Back to prayer (oh, right. . .).
The discussion is primarily about what to do if the reader or the individual forgets part of the T’fillah (Amidah - the standing) prayers. Also, how to shorten the prayer if one is saying it in a dangerous place or time.
But an interesting commentary on the Mishnah (from yesterday’s page 28b) “If one makes prayers a fixed task, it not a genuine supplication.” What is meant by “fixed task”? Important to know if you want to keep it real.
Rabbi Jacob ben Idi said in the name of R. Oshaiah: “Anyone whose prayer is like a heavy burden.”
The Rabbis say: “Whoever does not say it in the manner of supplication.”
Rabbah and Rabbi Joseph both say: “Whoever is not able to insert something fresh in it.”
(I love this balance of Kevah and Kavannah – fixed prayer vs fresh prayer. Adding intention, freedom, creativity into worship. But one also has to be careful:
Rabbi Zera said: “I can insert something fresh, but I am afraid to do so for fear I should become confused!”
(Keep it fresh - but don't get lost! Good advice.)