Before the Bracha

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Physical preparations

  1. When making a bracha, one's mouth should be empty so that one can fully praise Hashem. [1]
  2. One must wear a Kippah while making a Bracha. [2] If one doesn't have a Kippah one should cover your head with your hand and a little bit of your sleeve or ask a friend to cover your head with his hand (even without a sleeve). </ref> S"A 91:4 writes that using one's hand to cover one's head isn't sufficient for a head-covering, but a friend covering one's head would be sufficient. Mishna Brurah 91:10 adds that it is considered a head-covering if one uses one's hand along with a bit of the sleeve. </ref>

References

  1. Gemara Brachot 50b writes that if one forgot and put food into one's mouth, if the food isn't something that's easily ruined it should be spit out. On this the gemara explains that one should spit it out so that one could have his entire mouth involved in praising Hashem based on the pasuk ימלא פי תהלתך (Tehillim 71:8). The Shulchan Aruch 172:2 rules like this gemara and the Mishna Brurah 172:7 and Kaf HaChaim 172:4 bring down the gemara's explanation.
  2. S"A 91:3