Type of Spiritual Experience
It is clear that the Jewish ceremonies in the more orthodox synagogues achieve a high level of befuddling, particularly when the readings are in Hebrew, which few these days understand. Although synagogues are not always as impressive or ornate as Christian churches or mosques, what they lack in size or decoration they often make up for in lighting and arrangement.
In an Orthodox synagogue both the Torah and the Prophets are chanted in Hebrew. Services can last for several hours – at least two - and there are morning, afternoon and evening services on the Sabbath, all of which in the Orthodox synagogues use the Torah and Hebrew.
There is also much use of ritual, prostration, the covering of eyes, swaying, the lighting of candles, the spreading of hands and the use of special clothes.
It is the movements that are probably the most effective at inducing trance. The talmudic rules for movements include the following..
A description of the experience
“One must bow four times during the Amidah; at the beginning and at the end of the first benediction and at the beginning and end of the Modim thanksgiving prayer. When one says 'praised' he should bend over until the joints of his spinal column stand out and also bow his head. Then, before one pronounces the name of the Lord, he should begin slowly to stand erect, according to the verse. 'The Lord lifts up those who are bowed down' [Psalm 146:8]. After the recitation of the Amidah and before the worshipper recites 'May he who ordains the order of the universe bring peace to us and to all Israel' he should bow down and take three short steps backward, like a servant taking leave of his master …..............'