All over the world, people make objects to hold and send their prayers. There are special ceremonies found in ancient cultures and practiced today, that involve the construction of ‘holders and senders’ of prayers from natural materials.
Prayer carriers have many names such as Bahos (Hopi), Lung ta (Tibet), Prayer Flags, Ikupasuy or Prayer Sticks, Prayer Bundles, Prayer Trees and so on.
|Prayer Ties are the oldest and simplest
way to pray using Tobacco. Tobacco Prayer Ties are made by using pieces
of cloth that are approximately 4 inches x 4 inches. Traditionally the cloth
is either white, red, or yellow. Avoid using black cloth.
When the cloth is cut into squares, it is ready for our prayers. The prayer energy is offered into the Tobacco by holding the tobacco in our hands and thinking good thoughts, or healing thoughts, or thoughts of forgiveness, or whatever our reason for offering the prayers may be. All must be done with the very best intentions.
The Elders say to hold the Tobacco in our left hand which is the hand closer to our heart. When the prayers have been offered into the Tobacco, and the Tobacco is placed in the centre of the square cloth.
We draw up the four corners of the cloth forming a small pouch, the pouch is tied with string or yarn. Leave several inches of string available so that the Prayer Ties can be tied to a branch of a tree, or strung together if preferred.
We then smudge the Prayer Ties and offer them to Creator, invoking the power of the elements. Usually our Prayer Ties are released into the universe through burning (fire). However, the Prayer Ties can be given to a river (water), hung in a bush in the wilds (air), or even buried (earth). We should use whichever element we feel is most appropriate for our prayers.
The number of Prayer Ties we make demonstrates the depths of our desire, and adds power to our prayer. Sometimes thousands of Prayer Ties are made, although hundreds of Prayer Ties is more typical. Occasionally only a few dozen Prayer Ties might be made.
Whatever the number, the Prayer Ties hold our heart's desires and, as the Prayer Ties are released, they carry our desires to Creator.
The Tibetan word for Prayer Flag is 'Lung ta', meaning, 'wind Horse'. When wind blows; expressing the quality and nature of mind, the sacred Prayer Flag flaps in the breeze.
The prayers contained on the Prayer Flag are carried out
to all beings as a blessing. Prayer Flags either motionless or flying
in the breeze, are a reminder of the call to pray for the welfare of all
beings, to work to bring about virtue, goodness, healing and happiness
in the world. The traditional five colours represent the five Buddha families
and five elements.
Prayer Flags are meant to be placed outdoors by stringing or attaching them to the edge of a roof, between poles, on temples, between tress, and other places. By doing so it gives the wind the opportunity to move the Prayer Flags.
The wind is considered an expression of our minds, and the mental energy which activates them. Thus, the wind like the mind, carries the blessings throughout the countryside, and across the world.
Prayer Sticks, which are sometimes known as 'Ikupasuy', are the vehicle through which men communicate with the gods. The carving on the 'Ikupasuy' is also identified as 'the worshipper'. Often misidentified in early literature as a 'moustache stick' or 'moustache lifter', the 'Ikupasuy' carried a man's prayer's to the gods. Its artful and creative manufacture was a major concern; hours of thought and energy went into making a Prayer Stick.
Prayer Sticks with feathers attached as offerings to the spirits, were largely used by the Pueblo Indians. Pueblo Prayer Sticks are usually made of cottonwood about seven inches long, and vary in shape, colour, and the feather attached, according to the nature of the petitions, and the person praying.
The Prayer Stick is intended to represent the god to whom the feathers convey the prayers that are breathed into the spirit of the plumes. Green and blue Prayer Sticks are often found in the Pueblo graves and especially in the ceremonial graves of Arizona.
The Hopi Indians had special Prayer Sticks to which a small bag of sacred meal was attached.
Our first step in creating a Prayer Stick is to find a stick or branch that wishes to serve as a Prayer Stick. Blessings and thanks may be made to the Tree Spirits for offering themselves as a carrier of our prayers.
