Handout 1: Prayer for Compassion
Spirit of Life, I give thanks for the opportunities to love
that present themselves in the turmoil of life.
When the light catches the tears in another's eyes,
where hands are held and there are moments without
words, let us be present then, and alive to the possibility
of changing. Let us seek to make another's wellbeing
the object of our concern. Let us seek to be
present to another's pain, to bathe another's wounds,
hear another's sadness, celebrate another's success, and
allow the other's story to change our own.
Let us stand in the morning on damp grass, hear the
syllables of bird song, and fill up on sweet air that rolls
over oceans and continents. Let us look up at the stars
and the planets that fill the night sky with majesty. Let
us witness the first fresh buds of spring amid the brown
sticks of winter. And for all this, let us be grateful.
Let us not defend ourselves against the discomfort of
unruly emotion, nor seek to close down our hearts for
fear a new love will come to shake our foundations. Let
us instead be open to discovering a new way of seeing an
old problem, or appreciating the perfection of a seashell,
or the possibility of friendship. For in giving ourselves to
what we do not understand, we receive life's blessings, and
in taking care of another, we are cared for.