My Prayer to Humanity
One of the yummiest parts of my day is found in the company of my family’s stillness as we sit around the dinner table just before we eat. “Should we have our moment of silence?” Gideon, my eight-year-old, the oldest of our four kids, reminds us. The other kids get excited and silence quickly blankets the room.
Of the many forms of prayer we express in our home, all of which I love, there is something unusually special about our dinner prayer. As we sit and listen to the deafening voice of Silence, our busy thoughts become cleansed by Her stillness. Here in the placid waters of our minds is that magical moment — that moment when all dividing lines disappear and each of us returns home to our unbounded heart, to the invisible and all-encompassing force in which the foundations of faith are built upon. Here, we commune in Love.
Life doesn’t get much better than this.
“Do not let me ask any more than to sit in the darkness and light no lights of my own, and be crowded with no crowds of my own thoughts to fill the emptiness of the night in which I await You.” — Thomas Merton
After the waters settle and I feel that the room has made its way back to Love, I tell my family I love them. And, as we eat, the kids express what they felt in their heart.
They express the many specific things in which they are grateful for — yesterday for Naomi, our five-year-old, it was for gratitude: ‘Without gratitude we couldn’t feel gratitude.’ Girl’s gotta point. She also mentioned doors and handles, so we can go in and out of the house easily, without letting in the cold air (it’s winter here in Utah).
Other times they express some of the many ways in which they are connected to the rest of the world — Annelise, one of our seven-year-olds, an identical twin, follows the food that sits on her plate back through its journey. She sees her food in its fullness, connecting herself to the soil in which the food was planted, to the sun and the rain, to the farmers who cared for the plants, to the truck driver who drove the food to the store, to the cashier who sold the food to us, and so on.
And on occasion, they express their heart-felt wishes for their friends and families — Olivia, our other twin, wished the other day that the elderly don’t feel so alone, that they feel loved. Oh my god, this broke my heart wide open. She must have heard me talking to my mom about my grandma. May our hearts and prayers keep the elderly close during these lonely COVID times.
Will You Pray With Me?
I’d love for you to sit in silence with me, to marinate in our heart space, to be one with Love. Sit as long as you want. I know it’s hard in such a busy world — we’ve been conditioned for noise and action. So, just try to get comfortable with stillness. Don’t force it. Maybe just try to peek over the edge of your comfort level.
Once there, will you pray with me? With each line or sentence of my prayer below, rather than just reading it in a dry manner, try to really connect with it. Are these prayers something you really wish upon the world? If so, connect with your own intention behind them — e.g., realize that you really do want your friends and families to be happy. And then really wish that for them.
As my kids say, “Let’s send some friendly wishes!”
* * *
May you be happy. May you be free from suffering. May you be free from fear, from hatred and anger. May you be free from greed, from envy and jealousy. May you be free from thoughts of self-pity. May you take interest in your own being — may you approach yourself with awe and wonder, with compassion and understanding, with gratitude and forgiveness.
May you be filled with courage — the courage to let go of yourself so that you may live from the immovable Solitude and Stillness of your being, so that you may act from the One beating Heart. May you have the courage to care less about what others think and more about the unspoken words of your Heart. May you have the courage to know your own poverty so that you may express yourself with humility and peace, so that you may navigate the world and your relationships with a thousand ears and hands.
May you, in quietude, listen to Love, who has no voice and yet who speaks of all that Is. May Love draw you into Her Heart, lock you in Her Will, and cradle you in Her Wisdom. May you work in unison with Love to create your life, your understanding, your destiny. May you paint Love freely onto this world and onto the hearts of others. May Love reveal to you Truth, Beauty, and Goodness in all things.
May you experience deep and meaningful relationships. May you look at your children with stillness in your eyes and sincerity in your heart. May you worship them with your full, undistracted, selfless attention. May you hold tenderly in your heart and arms your loved one. May you bring each other back Home, back to Love, back to Stillness when you gaze into each other’s eyes. May they always feel safe and warm, at peace, in your undivided and unbounded presence. May you, without words, speak to them of Love, and dance with them to the beat of God’s Heart. May you point them to their own divinity, where together you dwell without space, time, or form, eternally entwined in Love’s embrace.
May you hold in your heart your brothers and sisters, your parents and grandparents, your entire collection of ancestors. May you understand that their pains and sorrows are also your own, that you are not apart from their development, from their being, from their communion in Love. May you also hold in your heart the entirety of your legacy, and let them — their feelings and emotions, their experience and understanding — guide you in all of your actions so that you may see and feel more fully the eternal consequences of each motivation, word, and action.
May you feel deeply connected and inextricably linked to all of Life, to all of Nature. May you be at one with all creatures, people, and things. May you cherish this beautiful earth, our home, which has given — and continues to give — us everything. May you find the sun’s light in your heart and the ocean’s rhythm in your blood.
May you rest in eternal stillness.
May you truly be at peace.
“My Night With Love”
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“My Snow Leopard Angel”
Everyone needs a friend like my Snow Leopard Guardian Angel — a bright light, a beacon, a North Star, a teacher, a wise counselor, a polished mirror to see your own reflection.
“The Divine Connection”
You don’t need to search far and wide for the Divine connection. It’s that without beginning or end. See and feel – know directly – the love that both surrounds you and fills you. Know the Love that is you…
“Cultivating Loving Attention”
How many of your words and actions are reactive & automatic? How many are reflective and intentional? What would it be like, what would it feel like, to intentionally love yourself, others, and the world?
“The Current of Stillness”
She moves in Her Stillness | Understands in Her Wholeness | Creates endless though Formless | And embraces the Boundless | She gives freely Her Charity | Paints marvelously Her Beauty…
“By Way of Introduction”
It’s spring in Salt Lake City. I’ve been writing at my desk all day and my back’s painfully aware. I glance out the window and see that the morning’s storm has washed out the pollution and left a soft blue sky…