Q. Why do the early morning blessings first acknowledge that the rooster recognises the dawn, then mention that we have not been made heathens, slaves or women (women have a separate b’rachah) and then thank God for opening our eyes in the morning and enabling us to move and get out of bed?
A. These blessings combine two Talmudic passages. One, in B’rachot 60b, says that as we perform each early morning action we should say a blessing; the other, in M’nachot 43b, says that a man should acknowledge every day that he has not been made a heathen, a slave or a woman.
(There is a great deal to say about the reference to women and about their blessing, “God… who has made me according to His will”, but we have dealt with this issue elsewhere.)
The question you have asked may be answered this way. The first thing that happens in the morning is that we wake up, courtesy of the rooster, an alarm clock or some other means.
Then, before we even open our eyes or begin to move, we begin to think. Our first thought is, “I’m alive! I’m Jewish! I’m free!” and a man adds, despite the sexism, “I’m male!”
Now that our mind is alert we can begin the series of actions that mark the process of getting up.