St. Patrick’s Prayer. Again and Again.

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Saint Patrick’s Breastplate, also known as The Deer’s Cry or The Lorica, is a traditional Celtic morning prayer of peace, protection, and power.  It is attributed to St. Patrick around the year 377, though exact authorship and date is unknown. It is “written as a hymn calling on Christ to surround the supplicant in all bodily directions and invokes God for protection against [all forms of evil.]”  A few verses of the longer, entire prayer are quite familiar to us today:

Christ be with me, Christ before me, Christ behind me, Christ within me, Christ beneath me, Christ above me, Christ on my right, Christ on my left, Christ where I lie, Christ where I sit, Christ where I arise, Christ in the heart of everyone who thinks of me, Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me, Christ in every eye that sees me, Christ in every ear that hears me.  

There is something powerful to repetition, friends.  In some traditions, its power might be expressed in a mantra.  Or, its power could be felt in a sung repetitions such a Gregorian or Hindu chant.  The power in repeating the Lord’s name in this prayer helps me quite a lot.

Prayerful repetition is calming, soothing, reassuring. 

And right now?  We could all use a little calm, a little reassurance.

Do you have just ONE minute?  Try this:

    • Read the St. Patrick’s prayer excerpt.  Once, twice, three times.  Whatever you got.  Just do it:
      • Christ be with me, Christ before me, Christ behind me, Christ within me, Christ beneath me, Christ above me, Christ on my right, Christ on my left, Christ where I lie, Christ where I sit, Christ where I arise, Christ in the heart of everyone who thinks of me, Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me, Christ in every eye that sees me, Christ in every ear that hears me.  
    • Got one minute more?  Print it out, and put it by your bathroom mirror or sink, or bedside table.

 

Do you have FIVE minutes?  Try this:

 

Do you have 15 minutes?  Try this:

    • Do #2 above and then …  🙂
    • Try this simple, powerful asana: Tedasana: Mountain Pose. 
    • Remove your shoes.  Grab a mat or not.  Maybe light a candle.

Begin at the front of a mat/rug/whatever with feet together, or hip distant apart.  (Feet parallel to the sides of the mat)

Starting at the base of your body, think of yourself as a strong, steady mountain.  You are grounded into the earth through your feet and strong legs as you are ever lifting toward the sky through your sternum and rib cage.

Now, work to:

— Tuck your tail bone under and pelvic bone up

— Strengthen your thighs

— Place your shoulders down and wide, and your sternum up and out to the sky

— Bring your chin parallel to the earth and lower your ribs down.

As you ease into tadasana, continue to calmly check in with your pose, working from your base (grounded feet) up through your legs and thighs; your tail bone and pelvic bowl; your shoulders and ribs; your sternum and your chin.  Slowly and  gently continue check in with your tedasana — ever more, ever gently grounding yourself into the earth below and expanding yourself into the sky above.

Blessings.  I’m breathing, repeating and praying with you.

Peace –

Pastor M.

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