#124 Prayer


In the shower this morning under the stream of hot water pouring over stiff places, I realized this is where I say my daily versions of what I call “Prayer”. I intend no irony or blasphemy in calling it such although I understand that for those with disciplined religious practice, my use of this term might offend. Mine is a highly individualized and (perhaps) quirky version of Spirituality. I have been terrible at discipline my entire life although that didn’t apply when it came to education, profession, or projects where I have been capable of  hard focus driven by love and directed purpose be it through knitting, homesteading, gardening, photography, or things connected to my love of books and the world of information sharing. For me work has often been a form of prayer.

I recognized my morning shower thoughts as “Prayer” first, because every shower brings gratitude that I live in a time where instant hot water streaming from a faucet is a great privilege. It’s almost as if I had traces of memories where hot water was never a given much less available so easily, so I consciously give Thanks for its daily presence. From there the movement into other forms of prayer, prayers for family and friends or for others in the midst of trouble of one kind or another Lately there are prayers for healing the divisions that have so plagued our nation and elsewhere. Much prayer seems needed.

Giving Thanks, a different form of prayer, goes on throughout the day as my eyes catch sight of critters, waves, clouds, light, horizon, or color. Each and every awareness is a gift. Nature is my framework for Spirituality. The small and the vast and all the ranges in between resonate with reminders of the consciousness of creation, the connected flow that runs through all. That’s about as specific as I can be.

In tough times both gratitude and prayer seem sorely needed, a way to stay alert to all that is precious in our lives. When being together physically is not possible I am even more thankful that this path I’ve taken seeking Spiritually was offbeat, divergent and personalized. My version of Church, Synagogue, Mosque, or Temple is without walls and not linked to others in sharing the experience, but I am deeply hopeful for all those in houses dedicated to Prayer, those who follow a much more straightforward path than my own.

One thought on “#124 Prayer

  1. Hi Jane
    I hope you’re safe and well. Your beautiful reflection on prayer shines with your hearted connection to the All.

    Here’s a David Whyte poem which I felt dances with your reflection quite well:

    Make a place of prayer, no fuss,
    just lean into the white brilliance
    and say what you needed to say
    all along, nothing too much, words
    as simple and as yours and as heard
    as the bird song above your head
    or the river running gently beside you,
    let your words join to the world
    the way stone nestles on stone
    the way the water simply leaves
    and goes to the sea,
    the way your promise
    breathes and belongs
    with every other promise
    the world has ever made.

    Now, leave them to go on,
    let your words alone
    to carry their own life,
    without you, let the promise
    go with the river.
    Have faith. Walk away.

    From ‘Prayer after Prayer’
    © David Whyte & Many Rivers Press
    May 2015
    to be published Dec 2015

    Monastic Fishing House
    River Cong. Co. Mayo
    April 2015

    Joe Roberts


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