Thursday, April 23, 2015

Earth Day Prayer Flags

Yesterday was Earth Day, which I didn't remember until later in the day.  In a way, I feel like I already celebrated it, since I wrote a post for the Living Lutheran site a month ago.

That Earth Day post is now up at the Living Lutheran site.  It asks the question:  what shall we plant if we're not good at gardening?

My answer:  prayer flags!

You might say, "But I'm also not good with creating things out of fabric."

I have good news:  my project only requires scraps of fabric and no sewing:

"I don’t mean the traditional Tibetan prayer flags, although those flags inspire this idea. Naomi Sease Carriker, a pastor, told me about her simple practice at a recent Create in Me retreat at Lutheridge, a Lutheran camp and conference center in Arden, N.C.  

She writes prayers on tulle, a thin cloth, and ties them to pieces of lattice fencing in her garden. She takes great joy in seeing them flutter in the breeze. The fluttering reminds her to pray."

I wish I had a picture of this project, but I don't.  The picture above is from a Create in Me retreat where we experimented with batik techniques.

Even if you're not a praying type, I have a vision for how this project could be used to foster our creativity.

We could write our wishes for our creative work on tulle or write our problems for which we need solutions.  We could write our dreams and visions, our hopes for what we'd like to see in our lives.

If we write them out, we may find ourselves able to release the anxiety that often comes from our unacknowledged needs or our inability to find solutions.  If we tie the tulle in places where we'll see them, we can be reminded of both our goals and our wildest dreams.  We may be more likely to stay focused with this kind of reminder.

And even if you don't have a garden or a corner of yard to call your own, you could still try a variation of this technique.  Put the scarps of cloth on your bookcase.  Tie them around your rear view mirror and gear shifter in the car.  Braid them together and make a long chain.  Let the braid remind you of your larger hopes and dreams--and periodically think about how many of them you (and others) have made manifest.

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