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As Bahá’ís, we often say the Long Healing Prayer for people who need healing from a variety of ailments which life throws at us.  I think many of us say it hoping that God will use the prayer to restore the person to the same level of health they enjoyed prior to their illness, and perhaps we’re a little disappointed when the condition worsens or when the person dies.

I’ve noticed that there are 125 separate names or attributes of God embedded into the prayer.  When I said it, I imagined each one as a separate entity, able to assist with a specific area of healing, so that by the time the prayer was finished, the room was filled with entities, all with their “marching orders.”

So the rest of this document will share some of my thoughts about how each attribute can bring life to the person prayed for, the person doing the praying and everyone in the vicinity of the prayer.

Bahá’u’lláh tells us that every word He utters has seventy and one meanings, so what follows is only one person’s understanding or one meaning, at one point in time.  I hope you will allow your imagination to flow free to release more understandings for each one, unique to your situation.

Click here if you want to listen to the prayer chanted as you read through this.

We start the prayer by reminding ourselves of who God is.

He is . . .

the Healer: Of course, we trust that “The healer of all thine ills is remembrance of Me”, which is what brings us to this prayer in the first place.  We know He will heal us but in this prayer, he demonstrates that healing involves so much more than our puny minds can conceive.

the Sufficer:  This name calls to mind the prayer of the Bab’s:  God is sufficient unto me; He verily is the All-sufficing!’ In Him let the trusting trust.  It’s a reminder that all we need is God.

the Helper:  Sometimes we need practical help.  Often we can’t even imagine what we need.  Neighbors and friends often say:  “if we can do anything to help . . .”, and they really mean it, but often we can’t think of anything and need “The Helper” to figure it out for us, and find the right person to deliver it in the right way.

the All-Forgiving:  There are so many places in the Writings that link sin with disease; and say that when we ask God for forgiveness, the sin will be healed.  Here is a reminder to look for the sin and repent.

the All-Merciful: We’re not comfortable thinking of ourselves as sinners and it’s hard to ask God for forgiveness, especially if our sins are big in our own minds.  I like that the All-Merciful comes after the All-Forgiving, because it’s a reminder that God is Merciful and not punishing.  Nowhere in the Writings do we see God referred to as the All-Punishing or the All-Condemning.  So go ahead, ask for His mercy!

Now that we acknowledge who He is, we call on Him.

I call on Thee . . .

O Exalted One:  This is a reminder of God’s exalted station.  Because He’s higher than we are, He has a greater vision of what’s going on and where to apply the remedy.

O Faithful One:  Here God is reminding us that He’s promised to be faithful to His Covenant with us; we can trust Him with our problems and our healing.

O Glorious One!  Here we’re reminded of how wonderful God is, and that we can be grateful for His presence in our lives.

The following refrain is repeated after every 3 attributes for the remainder of the prayer, and I think it’s to remind us that God is all we need, he heals, he protects and gives us life everlasting.

Thou the Sufficing, Thou the Healing, Thou the Abiding, O Thou Abiding One!

I call on Thee . . .

O Sovereign:  A sovereign is a king or ruler; so we’re supplicating our King for help.  Another meaning for sovereign is independent, or free.  This is a good thing because He has no hidden agenda and is responsible to no one, so he is free to give His full attention to our problems.

O Upraiser:  Here we’re asking God to lift us up to new heights, so that we don’t stay trapped in our misery.

O Judge: This was always a scary name for me, because I was sure God was judging me and finding me inadequate as a Bahá’í and as a human being.  I realize now that people take their problems to a judge and he sorts them out.  He can arbitrate for us whenever there is a breakdown in communication.

O Peerless One:  Here we are reminded that God has no equal.  He’s the best.  It’s a reminder to put our trust in Him and stop looking for second class help.

O Eternal One:  God’s love for us is everlasting; undying, ceaseless, timeless.  It will be with us now, and through all the worlds of God.  We can trust Him with our problems more than anyone else because His love is never going to change.

O Single One! God is single, unattached and free to give us His full attention.

O Most Praised One:  We praise Him for all the ways He’s helped in the past, and remember all the ways we’ve been able to count on Him as a reminder that He’s there for us this time too.

O Holy One: It’s wonderful to add a sacred dimension to our healing.  When we’re in the midst of doctor’s appointments and hospital visits, it’s a relief to spend a few minutes with God in a different world and a different space.  The Holy one reminds us to turn to the spiritual world.

