Simply Pray: A Modern Spiritual Practice to Deepen Your Life

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Skinner House Books, 2005 - 140 pages
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Offers fresh answers to the age-old question, "Why pray?" Building from the shared prayer forms of many faiths, Wikstrom offers a modern prayer bead practice that you can make your own. In addition, the author includes practical suggestions for composing prayers to use with the beads. Simply Pray is an excellent guide for anyone seeking a unique spiritual practice that is deeply rooted in the world's great religions.

Wikstrom identifies and defines the four major types of prayer that are practiced by all the world's major religions:

* Naming the many ways in which the holy is present in daily life and the wider world
* Knowing the self introspectively --both in its strengths and weaknesses
* Listening to the "voice of quiet stillness" that resides in each individual
* Loving by reaching out to the world

Simply Pray uses these four core prayer types to develop a modern worship practice, using prayer beads as a frame of reference. The book offers illustrated prayer-bead techniques that can be used directly or customized for personal use.

There are also helpful tips on how to make prayer a part of your daily routine, as well as how to to make prayer beads and the benefits of using them:

* Prayer beads serve as a focus for meditation. Much more than a mnemonic aid to prayer, prayer beads engage the senses to create a state of mindfulness.
* Prayer beads are mobile altars. Simply touching the beads as they rest in a pocket, briefcase, or purse brings a prayerful presence to mundane moments.
* Prayer beads serve as reminders of prayer and help keep track of prayers.

Simply Pray is for anyone who is seeking a modern prayer practice that is deeply rooted in world tradition.

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About the author (2005)

Erik Walker Wikstrom is the pastor of the First Universalist Church in Yarmouth, Maine. He has taken advanced training in spiritual guidance from the Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation and has studied Zen Buddhism for more than 20 years. Wikstrom is also the author of Teacher, Guide, Companion: Rediscovering Jesus in a Secular World.

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