Saying Tehillim

  1. Chazal and Commentaries from later generations speak at
    length of the great importance of saying Tehillim with concentration and
    from the heart. They tell us that it can save a person from all kinds of
    troubles, including diseases of the body and the soul, as it says in the
    midrash (Shocher Tov on Tehillim), “Everything that Dovid Hamelech
    wrote in Tehillim pertains to every Jew at all times as well as to himself,”
    Even though it is forbidden to read verses over a wound, and a person who
    does so is considered a kopher b’Torah because he is turning the
    words of the Torah into a remedy for the body, a healthy person is permitted
    to say Tehillim so that the merit of doing so will protect him and he will
    be spared troubles and distress.

  2. The Sefer Hachinuch explains that saying Tehillim moves a person to place all his trust in G-d,
    to fear Him and to trust in His chesed and goodness, and that this
    inner awakening protects him from dangers. The Torah did not forbid a person
    from saying words of Torah for the sake of the merit it brings and the
    protection that merit confers. Besides awakening G-d’s mercy and
    assistance, the recitation of Tehillim helps cleanse a person of chet
    and pesha (sin). The author of the Nodeh BeYehudah, when
    instructing a person on a path of teshuvah, wrote that in addition to
    learning Torah, which is most essential, he should cling to Hashem through
    the songs and praises of Dovid Hamelech because just as their study
    purifies the soul, so too does their recitation.

  3. Even though it is forbidden to recite the written Torah
    from memory, it is permitted to recite Tehillim from memory because, since,
    like prayer, they awaken G-d’s mercy, and are considered like prayers.

  4. A person who does not have a Sefer Tehillim and knows
    only one Tehillim by heart, should say it over and over again. It will be
    pleasing to G-d as though he were learning the most complicated halachic
    issues.

  5. Chazal praise the person who recites Tehillim every day.
  6. Tehillim should not be recited before reciting the
    blessings over the Torah even when they are recited as prayers and not for
    the sake of learning.

  7. Even though on Shabbos Tehillim are not recited for a
    sick person whose life is not in danger, it is permitted to recite Tehillim
    on Shabbos. It is not considered a violation of petitioning G-d on Shabbos.

  8. A person should be very careful not to spit while
    reciting passages that include the name of G-d.

  9. If a person recites one chapter of Tehillim every day, he
    need not repeat it if he has recited it in the course of reciting the entire
    Sefer Tehillim.

  10. An Onayn is forbidden to recite Tehillim, but
    others are permitted to recite Tehillim in the presence of a person who has
    died. A mourner is forbidden to study the Tehillim, but he may recite them
    as a form of prayer and awakening to teshuvah.