It is time for us to embrace the New Year once again – Happy 2021!!! Another opportunity to begin a new chapter in our lives. So what would be a good way to begin the New Year? As I reflect on what is truly important, I am reminded of two worthwhile goals to pursue this year – Devotion and Self-Purification. We should perform our duties keeping these in mind.
I would like to BEGIN the new year 2021 with glorification of the Supreme Sri Krishna upon whom rests everything. May all obstacles in the path of devotion, both external and internal, be lessons in the path of making spiritual progress and be overcome. Wherever the Lord takes me, I should be satisfied as it is His Divine Will and it is for my own benefit.
Happiness and contentment are also important. We have to live life to the fullest and cultivate joy. Let us enjoy the journey of life without worrying too much about the destination. Small steps in the right direction will lead us to our goal in due time.
Some time back, I read a book The Journey Within: Exploring the Path of Bhakti in which the inspirational Peace Prayer attributed to St. Francis of Assisi was mentioned. St. Francis was a venerated religious saint in the thirteenth century. This prayer in some ways reminds me of some of the prayers in the morning assembly at school. As a student, the hymns that we sang in unison before beginning classes remains forever etched in my mind. Looking back, I realize it was such a beautiful experience. We invariably started the day in a peaceful and positive way. And as I look back upon those times, it brings so much happiness. I thought it will be befitting to begin the New Year with the Peace Prayer. And to reflect on it from time to time.
This much-loved prayer reflects surrender and deep devotion to the Lord. It depicts a spirit of service to others, putting others before self. It gives us a message of LOVE and PEACE.
Peace Prayer of Saint Francis[i]
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
And 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
And it’s in pardoning that we are pardoned
And it’s in dying that we are born to Eternal Life
This post would be incomplete without a big Thank You to OM SWAMI JI for including me as part of his spiritual family, despite my shortcomings. 2020 was the year I joined os.me and Black Lotus – I consider myself so very fortunate. Happy 2021!!
[i] The Journey Within: Exploring the Path of Bhakti by Radhanath Swami, Pages 286-287
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