Monday, April 13, 2015

The Beracha on the Sefirat Haomer

The Beracha on the Sefirat Haomer

Day: Monday
Date: April 13, 2015
Parshat: Shemini
Yalkut Yosef: 489

Even though nowadays the mitzvah of Sefirat Haomer is Derabanan, the text of the beracha says that Hashem commanded us to count the Omer. The reason is since Hashem commanded us to listen to the Hachamim (Devarim 17:10) it is as if Hashem indirectly commanded us to count the Sefirat Haomer today as well. This is the reason why we say a beracha on any Derabanan mitzvah such as Hanuka Candles and Netilat Yadayim. Nevertheless, a person who counted without a beracha has fulfilled his obligation and should not say the beracha after the fact. A person who while saying the beracha thought it was a certain day of the Omer and afterward realized that it is a different day does need to say the beracha again. Instead he should count the Omer as he would normally do. One must count the Omer in a language that he understands. A person who counted in Hebrew but does not understand the words he said must count again in a language that he does understand. Women are not required to count the Omer and therefore may not say the beracha. According to the Kabalists it is preferable for women not to count the Omer event without a beracha.

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