how to say “good luck” in Hebrew
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In English, we say good luck – wishing the person good fortune, that the stars line up for them, that they find a four-leaf clover.
In Hebrew, we say בְּהַצְלָחָה listen and repeat – literally, with success.
|If anyone knew how
to encourage people
to be proactive, it was
the Lubavitcher Rebbe.
A variation of that wish found in more religious circles is בְּרָכָה וְהַצְלָחָה listen and repeat – blessing and success. This likely derives from the Lubavitcher Rebbe’s staple wish to those in his personal audience, ברכה והצלחה בְּכָל הָעִנְיָנִים listen and repeat – blessing and success in all (the) matters.
I believe Hebrew’s choice of בהצלחה reflects a more proactive orientation than that of the English good luck – that Jewish/Israeli culture emphasizes the role of the individual’s power to shape their destiny as at least equal to the power of external forces, even divine ones. I think wishing someone הצלחה listen and repeat - success – is more encouraging than wishing them good luck.
What do you think? Feel free to comment below.