Thursday, July 8, 2010

Prayer

Last night I was working on my sermon for this weekend. It revolves around developing your own spiritual practice. I wanted to give some examples on ways to bring this into your life and suggested prayer. This got me thinking about all the prayers I know "by heart." Thanks to my Catholic upbringing, I can reflexively say the Our Father and Hail Mary. With some help I can say the Apostle's Creed and, on a small scale, know several dinner graces. When I think of Catholic prayers, I think of these. I know prayer's don't have to follow any pre-described plan and are often free flowing, but it got me thinking, what is a UU prayer? We quote lots of poets and wise people, but what would be a traditional UU prayer? What could I say when I just need to focus my mind and enjoy the flow of the words? I think I will again be demonstrating my conservative UU nature by wishing that we had some sanctioned prayers - ones that our children begin to memorize at an early age and that will stay with them through adulthood. Our diverse nature will probably prevent this from happening, but are we missing out? I know many bristle at the thought of losing our congregational nature, but why not make a few touch points that connect us all together? Sometimes I wish we could just push our need to be so open and individualistic aside and work together to make this religion more cohesive and unifying.

1 comment:

Bridgett said...

There is a place for both of those kinds of prayer. And I am woefully uneducated about UU and what it draws from for its spiritual guidance (do you use the old or new testament at all?), but something from the psalms might be worth memorizing--not like an entire psalm, but just a stanza?