Cf. Siddur, pp. 30-42
While saying Baruch SheAmar (p. 16) one holds the two front tzitzis with the left hand. At the conclusion of the blessing one passes them over the eyes and kisses them.
Toward the end of Baruch SheAmar one pauses between melech and m'shabeach (p. 31), because the former word belongs to the preceding phrase.
When saying the phrase posai'ach es yodecha (p. 33) one touches the hand-tefillin, and at u'masbia l'chol chai ratzon one touches the head-tefillin.
If one is reading Pesukei DeZimrah and the sheliach tzibbur is about to say Kedushah (p. 52), Modim (p. 58) or Kaddish, one interrupts one's prayers to read the whole Kedushah, including the passages that are added on Shabbos and Yom-Tov at both Shacharis and Mussaf. One likewise interrupts oneself to say Modim, but not to respond Amen from Tiskabel onwards. One does not interrupt oneself at this point to say brich sh'mei (p. 69) or v'zos haTorah (p. 70).
[The Rebbe Shlita once wrote:] "I am not in favor of interrupting one's prayers with additional words in the vernacular."
- (Back to text) Haggahos LaSiddur HaYashan [i.e., the glosses copied from the margin of the Siddur used by the Tzemach Tzedek, and reprinted in Siddur Torah Or, p. reis mem alef].
- (Back to text) [Cf. Igrois Koidesh (Letters of the Rebbe Shlita), Vol. XVIII, p. 265.]
- (Back to text) Based on a letter of the Rebbe Shlita, reprinted on p. 198, below.
- (Back to text) From a letter of the Rebbe Shlita [reprinted in his Igrois Koidesh, Vol. VI, p. 262]. [Though the Yiddish word translated above as "the vernacular" typically refers to the Yiddish language, the following extract from this letter makes it clear that the reply refers equally to all languages.]
"You ask whether it is permissible to interrupt one's prayers by voicing additional words in the vernacular. In fact there is no difference in this matter between the Holy Tongue and the vernacular, for the problem lies in the interruption, not in the language. Though I have not received a directive in this matter, and though we know of various accounts of the early chassidim who used to add a few words to their prayers, all in all I am not in favor of this practice. The core of the question is this: If it promotes one's concentration in prayer and enhances the effect of the prayers on the worshiper, then perhaps one can find a sanction for it - but it is difficult for a worshiper to discern and to unmistakably identify its source.
"Does it derive from the expansiveness of the animal soul, which can also be nurtured somewhat by the waxing of one's prayers? Chassidus explains this possibility in terms of the 'Philistines' of holiness and of its opposite. (See Torah Or and Toras Chayim, end of Parshas Beshalach; and on meditation in prayer in general, see Kuntreis HaTefillah and the end of Kuntreis HaAvodah. [The concept of 'Philistines' is explained in the English translation of Likkutei Dibburim (Kehot, N.Y., 1987), Vol. I, ch. 2a, sec. 10, and footnotes there.]) Alternatively, is this practice a spontaneous utterance that derives from the divine soul? Since, then, its source is difficult to determine, why involve oneself in a doubtful situation?
"The sanction which may be found according to the revealed levels of the Torah [i.e., in the Halachah] is explained in the Responsa entitled Imrei Yosher by the Rav of Tarno, Part II, sec. 109, and in Nimukei Orach Chayim by the author of Minchas Elazar, sec. 101."