prayers

How I Pray

Author: 
Sobonfu Somé, Parabola 2014

I pray in many different ways.
The clarity of my intention is the beginning of my prayer.

In my tradition, every breath I draw is a prayer. Every time I inhale and exhale, it is a prayer.
And so, how conscious are you when you are breathing in and out? How conscious are you when you are walking?
How conscious are you when you are singing? How conscious are you when you are angry?
I pray in the way that I show gratitude, love or compassion. I pray alone and in community.
I pray with my thoughts. I pray with my body.

I pray in the way I speak to people.
I pray to various elements of nature-
the trees, the animals, the water, the rocks, the earth, the fire....
I pray to my Ancestors and all the Divinities.
I pray simply, with passion, humility, clarity and grace.

I pray in the way I welcome and bless people . I pray with whatever emotions come my way.
I pray with sincerity and with strong belief that what I'm praying for is going to manifest.

In my tradition, whatever you say is a prayer that you send out, Because sound is a powerful force that brings the hidden to light. And when you pray something is going to say Yes.

So each moment of my life is a prayer.
Each moment I reflect on myself, on the world and other people is a prayer. How I interact with people and how I deal with my thoughts is a prayer.
How genuine am l?-is a way for me to pray.

For me, all these things are sacred and are messengers, and can take my heart cries, which are my prayers to the Divinities.
This is the power of how I pray.

May I Become an Island

To the Buddhas residing in all directions
With my palms pressed together I make this request
Please continue to shine the lamp of Dharma
For living beings lost and suffering in the darkness of ignorance.

May I become an island for those seeking dry land
A lamp for those needing light,
A place of rest for those who desire one,
And a servant for those needing service.

For Those Whose Work is Invisible

Author: 
Mary Gordon

For those who paint the undersides of boats, makers of ornamental drains on roofs too high to be seen; for cobblers who labor over inner soles; for seamstresses who stitch the wrong sides of linings; for scholars whose research leads to no obvious discovery; for dentists who polish each gold surface of the fillings of upper molars; for sewer engineers and those who repair water mains; for electricians; for artists who suppress what does injustice to their visions; for surgeons whose sutures are things of beauty.  For all those whose work is for Your eye only, who labor for Your entertainment or their own, who sleep in peace or do not sleep in peace, knowing that their effects are unknown.

Protect them from downheartedness and from diseases of the eye.

Grant them perseverance, for the sake of Your love which is humble, invisible and heedless of reward.

Make Us Fearless

Author: 
Arthara Veda XIX

From that which we fear, make us fearless.
O bounteous One, assist us with your aid.

May the atmosphere we breathe
breathe fearlessness into us:
fearless on earth
and fearless in heaven!
May fearlessness surround us
above and below!

May we be without fear
by night and by day!
Let all the world be my friend!

Immigration Prayer

Author: 
Rev. Mark Belletini

O Love,
I come into your presence,
and the presence of this gathering,
as the grandchild of immigrants.
Immigrants who were not joyfully welcomed
by many inhabitants of this nation,
but ridiculed and accused of being a threat.
Immigrants who came to this land
in poverty and never became wealthy.
Immigrants whose English was never
as good as they wanted it to be.
Immigrants who were honest,
thrifty, hardworking, and who loved
this nation, even though many in this
nation despised their nationality of origin,
mocked their religion,
and pointed accusing fingers at them.
I am their grandchild, O Love,
and know this:
all human beings are inherently worthy,
and are worthy of respect and fair dealing.
All human beings, no matter their origin,
skills, education, language abilities or
religion, live lives as important to them
as my life is to me.
O Love, may I walk through this world,
where conversations about immigration
are often aflame with the exact same
disrespect and misunderstanding
leveled at my beloved grandparents,
with my head held high,
my memory strong,
my courage loud,
my solidarity secure.
May I give a voice to the voiceless,
and hold up a mirror of honesty
to the twists and distortions of the age.
O Love, set us free to serve you in peace. Amen.

