Wednesday, September 27, 2006

The Kingdom of Heaven.

"Heaven," he went on, "lies hidden within all of us- here it lies hidden in me now, and if I will it, it will be revealed to me tomorrow and for all time."--The Brothers Karamazov, Fyodor Dostoevsky.

Each morning as I leave my apartment for work, I pass a man reading from the Koran while he sits on the third floor steps. He is praying the Fajr prayer, or the morning prayer. Even though I am of a different desert religion, I feel a special sense of reverence as I pass by him. Always, I tiptoe by, and try to go through without disturbing him from his prayer.

I have always had a great respect for those people who wake up early to pray or meditate and I admire their ability to do this before the day begins.

I don't seem to have this ability to be meditative for very long--prayer is not my strong point. Because of this seeming lack though, I take comfort in what Mother Teresa said, "If you give your life as a prayer you intensify the prayer beyond all measure." Maybe it's just because I'm young and impatient, but I feel that given the choice to be on my knees in prayer or on my feet in life---I'll choose the latter 9 times of 10.

My grandfather was sort of a hybrid of the two. He was one of the hardest working people I have ever met--a construction foreman and master carpenter until age 80. But I remember him outside at 4 am meditating or praying--starting his hard day off with a softness that made him seem invinceable to me.

So I strive for this life of prayer, whether it be a set aside time to myself, or a walk from the subway down 34th street all the while praising and thanking for this most blessed life.


Blogger Tina said...

What a lovely post. I agree that the act of praying doesn't need necessarily to be done while on one's knees in a completely introspective posture. Just to spend some time thinking about how blessed we are is prayer enough.

7:13 PM  

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