How do you wake up every morning?
Do you have a particular ritual? In Judaism, we have a tradition of waking up with a declaration of gratitude. It’s not really a prayer, it’s more a statement of deep appreciation. We say the Modeh Ani in the morning to express our appreciation for waking to consciousness.
What we say is: “Modeh Anee Lefanecha Melech Chai v’kayam, She-he-chezarta-bee Nishmatee B’chemla Raba Emunatecha”.
I offer thanks to You, living and eternal King, for You have mercifully restored my soul within me; Your faithfulness is great. (For the Hebrew, please click this link to see the source; some computer programs do not show the Hebrew properly.)
The word Emunahtecha can be translated in several ways but most commonly, Emunah means faith, persistence, and a sense of steadfastness. Emunatecha means your faith, your steadfastness—in me!
Let’s dwell on this concept a bit. Each and every morning, upon waking from sleep, we take a moment to appreciate the miracle of life, of wakefulness and that The Holy One has faith in us. Faith that we will make the best of every day. We express thanks and appreciation for our soul (nishmatee), for that which makes us human. We’ve been given yet another chance to prove we are worthy of this life. Every day, a new start.
We begin again in our quest to be a better person, and The One Above is giving us another shot at life.
This video might inspire you to begin this practice everyday. There are many melodies for Modeh Ani, see which one resonates with you. Try this one by David Paskin or this Hasidic melody by Avraham Fried, or this, with English translation by Elana Jagoda.
Wishing you special mornings of appreciation,