Multi-Faith Prayers for Peace

 

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From the Peace Abbey

The following twelve prayers for peace are the same ones that the leaders of the world’s religions said in Assisi,

Italy, in 1986, at the invitation of Pope John Paul II. They are the prayers that the young adults at the

Life Experience School in Sherborn, MA, have said each morning since 1986, when Lewis Randa, the Director

of the School, brought them back from Assisi. Subsequently, these prayers have been promoted through the Peace

Abbey, a multi-faith retreat center, chapel and shrine dedicated to peacemaking and attached to the School. The

Peace Abbey provides a 13-bead cord (like a “rosary”) as a reminder to say these twelve prayers and add one’s own

(13th) prayer for peace. The medallion at the end of these prayer beads is an image of either Gandhi or

Francis of Assisi.


To learn more about the peacemaking programs of the Peace Abbey and monuments erected there,

Contact  www.peaceabbey.org


 

From the World Peace Village

Six of these prayers for peace are also featured in the “World Peace Village,” a unique experience of six shrines

inspired by the major spiritual traditions of the world: Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, Native American

and Buddhism. Each shrine offers a path to these ancient ways of wisdom, and provides a prayer practice

through a ritual integral to the tradition. The World Peace Village provides the “pilgrim” with a variety of

moments to experience the presence and the spirit of peace. Once we hold these in our hearts, every breath

becomes a prayer and every step brings us closer to peace.

 

The Peace Village is located at 330 Ravenswood Avenue, Menlo Park, CA, and provides a miniature set

of the six shrines as well as a traveling exhibit to include at conferences focused on peacemaking

from a faith perspective.

 

To learn more about the programs of the Peace Village, contact www.worldpeacevillage.org

 

Other Key Organizations Promoting Interfaith Efforts for Peace

The Fellowship of Reconciliation  www.forusa.org Since 1915, FOR has carried on programs and educational

projects concerned with domestic and international peace and justice, nonviolent alternatives to conflict, and

the rights of conscience. As an interfaith organization, it has Muslim, Jewish, and a number of Christian

“Peace Fellowships” and is a part of the International FOR, which has affiliates in over 40 countries.


Religions for Peace USA
www.RFPUSA.org is a coalition comprised of leaders from over sixty U.S.

religious communities. RFP-USA operates on the conviction that multi-religious cooperation and common action

can be powerful instruments in the quest for constructive social development, justice, reconciliation, and peace.


Note: * indicates a prayer that is the same in the “Peace Seeds” collection of the Peace Abbey and the “Welcome

to the Peace Village – There Can Be Peace” booklet of the World Peace Village.

 

The Hindu Prayer for Peace *

“O God, lead us from the unreal to the Real.
O God, lead us from darkness to light. O God, lead us from death to immortality. Shanti, Shanti, Shanti (Peace, peace, peace) unto all. O Lord God Almighty, may there be peace in celestial regions. May there be peace .on earth. May the waters be appeasing. may herbs be wholesome, and may trees and plants bring peace to all. May all beneficent beings bring peace to us. May all things be a source of peace to us. And may your peace itself, bestow peace on all, And may that peace come to me also.”

Jewish Prayer for Peace *

“Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, that we may walk the paths of the Most High. And we shall beat our swords into plowshares, And our spears into pruning hooks. Nations shall not lift up sword towards nation – Neither shall they learn war anymore. And none shall be afraid. For the mouth of the Lord of Hosts has spoken.”

Muslim Prayer for Peace *

“In the name of Allah, the beneficent, the merciful, Praise to the Lord of the Universe who has created us And made us into tribes and nations; That we may know each other, Not that we may despise each other. If the enemy inclines toward peace, Do you also incline toward peace. And trust God, for the Lord is the one that hears and knows all things. And the servants of God, most gracious are those who walk on the Earth in humility, And when we address them, we say ‘PEACE.’”

 

Christian Peace for Peace *

“Lord, make me an instrument of your peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love; Where there is injury, pardon; Where there is doubt, faith; Where there is despair, hope; Where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek To be consoled as to console, To be understand as to understand, To be loved as to love. For it is giving that we receive. It is in pardoning that we are pardoned. It is in dying to self that we are born to eternal life. Amen.”

