Wednesday, May 16, 2018

"B'ezrat Hashem"

"B'ezrat Hashem, we'll be there." 

"B'ezrat Hashem, we'll see you over Pesach."

"The party will be on Sunday, b'ezrat Hashem."



Gdwilling. That's all it means. 

Literally defined as "with Gd's help," b'ezrat Hashem is a common phrase sprinkled in conversation. It can technically be used anywhere in the sentence where an interjection would be appropriate. In practice, it's usually said at the beginning and sometimes the end of a sentence. 

It's just as common to hear people say, "Gdwilling" in English. Or not using a phrase like this at all. If you want to add either phrase, feel free to. But also don't feel pressured to. I know I felt pressured to, but I eventually came to really embrace "Gdwilling" as a common feature in my speech for its own sake. If anything, I actually feel like I say it too frequently, which is a different problem. (I hate so much repetition - words quickly lose their meaning if I say them too often in a short period of time and I begin tripping over the sounds. Like saying avocado 15 times in a row. Try it if you don't know what I'm talking about.)

One wrinkle here is seeing Bezrat Hashem in writing. People often write BH or B"H as shorthand for it. Except that those acronyms could just as well mean "Baruch Hashem" (Thank Gd). So you have to use context clues to figure out which one is meant, but neither phrase is integral to understanding the message itself and can be ignored if needed. 

1 comment:

  1. That last paragraph!! As a BT JFB, I didn't even know about b'ezrat(s) Hashem until I don't even know when. But, you can be sure I was seriously confused by "baruch Hashem" being used in places where I just couldn't figure out why it was being used!

    ReplyDelete