A regular participant on this site, David, encouraged me to purchase the Mahzor Lev Shalem – Prayerbook for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur

A mahzor is the prayer book used by Jews on the High Holidays of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. But, for those who have not seen a mahzor, such a technical description does little justice to this magnificent volume.

I think, I hope that this is the sort of quality book of the future – if books are to survive in a digital world. What a magnificent book: beautifully bound, clear layout, extremely attractive fonts. Then we come to the content. Wonderful insights into Jewish spirituality, with commentaries, reflections, prayers, and resources clearly presented in the margins. The prayers and readings are wonderful additions to any individual’s or community’s devotional life. The prayers are sensitively inclusive without jarring, including options for adding women’s names to the traditional places where only men are mentioned. For those who cannot read Hebrew, congregational parts are transliterated. And, of course, the Hebrew is translated.

This mahzor forms the new official mahzor of the Conservative movement in Judaism. Conservative Judaism looks back to the nineteenth century for its foundations. Conservative Judaism is non-fundamentalist, open to contemporary culture and scholarship, and committed to Jewish religious law. This mahzor is also usable for Orthodox or Reform congregations

The book is improved by adding ribbons. And I’m saddened there isn’t a good index so that I could find the versions of biblical texts, etc. Maybe an index exists or will appear online – or one will be produced in the future.

This is a book I cannot recommend too much!

Official website

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