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A Prayer for Renewal by Rabbi Zalman Schachter Shalomi (2004)

This is an untitled prayer by Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, originally offered by him in an address given at the Roundtable Dialogue for the visit of the 14th Dalai Lama together with other Nobel Laureates in Vancouver, B.C., entitled “Balancing Educating the Mind with Educating the Heart.” The event was held at the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts, on Tuesday, April 20, 2004. While the video documenting the address is currently offline, thankfully the original text of the prayer is given in its transcription by Gabbai Seth Fishman. The prayer is presented here alongside an adaptation found in the High Holy Days Maḥzor of Congregation Nevei Kodesh: Jewish Renewal Community of Boulder (2018), p.36, Section 10: Prayers for Rosh haShanah. The prayer in this form, as revised by Netanel Miles-Yepez and Reb Zalman, can be found at Kol Aleph (2014) and the now defunct Sufi Hasidim website (2009).

Contribute a translation Source (English) Adaptation (English)

Source of time and space, Avinu Malkenu,
from infinity,
draw down to us
the Great Renewal,
and attune us
to Your intent
Source of Time and Space, Avinu Malkeinu!
Draw down to us
The great renewal,
A stream from the Infinite,
Attuning us to
Your timely intent.

so that Wisdom, Your daughter,
flows into our awareness,
to awaken us to see ahead
so that we help
instead of harm.
Let Wisdom flow
Into our awareness,
Awakening us to foresight,
Guiding us to help
Instead of harm.

May all the devices we make and use
be sparing and protecting of your creation.

Help us, God, to set right
what we have debased,
to heal what we
have made ill,
to care for and to restore
what we have injured.
Help us to set right
All that we have debased,
To heal what we
Have made ill,
To care for and restore
What we have injured.

Bless our Earth, our home,
and show us all how
to care for her,
so that we might live
Your promise,
given to our forebears,
to live heavenly days
right here on this Earth.
Bless the Earth, our home;
Guide us in how
To care for her
So we might live
According to
Your promise:
Days of Heaven
Here on Earth.

May all the beings You have fashioned
become aware that it is You who has given them being.

May we realize that You shape our lives,
and may each one who breathes
join with others who breathe
in the delight of shared knowing of the Great Breath.

Assist us in learning how to partner
with family, neighbors and friends.

Aid us in dissolving
old enmities.
May we come to honor,
even in those
whom we fear,
Your image and form,
Your light dwelling
in their hearts.
Aid us in dissolving
Old enmities;
May we come to honor,
Even in those
Whom we fear,
Your image and form,
In their hearts.

We pray for Vaclav Havel,
who couldn’t be with us today.
May his health be restored.
May he be able to teach
and continue to share with people
a vision of enlightened government
that we could use on both sides of the Atlantic at this time.

May we soon see
the day
when Your house
will indeed be
the house of prayer for all peoples,[1] Cf. Isaiah 56:7.  
named, and celebrated
in every tongue and speech
and on that day,
You will be one,
and one with all of cosmic life,[2] Cf. Zechariah 14:9  
May our star soon rise
On the day
When Your House
Will indeed be
A House of Prayer for All Peoples,
Named and celebrated
In every tongue;
On that day
You will be known
As One with all Cosmic Life.

We need to relearn the technology of blessings.
May the people who organized this event,
the people who contributed with effort and finances,
may we who spoke and you who listened
be blessed with energy, vigor,
and well-being,
harmony in your family-life and work-life
to actualize the new hope.
May we all be blessed with vigor,
harmony in our families and in our work-life,
to actualize our renewed hope.

And may the words of my mouth
and the concerns in our hearts
be received and responded to
by the One in Whom we find refuge and redemption,
May the words of my mouth,
and the concerns of our hearts,
be received and responded to
by the One in whom we find refuge and redemption.



1 Cf. Isaiah 56:7.
2 Cf. Zechariah 14:9

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