Earth Prayer

We are blessed to live in the beautiful conifer forests of the Foothills of the Sierra Nevada in Northern California.  We live among the majestic sugar pines whose cones extend up to two feet long, the towering ponderosa pines, the lofty fir, fragrant cedar and robust oaks. 

Today a neighbor is clearing many of these stately trees from her property.  As the boom of a falling cedar echoes through the ravine and rattles the ground beneath us my heart is breaking and tears well in my eyes. I send love and gratitude for the beauty of these trees we have admired, the shade they have provided, the habitat for the graceful great horned and barn owls, pileated woodpeckers, deer, bear, fox and even mountain lions they have sheltered. 

My prayer of gratitude for all that these trees have given us all, for what will be created from their massive trunks, and for the well being of the standing trees that now have more light and space to expand themselves goes out to the trees, the forest, each of us, the universe. 

And thank you to Mark Nepo for this beautiful Earth Prayer …

Earth Prayer


O Endless Creator, Force of Life, Seat of the Unconscious,

Dharma, Atman, Ra, Qalb, Dear Center of our Love,

Christlight, Yaweh, Allah, Mawu,

Mother of the Universe…


Let us, when swimming with the stream,

become the stream…

Let us, when moving with the music,

become the music…

Let us, when rocking the wounded,

become the suffering…


Let us live deep enough

till there is only one direction…

and slow enough till there is only

the beginning of time…

and loud enough in our hearts

till there is no need to speak…


Let us live for the grace beneath all we want,

let us see it in everything and everyone,

till we admit to the mystery

that when I look deep enough into you,

I find me, and when you dare to hear my fear

in the recess of your heart, you recognize it

as your secret which you thought

no one else knew…


O let us embrace

that unexpected moment of unity

as the atom of God…

Let us have the courage

to hold each other when we break

and worship what unfolds…


O nameless spirit that is not done with us,

let us love without a net

beyond the fear of death

until the speck of peace

we guard so well

becomes the world…


For more of Mark Nepo’s writings visit

2 comments to Earth Prayer


    An Eco-Humynist Manifesto for the 21st Century
    by Jennifer Browdy de Hernandez

    Whereas human beings have acted in a dominating fashion towards each other and towards other living species on this planet, using the excuse of difference to justify aggressive and destructive behavior;

    Whereas competition has been used as a rationale for economic systems based on hierarchical systems of power;

    Whereas social exclusion and systematic discrimination has been seen as the normative right of dominant groups;

    Whereas privileged groups have felt entitled to take more than their fair share from the environmental commons, and to deprive less powerful groups, whether human or of other species, of the resources necessary for well-being;

    Whereas it is quickly becoming apparent, in the age of climate change, that the dominant paradigm of capitalist patriarchal social relations is resulting in the dangerous destabilization of the entire natural ecosystem;

    The time has come to take action to change this paradigm in the following ways:

    Move from a top-down hierarchical system to a horizontal, egalitarian model of social relations based on inclusivity across all of the traditional boundaries used to keep different groups apart, including race, class, gender, sex, nationality, ethnicity, religion, and also opening up the possibility for cross-species collaboration based on respect and stewardship;

    Shift the worldwide economic system to a model of global cooperation and collaboration, with the focus of human industry and government on providing a baseline of well-being for all life forms on this planet, regardless of geographic origin or antiquated ideas of relative importance (ie, who is to say that a human being is more important than a songbird, or a sardine?);

    Tailor the education system to teaching the history of the destructive cultural practices of homo sapiens up to the 21st century, and opening up constructive conversations across disciplines, where alternatives to these traditions can be envisioned and developed;

    Model egalitarian, collaborative, respectful social relations in the private sphere of the family as well as the public spheres of education, the profession, government and law;

    Shift from a violent conflict and punishment model of resolving disagreements to a peaceful persuasive model, with the goal always being the well-being of the community as a whole first, and secondly each member of it.

    Destroy all weapons of mass destruction, as well as all bio and chemical weapons, and their blueprints.

    No one person’s or minority group’s interests (with rich people and businesses or industries rightly being considered minorities) should be allowed to take precedence over the interests of the majority, including the non-human majority on this planet.

    Develop an appropriate representative global governing council to administer these principles.

    In the name of Mother Earth and ALL of her children, I call on the peoples of the world to act without delay to become the stewards of the planet and the collaborative, respectful individuals we were always meant to be.

  • Smitty

    This is all fantasy – there is no such thing as Mother Earth!