Posted in Essay, Spiritual Practice, Terri Stewart

Inviting Sacred Space Into our Intentions

flickr photo by B Duss  cc licensed ( BY NC )
flickr photo by B Duss
cc licensed ( BY NC )

There is a lot said now about doing things “with intention.” Deepak Chopra says that “intention is the starting point of every spiritual journey.” But sometimes I think we take the concept of intention and confuse it with goals. Setting an intention, “live more compassionately,” becomes conflated with the actions that it takes to reach the goal of compassion. What is a more compassionate life? A life that feeds the hungry? Houses the homeless? Goes into places of deep discomfort? Maybe. It is here that our intention becomes about action or about doing.

But what if it is not about what we do to become a compassionate person, but about inviting compassion to fully invade our being. Dr. Dyer says that this is the process of intention is to allow freedom to enter your consciousness and letting go, becoming free. It separates from what you want and becomes what you are.

“You have to just be. You have to let go. You have to allow. You have to be free and make this your consciousness.” He continues, “Basically, what you would see is a frequency (of energy) that manifests itself through the process of giving, of allowing, of offering and of serving. It asks nothing back.”

Dr. Dyer illustrates the concept of giving without expectations by quoting the great poet Hafiz: “Even after all this time, the sun never says to the earth ‘you owe me.’ Just think of what a love like that can do. It lights up the whole world.”

It seems it is a process of claiming an intention, inviting it in, and then releasing it. Not that we should not be doing, but our aim is not in the doing, it is in the being.

My friend, Deborah Globus at LaPadre recently wrote a short ritual for intention setting. I’d like to share it here so you can, if you like, invite sacred space into your intentions … or … release your intentions to the sacred.

What You’ll Need:

  • Candles (tapers) and candle holders
  • Matches/lighter
  • Carving knife (pocket knives, steak knives and paring knives all work equally well.)
  • Sharpies markers for decoration (optional)

What You’ll Do:

Meditate on what you’d like to bring in

Choose 1-3 words or symbols to represent what you’d like to bring in

Carefully carve into the candle (or write it on with Sharpies or paint pens.)

Light your candle. As the wax melts your intention is released to the Universe.


Monthly Newsletter from LaPadre

“The Power of Intention”

“The Power of Intention”

Youtube Time Lapse of a Candle Melting

(c) 2014, post, Terri Stewart

REV. TERRI STEWART is The Bardo Group’s Sunday chaplain, senior content editor, and site co-administrator. She comes from an eclectic background and considers herself to be grounded in contemplation and justice. She is the Director and Founder of the Youth Chaplaincy Coalition that serves youth affected by the justice system. As a graduate of Seattle University’s School of Theology and Ministry, she earned her Master’s of Divinity and a Post-Master’s Certificate in Spiritual Direction. She is a contributing author to the Abingdon Worship Annual. (The 2014 issue just released!)

Her online presence is “Cloaked Monk.” This speaks to her grounding in contemplative arts and the need to live it out in the world. The cloak is the disguise of normalcy as she advocates for justice and peace. You can find her at ,, and  To reach her for conversation, send a note to


I am a monk disguised as a passionate prophet. My true loves are God, family, and the creative arts. And maybe just a little bit of politics too. (PS My photo is by Eric Lyons Photography).

4 thoughts on “Inviting Sacred Space Into our Intentions

  1. Making the distinction between being and doing is important and gracefully done here. I so appreciate the Hafiz’ quote, though I must admit that the sun would be justified in saying to the Earth, “you too must do your part.” I love the ceremony! 🙂


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