Monday, July 10, 2006

prayed for/prayed against?

After meeting on Sunday I looked out in the parking lot and was surprised to see a circle of a dozen or so people all facing the meeting house with their palms to the sky seemingly praying.

One person had a bowl in which something was burning-- it smelled like sage to me. A few of them, and maybe all of them, had little green tags pinned to their shirts.

The really surprising thing was that no one at the meeting knew any of the people in the parking lot. So far as we knew they were not affiliated with the meeting.

When one member of our meeting left to go to her car, the whole praying circle turned to face her.

Were they trying to save our souls because we aren't of the One True Religion, whatever that may be? Or were they in solidarity with us over something?

I'm burning with curiousity to know who these people were and why they were there. Hopefully someone will know and tell me all about it.

The sage was really what confused me. Most narrow fundamentalist type religions who would demonize the Quakers don't really go in for the burning of incense.

And the liberal wacko fringe like the quakers and the unitarians would certainly be up for this kind of thing but usually at their own meetinghouse...


Blogger Liz Opp said...

Well, I wasn't there... but my first thought when I read this post was:

What a lost opportunity!

How can we know one another in That Which Is Eternal if we do not approach one another to ask, with genuine curiosity and care, what we are each doing and why?

Still, I imagine it can be off-putting if no one in the meeting knows anyone in the circle, yet the circle is on the meeting's property.


Liz, The Good Raised Up

9:23 AM  
Blogger Kiara said...


So while I didn't feel comfortable approaching these folks someone else at the meeting did and I am glad.

My reluctance was twofold; partly I was afraid of some confrontation. More than that, I was not willing to intrude on someone else's spiritual practice while they were in the middle of something solemn and important.

Imagine if someone walked into silent meeting and started asking in a loud voice what we were doing... the sentiment might be welcome but the timing would be off.

Turns out it was a Native American Ojibwe ceremony praying to the North, South, East and West.

They had some connection to the Friends in Residence and the leader of the prayer circle was the woman who held the naming ceremony for the baby born at the meetinghouse this year.

10:20 AM  

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