Praying for Others

Lately I have taken on the practice of praying for others as part of my daily Buddhist religious routine. I write the names of individuals, for whom I am praying, in a little notebook, which I keep on my bed stand. The notebook contains the names of those who have died, who are suffering illnesses, or loss, or difficulties in life, people who have harmed me, people I have harmed, people who are challenging and generally anyone who comes to mind. The list contains people I know, people I do not know, people involved in tragedies, animals, and others.

The notebook resides on my bed stand because praying for others is one of the last practices I do before going to sleep. There is nothing elaborate of fancy about the practice of praying for others.  It is simply an opportunity to reflect on others’ suffering, to see their suffering as real, and offer a prayer, a thought, a desire, that they be freed of suffering and the causes of suffering.  For those who are close, it is a time to reflect on real and concrete ways I might alleviate their suffering.

The list changes over time as new sufferings arise and old one’s are resolved.  There is always suffering and beings who need our prayers, our thoughts, our compassion and concern. Often there is very little we can do for those who are suffering. But what little we can do, we should do. As Mother Theresa has famously said, “In this life we cannot do great things. We can only do small things with great love.”

Namo Amida Bu!

Peace, Paul

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2 Responses to “Praying for Others”

  1. Shantikara Acquaro Says:

    Namo Amida Bu!

  2. Robbin Says:

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