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Amidah: Rabbi Samson R Hirsch: Good on Us

The 9th of Iyar is the Yahrtzeit of Rav Yitzchak Bernays (Barneis) (1792-1849), teacher of Rav Shamshon Rafael Hirsch. “Bless for us, O God, our Lord, this year, and all the varieties of its produce for the best.” Stress is placed here on both “on us,” and, “for the best,” for a year may be blessed and still not afford blessings to us. Such a year cannot then be a blessed one as far as we are concerned. It is quite possible for the soil to yield abundant produce in the fields to flourish without man benefiting from them. As our Sages have put it: “The vine may give of its fruit and still the wine may be expensive.”


Field and pasture may abound with luscious fruit and yet, because of human folly and because of crookedness and perversity in human relationships, dearth and famine will hold sway and spoil our lives.

Therefore, we ask God not only to bless the fields, but also to a range circumstances in such a manner that the blessed year may prove a blessing to mankind also, and that the abundant harvest of the field and pasture may thus bring happiness and prosperity to the homes of men.

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