Saturday, February 21, 2009

The Biggest Fish in the World

Yesterday I visited an incredible place - the Georgia Aquarium, biggest aquarium in the world. There were many incredible sights, but the highlight was the whale shark, biggest fish in the world, which outside of Japan and Dubai can only be seen in Georgia. Their largest specimen was only half-grown at 22 feet long, in a six million gallon aquarium. It was truly awesome, and I spontaneously pronounced the berachah of Baruch shekachah lo b'olamo. They also had the world's only captive manta ray, just a baby at 450 pounds - it's expected to reach ten times that weight, with a wingspan of 26 feet!


Anonymous said...

Hi Rav Slifkin,

Is there a reason you omitted the "ata Hashem elokeinu melech ha'olam" from your bracha?

I know that that bracha can only be said once every 30 days, similar to the "seeing the ocean" bracha. Is that the reason for your short version?

Unknown said...
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Unknown said...
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Daniel E Weisman said...

Hi Daniel, I noticed your question for R. Slifkin and thought I'd take a try at answering. There are two possible reasons I would venture as to why R. Slifkin didn't write the "ata Hashem Elokeinu melech ha'olam: 1) R. Slifkin is using an abbreviated form of mentioning the berocha following the precedent set by gemorah Berochos daf 54a, where (according to most authorities, not the Raavid) the gemorah is using an abbreviated form. Or, 2) R. Slifkin holds like the Raavid who holds (interpreting Beis Yosef) that you don't make the "ata Hashem Elokeinu melech ha'olam" for things seen, which he considers an optional berocha. (Disclaimer: I had happened to be studying that sugya and had help from Artscroll and have not seen the Raavid inside.)