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Shabbat Prayers: Nishmat: A Fiery Song

“Were our mouth as full of song as the sea, and our tongue as full of joyous song as its multitude of waves, and our lips as full of praise as the breadth of the heavens, and our eyes as brilliant as the sun and the moon, and our hands as outspread as the Eagles of the sky and our feet as swift as hinds, we still could not thank You sufficiently.” (Nishmat)


“Rabbi Yishmael said:

Metatron, the ministering Angel of the Countenance

who resides above all, told me:

because the Holy One, Blessed is He,

took me by fire to serve the Throne and the wheels of

the Chariot and the needs of the Divine Presence

immediately my flesh turned into a flame

and my veins into a burning fire

and my bones into hot coals of a broom tree

in the light of my eyes into the splendor of lightning

and the orbs of my eyes into a torch of fire

and the hairs of my head into a blaze and flame

and all my limbs into wings of burning fire

and all my body into blazing fire

and on my right burning flames of fire

and on my left a burning torch

and around me stormy gusty winds were blowing

and clamorous sounds in front of me and behind me.”


This song of Nishmat is not a fantasy of what we could begin to sing if, “our mouths were as full as the sea,” but a description of the potential power of our prayers, especially on the Shabbat when we ascend to ever greater heights.

This is our opportunity to sing A Fiery Song to gather with the ministering angels.

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