MM #26 – “Modeh Ani” – Craig Taubman

“Model Ani,” translated as “I give thanks,” are the first words of the Jewish prayer said every morning, thanking God for restoring one’s soul after a night’s sleep. Craig Taubman, who with eleven albums and thirty years of music to his credit, brings an incredible reggae twist to this centuries-old prayer. Reminding us all to be grateful for the morning sun, the afternoon run through a sprinkler, and the time spent with friends, family or your best stuffed animal.

Mincha Moment (MIN-chuh, with the “ch” like in “Bach” or “loch”)… Taking Time to Be Grateful refers to a moment in the afternoon — 2:30 pm is what we’ve been using — when you stop whatever you’re doing, look around and acknowledge to yourself, how truly grateful you are. If 2:30 pm doesn’t work for you, no problem. Choose another time, but stick to it. Better yet, keep 2:30 pm and pick an additional moment as well. Unlike specials in the supermarket, decongestants or hot fudge sundaes, there’s no limit to how many mincha moments you can have in a day. But whatever time you decide, when it arrives, stop what you’re doing. Take in everything around you, and recognize how much gratitude you have. It sounds easy, especially if you’re on vacation. Not too difficult to be grateful for spectacular scenery, amazing food, and daily massages. On the other hand, if instead of vacation, you’re in a boring meeting at work or waiting two hours at the DMV, you might find it quite a bit harder. Yet if you take a minute, you’ll find there’s a lot you’re thankful for. Maybe it’s some of your colleagues at the office, who make working on assignments interesting and help to get your creative juices flowing. Maybe it’s your strong legs that allow you to stand online. Or maybe, when all is said and done, life is just pretty damn good–especially if you have a fresh pound of chocolate malted milk balls in the drawer.

Debra Gonsher Vinik and David Vinik are partners in Diva Communications, Inc, a video programming and production company in NYC. Through an interfaith kaleidoscope, they create, write, film and edit documentaries on social justice issues.

Years ago, Debra and David set their watches (now it is their cell phones) to go off every day at 2:30 pm. In addition to giving them an opportunity to reflect on all they have, Debra and David love knowing that at 2:30 pm, wherever they are, they are united, no matter the distance, in joint reflection.

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  1. Great video with such an amazing message! It’s like Bob Marley meeting the Lubavitch Rebbe!

  2. Debra Gonsher Vinik December 18, 2015 at 1:18 pm

    Thanks, Vicki! I KNOW this is something you practice every day, and how you truly treasure every moment. Yes, even the not so great ones!

  3. What a beautifully done video to remind us how special every single day is and every breath we draw…and how lucky we are to be surrounded by special people! Modeh Ani for our friendship!

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