A Blessing Exercise

by Beth Richardson on December 29, 2013 · 10 comments

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By Emily Eiben

Begin by settling into a comfortable position in your chair. Take a moment to relax your shoulders and let the tension out of your forehead. Take 5 long, slow breaths in and out. Center your awareness on your breathing, and let yourself enjoy a moment of relaxation.

Let’s begin by offering ourselves a blessing. Create an image of yourself in your mind—you as you are now, or maybe you as a small child, and try to cultivate a soft, loving heart toward yourself. Extend grace and love to yourself. Now, imagine yourself cupped in God’s loving, tender hands. Let yourself rest in God’s hands for a moment. (Pause.)

Pray: May I experience God’s love.
May I experience God’s rest.
May I experience God’s peace. (Pause for 5 deep breaths.)

Now, extend the blessing to someone you love. Imagine your partner, a best friend, a sister or brother, or even a child or parent, someone who brings you deep feelings of love, tenderness, and care. Imagine this person in your mind’s eye. Open your heart to this person and extend love and grace toward them. Now, imagine this person cupped in God’s loving, tender hands. Let him or her rest in God’s hands for a moment. (Pause.)

Pray: May they experience God’s love.
May they experience God’s rest.
May they experience God’s peace. (Pause for 5 deep breaths.)

Now comes the hard part! Let us extend our blessing to someone you just don’t get along with. This is someone who causes tension, anger, or negative emotions when you interact with them. Imagine this person in your mind’s eye, and try to hold them gently in your heart, with feelings of benevolence and gentleness. If feelings of anger or tension arise, try to release these feelings to God, by just letting go and opening your heart to set these negative energies free to God’s care. Now, imagine this person cupped in God’s loving, tender hands. Let him or her rest in God’s hands for a moment. (Pause.)

Pray: May they experience God’s love.
May they experience God’s rest.
May they experience God’s peace. (Pause for 5 deep breaths.)

Finally, let us extend God’s blessing to all beings, everywhere. All that is, all that has ever been made, all that is and was and is to come: it is all held by God, sustained by God’s love, and blessed by God’s Spirit. Imagine a beautiful, blue-green earth in your mind, full of plants and animals and so many people, so many beings—and this whole world is in God’s upturned palm. The whole world rests in God.

Pray: May all beings everywhere experience God’s love.
May all beings everywhere experience God’s rest.
May all beings everywhere experience God’s peace.
(Pause for 10-15 deep breaths.)


Emily Eiben is a writer, editor, and translator from Ohio, living in Germany. She is working on her doctorate at the University of Munich (Germany), comparing the Buddhist and Christian ideas of compassion.

Photo Credit: © Nancy Terzian.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Stephan Hein January 8, 2014 at 7:13 am

Beautiful! A beautiful meditation. It resolves many edges & corners of life per se. It is very peace-giving, “being” in the meditation. Thank you for sharing, Blessings, Swami DevaSteph alias Stephan

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LoriAngela January 8, 2014 at 11:05 am

This is a great way to enter into praying for others. It is doable, even for beginners. Thanks.

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