Prayer Shawls

Choose from traditional wool or acrylic Tallit to contemporary hand crafted ones by Gabriely, Rikmat Elimelech and Yair Emanuel. The Tallit, or Prayer Shawl is worn in many styles, the main feature being the Tzitzit, or Fringes at the four corners.

Showing 1-32 out of 312 items
Showing 1-32 out of 312 items

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The tallit (prayer shawl) is worn over clothing during the morning prayers. While Sephardic Jews and Jews of German and Oblander descent begin donning the tallit at their Bar Mitzvah, most Orthodox Ashkenazi men don’t start wearing a tallit until they are married. Consequently, in Ashkenazi circles the tallit is often given to the groom as a gift before marriage as part of the dowry. Because many men do not wear a tallit until after they are married, in some religious circles this symbol is used to help women find single men in the prayer synagogue.

Traditionally the tallit is made of wool, and therefore must be checked by an expert to confirm that there are no traces of linen on the garment (as the Bible prohibits wearing garments that contain both wool and linen). The classic prayer shawl is while with black stripes. However, there are various opinions regarding the weather there is any religious significance to the particular colors of the prayer shawl. According to some Sephardic traditions the tallit is all white, including the stripes. There are many interpretations for the stripes, and one reason is that they symbolize the destruction of the Temple. One can also purchase a more colorful tallit, but these are far less popular among traditional orthodox men.

According to Orthodox law, the tallit needs to be large enough to cover the majority of the individual’s body. On each of the four corners of the shawl there are strings tied in special knots. These strings are called tzizit. Wearing tzizit on a four cornered garment is a biblical commandment, and if the tzizit fall off the garment is invalid. Additionally, there are fringes around the edge of the entire prayer shawl.

Many people choose to buy decorative pieces to go around the neck of their tallit. This is because of the widely accepted opinion that it is ideal to beautify religious artifacts.

Overall, there is much room for variance of the tallit, however, the traditional black and white prayer shawl will probably always be the most popular.

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