Here, I wish to share with you two incredibly loving prayers for Peace within, with a thought that it may resonate with someone it is meant to.
Two years back, few days after Christmas, a friend handed over this colourfully handwritten note (featured image and below) to me, as a gesture in return of a Christmas present, I had offered to him.
Titled – St. Francis Peace Prayer, it read:
Lord, make me an instrument of Thy 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.
How beautiful! Powerful! Life is full of choices about how we respond to the whims and fancies of our own mind. Do we most of the time choose to offer ourselves in all the fullness we could or endlessly just long to be offered? It could make all the difference.
Incidentally, then I was going through a weird spell of restlessness, though I no longer remember what exactly had triggered it. In those moments of emotional chaos, this Peace Prayer solaced the spirit, lifted me up and helped me regain my footing. I said my gratitude to this Saint of Peace and later thanked my friend dearly.
Well, when it comes to Inner Peace, the good news is that ‘we can be in control of it’. Believe it or not, this itself was a grand revelation to me which came through this Guided Meditation by Swamiji, which is the second Peace Prayer I wished to share here. Many of us might be familiar with this track, which is now also there on the Black Lotus App.
Some lines from the meditation, in Swamiji’s voice, goes like:
.…I understand that my inner peace and calmness is in my control. There are always going to be circumstances beyond my control. There are always going to be difficult people in my life….I am committed to my inner peace….people will hurt me, misunderstand me, I will not get everything in my life. That is okay. I am at peace. I am happy; wherever I am at the moment……I thank the Universe for everything I have been blessed with…..
When I first listened to these (seemingly simple) words, I thought to myself – “C’mon, why did not anybody tell me this earlier? How am I leading my life, without even knowing these basics?”
It is not like, years later, now I have learnt and imbibed every bit of life lessons that Swamiji has lovingly been passing on to us through His discourses, books, blogs and His myriad ways. Rather I falter all the time, all the more. I am aware that the deep-rooted stubborn tendencies of my mind very often block my receptiveness to all His Grace that is working for me.
It is also not that I claim to maintain my inner peace at all times, with or without efforts. There is just a growing understanding that it is okay to sometimes be flooded with happiness and sometimes feel down and out. On the outside, everything is passing, in ups and downs anyways. But deep within, there is a sacred place, which is untouched, unburdened by every experience, no matter what; where there is all silence, stillness, and wholeness; perhaps an end in itself.
It is okay if being there is not so easy now. It is a matter of time. In moments of utmost despair, Peace Prayers, born out of infinite and unconditional Love, can carry us closer to that sacred place within. On this way, no matter how difficult, but there is always a beautiful possibility. The possibility to choose happiness over misery, kindness over resentment, love over fear, gratitude over complains. This is the place it seems where Nature heals you, opens your heart and who knows, possibly even heals through you.
Inner Peace matters.
P.S. To you, sweet souls, you inspire me with your stories and your loving presence here. Such connection is magical and incredibly powerful, as it unfolds before me, every moment I spend here. It helps me open my heart to you, even if just a tad bit at a time.
I may or may not realize this always, out of ignorance, but everything that is working for me, it is all His Grace alone. And everything that is not, is my own doing or not doing.