‘Blessings often come in disguise. This one comes on your iPhone.”
So says the description of the new iPhone/iPod touch application, the iBlessing, a product developed by The Jewish Learning Group and now available on iTunes. When a user clicks on any one of the food groups displayed on the screen — including fruit, meat, bread and wine — the appropriate blessings appear and the prayers are played aloud in Hebrew and English. Added bonuses include the Modeh Ani, the prayer recited upon waking, and the Shema, a blessing declaring one’s faith in God.
The Jewish Learning Group also launched the ParveOMeter, which is perfect for those inclined to lose track of time: The application counts down the minutes between meat meals and dairy meals. The timer is automatically set to go off six hours after the meat button is pressed, but it can be customized, based on levels of observance, to zero, 30 or 60 minutes following a dairy meal.
According to Zalman Goldstein, head of The Jewish Learning Group, the applications have already received 14,000 downloads combined since August 16, when they were introduced on iTunes. Best of all, both applications are free of charge.