Native American Prayer for Peace*
“O Great Spirit of our Ancestors, I raise my pipe to you, To your messengers the four winds, And to Mother Earth who provides for your children. Give us the wisdom to teach our children To love, to respect, and to be kind to each other So that they may grow with the peace of mind. Let us learn to share all good things That you provide for us on this earth.”

 

Buddhist Prayer for Peace

(from the World Peace Village)

“May our brothers and sisters, human and non human beings, Born in every form sharing in the web of life Be safe, be happy and be free. May true peace of the heart Bring peace among all peoples of the world. May all beings everywhere find joy and blessings. May I and all beings awaken together. “
(Source: Jack Kornfield)

 

Buddhist Prayer for Peace

(from the Peace Abbey)

“May all beings everywhere plagued with sufferings of body and mind quickly be freed from their illnesses. May those frightened cease to be afraid, and may those bound be free. May the powerless find power, and may people think of befriending one another. May those who find themselves in trackless, fearful wildernesses – the children, the aged, the unprotected – be guarded by beneficent celestials, and may they swiftly attain Buddhahood.”

 

The Jain Prayer for Peace

(from the Peace Abbey)

“Peace and Universal Love is the essence of the Gospel Preached by all the Enlightened Ones. The Lord has preached that equanimity is the Dharma. Forgive do I creatures all, and let all creatures forgive me. Unto all have I amity, and unto none enmity. Know that violence is the root cause of all miseries in the world. Violence, in fact, is the knot of bondage. ‘Do not injure any living being.’ This is the eternal, perennial, and unalterable way of spiritual life. A weapon, howsoever powerful it may be, Can always be superseded by a superior one; But no weapon can, however, be superior to nonviolence and love.”

 

The Sikh Prayer for Peace

(from the Peace Abbey)

“God adjudges us according to our deeds, not the coat that we wear: that Truth is above everything, but higher still is truthful living. Know that we attain God when we love, and only that victory endures, in consequence of which no one is defeated.”


 

The Bahai Prayer for Peace

(from the Peace Abbey)

Be generous in prosperity, and thankful in adversity. Be fair in your judgment, and guarded in your speech. Be a lamp to those who walk in darkness, and a home to the stranger. Be eyes to the blind, and a guiding light to the feet of the erring. Be a breath of life to the body of humankind, a dew to the soil of the human heart, and a fruit on the tree of humility.”

 

The Shinto Prayer for Peace

(from the Peace Abbey)

“Although the people living across the ocean surrounding us, I believe, are all our brothers and sisters, why are there constant troubles in this world? Why do winds and waves rise in the ocean surrounding us? I only earnestly wish, that the wind will soon puff away all the clouds which are hanging over the tops of the mountains.”


 

 

The Native African Prayer for

Peace

(from the Peace Abbey)

“Almighty God, the Great Thumb we cannot evade to tie any knot; the Roaring Thunder that splits mighty trees; the all-seeing Lord up on high who sees even the footprints of an antelope on a rock mass here on Earth. You are the one who does not hesitate to respond to our call. You are the cornerstone of peace.”

 

The Zoroasterian Prayer for Peace

(from the Peace Abbey)

“We pray to God to eradicate all the misery in the world: that understanding triumph over ignorance, that generosity triumph over indifference, that trust triumph over contempt, and that truth triumph over falsehood.”

 

Muslim, Jewish, Christian Prayer for Peace

“O God, you are the source of life and peace. Praised be your name forever. We know it is you who turn our minds to thoughts of peace. Hear our prayer in this time of war.


“Your power changes hearts. Muslims, Christians, and Jews remember, and profoundly affirm, that they are followers of the one God, children of Abraham, brother and sisters. Enemies begin to speak to one another; those who were estranged join hands in friendship. Nations seek the way of peace together.


“Strengthen our resolve to give witness to these truths by the way we live. Give to us: understanding that puts an end to strife; mercy that quenches hatred, and forgiveness that overcomes vengeance. Empower all people to live in your law of love.”

 

(From Pax Christi USA and reprinted with their permission. Multiple copies of this prayer are available from Pax Christi USA at www.paxchristiusa.org or 814-453-4955.