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Bracha upon making aliya


Rabbi Ari Shvat

Shevat 30, 5783
Hi Rav Shvat! How are you? I’m Bezrat Hashem making Aliyah tomorrow:))) is there a bracha I can say or minhag I can do when I make Aliyah?
That's fantastic- Kol HaKavod!! It's the best and most historic and important decision you'll ever make!! You should definitely make a Shehechiyanu (as you are clearly happy) when you land or when you leave the plane (especially if u kiss the ground, at which time you should recite "כי רצו עבדיך את אבניה ואת עפרה יחננו", "For Your servants desired her stones and (even) love her dust", Tehilim 102, 15). Rav Kook said that there's no other specific bracha on this mitzva, and one explanation is that (Resp. Rashba I, 18 & 254) there is no bracha on mitzvot which are "b'di'eved" (e.g. like returning a lost object, paying back stolen money etc.). Accordingly, having been born outside of Israel was "against our will", and in aliya, we're just "straightening" something unfortunate to become natural: A natural Jew living in our natural Land, speaking our natural Language, observing our natural Torah! Similarly, R. B'chaye explains that there's no bracha on mitzvot which are logical (e.g. giving tzedakah, doing kindness), and here too, just like all of the nations, it's certainly logical for us too, to live in our national Land. All the best!! With Love of Israel, Rav Ari Shvat (Chwat)
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