The Prayer Sticks are fairly straight forward to make, the craftsmanship in the carving or the detail in the decoration are unimportant in themselves, it is the intent and the energy that you infuse into the prayer sticks with your commitment and dedication that will make a difference.
The prayer energy is offered into the creation of our Prayer Sticks by thinking good thoughts, or healing thoughts, or thoughts of forgiveness, or whatever our reason for offering the prayers may be. All must be done with the very best intentions.
We smudge the Prayer Sticks and offer them to Creator, invoking the power of the elements. Usually our prayers are released into the universe through the prayer sticks being stood up in the ground with the stick exposed to nature (air). However, the ties can be given to a river (water), burnt (fire). or even buried (earth). We should use whichever element we feel is most appropriate for our prayers.
A Prayer Bundle will usually consist of a number of sticks of equal length. To our Prayer Bundle we may add offerings as we feel are appropriate, and we may even add a written prayer, or request if we desire. We tie the bundle with ribbon, twine or even vines depending upon the nature of the prayer or request.
Our first step in creating a Prayer Bundle is to find sticks or branches of equal length that wish to serve in a Prayer Bundle. We may find our sticks separately over a period of time, or conveniently in one place 'waiting for us'. Blessings and thanks may be made to the Tree Spirits for offering themselves as a carrier of our prayers.
The prayer energy is offered into the creation of our Prayer Bundle by thinking good thoughts, or healing thoughts, or thoughts of forgiveness, or whatever our reason for offering the prayers may be. All must be done with the very best intentions.
We then smudge our Prayer Bundle and offer it to Creator, invoking the power of the elements. Usually our prayer bundle is released into the universe through being given to a river (water). However, the Prayer Bundle can be hung in a bush in the wilds (air), burnt (fire), or even buried (earth). We should use whichever element we feel is most appropriate for our prayers.
|Prayer Trees can be used for many
purposes. A Prayer Tree may be constructed by a prayer circle, or prayer
group sharing the same intention or prayer request. A group Prayer Tree
can be constructed, for individuals to attach their own individual prayers.
An individual Prayer Tree may be constructed for the use of an individual.
Our first step in creating a Prayer Tree is to find a large stick or a heavy branch with many 'arms', that will serve as the Tree. Remember, this one branch or stick comes from a Parent Tree, and represents all Trees; and it also represents the eternal Tree of Life.
If working with a group or a prayer circle, up to five people will go out searching for a suitable branch and bring it back for the whole Circle. Blessings and thanks may be made to the Tree Spirits for offering themselves as a carrier of our prayers.
Our Prayer Tree will 'tell us' where it wants to be 'planted'. As we walk with the Prayer Tree, we will feel where it is right to plant our Prayer Tree. We will then dig a deep hole and plant the tree, a prayer asking the earth to accept our Prayer Tree may be said at this point, if appropriate.
Rocks may be placed around the bottom of the prayer tree to ensure stability, because Prayer Trees will often be placed near mountain tops or oceans, where high winds may be prevalent.
Prayers for the Prayer Tree may be made using yarn or ribbons of specific colours each with its own meaning, feathers, paper for writing prayers, or personal objects of meaning related to the prayer, or as an offering. Anything can be placed on a Prayer Tree. The energy and the intention that we transfer to our prayers as we make them and attach our prayers to our Prayer Tree, are the most important component in constructing our Prayer Tree.
The prayer energy is offered into the creation of our Prayers and offerings by thinking good thoughts, or healing thoughts, or thoughts of forgiveness, or whatever our reason for offering the prayers may be. All must be done with the very best intentions.
Our prayers may be attached to the Prayer Tree during a period of deep solitary thought and contemplation. Alternatively, especially if we are participating in a Prayer Circle, the attachment of the prayers may involve a solemn service. However, it is more likely that our prayer circle will use a traditional native, or Wiccan ceremony that calls for much celebration, including singing, and dancing and the beating of drums.
