Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Thursday Prayer: Adon Olam, Lord of the World

This 17th century prayer has been a stalwart throughout my life. The final lines were used as the closing benediction for Sabbath services, and the song itself is one of the most widely known in Judaism.

The easy rhythm of the song makes it easy to abandon the traditional melody (which I can sing in my sleep) and be creative. The most addictive modern melody I know that fits this is the Final Jeopardy music....

Hebrew Transliteration....English Translation
Adon aloam asher malach,
b'terem kol y'tsir nivra
l'et na'asa b'cheftso kol,
azai melech sh'mo nik'ra.

V'acharei kichlot hakol,
l'vado yimloch nora,
v'ha haya, v'hu hoveh,
v'hu yih-ye b'tifara.

V'hu echad, v'ein sheini
l'hamshil lo, l'hachbira,
b'li reishit, b'li tachlit,
v'lo ha'oz v'hamisra.

V'hu eili, v'chai goali,
v'tsur chevli b'yom tsara,
v'hu nisi umanos li,
m'nat kosi b'yom ekra.

B'yado afkid ruchi
b'eit ishan v'a'ira,
v'im ruchi g'viyati.
Adonai li, v'lo ira.
Lord of the world, the King supreme,
ere aught was formed, He reigned alone.

When by His will all things were wrought,
then was His sovereign name made known.

And when in time all things shall cease,
he still shall reign in majesty.

He was, He is, He shall remain
all glorious eternally.

Incomparable, unique is He,
no other can His oneness share.

Without beginning, without end,
dominion’s might is His to bear.

He is my living God who saves,
my rock when frief or trials befall,
my banner and my refuge strong,
my bounteous portion when I call.

My soul I give to His care,
asleep, awake, for He is near,
and with my soul, my body, too;
God is with me, I have no fear.

Best wishes for a Happy and Healthy New Year!

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