Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
  Page title
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

Understanding the Halachos of Getting Out of Bed

The Prayer of Modeh Ani

"I admit before You [Hashem] the living and everlasting King, that you returned my soul with mercy, great is Your Faithfulness!" The first thing a Jew is meant to do when he opens his eyes in the morning is to admit that Hashem has returned his soul back to him.

Our Sages tell us that the experience of sleep is one-sixtieth of death (Berachos). For this reason, King David was careful to minimize his sleep, so he should not "taste the flavor of death" (Shulchan Aruch 4,16 citing Zohar Vayigash 207a). At the end of his life, the Vilna Gaon acted in a similar fashion, never sleeping for the amount of time that is considered one sixteeth of dath (more than half an hour at a time).

Every morning that we wake up and are given life again, we are resurrected from the semi-death experience of sleep. By refering to Hashem as "the Everlasting King", we remind ourselves of the fundamental principle of Jewish faith. We affirm that just as we have been given our life anew in this world, so, too, at the End of Days all of the dead will be resurrected by the Everlasting King.

Most prayers may not be recited unless one’s hands have not touched parts of the body that are generally covered. In a case where one is unsure, such as after a night's sleep, the hands must be washed first. Nevertheless, we may recite Modeh Ani immediately upon waking, since it does not contain any direct reference to Hashem's names (Mishna Berura 1,8).


Text Copyright © 2007 by Rabbi Daniel Travis and Torah.org


 






ARTICLES ON KI SEITZEI AND ELUL / ROSH HASHANAH:

View Complete List

Different Courts, Different Rules
Shlomo Katz - 5766

Teshuva—Fencing in the Enemy
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5765

Sound of the Unheard Shofar
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5764

> Gratitude - A Hereditary Trait?
Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky - 5757

More and More Ourselves
Rabbi Label Lam - 5764

Tzedakah vs. Charity: What is the difference?
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5773

ArtScroll

Starting From Scratch
Rabbi Pinchas Avruch - 5764

Rabbi Frand on Rosh HaShana
- 5769

The Wayward Son - What Can He Teach Us?
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5758

Looking for a Chavrusah?

“CSI: Who Are You – Jew, Who, Jew, Who?”
Jon Erlbaum - 5771

Giving in to the Dictates of One's Heart
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5759

Yefas Toar: The Exception Proves The Rule
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5770

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

The Month of Elul: Customs
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5758

Tough Love
Rabbi Naftali Reich - 5767

Knock, Knock!
Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky - 5757

A Time to Remember and Be Inspired
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5757



Project Genesis

Torah.org Home


Torah Portion

Jewish Law

Ethics

Texts

Learn the Basics

Seasons

Features

TORAHAUDIO

Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base




Help

About Us

Contact Us



Free Book on Geulah!




Torah.org Home
Torah.org HomeCapalon.com Copyright Information