Continuing my researches on the prayers of contrition found in various traditions.

Buddhism

This is an amalgamation of two translations: one by Robert Aitken Roshi, of the Diamond Sangha in Honolulu, and one found on BeliefNet and attributed only to “anonymous”–which it is–it’s a very old Buddhist text.

All the evil karma, ever created by me since of old,
on account of greed, anger, and ignorance, which have no beginning,
born of my conduct, speech and thought,
I now confess openly and fully.

This Buddhist “Prayer for the Courage to Look Within” was posted by BeliefNet member kuliLinei:

May all sentient beings have the courage to look within themselves and see the good and bad that exists in all of us. May we open our hearts, shining the light of love into the dark recesses where doubt and fear reside. May we have the courage to step into that light and embrace whatever we find, letting it rise to the surface freed by the act of loving kindness.

Christianity

O my God,
I am sorry for my sins because I have offended you.
I know I should love you above all things.
Help me to do penance,
to do better,
and to avoid anything that might lead me to sin. Amen.

I find this one very moving despite the fact that I can’t in any way accept the idea that Jesus’s Passion atoned for us, so that I’d edit out “the most bitter Passion of My Redeemer.”

Forgive me my sins, O Lord,
forgive me my sins;
the sins of my youth,
the sins of my age,
the sins of my soul,
the sins of my body;
my idle sins,
my serious voluntary sins;
the sins I know,
the sins I do not know;
the sins I have concealed for so long,
and which are now hidden from my memory.

I am truly sorry for every sin, mortal and venial,
for all the sins of my childhood up to the present hour.

I know my sins have wounded Thy Tender Heart,
O My Savior, let me be freed from the bonds of evil
through
the most bitter Passion of My Redeemer. Amen.

O My Jesus, forget and forgive what I have been. Amen.

Paganism

. . . or is it Neo-Paganism? I don’t know the origin of this prayer, just that it is published in A Book of Pagan Prayer by Ceisiwr Serith (York Beach, ME: Red Wheel/Weiser, 2002). I found it on BeliefNet. I like the prayer’s being directed to various guides.

A Prayer to the High Gods at Bedtime

As I go to bed, I pray to the High Gods.
I offer you my worship, and ask you to bless my family.
I ask if I have done anything today to offend you.
If I have, I ask for forgiveness and for guidance,
that I might walk the sacred path in peace and in beauty.
As I go to bed, I pray to the gods of my household.
I offer you my worship and ask you to bless my family.
I ask if I have done anything today to offend you.
If I have, I ask for forgiveness and for guidance,
that I might walk the sacred path in peace and in beauty.
As I go to bed, I pray to the Ancestors.
I do you honor and ask you to bless my family.
I ask if you I have done anything to offend you.
If I have, I ask for forgiveness and for guidance,
that I might walk the sacred path in peace and in beauty.
As I go to bed, I pray to all numinous beings.
I do you honor and ask that you extend your blessings over me and mine.

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