New OU Press Book Demystifies Jewish Prayer

15 Nov 2010


Synagogue attendees can now better understand how to pray with the publication of Hilchot Tefilla: A Comprehensive Guide to the Laws of Daily Prayer by Rabbi David Brofsky. This new book, published by OU Press, Ktav and Yeshivat Har Etzion, is a guide not only to the rules regulating how Jews pray but the reasons and sources of these rules.

Rabbi Brofsky, a veteran educator in Israel, explains the laws of prayer as they apply throughout the day, from the hand-washing and blessings recited upon waking through the many laws related to Shema and the prayers recited three times daily. In his comprehensive yet accessible style, Rabbi Brofsky weaves together halachic, conceptual, philosophical and historical analysis, taking readers on a journey from the earliest sources in the Talmud through modern-day halachic authorities.

This book serves readers regardless of their level of Jewish education. While beginners will appreciate Rabbi Brofsky’s clarity, advanced students will quickly recognize his remarkable ability to summarize complex subjects and reach practical conclusions. Like synagogues, this book is open to all who wish to use it, serving as both an introductory primer and an advanced guide.

This book is the latest offering from OU Press, the publishing house of the Orthodox Union that recently published Unlocking the Torah Text on Vayikra by Rabbi Shmuel Goldin and The Mind of the Mourner by Dr. Joel B. Wolowelsky. Important future books include Darosh Darash Yosef: Discourses of Rav Yosef Dov Halevi Soloveitchik on the Weekly Parashah by Rabbi Avishai David; and the Koren Mesorat HaRav Siddur, a new prayerbook with a profound commentary based on the teachings of Rabbi Soloveitchik, accompanied by the eloquent translation of the prayers by Rabbi Jonathan Sacks and the popular Koren layout.

Copies of Hilchot Tefilla, which cost $22.95 each, are available at a discount through Those who wish to place a bulk order (at a bulk-rate discounted price) can contact OU Press at