Dear All of Our Mothers and Fathers, Sisters and Brothers, Daughters and Sons, In-laws and Out-laws, Aunties and Uncles,

Hallowed be your names, your stories come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us your trespasses, your boldest deceptions, your damaging lies. Give us the courage to forgive you, to share with you our daily bread, to trust in your humanness, to accept your everyday wanderings and squanderings, your losses and lovers left far behind. Let us give up temptations to abandon each other or shun, let us ungrasp our deep broken promises, our angers and petty indictments. Let us give up our debts, unpaid or forgotten, bow to all imperfect endings and untrue beginnings.

Please give us The Middle Way. Deliver us from evil, all of us, from the prisons of blame and shame, the victimhood of “he did that to me” or “she treated me like this.” Lead us not into abstraction and distraction. Deliver us from bad dreams, and snide dinner table arguments. Remind us of gratitude practice as we put our feet on the floor each morning when we get out of bed. Let us be peacemakers and lovemakers, our stories hard won. Let us be lost now and found now, our traveling done.

Let us be seeking the kingdom and queendom of kindness, the power and glory of justice for all. Hallowed be our mixed-up bumbled funny sad lives. May we be listeners, useful to others in some small way. Forever and ever, loving and present, grateful for all. May we be humble, joyful, generous and free. On earth as it is in heaven.

—Jaune Evans, November 25, 2020

Jaune Evans is a senior priest practicing with Everyday Zen Foundation, leader of Heart of Compassion Sangha in Pt. Reyes, CA.