Chabad Crown Heights info has a video of professor Cyril Karabus being blessed by Chabad Shliach Rabbi Asher Deren with Birchas Kohanim upon his arrival from Dubai.
Rabbi Micha Peltz writes about The Jewish Birthday 'Bracha' That Teaches Us to Count.
On birthdays, Jews greet each other with 'ad meah v’esrim' - 'may you live until 120.' This blessing, which can be traced back to the Torah, seems to acknowledge that our days are numbered.
... we learn in Deuteronomy that Moses lived to be 120 years old. And great rabbis of the Talmud such as Hillel, Rabbi Yohanan Ben Zakkai, Rabbi Akiva, and Rabbi Yehuda Hanasi, all lived to 120 as well. Pretty good company - suddenly living until 120 doesn’t sound so bad.
And why should it? The average life expectancy in the U.S. is 78. (It’s 80 in Israel – another reason to make aliyah!) Living more than 40 years beyond that could be quite a blessing. Assuming that a person still has their health. This caveat has given rise to a cute adaptation of this birthday blessing: “ad meah k’esrim” – “May you live until 100 [feeling] like you are 20!” That would truly be a blessing.
Father in Heaven
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