Prayers and Blessings

Jewish prayer, tefillot, emerged as a structured form following the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 CE. Without a central place to worship God, prayer became the primary replacement for sacrifice and communicating with God. As such, the majority of prayers found in Judaism are of petition to God, or of praise. Specific prayers are associated with observance of the festivals and Shabbat, while there are prayers Jews are commanded to recite daily. In addition, there are blessings, berakhot, a type of prayer that expresses gratitude to God and are recited prior to the performance of a commandment.