O Helping One: Sometimes in the midst of a crisis we feel like we have to do everything ourselves.  Sometimes it’s even easier that way.  Delegating can be exhausting and time consuming, so why not ask the Helper to send the help you need.

O Omniscient:  This word means All-Knowing; All-Seeing; Wise; and Well-informed.  How many times have you been dealing with a whole host of health care workers and medical personnel, none of whom have the whole picture.  As you go from doctor to doctor, you have to tell the story over and over again.  Isn’t it nice to know you don’t have to do that with God?

O Most Wise:  Often we turn to medical personnel; going up the hierarchy of specialties till we get to the top person, but God’s knowledge is infinitely higher; and in this capacity, he can steer you to the right people if you remember to ask His advice.

O Most Great One: Our God is a huge, immense, vast, large, abundant, boundless, enormous God.  He can do anything!

O Clement One:  This word means meek, mild, gentle, warm, soft – all comforting words.  This is the part of God most likely to bring you a metaphysical cup of tea, exactly when you need it; or gift you with someone whose kindness is quietly given at exactly the time you need it the most.

O Majestic One: This is the royal, regal part of God, who is impressively dressed and has an aura of responsibility about Him.  You see His subjects bowing down before Him because of His station; and you know you can count on Him.

O Ordaining One! This is the one who makes things happen.  He commands, gives orders, making sure the Concourse on High is dispatched to help.

O Beloved One: This is the one you can count on when all others have gone home.  It’s the one you want to curl up beside and share all your woes with, knowing He’s got a listening, non-judgemental, compassionate ear.

O Cherished One:  This is the one you value, cherish and appreciate.  He’s the security blanket you don’t want to let go of; the cord you cling to.

O Enraptured One: This part of God has you enthralled, captivated, mesmerized, hypnotized, entranced, delighted.  He transports you to another place, high above your troubles.

O Mightiest One:  I think of the expression “The pen is mightier than the sword” and I remember that He’s sent Bahá’u’lláh, with all His wonderful Writings, to teach us about peace and how to achieve it.  His Writings will help give us a new perspective on life.  Time to crack open a book!

O Sustaining One:  God is in for the long haul.  He doesn’t leave when His shift is over; He works weekends; He never takes holidays.  He’s there to support and nourish and hold us up when our resolve is flagging and when we’re exhausted.  He’s the one who gives us the energy we need to carry on.

O Potent One: His medicine is effective and quick acting when we remember to apply His remedy.

O Ruling One:  This one makes me think of His rule:  “The healer of all thine ills is remembrance of Me, forget it not.”

O Self-Subsisting:  This is the God who doesn’t need anybody or anyone else to intervene.  He’s the “go to” God; and the buck stops with Him.  Once you turn to Him, you won’t need to look anywhere else.

O All-Knowing One:  Isn’t it comfortable to know that someone knows what’s going on?  He knows the cause of the disease and how to heal it.  He knows exactly what you need and when.

O Spirit:  He’s the life force that keeps us going.

O Light:  The power went out last night and I needed a flashlight.  God is like that flashlight, shining where we need to be illumined; bringing light to an otherwise dark situation.  He makes things easier.

O Most Manifest One: He’s obvious, evident, clear, visible, unmistakeable.  He’s our reminder of what we need and who we need to turn to.

O Thou Frequented by all:  Although many people call on Him, He’s never too busy to help you too.

O Thou Known to all: He’s the God of every religion; everyone uses Him at one time or another.  It reminds me of the saying: “there are no atheists in foxholes”.

O Thou Hidden from all: Sometimes in our darkest moments, we can’t find Him – He seems to ignore our pleas.  It’s part of His Unknowable essence and Bahá’u’lláh assures us that “Ye shall be hindered from loving Me.”  (Baha’u’llah, The Arabic Hidden Words 66).  So when we can’t find Him, it’s part of the contrasts we seem to need.  Keep turning to Him anyway.

O Concealed One:  Sometimes He makes His presence known through other people – someone will say or do something at exactly the right moment, and if you look for it, you’ll see through the disguise.

O Triumphant One:  This is the successful one, who breaks through the barriers; the one who takes you to victory; the one you can celebrate and share your success with.

O Bestowing One! God’s bestowals are constantly streaming forth for us; and this part reminds us to watch for them; to find the gems in the pebbles of life.

