Thursday, 18 February 2010

Attitude of Gratitude - 1 Development

Developing an Attitude of Gratitude should be a "Piece of Cake" for an Observant Jew. After all, we wake up declaring: "Modeh ani l'fanecha!"

Thanksgiving is central to our prayers and our holidays. Our life-cycle events recycle this theme again and again. Saying "modim anachnu lach" at a minyan is up there with answering Bar'chu and "Y'ehei shmeih rabba"

But even a very good Jew can often use a "booster shot" in raising one's awareness, in raising one's consciousness.
The regular daily dose does meet the "minimum Daily Requirement", but sometimes we want to achieve "spiritual excellence" [kudos to R Yaakov Feldman] and minimums leave us in stagnant mediocrity unless we grow past it.

Nu - so how do we administer such a booster shot?

I'm glad you asked!

Some Tehillim have Gratitude\Thanksgiving as a theme
Hallel - 113-118 [esp. 118]
Hallel haGadol -136

To name a few

One may bookmark these and recite them as constant reminders.

How about some Brachot in Davening?

Besides the Modeh Ani - which was adapted from EloKai! N'shamah

There are other classics -

First Daily:
Elokay! N'shamah itself
Gomeil Hassadim Tovim
Modim d'Rabbanan
Nodeh L'cha
in Bentsching

Nishmat kol Chay [an expanded intro to Yishtabach]
Birchat Gomeil
[end of Hallel]

When you are obligated to say them, say them with extra kavvanah

When you are not obligated, one may merely contemplate upon one or more as a spiritual exercise.
EG take Elokay! N'shamah and read it later in the day w/o using the Sheim and Contemplate its theme.


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