March 25, 2014

   “Create in me, a clean heart, O Lord!”

 I sang the line with gusto at our Ash Wednesday mass (too much gusto, my daughter would say) and prayed it with sincerity.  And then I thought, what exactly does that mean?  Am I to scrub my heart clean, and if so, how?  Is a clean heart akin to a “pure” heart, which Jesus suggested, in the Beatitudes, was a prerequisite for those who see God?

    I’d been reading Prayers of the Cosmos by Neil Douglas-Klotz.  In it he recovers Jesus’ original language, Aramaic, a language so rich in interpretation I can’t help but think we’ve been missing out.  

    Here are a couple of possible translations of the Aramaic that have certainly broadened my understanding of “Blessed are the pure of heart, for they shall see God”:


    “Aligned with the One are those whose lives radiate from a core of love; they shall

    see God everywhere,”


    “Resisting corruption are those whose natural reaction is sympathy and friendship;  

    they shall be illuminated by a flash of lightning:  the Source of the soul’s movement

    in all creatures.”


  Love – Sympathy – Friendship.   Now, those are words my “heart” can grasp and move toward making its own!

“Create in me, O Holy One, a loving, sympathetic and friendly heart.  Then I will see You everywhere.”

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