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Kol Nidre

Kol Nidre

Kol Nidre Introduced

The Kol Nidre prayer is recited on the eve of Yom Kippur during the opening services on the Day of Atonement. This Aramaic prayer is chanted or prayed by Jews around the world as a personal confession. It sets the mood for Yom Kippur. By many it is considered the theme of Yom Kippur. It invokes the moods of reflection, self-examination, penitence, awe, devotion, prayer and hope. It also invokes another mood.

It is a mood of longing. Longing to return to the days before it’s prominence. The practice of requesting the annulment of vows made before G-d is a relatively “new” Jewish tradition. Occasionally, modern Rabbis attempt to remove it. Watch this brief video explaining the mystery of this prayer.

Kol Nidre Explained

All Vows

Prohibitions, oaths, consecration, vows that we may vow, swear, consecrate, or prohibit upon ourselves.

From this Yom Kippur until the next Yom Kippur, may it come upon us for good-regarding them all, we regret them henceforth.

They will all be permitted, abandoned, cancelled, null and void, without power and without standing.

Our vows shall not be valid vows; our prohibitions shall not be valid prohibitions,

and our oaths shall not be valid oaths.

The Adventures in Jewish Studies Podcast Season 4, Episode 5 titled; “Kol Nidre; Yom Kipper’s Most Famous Melody” It is a 26.37 long podcast explaining this legal text and its survival.

Safaria – provides three English texts and nine sheets on this prayer. The three English texts are as follows: (1) one is from Shulchan Arukh, Orach Chayim, 619. The other two are “English Explanation of Mishnah Nedarim” by Dr. Joshua Kulp.

Examples of Modern Traditions

Cantor Ari Schwartz is chanting the Kol Nidre prayer. For a Sephardic version is the post titled, Yom Kippur songs.
Jacqueline du Pré/Daniel Barenboim/Israel Philharmonic Orchestra

Jacqueline du Pré is considered by many as the greatest cellist of her generation. Here is an instrumental for this prayer.


Traditions are hard to change. This is the reason many famous Rabbis fought so hard to prevent this from becoming one. It is now engrained into the soul of the Jewish people. Can it be changed? Only with the help of Yahovah.

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