O Almighty:  This is the one who wants to get your attention.  He’s big, immense, loud, frightful, deafening and ear-splitting.  He’s the one who wants you to have eyes to see and ears to hear.  He’s the one you want to remove the veils between the two of you.

O Succoring One:  This is the one who brings aid, assistance, comfort.  He relieves the pain, supports and rescues us.  He gives a helping hand where one is needed.  He steps in and takes care of the practical details.

O Concealing One: We know that many diseases are the result of sin.  This is the part that covers it up; hides it from others and keeps it quiet.

O Fashioner:  Have you ever watched a craftsperson at work?  They take their time, doing first one thing and then another.  Sometimes what they are doing doesn’t even seem to make sense, but it’s a necessary step in the whole process.  It takes time for God to fashion us into the creation He desires for us too.  “Experience seems to suggest that the healing process can often be a lengthy and stressful one”

O Satisfier:  This is the one who is pleased with you; who wants to satisfy your every desire.

O Uprooter! This is one of my least favorite ones, because I don’t like change.  He knows when it’s time to move me from a shady spot to a sunnier one; from gravel to a loamy soil.  I don’t know what’s in my best interest, but the Uprooter does, and He’s not afraid to prune me and replant me somewhere better.

O Rising One:  This makes me think of bread dough rising.  It doesn’t look like much in the moment, but you know it’s going to make a really good loaf of bread after it finishes growing and expanding.

O Gathering One:  Sometimes we feel “single, alone and lonely”; and this is the part of God that brings together the people we need to consult with; or to share with.  He gathers together those who are needed in ways we can’t even begin to imagine.

O Exalting One: This one lifts you up, raises you to new heights; promotes your cause to others; applauds your efforts.

O Perfecting One:  This one puts the finishing touches on the design of your life; decorates you with colour; makes you more perfect through the tests He sends your way.

O Unfettered One: This one has no limits or boundaries; He’s free and unencumbered by anything or anyone.  He’s not restricted or regulated.  “He doeth as He pleaseth”.

O Bountiful One! This one is generous; giving; open-handed; makes sure we have plenty of what we need.

O Beneficent One:  This one works together with the Bountiful One; in charitable, altruistic, philanthropic; useful ways.  If you need help from a service provider, this is the one who will help.

O Withholding One:  We have the right to ask God for anything, but sometimes God says no.  Sometimes He knows that healing isn’t right for us.  Sometimes it seems He’s withholding His help because we’re expecting a certain outcome and His answer comes in ways we find hard to recognize.

O Creating One! This is the one who can find solutions where none seem to exist.  He crafts, fashions, forms, builds, constructs, designs exactly what we need.

O Most Sublime One:  This is the one who inspires, uplifts, moves us and helps us transcend our problems.

O Beauteous One:  This is the one who sends rainbows and flowers and everything beautiful in nature, to remind us that there is still beauty to be found, even in the midst of our pain.

O Bounteous One! This is the one whose gifts are overflowing, copious, abundant.  They’re there if we look for them and count our blessings.

O Just One:  This is the one who is fair, impartial, unbiased; objective.  He knows the right thing to do for everyone.  He’s going to make sure that everyone’s needs get met in a win-win solution.

O Gracious One:  This is the one who is kind, polite, tactful, courteous, amiable, well-mannered one; easy to be around; easy to talk to; approachable.  Sit down and pour your heart out!

O Generous One! This is the one whose gifts are over the top; lavish and plentiful.  You can ask Him for anything.  He loves to give extravagant presents!

O All-Compelling:  He’s convincing, persuasive, undeniable, so go back to the Writings to find the answers.  They’re in there.  Guaranteed!

O Ever-Abiding:  He’s with you always; permanent, steadfast, unshakable.  He’s with you long after everyone else leaves.

O Most Knowing One! He’s the most aware; conscious, perceptive, shrewd one, so you can ask Him anything and He’ll find a way to let you know the answer.

O Magnificent One:  He’s impressive, beautiful, grand, stunning, outstanding, wonderful and superb.  Whatever solutions He has in mind for you will be beyond your wildest imagination.

O Ancient of Days:  He’s been around forever; nothing surprises Him; He’s seen it all.  You’re not unique.  Your problems aren’t unsolvable.  He’s got a limitless storehouse of solutions to draw on.

