"Aliyah"

"Going up" to the Torah

The term "Aliyah", which in Hebrew means "Ascent" or "Going Up", has multiple meanings.

But in the synagogue, it refers to the "Calling Up" of a worshipper to a section of the week's Torah portion, or of the special Festival readings.
According to tradition, the Torah is read from a higher area of the synagogue known as the Bimah (platform or stage). Hence the term "Aliyah" or "Going Up",  which has both a physical and spiritual connotation.
For the Monday and Thursday morning Torah readings, 3 people are called up.
On Festivals there are 5, except for Yom Kippur when there are 6.

On Sabbath mornings, there are 7 plus the final call-up, known as the "Maftir" Aliyah.
In Hebrew, Maftir means "departure" or "final station".
Traditionally, Bar and Bat Mitzvah celebrants are called up for this final Aliyah.*
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU'RE CALLED UP
The "called up" worshipper recites a blessing before and after the Torah reading.
The worshipper then moves to the other side of the designated Torah Reader and, out of respect for the Torah, stays on the Bimah until the conclusion of the next worshipper's section.
This is the prayer which the worshipper recites BEFORE the Torah reading:
TRANSLITERATION
Worshipper: Barchu et Adonai Hamevorach
Congregation responds: Baruch Adonai Hamevorach Le'olam Va'ed
Worshipper repeats: Baruch Adonai Hamevorach Le'olam Va'ed
Worshipper continues:
Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech Ha'olam,
Asher Bachar Banu Mikol Ha'amim
Venatan Lanu et Torato:
Batuch Atah Adonai, Noten Hatorah.
Then the Designated Reader chants the Torah section
 
This is the prayer which the worshipper recites AFTER the Torah reading:
Worshipper:
Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech Ha'olam,
Asher Natan Lanu Torat Emet,
Vechayei Olam Nata Betocheinu:
Baruch Atah Adonai, Noten Hatorah.
 
TRANSLATION OF THE PRAYERS BEFORE AND AFTER:
BEFORE
AFTER
Let Us Bless the Lord, The Blessed One.
Blessed is the Blessed One Forever.
Blessed are you Lord Our God
King of the Universe,
Who has chosen us from all the nations,
and has given us his Torah:
Blessed are you, Lord,
who gives the Torah.
Blessed are you Lord Our God
King of the Universe,
Who has given us the Torah of Truth,
And who has planted everlasting life within us:
Blessed are you, Lord,
who gives the Torah.


 
THE NEXT STEP - SABBATH AND FESTIVALS ONLY
THE HAFTARAH READING

The term "Haftarah", which in Hebrew means "The Departure" , refers to the readings from the Books of the Prophets which follow the Torah readings every Shabbat and on Festivals.
Click here for the Haftarah page with all explanations.

 
 

NOTE TO READERS:
Jewish World Life commissioned these summaries, which have been prepared specifically for our readers.
If you want to use the information, here is the link
http://www.jewishaustralia.com/aliyah.htm


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