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בָּרְכוּ | Bàṛˈk͡hụ | Bless is a בְּרָכָה | bəṛàˈk͡hàh | blessing sung before שְׁמַע יִשְׂרָאֵל | S͡həˈmạ‘ Yịṣṛàˈ’éḷ | Hear, Israel in the מַעֲרִיב | Mạ‘ạˈṛịv | Evening prayer and in the שַחֲרִית | S͡hạħạˈṛịt͡h | Morning prayer, as well as before the קְרִיאַת הַתּוֹרָה | Qṛiˈ’at͡h haToˈṛàh | Torah Reading in the Torah Service.
The Barkhu blessing is traditionally recited as a call and response, in which the חַזָן | ħạˈzàn | (male) cantor or חַזָנִית | ħạzàˈnit͡h | (female) cantor calls to the קְהִלָה | qəhịˈḷàh | congregation:בָּרְכוּ אֶת־יי הַמְבֹרָךְ!whereupon the cantor as well as the congregation, separately or together, respond with the actual blessing:
| Bàṛˈk͡hụ ’èt͡h hạˈS͡hém hạməvọˈṛàk͡h! |
Bless the Eternal One who is being blessed!בָּרוּךְ הַשֵּׁם הַמְבֹרָךְ לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד!
| Bàˈṛụk͡h hạˈS͡hém hạməvọˈṛàk͡h ḷə‘ọˈḷàm vàˈ‘èđ! |
Blessed is the Eternal One who is being blessed forever and ever!
Many people, while reciting the call or the response or both, have a custom of bowing toward the הֵיכָל | héyˈk͡hàḷ | palace, the cabinet in which are stored the synagogue's Torah scrolls, which represents the inner sanctuary of the Temple in Jerusalem. That which is known as the heykhal among the Sephardim and Mizrakhim, is known among the Ashkenazim as the אָרוֹן קֹֽדֶשׁ | ’Àˈṛọn ˈQọđès͡h | Holy Ark, which represents the Ark of the Covenant which contained the לוּחוֹת הַבְּרית | Ḷụˈħọt͡h hạˈBṛịt͡h | Tablets of the Covenant — Stone Tablets of the Ten Commandments. The heykhal is customarily placed at the front wall, which is normally oriented toward Jerusalem.
In this square round by David ben Or, intended for Qabbalat Shabbat, three voices take turns calling for (in section A) and immediately responding (in section B) with the blessing. Before and after each mention of הַשֵּׁם | hạˈS͡hém | the ineffable name of G!d, the melody dips in imitation of the bowing worshippers. The third section (G) of the round trails off repeating the phrase לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד | ḷə‘ọˈḷàm vàˈ‘èđ | forever and ever is repeated over and over, but not quite forever…
http://sefaradizo.org/muzica/barju/ Sephardic Association of Órgiva, Granada, Andalusia, Spain 2017.10.11 English edition
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