O Magnanimous One: He’s kind, forgiving, fair, considerate, benevolent, high minded and generous.  Nothing is too much trouble.

O Well-guarded One:  Your secrets are safe with Him.  He’s able to protect you and keep you safe.  He’s a great bodyguard.

O Lord of Joy:  It’s hard to imagine that in the midst of personal tragedy, there can be joy, but this is what God wants for us.  “I will be a happy and joyful being.”  Even in death, God wants us to be joyful.  “I have made death a messenger of joy to thee.”

O Desired One: He’s the one we want; our favorite one; our chosen one; the one we need, require, prefer.  Why look anywhere else?

O Thou Kind to all:  He’s caring, sympathetic, gentle, thoughtful, compassionate, kind-hearted and humane. He’ll see that things are handled well for everyone.

O Thou Compassionate with all: He’s concerned about your welfare; caring, empathetic, sympathetic.  He’ll give you a listening ear.

O Most Benevolent One: He too is kind, caring, compassionate, generous, giving, altruistic.

O Haven for all and O Shelter to all:  the image that comes to mind is “like unto a hen He gathereth his chickens under His wings”

O All-Preserving One: He’s protective of us; wanting to conserve our energy; sustain us when we don’t think we can carry on; stabilises and maintains things for us.

O Thou Succorer of all, O Thou Invoked by all and O Most Lauded are similar.  It’s been said that “there are no atheists in foxholes”.  When the dis-ease gets great enough everyone turns to God.  It helps me remember that “the world is wet with tears”, and anyone can find comfort in turning to God.  I’m not the only one He helps or comforts.  Perhaps “misery loves company”, and this attribute helps me realize that others are hurting too.

O Quickening One: This is the one you go to when you’re in a hurry. He speeds things up, accelerates solutions, help move things forward at a quicker pace.

O Unfolder:  Have you ever been in clothing store where every item is folded so thoroughly, you can’t see the size or the decoration?  You don’t know if it will fit until you unfold it.  Sometimes our lives are like that.  Perhaps we’ve folded ourselves up to protect against hurt or pain, and our muscles have atrophied from curling in on ourselves.  We need to be unfolded, so we can heal.  Or witness a flower unfolding to reveal its beauty, or a baby, unfolding itself as it emerges from the womb.  All of it is necessary so we can live the life God has in mind for us.

O Ravager:  This is the one who destroys, ruins, wrecks things.  He knows when things aren’t working anymore and need to be broken so something new can come in its place.

O Most Clement One: We’ve met this one before but He’s so warm, gentle, soft and mild – exactly what you need after you’ve been unfolded and ravaged!

The next 3 attributes get personal.  God takes it from the lofty to the personal through the use of the word “my”.

O Thou my Soul:  He’s the core of your being; the one that’s been with you since conception.  He’s our essence, heart and source of our being.

O Thou my Beloved:  He’s the one we love more than anyone else.

O Thou my Faith: He’s the one we can trust; confide in.  He’s committed and constant and loyal.

O Quencher of thirsts:  He satisfies our thirst and He’s also the one you want to extinguish, smother, stifle, douse, snuff out all of your character defects and sins.

O Transcendent Lord:  He helps us rise above our trouble; He’s mystical, divine; inspirational, unlimited and awe-inspiring.

O Most Precious One: This one is valued, loved, important, treasured, valuable, costly, prized, expensive, priceless and exquisite.  We know its value, so take it out of the safe and keep it close!

O Greatest Remembrance:  Of all the things we can remember, His love and His presence in our lives is the greatest of them all.  That’s why it’s so important to continually call Him to mind.

O Noblest Name:  When someone is noble, they are moral, polite, upright, decent, self-sacrificing, virtuous and honorable.  They remind us of who we want to be.  In the Hidden Words Bahá’u’lláh reminds us:  Noble I made thee, wherewith dost thou abase thyself?           (Baha’u’llah, The Arabic Hidden Words 13).  He wants us to claim our nobility.

O Most Ancient Way: This is a reminder that God has a tried and true method, technique, system, approach, tactic and style which He can use to get you out of your predicament.

O Most Holy: We’ve seen this one before too.  Whenever I see a name repeated, I wonder why.  In this case it follows God’s Ancient Way.  I think He’s reminding us that His way is a sacred, blessed, consecrated, Divinely ordained way.

