There's meaning in everything, but we often struggle to understand the message.
One major help in understanding God's messages is Perek Shirah — Chapter of Song, which features prominently in Finding My Father's Song.
(Here's a downloadable PDF of the entire song: Perek Shirah in English.)
Perek Shirah is an ancient collection of over eighty verses put together by King David, whose most famous book is the Book of Psalms.
But after King David finished writing the Book of Psalms, Perek Shirah came to him as a type of even higher revelation.
Each part of Creation has its own song, and this is what was revealed to King David.
Perek Shirah was first mentioned in written Jewish texts around two thousand years ago (although knowledge of Perek Shirah could exist long before its textual mention, especially since much of Jewish scholarship was passed down orally, in addition to the wealth of written scholarship lost or destroyed throughout the ages).
The most respected Jewish sages throughout history praised the power of Perek Shirah to save a person’s soul, both in this world and in the Afterlife.
Perek Shirah isn't widely known outside the ultra-Orthodox community, where it is popular due to its powerful spiritual attributes.
Yet several stories exist of how Perek Shirah helped people understand the message hidden in a distressing event.
For example, Sara Yoheved Rigler writes about how the Song of the Rat helped her & her husband understand what the giant rat in their home needed to tell them:
My Rat's Tale
Another couple realized that the invasion of scorpions into their new apartment hinted at their unintentional callousness in leaving a homeless man with whom they'd been sharing their meals. Upon contacting him to inform him of their new location (accompanied by a sincere offer to continue hosting him for meals), the scorpion infestation disappeared.
(The Song of the Scorpion within Perek Shirah is Psalm 145:9: "God is good to all and His Compassion is upon all His creatures." Thus, the couple realized their unintentional abandonment of the homeless man lacked compassion.)
It's not always clear to exactly what creature Perek Shirah refers. For example, the smameet mentioned toward the end of Perek Shirah could either be a small lizard or a spider. (And therefore, you can feel free to apply the message of the smameet to both the spiders you encounter, and the cute little gecko lizards.)
Furthermore, the meaning of the song isn't always as apparent as it was in the above instances.
But it's still worth taking a look to see whether the song of a particular creature or phenomenon holds a special message for you.
Of course, sometimes the reason for the event is something else entirely, something far less obvious & far more esoteric.
Judaism very much embraces paradox and isn't about a "bibbity-bobbity-boo!" approach to tackling life's challenges.
But it's still worth seeking out the message.
You never know what you'll find.
Free Inspirational Posters for Free Download: A Millennia-Old Short Jewish Prayer to Start Your Morning in the Best Way Possible
At the end of this post, you'll find graphics to download for free.
(If you use them online, I'd be grateful for attribution & a link back to this site, but since I'm offering these for free, so you don't have to link or attribute.)
You can also print them out as posters.
Upon waking up in the morning, a Jew is supposed to thank God for returning one's soul to the body.
There is an idea in Judaism that sleep is 1/60th of death.
The human soul comprises different aspects & levels (which is why Judaism has several different names for the soul — to describe its different aspects & levels).
When one goes to sleep at night, part of the soul rises to another plane and tells of its deeds that day. (Yes, part of this process can be expressed in a metaphorical dream.) It is judged and usually given yet another chance for a better tomorrow.
The soul then descends back into the body and then at some point, the person wakes up.
So for millennia, Jews have said the following short prayer immediately upon waking:
Thankful am I before You, Living & Enduring King, that you returned within me my soul with mercy — Great is Your Faithfulness!
Modeh (or Modah for a female) ani lifanecha Melech Chai v'Kayam sheh hechazarta bi nishmati b'chemlah — rabbah emunatecha!
In Hebrew, the guttural throat-clearing sound is often represented by "ch." There is no native "ch" (like the English "ch" of "cheese") in Hebrew, so whenever you see a Hebrew word written with "ch," please know that it represents the guttural throat-clearing sound.
For the images, there are 3 options:
Of course, you can also feel free to download all three graphics.
Hover your mouse-arrow over your chosen image, then press right-click on your mouse, then choose the option that best suits you.