Han’shamah Lach – a new musical setting

Music and Audio © Alexander Massey 13 Sept 2018

Enjoy listening! Fuller commentary / essay coming soon – in the meantime, here are some brief details about the prayer:

  • The prayer is usually associated with High Holy Days. Yamim Noraim, and is sung at Selichot, and also Kol Nidrei. The verses used in this setting are part of a longer prayer. Often just these two verses (or even the first verse) are used.
  • The machzor (High Holy Days prayerbook) of UK Judaism cites this source: Machzor Oholei Ya’akov, ed. R. Ya’akov ibn Yitzchaki, vol II (Jerusalem 1910), p.37. Idelsohn attributes the poem to Abraham Ibn Ezra.

Han’shamah lach v’haguf pa-alach,
chusah al amalach.
Han’shamah lach v’haguf shelach,
Adonai, aseih l’ma-an sh’mecha.

The soul is Yours and the body is Your workmanship;
have compassion on what You have created;
the soul is Yours and the body is Yours,
Adonai, do this for the sake of Your Name.

There is a well known setting of the first verse of Han’shamah lach attributed to Shalom Carlebach. With very few settings in circulation, I figured that there was probably room for one more!

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One comment on “Han’shamah Lach – a new musical setting
  1. Fel says:

    Beautiful. Thanks for sharing. Have a light fast and Shana Tova
    And many more beautiful compositions and renditions. Love from us both
    Fel & Li

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