O Sanctified One: He is consecrated, blessed, purified, approved, dedicated, hallowed.  He makes our problems sacred.  When we remember this, we’re raised up to new heights, and they don’t seem to matter as much.

O Unfastener:  This is one of my favorite attributes.  I used to pray for healing so I could go back to life the way it was before.  But when I pondered this attribute, I realized that perhaps God has something better planned for me.  He has to unfasten me from the old way of being, so I can be the person he created me to be.  Depending on my level of attachment to the old “me”, this can be as painful as ripping Velcro, or as easy as unzipping a coat.

O Counselor:  How many of you have gone for therapy at a major turning point in your life?  You might have a 50 minute hour once every couple of weeks if you’re lucky.  But who do you turn to when “stuff” emerges between appointments?  The Counsellor is on call 24/7!

O Deliverer: This is the one you want to break you out of the prison of self.  He’s’ your liberator, emancipator and releaser.  He’s your “get out of jail free” card.  He’s got the key to set you free.

O Friend:  At 2:00 in the morning, when everyone has gone home and you’re the only one keeping vigil by the bedside, and you feel all alone and abandoned, isn’t it refreshing to know that you have a friend with you “at all times and under all conditions”?

O Physician:  Sometimes when we’re bounced around from specialist to specialist and no one seems to know quite what’s wrong or how to fix it, isn’t it wonderful to know that we have a Divine Physician at our beck and call?!  The Writings give some specific guidance.

O Captivating One: God holds us captive.  He created us.  “He doeth as He pleases and what recourse have we?”  Sometimes we think that we’re in charge of the decisions we make about our health, the ways we take care of our bodies and our minds, but God truly holds us captive and every day in the Short Obligatory Prayer, we’re reminded of our powerlessness.

O Glory:  This is the one we’re in awe of; we admire His beauty, grandeur, brilliance, exaltation and wonder.  Focusing on these attributes lifts us to another plane, where we have some relief for awhile.

O Beauty:  Sometimes there’s not a lot of beauty to be found in Intensive Care, or in a hospital ward, or a hospital waiting room.  So God can bring beauty into even the ugliest of settings.

O Bountiful One: We’ve seen this one before too.  This time it comes after the Beauty-full one.  I like to think of this one as having the practical help we need when we come back to earth from our journey into beauty.

O the Most Trusted:  We know this one is reliable, dependable and faithful.  We can trust Him to keep our issues confidential.  We know we can trust His advice and guidance.

O the Best Lover:  This is another of my favorites.  Most of us are looking to our spouses to be our “best lover” and wonder where the love goes when it fades away.  Humans were never meant to take this on – God wants us all to Himself.  When we put Him as our Best Lover, calling on Him day and night; serving Him; mentioning His name, He’ll never leave us.

O Lord of the Dawn: This is the one who is with you through new beginnings; when you start a new phase of your life.  He’s the one there at daybreak, watching the sunrise with you.

O Enkindler:  Have you ever gone into a room, and lit a candle?  Perhaps while you are lightening it, you are turning to God, and honoring the sacred reason for which the candle is lit.  It lights up the room, changing the atmosphere.  I think God does that when He enkindles our soul.  He lights a flame of faith which stays lit as long as we want.

O Brightener:  This is the part you want when that dark cloud is following you.  You want Him to cheer you up; brighten your day.  You want Him to improve and enhance the quality of your life; to animate and revivify you; to liven and jazz things up.

O Bringer of Delight: In the midst of your darkness, you want some joy, happiness, enjoyment, pleasure.  You want to appreciate, relish, enjoy and savor each moment.  This is the part that will help you with that.

O Lord of Bounty:  This is the one who has lots to give as a reward, prize or payment; He has abundance and plenty, and reminds you that nothing is too much trouble.

O Most Compassionate:  He is the most sympathetic, empathetic, gentle, kind-hearted listener you will find, so don’t hesitate to have a conversation with Him.

O Most Merciful One: Just when you think you can’t handle another thing, this is the one who will provide benevolent, understanding, timely, welcome and lenient intervention.

O Constant One:  People come and go in our lives; sometimes the ones we count on suddenly disappear in a crisis, but God’s love and presence in your life is constant, endless, unceasing, unbroken, steady and invariable.  You can count on Him even when you can’t count on anyone else.

