A Jewish chain letter?

chain_letterI received this email chain letter today from a friend:

Powerful Tefila (prayer) for Today. Read this sentence carefully. When Hashem (God) takes something from your grasp. He’s not punishing you, but merely opening your hands to receive something better. Concentrate on this sentence. “The will of Hashem will never take you where the Grace of Hashem will not protect you.” Something good will happen to you today, something that you have been waiting to hear. Please do not break. Just 27 Words: ‘Hashem our Father, walk through my house and take away all my worries and illnesses and please watch over and heal my family in your name, Amen.’ This prayer is so powerful. Pass this to 12 people including me. A brocha is coming to you in form of a new job, a house, marriage or financially. Do not break or ask questions. This is a test. Does Hashem come first in your life? If so, stop what you’re doing & send it to 12 people now. Watch what He does…

This was my response:

The first part of the email is spot on. We should pray to God for everything we need AT ANY AND ALL TIMES, knowing that our prayers are always heard, even though they may not always be answered IN THE WAY WE EXPECT OR WANT. Therefore a prayer like this is perfect for ANY day. No need to wait till we are in synagogue, we can pray any time.

Encouraging others to pray is also a great idea; it helps them, and also increases our own merits, since we have caused others to do something meritorious.

The end of the email is where something goes wrong. Receiving an email on a particular day, or sending copies of our prayer to a specific number of other people, does not increase the likelihood that it will be fulfilled, any more than wearing a red string does, or hanging a horseshoe – or hamsa – or blue glass eye – on the wall.

I’m afraid that part of it is just pagan superstition expressed in pseudo-Jewish terms.

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