beat per word, sometimes per syllable.

Now the meat and potatoes of the " Birkat Hand Jive"
-Plams down on the table, bang twice
-Cross right hand to chest/ left collar bone area and tap twice with the palm of your hand
- Again palms down on table, bang twice
-Now take your left hand cross over to the right side and tap twice (just like the right)
-This time go through all the same motions but instead of 2 claps it will be one!
- After the last single bang on the table cross hands over one another and tap the table then uncross and tap again.
-Now pick hands up and clap your hands twice as though you are getting crumbs off your hands
-Cross your arms genie style, right arm first
-Uncross your ams one at a time with forearms still up (pointer fingers out)
-Take pointer fingers, pointing towards eachother and have them circle eachother about two times fast, then point them away from eachother.

This goes with the prayer and you go through it at least two times.

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