Skip to main content

Aquinas's Prayer Before to Study


   How should we pray? When the disciples asked Jesus how to pray, Jesus gave them an example - The Lord's Prayer. In John 17 we are able to read what is frequently called the High Priestly Prayer of Jesus. We find, in the letters of Paul, many examples of how Pastors and church leaders ought to pray for their churches. We learn to pray by observing the prayers of others. In light of this I simply want to share one prayer that has been a constant source of encouragement to me in my studies. This prayer can be found on a number of websites around the internet, however, I have rarely found the full version of it. So, I decided that I would put it here on my blog. I hope that it will be an encouragement for others.

Aquinas’s Prayer Before Study*

Ineffable Creator,
   Who, from the treasures of Your wisdom,
          Have established three hierarchies of angles,
          Have arrayed them in marvelous order
                   Above the fiery heavens,
          And have marshaled the regions
                        Of the universe with such artful skill,

You are proclaimed
         The true font of light and wisdom,
         And the primal origin
                Raised high beyond all things.

Pour forth a ray of Your brightness
           Into the darkened places of my mind;
    Disperse from my soul
         The twofold darkness
               Into which I was born:
                    Sin and ignorance.

You make eloquent the tongues of infants.
          Refine my speech
          And pour forth upon my lips
                The goodness of Your blessing.

Grant to me
          Keenness of mind,
          Capacity to remember,
          Skill in learning,
          Subtlety to interpret,
          And eloquence in speech.

May You
          Guide the beginning of my work,
          Direct its progress,
          And bring it to completion.

You Who are true God and true Man,
           Who live and reign, world without end.

Amen.


*Prayer quoted from The Aquinas Prayer Book: The Prayers and Hymns of St. Thomas Aquinas, trans. and ed. Robert Anderson and Johann Moser (Manchester, NH: Sophia Institute Press, 2000), 41-44.

Popular posts from this blog

How Kant’s Synthesis of Empiricism and Rationalism resulted in Agnosticism

Immanuel Kant, presented with the extreme empiricism of Hume and the extreme rationalism of Liebniz, which he discovered through the writings Wolff, sought to take a middle road between these two extreme philosophical positions. I would submit that Kant’s synthesis of these two views leads to an agnosticism about what Kant called “the thing-in-itself”, and ultimately to the philosophical positions known as Atheism, determinism, and nihilism.


Kant’s Sources
First of all, Kant was influenced by Hume’s empiricism and Newton’s physics. He saw that the physical sciences, in contrast to rationalistic metaphysics, were actually making advances. They were making discoveries, and building a system of knowledge that accurately described the world of our sense perceptions. Rationalistic metaphysics, on the other hand, was floundering amidst the combating systems that the philosophers were erecting. It did not provide new knowledge, and only led to unacceptable conclusions, such as the Absolute Mon…

LEISURE: THE BASIS OF CULTURE – A BOOK REVIEW

Leisure: The Basis of Culture & the Philosophical Act. Josef Pieper. Translated by Alexander Dru. 1963. Reprint, Ignatius Press, 2009. 143 pp. $12.99. ISBN 978-1-58617-256-5.
            This book is composed of two articles written by the German philosopher Josef Pieper. Though the two articles are intimately connected, they form two distinct works; as such, this book review will begin by giving a brief introduction to the works in question, followed by and exposition of each of the works individually. The two articles that are included in this book, Leisure: the Basis of Culture and The Philosophical Act, were both published in 1947, and, as such, were written during the cultural crisis in Germany that followed the Second World War. Not only did Pieper have the cultural crisis in mind when he wrote these articles, but he was also writing in light of the works of the most well-known German philosopher of the time – Martin Heidegger. As such, any reader who is familiar with Heidegg…

IDENTITY AND DIFFERENCE by Martin Heidegger

I don’t propose to attempt any sort of reply to Martin Heidegger in this article. The purpose of this article is to explain Martin Heidegger’s thoughts, as they are found in the book, Identity and Difference. Martin Heidegger is a difficult thinker to understand, and requires a lot of work to fully appreciate his arguments. My primary goal in this article is to introduce the reader to two very important articles written by Heidegger, and, I hope, to properly explain Heidegger’s views on Being and beings.
            This book is composed of two articles written by Martin Heidegger and translated with an introduction by Joan Stambaugh. The first article, The Principle of Identity, is “the unchanged text of a lecture given on the occasion of the 500th anniversary of the University of Freiburg im Breisgau, for the faculty day on June 27, 1957.”[1] The second article The Onto-theo-logical Constitution of Metaphysics, is “the explication that concluded a seminar during the wint…