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Sacred Imagination
December 2001 Column & Gallery

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Dana's Current Column

by Dana Reynolds

Each month, Dana Reynolds shares her life-transforming thoughts, ideas, and sacred imagination based around our "theme of the month."  Dana is a visionary Spiritual Midwife, who devotes herself to helping women birth their creative gifts into the world.

The Prayer Cord

Throughout time, saying prayers on knots tied on a cord, or beads arranged on a chain, have held spiritual significance and an opportunity for deepening meditative and contemplative practices. Whether these are called prayer beads, Mala, or the Rosary, they are one in the same.

As part of this month’s spiritual practice, create a Mala or Rosary that is unique to your personal mythology. One way of doing this is to gather beads from an old necklace or bracelet and string them on beading cord (available at craft stores). You may choose to assign each bead a special meditative focus. Your beads may represent the chakras, individuals in your life you are making intercessory prayers for, virtues and qualities you are meditating on, etc. As you sort and seek the beads that speak to you, do so in a sacred way with ritual and holiness. Light a candle. Offer prayer for the process.

The intention is to create something that is deeply meaningful to you through the selection of the beads and their arrangement. You may also choose to tie knots along a length of cord, ribbon, or rope.

dana_prayer_beads.JPG (19904 bytes)

Once you have created your prayer cord, Rosary, Mala, etc., you may wish to bless it with smoke from incense, holy water, a sprinkling of earth, a tinkling of bells. Offer your prayers on each knot or bead, trusting the process with your open heart.

Your prayer cord may be carried in your purse or pocket. The more you hold it the more it will become a part of your spiritual practice.

The following is a list of suggestions for meditation focuses for your prayer cord:

  • The chakras: meditate on each chakra, the color, and the properties
  • The cycles of the moon: meditate on lunar mystery, visualize the phases of the moon, symbol of the Feminine and Blessed Mother.
  • The twelve months of the year: meditate on each month of the year and its significance to your life.
  • The seven days of the week: contemplate the days of the week and the significance each day holds for you.
  • The seasons of the year: meditate on the seasons and the properties of each one including; animal life, weather, earth changes, and personal associations regarding mood changes, diet, energy level, etc.
  • The twenty-four hours of the day: contemplate the hours of the day and the mean time has for you (linear vs. non-linear).

Suggested repetitive prayer for contemplation with the prayer cord: Repetition of a word or phrase assists the deepening of our interior process. An example of this is the simple Hail Mary prayer used with the Rosary... Hail Mary full of grace. The Lord is with you. Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, mother of God, pray for us (sinners) now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

Other repetitive prayers might be (you are encouraged to write your own personal prayers into your prayer journal and allow their words to burn into your heart):

Come to me Light of Spirit. Open my heart that I might receive your guidance.

I am ascending with blessing and benediction.

Holy Mother, most tender and beloved, heal me, help me.

Sophia, Mother Wisdom, bless me with your knowing.

I am opening to the Mystery. I am surrendering to the journey before me.

Intercessory Prayer: Naturally, each bead or knot on your prayer cord may be offered as a prayer for others.

Ecstatic Prayer: In sacred space and silence, wrapped in your prayer shawl, allow your body to release the sounds, phrases, words, songs that it wishes to express. Do not censor. Open the floodgates within your spirit. Whisper, shout, hum, sign, and trill your prayers. Grieve, praise, adore, implore, and intercede. Speak to your God in your language.

You are invited to submit your story and accompanying photos to be considered as a feature for the Sacred Imagination column. E-mail me at dana@sacredimagination.com for details.

Copyright© 2001 Dana Reynolds. 


Read Dana's Past "Sacred Imagination" Columns:

November 2001 - "Explore, Express, Imagine"

October 2001 - "Seeking Sacred Alchemy"

September 2001 - "Invoking Your Muse"

August 2001 - "The Blessings of Daily Bread"

July 2001 - "Entertaining the Dream Visitor"

May 2001 - "Embracing the Whole: Choices for Conscious Living"

April 2001 "Nourishing the Souls of the Children"

March 2001 "Opening the Senses to Beauty"

February 2001 "The Eyes of Love"

January 2001 "Patterns of Authenticity"

December 2000 "Finding Peace in the Fields of Time"

November 2000 "Cultivating Gratitude: Heart-Hugs and Prayer Leaves"

October 2000 "Journey to the Center - The Sacred Mystery of the Labyrinth"

September 2000 "The Heart and Craft of Healing"

August 2000 "Transforming Life’s Challenges into Beauty and Story"

July 2000 "Sacred Spaces Invite the Muses of the Soul"

Read Dana's Soulful Living Feature Articles:

Visual Prayers

Intuition and the Sacred Imagination: The Dance of Co-creation

For ten years, Dana Reynolds has been facilitating women’s spiritual presentations and retreats nationwide. Her work as a Spiritual Midwife, one who assists women as they birth their creative gifts into the world, is the foundation of all her endeavors. Her background as a visual artist and writer enriches her Spiritual Midwifery: Birthing the Feminine Soul workshops.

As the creator of an art making process known as visual prayer, Dana teaches women how to combine ritual with sacred intention to create altars, collages, spirit dolls, and other touchstones. The creation of sacred spaces is also paramount to the Spiritual Midwifery experience. Her web-site http://www.sacredimagination.com offers samplings of her visual prayer collages, poetry, and a workshop catalogue.

Be An Angel

Dana is the author of the whimsical and colorfully illustrated book, Be An Angel, a co-creation with illustrator and graphic designer, Karen Blessen, (Simon & Schuster). Her essay, Visual Prayers is included in the anthology, Our Turn, Our Time: Women Coming of Age, edited by Cynthia Black, (Beyond Words Publishing).

Our Turn Our Time

A trained labyrinth facilitator, Dana incorporates the labyrinth and other spiritual wisdom into her retreats and workshops. She recently traveled to Chartres and Vezelay Cathedrals in France to gather information pertaining to ancient sacred mystical traditions. She currently lectures on such topics as spiritual midwifery, sacred journal keeping, feminine spiritual wisdom, and the early Christian women saints and mystics.

Dana’s life follows the spiral path from rim to center and back again. She looks for the sacred in forgotten places and openly embraces the great Mystery of life. Guiding women to the discovery of their creative inner gifts is the passion that fuels her soul.


Visit Dana at:



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