Grant That I May Pass Through the Coming Year

Author: 
Dr. Howard Thurman

Grant that I may pass through the coming year with a faithful heart.
There will be much to test me and make weak my strength before the year ends.
In my confusion I shall often say the word that is not true
and do the thing of which I am ashamed.
There will be errors in the mind and great inaccuracies of judgment...
In seeking the light, I shall again and again find myself
walking in the darkness.
I shall mistake my light for Your light
and I shall drink from the responsibility of the choice I make.
Nevertheless, grant that I may pass through the coming year with a faithful heart.
May I never give the approval of my heart to error, to falseness, to vanity, to sin.
Though my days be marked with failures, stumblings, fallings,
let my spirit be free so that You may take it
and redeem my moments in all the ways my needs reveal.
Give me the quiet assurance of Your Love and Presence.
Grant that I may pass through the coming year with a faithful heart.

Forgive Us

Forgive us that often we forgive ourselves
so easily and others so hardly;
Forgive us that we expect perfrection
from those to whom we show none;
Forgive us for repelling people by the
way we set a good example;
Forgive us the folly of trying to
improve a friend;
Forbid that we should use our little
idea of goodness as a spear to
wound those who are different;
Forbid that we should feel superior
to others when we are only more shielded;
And may we encourage the secret
struggle of every person.

- Vivian Pomeroy

From the Gates of Repentance

For the sin of silence, For the sin of indifference, For the secret complicity of the neutral. For the closing of borders, For the washing of hands, For the crime of indifference, For the sin of silence, For the closing of borders. For all that was done, For all that was not done, Let there be no forgetfulness before the Throne of Glory; Let there be remembrance within the human heart; And let there at last be forgiveness When Your children, O God, Are free and at peace.

Beatitudes for Justice Builders

Author: 
Rev. Lindi Ramsden

Blessed are you who can question your own assumptions and listen with an open mind; you will receive new insights beyond your imagining.

Blessed are you who suffer the attacks of others to stand up for what is right; you will not be alone, for your courage will inspire others to rise.

Blessed are you who build friendships as well as justice; even when you lose an issue, you will have strengthened the foundation of your community.

Blessed are you who take delight in people; you will not be bored in meetings.

Blessed are you who agitate the placid waters of complacency; you will create waves in the inertia of privilege, and will know the thrill of riding the surf of change.

Blessed are you who lead with enthusiasm and confidence, resisting the temptation to shame the apathetic or self-absorbed; you will inspire curiosity and hope in others.

Blessed are you who play as well as work; you will have more fun, build more energy, and will draw the powers of the impish to you cause.

Blessed are you who ask for help in your role as leaders; you will find teachers at every turn, and your work will remain interesting and alive.

Blessed are you, when wrongfully attacked, find safe outlets for your righteous rage; your mind will be clear, your decisions strategic, and your progress will not be derailed by the backlash of the fearful.

Blessed are you who do not demonize your opponents; your eyes and your hearts will be open.

Blessed are you who sing and dance; you will find energy and joy to lift you on your journey.

Blessed are you who offer thanks and praise five-fold for every critique; your children will want to visit after they are grown, people will want to serve on your committees, and friends will be interested in your opinions.

Blessed are you who study the rhythms of history; you will have knowledge with which to shape the future.

Blessed are you who work in coalition rather than in principled isolation; you will meet great people, learn things you didn't realize you needed to know, and have partners for the journey when you are in the lead, or in need.

Blessed are you who volunteer to be secretary and take good minutes; your words will become history, and your efforts will move steadily forward rather than running absent mindedly over thoroughly discussed ground.

Blessed are you who discover, train and encourage young leaders; you will see your work expand and grow beyond your own time and talent.

Blessed are you who can change your mind; you are still alive.

Blessed are you who will not let the perfect be the enemy of the good; you will see progress in your lifetime.

Blessed are you with an active spiritual life; you will find perspective and comfort in times of loss and betrayal, and will rise without cynicism to meet the challenges of a new day.

Blessed are you who live from a place of gratitude; for you will know the meaning of Life.

Collect for Purity

 Almighty God, to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hid: Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy Name; through Christ our Lord. Amen.

  -1979  Book of Common Prayer

 

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