O Life-giving One:  This one gives back life.  It may not be physical life, but it can breathe spiritual life into any situation.  Just when you think everything around you is dying, the Life-giving one is still around, ready to breathe refreshing breezes on you.

O Source of all Being: This is the one whose love for you brought you into being.  He provides you with the foundation and basis for life; He’s the loving parent you need when life is falling apart.  He has an endless supply of resources and knows where to find the help you need.

O Thou Who penetratest all things:  This is the one who is able to get at the root of any problem to solve it; He has a quick grasp of reality, comprehends, perceives, understands and is able to figure out problems you can’t solve.

O All-Seeing God: This is the one who has eagle-eye vision; who knows every aspect of your life and your place in the world.  He notices things you may have forgotten.  He sees everything you’ve ever done or ever will do and He’s able to remind you of your strengths, and show you which path is best for you to go down now. He can find your lost keys and help you remember appointments.

O Lord of Utterance: This is the one you want as your mouthpiece.  Whenever you don’t know what to say or how to say something with “words as mild as mother’s milk”; whenever you want to be a “hollow reed”, so God can speak through you, this is the part you want.

O Manifest yet Hidden:  This one is there when you need Him, but not obvious otherwise.  He’s the one who creeps in and gets things done even unasked.  He’s like the waiter who whisks away your plate as soon as you’re done, but you didn’t see him hovering; or the housekeeping staff who come in to your room while you’re out having dinner, to turn down your bed and leave a chocolate on the pillow.  He’s there; His presence can be felt; but He’s hidden at the same time.

O Unseen yet Renowned: This is one of the mysteries of God – He’s well-known, popular, famous, prominent in people’s lives, yet no one has ever seen Him.  This is the one you accept on faith, which is easier to do after seeing all the other parts at work.

O Onlooker sought by all: This is the witness to your pain; standing by, willing to help; wanting to help; and jumping in to help the moment you seek Him out. Until then, He’s just a bystander.

O Thou Who slayest the Lovers:  This one is a puzzle to me, since a “slayer” is someone who kills, murders, assassinates, slaughters, exterminates and eliminates.  I can’t imagine a God who would do that to anyone, and especially not to His capital-L “Lovers”.  However, we do know that because He’s given us free-will, He allows genocide; and because we know that we need the decline of the old world order to bring in the new; and we need opposites to understand things better, I have to believe and trust, that when people are killed, God has a reason even though I can’t understand.  As someone who witnessed the murder of her brother, I do somehow take comfort in knowing that there is an aspect of God with a reason to slay “his Lover”, and I am consoled and reassured that the separation is not forever; that I will see him again in the next world.  I hope this brings comfort to you too.

On a more personal level, one of my readers added:  As we read in the 7 Valley’s, Baha’ullah tells us:

Wherefore must the veils of the satanic self be burned away at the fire of love, that the spirit may be purified and cleansed and thus may know the station of the Lord of the Worlds.  (Baha’u’llah, The Seven Valleys, p. 11)

So maybe one of the purposes of “slaying the lovers” is to help us burn away our satanic self in order to purify and cleanse us in order to draw closer to God.

O God of Grace to the wicked: We are all sinners; we are all wicked in the sense that we do things that are not pleasing to God; we all have done things we think are unforgiveable; and yet, God shows us His mercy, favor, kindness and leniency.  He adorns our lives with beauty; embellishes and enhances our virtues; and even holds us in a place of honor and favor.  This is the one we most need in our shame and humiliation.

Now the prayer is coming to an end.  We’ve connected with the wide range of aspects of God and we know we can count on each of them to solve the different facets of the problem which prompted us to say this prayer.  Here we remind ourselves of who God is, when we say:

Sanctified art Thou, O my God! Here we’re reminding ourselves of God’s holiness; His sacred, hallowed presence in our lives.  We’re taking some of the personal aspects of God, which bring Him down to a level we can understand, and restore Him to His rightful place, sanctified above everything.

