Posts Tagged ‘shame’

 

The Dark Corners

Posted on: February 15th, 2014 by Alden No Comments

Creation_of_LightFear, sorrow and doubt cannot defeat the light of holiness, unless you let them. This prayer acknowledges difficult moments and emotions, offering the classic Jewish response to facing them with strength and dignity: Torah, tefilah (prayer) and mitzvot (acts of righteousness).

This piece is part of “Three Prayers,” in which three of my prayers are set to original choreography by Lin Batsheva Kahn of the Tikvah Company of Artists and original cello music by Desiree Miller of the Chicago Civic Orchestra. “Three Prayers” premieres in Jerusalem in June 2014 as part of an evening of dance and poetry by Miriam Engel’s Angela Dance Company. To listen to the music performed by Desiree, click on the triangle in the bar below. The text follows.

 

The Dark Corners
Fear lurks
In the dark corners of my heart,
Waiting to convince me
That love will fail.

Sorrow lurks
In the dark corners of my soul,
Waiting to convince me
That faith will fail.

Doubt lurks
In the dark corners of my mind,
Waiting to convince me
That wisdom will fail.

Rock of Jacob,
Teach me to shine
The light of mitzvot
Into the dark corners of my mind,
So that I face my fears with courage
Redeeming them with awe and wonder.

Song of Miriam,
Teach me to shine
The light of tefilot
Into the dark corners of my soul,
So that I face my sorrows with strength
Redeeming them with righteousness.

G-d of Old,
Teach me to shine
The light of Torah
Into the dark corners of my mind,
So that I face my doubts with honor
Redeeming them with holiness.

© 2014 Alden Solovy and tobendlight.com. All rights reserved.

Postscript: This prayer will appear in my forthcoming book, Prayers from the Heart of Darkness.Consider using this as a slichot meditation during the month of Elul. Here are links to prayers about specific challenging emotions, including “Doubt,” “Fear,” “Anger” and “Shame.”

For usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” For notices of new prayers, please subscribe. You can also connect on Facebook and Twitter. If you like this prayer, please post a link to Facebook, your blog or mention it in a tweet.

Photo Source: WikiMedia Commons

Doubt, Fear, Anger, Shame

Posted on: October 4th, 2011 by tobendlight No Comments

Can doubt, fear, anger or shame be blessings? Here are links to four prayers about troublesome emotions. They speak to the need to reclaim the gifts hidden in these feelings: the challenge to grow and change, the opportunity to harness them for healing. As we move toward repentance, prayer and righteousness on Yom Kippur, may we find ways to redeem our feelings, our experiences and our lives as blessings. Here are links to four prayers about facing these emotions:

Here’s a prayer about the witnessing the pain of others, called: “Witnessing: A Meditation.”

Click here for a prayers for the Yamim Noraim, listed by topics. Here’s a focused list of prayers for Elul, one of prayers for Rosh Hashana, another for Yom Kippur prayers and one more for Sukkot. And here’s a link to yizkor and memorial prayers.

For usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” For notices of new prayers, please subscribe. You can also connect on Facebook and Twitter. If you like this prayer, please post a link to Facebook, your blog or mention it in a tweet.

We Share the Same Pain

Posted on: November 9th, 2010 by tobendlight No Comments

This is an invitation, an invitation to men to bond as equals, as brothers, as friends, sharing our deepest pain and our deepest fear. It’s posted today to honor the men of the November 2010 New Warrior Training Adventure held by Chicago Community of The ManKind Project at Camp Ronora, Mich.

Please listen along as you read. (Click on the triangle in the bar below. The text follows.)

We Share the Same Pain
Brother,
You do not know me…
And you know me.
I do not know you…
And I know you.
We have travelled different roads,
But they are paths across the same landscape,
Trails across the same terrain.
Joy and anger,
Pride and shame,
Fear and love.
Our fathers and their fathers
Faced the journey of the heart alone,
Without the guidance of their brothers,
Without the wisdom of the generations.

Brother, we share the same legacy and
We share the same pain.
That is all I need to know
To love you today
For who you are and for who you can become.
Hurt, but not broken.
Still able to find the deep root of majesty within,
The gift of passion and power,
Radiance and joy,
Directed toward a life of service.
You know me.
I know you.
Let us share the challenge,
The journey,
And the victory.

© 2010 Alden Solovy and www.tobendlight.com. All rights reserved.

Postscript: Check out these prayers for men: “My Work Remains,” “For the Lost,” “We Share the Same Pain”and “My Heart Knows What It Needs,” as well as a list of other prayers for and about men.

Please use these prayers. See “Share the Prayer!” in the right hand column.

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Doubt

Posted on: May 22nd, 2010 by tobendlight No Comments

A friend asked me to write a prayer about doubt. I was stumped until, one morning after prayer and meditation, the notion of doubt as a Divine gift broke through. The result is a set of prayers about difficult emotions, including “Shame,” “Fear” and “Anger.” To listen along as you read, click on the triangle in the bar below. The entire text follows.

Doubt
G-d of ancient secrets,
G-d of unknown futures,
I’ve been on the mountain
And in the valley.
I’ve swum calm waters
And was tossed by a raging sea.
I’ve been a man / woman of perfect faith
And consumed by impenetrable doubt.
I live between moments of clarity and hours of confusion,
Between daylight and twilight.
I live between the heights and the depths,
Between the calm and the storm,
Between hesitation and trust.

Doubt is a gift.
Doubt is a journey.
Doubt is a blessing.

Holy One,
Creator of mysteries beyond my grasp,
Help me to see my doubts as teachers and guides
Leading me back to You,
Your people,
And Your word.
Let my doubt be the gateway to faith,
Just as confusion is the path to understanding,
As night is the doorway to sunlight.

Blessed are You, Redeemer of the lost,
Who created doubt so that we might discover faith.

© 2010 Alden Solovy and www.tobendlight.com. All rights reserved.

Postscript: This is part of a series of prayers about difficult emotions, including “Fear,” “Shame” and “Anger.”

For usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” For notices of new prayers, please subscribe. Connect with To Bend Light on Facebook and on Twitter.

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