Praying for Health

I never noticed this until now, but when we say the Asher Yatzar bracha (blessing said after going to the bathroom), we say at the end:

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה’ רוֹפֵא כָל בָּשָׂר וּמַפְלִיא לַעֲשֹוֹת

Blessed are You, Hashem, Who heals all flesh and acts wondrously.

However, during Amidah, we pray to Hashem by saying this:

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה’ , רופֵא חולֵי עַמּו יִשְׂרָאֵל

Blessed are You, Hashem, Who heals all the sick people of the Jewish nation.

The first bracha in Asher Yatzar is a prayer to Hashem for healing all of mankind but the second bracha in the Amidah is only a prayer to Hashem for healing the Jews.  Why is this?

The gemara in Megillah 18b answers that each bracha in the Amidah is there for a specific reason.  The bracha on healing the Jews is the eighth bracha of the Amidah.  This corresponds to the eighth day of a Jewish baby, when he is circumcised.  Since only Jews have the commandment of having a circumcision, this blessing only applies to Jews and not the rest of mankind.  Therefore, the blessing only refers to healing of Jews.  However, the bracha of Asher Yatzar, which refers to blessing Hashem for allowing our bodily orfices to function properly is something that applies to everyone.  That’s why that bracha refers to all of mankind.

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2 Responses to “Praying for Health”

  1. dreamer123 Says:

    I like the recent addition of divrei torah…
    Very interesting.
    I’ve never heard that before.


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