Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Lord and Master of my life

The prayer of Mor/Mar Ephrem, the deacon of Edesse (4th c), famous hymnograph and liturgist may have not been written by the author of the "madroshe - commentary poetry". Thus we only have access to the Greek version and Saint Ephrem only wrote in Syriac (Aramaic). His prayer is not in use in the Semitic Syrian Orthodox/Catholic and Ancient Nestorian/Assyrian-Chaldean Churches of the East. Instead, they have a wonderful supplication for confession called "hussaya-hussoyo" (prayer of supplication for mercy).

IT SHOULD BE NOTED that the prayer, just as the Prayer of the Lord, is deeply rooted in the Jewish and rabbinical tradition and, as the Our Father prayer, it could be said both by Jews and Christians alike. It is important to mention without exaggerating this special connection because it shows that the prayer is most ancient.

Sloth, vain gossip, denunciation, one-side accusation and judgment are linked there with the spiritual disease of apathy (akedia) which is much more than simple spleen or depressive stand, _ it is indeed a spiritual discomfort that always tried to accuse the others except ourselves in our own responsibility in the Face of God. It calls to pardon, but it requires much more: "give me not to judge my brother (evidently also "sisters"). Judgmental attitudes reign everywhere; from soap television series, media false statements and information, absence of the respect to consider people as innocent before it is proven that they committed misdeeds are our daily "bread and nonsense".

Late Olivier Clement and many thinkers and theologians as also psycho-analysts have shown that human souls often search, with real despair and hectic uncontrolled reflection and envy, to hate some enemy, some "aliens". This allows to mirror some personal hidden questioning and self-hate, immaturity and lack of courage. God allows to erase hate and open the gates of mutual understanding and cooperation. This also lines with St. Paul's preaching for the unity among the members of the community, One Body and One Vineyard. The challenge is proposed as a reachable goal in the course of Great Lent, as also before Pesach and the liberation from personal and collective serfdom, bondage.

[Greek] Κύριε καὶ Δέσποτα τῆς ζωῆς μου, πνεῦμα ἀργίας, περιεργίας, φιλαρχίας, καὶ ἀργολογίας μή μοι δῷς. Πνεῦμα δὲ σωφροσύνης, ταπεινοφροσύνης, ὑπομονῆς, καὶ ἀγάπης χάρισαί μοι τῷ σῷ δούλῳ.
Ναί, Κύριε Βασιλεῦ, δώρησαι μοι τοῦ ὁρᾶν τὰ ἐμὰ πταίσματα, καὶ μὴ κατακρίνειν τὸν ἀδελφόν μου, ὅτι εὐλογητὸς εἶ, εἰς τοὺς αἰῶνας τῶν αἰώνων. Ἀμήν.

[Slavonic] Господи и владыко живота моегω, духъ оунынїѧ, небрежεнїѧ, любоначалїѧ и празднословїѧ ѿжεни ѿ мεнε. Духъ же цѣломѹдрїѧ, смиреномѹдрїѧ, терпѣнїѧ и любве, дарѹй ми рабѹ твоемѹ. Ей Господи Царю, даждь ми зрѣти моѧ согрѣшенїѧ, и не ωсуждати брата моегω, якω благословенъ еси во вѣки вѣковъ. Аминь

[English] O Lord and Master of my life, give me not the spirit of sloth, idle curiosity/meddling, lust for power and idle talk.But grant unto me, Thy servant, a spirit of chastity/integrity, humility, patience and love. Yes, O Lord and King, grant me to see mine own faults and not to judge my brother. For blessed art Thou unto the ages of ages. Amen.

[Ukrainian] Господи і Владико життя мого, дух млявости, недбайливости, владолюбства й пустослів’я віджени від мене. Дух же доброчесности і смиренномудрія, терпіння й любови даруй мені, недостойному рабові Твоєму. Так, Господи Царю, дай мені зріти мої прогрішення і не осуджувати брата мого, бо Ти благословен єси на віки віків. Амінь.
Marc Chagall's painting: Abraham intercedes for Sodom in the presence of the angels;

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