Unlike Prayer Bundles, Prayer Sticks and the like, Prayer Trees are usually maintained for a period of time, perhaps several years or a lifetime. Prayer trees are ever changing, the elements will carry some prayers and offerings away over time.
New prayers and offerings will be added as the need arises for individuals, or at pre-determined meeting times for groups and prayer circles.
|A Prayer Bowl is used to listen
to our prayers, wishes, and thoughts, and carry them into the universe.
Prayer Bowls can also be used to make any room more spiritual, without causing
to much attention.
Prayer Bowls are good for the workplace, because to co-workers, it is just a decoration, and for us, it is a magical tool.
A Prayer Bowl is a fairly simple object to make. We take a small bowl that we like, and add some objects that have meaning or that we are drawn to include such as a feather, some crystals or stones, shells, coins, photos, seed pods and even some dirt. Whatever we are drawn to include.
We may choose items for our prayer bowl without a conscious reason, or we may choose to select our items for a specific purpose. For example; The feather may have meaning something to us, perhaps a feather from our power animal, or an animal whose qualities we admire. A feather can also be used to represent the air and spirit elements. Crystals can be chosen based upon the their spiritual of healing properties which may be needed. Crystals can also represents the earth and fire elements.
Specific shells may be chosen for their properties, or may represent the water and spirit elements. Seeds pods may carry the properties of their parent plant or maybe used to represent the earth and spirit elements. Coins may be used to represent abundance, and photos may be of loved one in need of healing. The possible uses of our Prayer Bowl are almost unlimited.
If we choose to include dirt in our Prayer Bowl, it is practical to place the dirt into our Prayer Bowl first, followed by the crystals or stones and so on. However, if we have created a 'Healing Prayer Bowl', we may place a photograph of the person we wish to heal beneath a crystal of stone which carries the appropriate healing energies needed.
The prayer energy is offered into the creation of our Prayer Bowl and offerings by thinking good thoughts, or healing thoughts, or thoughts of forgiveness, or whatever our reason for offering the prayers may be. All must be done with the very best intentions.
After we have established our Prayer Bowl, we need to empower our Prayer Bowl to listen to our prayers. In a dim light room, we light a candle, and gaze into the flame. As the flame burns our prayer energy is carried in to the universe.
After our Prayer Bowl is empowered, we place our Prayer Bowl in an appropriate place. We may place our Prayer Bowl near a window to expose our Prayer Bowl to the elements. However, the most important thing is to place our Prayer Bowl wherever feels 'right'.
|Prayer or Wish Boxes are a very
old tradition that is still be used today. All that we need to do, is gather
any and all items that we associate with our prayer or wish, place them
inside a box, and secure our Prayer or Wish Box with a silver ribbon.
We should make sure that we place something silver inside our Prayer or Wish Box, and light silver candles when saying our prayer or doing our wish spell. Our silver ribbon around the box will help bind our spell.
Silver used in magick represents the Full Moon. When the Moon is full, she makes our magick the strongest. Silver is also the colour of intuitive visions and can assist in bringing out our magickal potential.
We gather all of the items we have found for our prayer of Wish Box and lay them out in front of us. We meditate on what we pray or wish for. When we feel ready, we light our silver candle. We centre ourselves and focus on our intent.
We state our prayer or wish clearly, and place each item, one at a time into our Prayer or Wish Box. Once we have placed all of our items into our Prayer or Wish Box, we close our Prayer or Wish Box and bind it with our silver ribbon.
The prayer energy is offered into the creation of our Prayer Box and offerings by thinking good thoughts, or healing thoughts, or thoughts of forgiveness, or whatever our reason for offering the prayers may be. All must be done with the very best intentions.
We will need to find a safe place to keep our Prayer or Wish Box. We should not touch our Prayer or Wish Box again until our prayer has been answered, or our wish has come to life.
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