Session 3 – Contemplation and Prayer

Session 3 – Contemplation and Prayer

Click on the resources to access the resource.  Links will either take you to a video or something to read online or enable you to download handouts or readings.  Congregational participants should read or view all resources before the session for which they are listed and respond to the reflection questions in a journal which they should bring with them.  Retreat participants will cover all the resource material through presentations at the retreat, but will also engage the reflection questions in regular online witnessing groups with a facilitator.  Remember to use the reflection questions as prompts for writing in your journal.


Contemplative Prayer and Meditation



Unitarian Universalist views on Prayer

“Prayer is Stupid, Right? By Andrew W. K.

NPR Interview with Ann Lamott author of  “Help, Thanks, Wow!”  transcript  or Audio

Two Traditions of Prayer by Gerry Pierse

Father Thomas Keating “Centering Prayer Guidelines” (video)

Introduction to Zen Meditation

The archaeologist and the Incas

The Sabbath (excerpt) by Abraham Joshua Heschel

Reflection Questions for Journaling:

  • What emotional reaction do I have to the term prayer?
  • How is it different from my reaction to the terms meditation and contemplation?
  • What has the term prayer meant to me?
  • How might I reframe the idea of prayer and praying?
  • In what ways is my experience of my spiritual practice(s) or “prayer”  apophatic and/or kataphatic?
  • How do I feel about Anne Lamott’s three prayers “Help, Thanks, and Wow?”
  • How do I feel about setting aside time for Sabbath?
  • What gets in the way of allowing myself to set up “palaces in time” for tending my own soul, and letting it catch up with me?
  • How do I feel about the need for Sabbaths of different intervals such as daily, weekly, yearly?
  • How are Sabbath and spiritual practice and contemplation connected in my life?


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s