Why pray? You may ask. Why not? I’d say. Prayer is communicating with the most intimate friend I can imagine, a wise friend, not concerned with temporary matters, a friend I postulate to exist outside of time and also hidden in matter, a friend who is truly connected with the only being (some call it god, I call it the one intelligence, or ‘the friend.’ Meister Eckhart and Franz von Assisi expressed it most clearly … god looks at you the way you look at god … Is there anything to lose? No. Is there anything to gain? No. Prayer is beyond loss and gain, it is a creative leap into the unknown. What you project looks back at you as from a mirror.
My experience convinces me that psychic existence prevails beyond any one physical form in space or my limited perception in time, and beyond any mirror.
Here is my favourite prayer:
* * * *
Let Thy wish become my desire,
Let Thy will become my deed,
Let Thy word become my speech Beloved
And Thy love become my creed.
* * * *
Let my plant bring forth Thy flowers,
Let my fruit produce Thy seed,
Let my heart become Thy lute Beloved
And my body Thy flute of reed.
* * * *
Hazrat Inayat Khan
9 responses to “my favourite prayer”
Very beautiful and I agree with your first comment – why pray? – why not. Anything in this day and age for comfort and hope and soul food
Soul food, no different from any other, food that nourishes and tastes good, and doesn’t give you indigestion 🙂
Many folks think of prayer as a request for some boon: I pray that Aunt Sarah feels better; Lord, grant that I may ace that test tomorrow; Forgive me, Lord, that I have sinned; etc.
This is the childlike, authoritarian view of God, the (for)giver of all things. I like your prayer and it reminds of my own favorite, attributed to that fellow you mentioned:
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love.
Where there is injury, pardon.
Where there is doubt, faith.
Where there is despair, hope.
Where there is darkness, light.
Where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled, as to console;
to be understood, as to understand;
to be loved, as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive.
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.
Though I’m something of an agnostic these days, I find comfort in that prayer, especially when I feel angry or hurt. It says that the world is what you make of it.
Thanks for sharing these beautiful prayers, JF, and good to meet you here.
I tend to be a gnostic agnostic … if I have too much doubt, faith sneaks in, if I have too much faith, questions arise. It’s my way, a fine balancing act towards becoming human.
What a beautiful prayer Ashen. Thanks for sharing it.
I’m glad I shared the prayer, Zan, and finding it appreciated here gives me pleasure. The words grew on me over the years, line for line, and at moments when their significance touches deeply, I sense a blessing reach through the original transmission and feel accumulated worries gently disperse, like a weight that slips off my shoulders.
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Comments are rather inadequate here! Seemingly trite. Yet one can admit to a lump in the throat and a longing as calling as the sea…it is the universal intimacy of it I think…
Hi Philippa. Re: universal intimacy … this reminds me of lines from ‘Unseen Rain,’ Quatrains of Rumi by John Moyne and Coleman Barks (1986).
I am so small I can barley be seen.
How can this great love be inside me?
Look at your eyes. They are small,
but they see enormous things.