Prayers for the New Year

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Posted on January 3rd, 2013 | Filed under Uncategorized
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First, two prayers from Prophet Muhammad (PBUH):

“O Allâh, place light in my heart, light in my tongue, light in my hearing, light in my sight, light behind me, light in front of me, light on my right, light on my left, light above me and light below me; place light in my sinew, in my flesh, in my blood, in my hair and in my skin; place light in my soul and make light abundant for me; make me light and grant me light.”


"O Allah, O our Lord, You are peace,
and from You is peace,
and to You returns the peace,
O our Lord, give us life of peace,
and usher us in the abode of peace.
Blessed are You, our Lord, the Most High,
O the Lord of Majesty and Reverence."

Second, from me:

May we find peace.

May we work towards peace.

May we build peace.

May the oppressor be challenged.

May the oppressed find justice.

May truth prevail.

May love be manifest.

Photo by lednichenkoolga, via Flickr Creative Commons.

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10 Responses to “Prayers for the New Year”

  1. Hi Hussein,

    This is a really lovely set of prayers. I didn’t realize you were such a poet, but am not surprised either!

    I particularly resonate to the motif of “light,” which is found in a number of Jewish prayers, as well.

    All the best,

  2. Hussein says:

    I wish I could take credit. They are from the Prophet. :)

  3. Hussein says:

    The first one is borrowed. I think from Yusuf Islam. The second is one I polished from a collection I have.

  4. Hey Hussein,

    Thank you for sharing this light and peace to my day, our online community, and the world. I believe the light is most bright when we share it, name it, and embody it. And this brief article is a full manifestation, in my opinion, of what embodied light might look like. You honor your past, your identity and tradition, your present, the Presence, and the future that you which to shape. Your addition of your own writing to the sayings of the Prophet (PBUH) is an example of the unfolding of truth even to this day. May truth prevail and may love manifest, and may all of us be vehicles for this prevailing manifestation of the Divine.

    Peace to you on your journey,

  5. Hussein says:

    Thanks Nic for your kind words. May we continue to embody light and justice.

  6. Ify says:

    These prayers are beautiful. Last year on Thanksgiving Day, I was working at a hospital that included prayers from many different religious and spiritual groups on being thankful. Noticeably absent was a prayer from the Muslim tradition so I’ve been pondering, which prayer I should submit for possible inclusion this year. Any suggestions or personal favorites?

  7. Hussein says:

    Salaam Ify,

    I plan on using this space to do a lot of reflection on prayer and posting prayers. If you’ve got some time before submitting, hopefully something will strike you.

    If not, email me and I’ll do some searching.

  8. […] These first few, grey, weeks of January are really challenging to me, So this invocation of the light really speaks to […]

  9. Ros B says:

    Hallo Ify

    I have read a wonderful Muslim prayer by Yusuf Ali, the Islamic scholar and poet who was one of the first persons to translate the Qur’an into English:

    Goodness leeds to happiness,
    Happiness leads to forgiveness,
    Forgiveness leads to love,
    Love leads to giving,
    Giving leads to receiving,
    Receiving leads to joy,
    Joy leads to appreciation,
    Appreciation leads to understanding,
    Understanding leads to God,
    God, The One and Only!

    I hope you enjoy this.

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Hussein Rashid is an academic and activist. He received his PhD from Harvard University, and his broad research project involves the representation and self-representation of Muslims in America. He has published on Islamicate musics in America, and has delivered talks on the Muslim-American blogistan and Muslims in graphic novels. He has taught at Hofstra University, Fordham University, Harvard University, Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, and Virginia Theological Seminary. He works in New York’s interfaith communities, teaching at Quest: A Center for Spiritual Inquiry. He has appeared on CNN, NPR, Fox News, CBS Evening News, and Russia Today. He is an Associate Editor at Religion Dispatches, and blogs at islamicate. He is known for his teaching, research, public communication skills, media engagement, and use of Web 2.0 technologies. You can find out more about him at Recently, he turned his consultancy into an L3C. islamicate L3C specializes in improving conversations around religion generally, and Islam specifically. We work in education, media, and policy.

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