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From: Russell Hendel <rhendel@mcs.drexel.edu> Date: Sun, 13 Jun 1999 20:58:55 -0400 (EDT) Subject: Mumbling in Prayer--Alpha waves--relaxation Yeshaya Halevi brings a delightful study in Volume 28 Number 68 that people who mumble prayer have increased alpha waves denoting calmness and relaxation and hence the practice (of mumbling) should not be denigrated as much as it is. But that would only be true if the PURPOSE of prayer was to achieve calmness and relaxation. Indeed!!!! No one disputes that mumbling prayer can cause calmness and relaxation--but is that the goal of prayer? Rambam, Prayer Chapters 1 and 5 clearly states that the required emotion in prayer is not calmness but helplessness. One must stand before God like a slave or servant before a king. One must be submissive. The King of Prayer, King David spoke about crying during prayer (because of his awareness of helplessness). Thus I really think that mumbling in prayer should be opposed. However far be it from me to toss out a good scientific study. On Shabbath it is required to be CALM an RELAXED. Therefore those coming home from synagogue should mumble the kiddush (to place them in the proper mood!)(In particular they should not delay the Kiddush with extensive Chazzanuth). Russell Jay Hendel; PHd ASA Dept Math & Comp Science Drexel Univ Moderator Rashi Is Simple http://www.shamash.org/rashi