I beseech Thee:  We’re  asking, begging, imploring, pleading and even demanding Him to pay attention to us as we turn to Him in prayer; pouring out our pain and confusion and powerlessness.

by Thy generosity:  We’re reminding ourselves of his bounty and big, kind heart.

whereby the portals of Thy bounty and grace were opened wide:  We’re reminding ourselves that He’s opened wide the gates, doors and entry-ways to His storehouses of rewards, gifts, prizes and benevolent, charitable gifts, blessings and favors.

whereby the Temple of Thy Holiness was established upon the throne of eternity: He’s giving us an image we can relate to – a King of unsurpassing Holiness, sanctified from time or place, who will be there forever; sitting on His throne, waiting for us to approach Him.

and by Thy mercy whereby Thou didst invite all created things unto the table of Thy bounties and bestowals:  He’s inviting us to approach Him, expecting His bounties and bestowals.

and by Thy grace whereby Thou didst respond, in Thine own Self with Thy word “Yea!” on behalf of all in heaven and earth:  He’s promising to grant our request with a “yes” on behalf of everyone in heaven and earth who wants us to have our share of His grace.  Of course, His “yes” might not look like the “yes” we were expecting, but we can always count on it to be the right “yes” for us at this time and in this place.

at the hour when Thy sovereignty and Thy grandeur stood revealed:  Here He’s reminding us that we can see His dominion, authority, power, control and freedom to act as well as His dignity, majesty, splendour and magnificence.

at the dawn-time when the might of Thy dominion was made manifest:  We’re reminded that as we turn to Him, we’re only seeing the beginning glimmer of the appearance of His power and potency.  We’re just starting to understand that His influence over the entire creation was being made evident, obvious, clear, visible and apparent.

And again do I beseech Thee, by these most beauteous names, by these most noble and sublime attributes:  Now that we know who God is and how He wants to intervene in our lives, we beg Him again, this time acknowledging all of His signs and attributes, and grateful for all of them.

and by Thy most Exalted Remembrance:  We’re grateful that we remember who He is, and that we can turn to Him.

and by Thy pure and spotless Beauty: We’re acknowledging the absolute perfection of His presence in our lives.

and by Thy hidden Light in the most hidden pavilion:  We recognize His light is hidden and we’ve had to go looking, grateful that we’ve found it.

and by Thy Name, cloaked with the garment of affliction every morn and eve:  We thank Him for all the suffering He’s done on behalf of all humanity; that His afflictions and sufferings are nothing compared to ours.

Now that we’ve acknowledge who God is; and what He can do for us if we ask, we’re coming to our final list of requests.

to protect the bearer of this blessed Tablet:  We want Him to protect whoever has this prayer in his possession.

and whoso reciteth it:  We want Him to protect whoever says the prayer.

and whoso cometh upon it:  We want Him to protect whoever comes upon it, either in a prayer book, or listening to someone recite it.

and whoso passeth around the house wherein it is.  We’re asking Him to protect everyone who even comes in the vicinity of this prayer, whether it’s being recited or not.  The mere act of the presence of the prayer is enough for God’s protection to reach them.

Heal Thou, then, by it every sick, diseased and poor one, from every tribulation and distress, from every loathsome affliction and sorrow:  Here we’re asking God to heal not only us, but everyone else dealing with disease, poverty, pain, distress, ordeals, tests, hardships, anguish, grief, mourning, worry, stress, trouble, danger, difficulties, misfortunes, burdens, regret, disappointment and torment.

and guide Thou by it whosoever desireth to enter upon the paths of Thy guidance and the ways of Thy forgiveness and grace.  Here we’re asking God to guide everyone to His path of guidance, and for Him to grant everyone who asks, His forgiveness, mercy, compassion, understanding, tolerance, pardon, pity and reconciliation.

Thou art verily the Powerful, the All-Sufficing, the Healing, the Protector, the Giving, the Compassionate, the All-Generous, the All-Merciful.  We end the prayer reminding ourselves of God’s attributes, trusting that He is able to be influential, strong, mighty, effective and persuasive; that He is all we need;  that He has the cure, medicine, therapy, treatment we need to recover, restore, refresh, regenerate, rebuild, repair and recuperate.  He’s all we need to nurse us and restore us back to health.  He is there to guard, shield, defend, protect and act as our bodyguard.  He’s able to offer, provide and give generously whatever we need from His hidden storehouses.  He’s concerned, sympathetic, empathetic, gentle, caring and considerate.  He’s eager to be understanding and forgiving.  In short, He’s got it all.  We know it, which is what causes us to turn to this prayer in times of need.

Hope this has given you new insights into what God wants to do for you, in His love for you, and I hope you will share your insights so we can all expand our understanding of this powerful prayer.

If you enjoyed this analysis, you might also want to read:  “Using the Names of God for Healing.”

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