According to the Gemara Berachos 9th perek and codified in Shulchan Aruch oc 228, one must make a beracha on seeing mountains, oceans etc. Why nowadays does the minhag seem not to? You don’t see people on a plane making a berachah on the Alps or Atlantic ocean when flying over them, or theMediterranean seawhen going to the beach (assuming one has not seen them in 30 days). What then is the rationale? Is everyone lax in halacha?

Similarly, when driving out of Yerushalayim one sees graves on Har Ha’menuchos, and when traveling to the Kotel one sees graves on Har Ha’zeisim. Does that exempt one from making the beracha on Jewish graves when actually visiting a cemetery?

Answer:

There is no reason why these berachos should not be made. Upon seeing the Alps or the ocean, even from an airplane (provided one has a good view), a berachah should be made (Betzel Ha-Chochmah 16:4; although Rivevos Efraim 7:52 expressed doubt over somebody who sees a mountain from an airplane, if one has a good view of the mountain, and appreciates the greatness of Hashem’s creation, there is no reason not to make the berachah).

The same is surely true of somebody going to the beach.

I would not assume that everyone is lax in halachah; perhaps most people don’t make the berachah because they are regular beach-goers.

One only makes the berachah on graves if one has not seen graves for thirty days. This includes seeing graves while driving out of Jerusalem, provided that the graves were actually noticed en route.

Tags: airplane graves

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2 Responses to “Berachos Upon Seeing Alps from Airplane”

  1. What’s the bracha for when one sees graves?
    That means that one has to say one when going to the beis hachayim-for a levaya or to visit ones parents- for sure after 30 days?
    Also, is it true that when someone goes to a levaya cannot go afterwards to visit family k´vorim in the same bais hoilom?
    Thank you for answering.

    • The Berachah is “mechayeh meisim” – “Blessed are you Hashem… Who fashioned you with justice, nourished and sustained you with justice, took your lives with justice, and knows the sum total of you all with justice, and He will restore and resuscitate you with judgment. Blessed are you Hashem, Who resuscitates the dead.”

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