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Nurture The Light

Practice

Ingram Publishing/Thinkstock

3 ways to nurture our lights within .

It’s so tempting, in these difficult times, to take the low road. To pick up a bat against those wielding weapons. To use hateful language against those spewing hateful words. But the opposite of darkness is light, not more darkness. For this week’s Healthy Habit, let’s think about ways to nurture our lights within, so that we are able to, as Rumi says, in The Essential Rumi, “Be a lamp, or a lifeboat, or a ladder. Help someone’s soul heal. Walk out of your house like a shepherd.”

Meditate on a Candle

In a discussion on the role of candles in the Catholic religion, the website Awaken To Prayer had this lovely thought: “Light is pure; it penetrates darkness; it moves with incredible velocity; it nourishes life; it illumines all that comes under its influence.” As you spend time with a candle, do a gut-check: Am I living in a way that is moving against darkness? If so, how is that being manifested? How can my intentions become more pure and be expressed that way?  

Pray

Select a prayer that literally mentions light. For example, this is Muhammad’s Prayer of Light. The source is Xavier.edu, which provides prayers from all faith traditions.

“O God, give me light in my heart
and light in my tongue
and light in my hearing
and light in my sight
and light in my feeling
and light in all body
and light before me
and light behind me.

Give me, I pray Thee,
Light on my right hand
And light on my left hand
And light above me
And light beneath me,

O Lord, Increase light within me
And give me light
And illuminate me.” 

Chant  

According to the American Institute of Vedic Studies, the mantra to the supreme light is the Param Jyoti mantra, which it spells phonetically as Om Hreem Hamsa So Ham Swaha. “This mantra brings us into the Divine or inner light and causes it to resonate in our body, breath, speech and mind.” The institute writes that Om is the universal sound; Hreem/Hrim is a mantra of the spiritual heart; Hamsa is the mantra of the liberated soul; So Ham means “I am He”, referring to the Supreme Being. Swaha indicates consecration into the light. 

 


Kathryn Drury Wagner

Kathryn Drury Wagner is a writer and editor based in Los Angeles. She is the author of Hawaii’s Strangest, Ickiest, Wildest Book Ever!, a science and natural history “gross out” for young readers.  


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