PRAYER OF ISAAC OF NINEVEH (from a collection of thirty prayers)
The Back Cover of "The Syriac Fathers" -- A Great Introduction to Syriac Christianity: (See attachment)
The Front Cover of "The Syriac Fathers on Prayer and the Spiritual Life," with a Syrian Cross: (See attachment)
1. As my soul bows to the ground I offer to you with all my bones and with all my heart the worship that befits you, 0 glorious God who dwells in ineffable silence. You have built for my renewal a tabernacle of love on earth where it is your good pleasure to rest, a temple made of flesh and fashioned with the most holy sanctuary oil. Then you filled it with your holy presence so that worship might be fulfilled in it, indicating the worship of the eternal persons of your Trinity and revealing to the worlds which you had created in your grace an ineffable mystery, a power which cannot be felt or grasped by any part of your creation that has come into being. In wonder at it angelic beings are submerged in silence, awed at the dark cloud of this eternal mystery and at the flood of glory which issues from within this source of wonder, for it receives worship in the sphere of silence from every intelligence that has been sanctified and made worthy of you.
3. I beseech You, 0 God, send me help from your highest heavens so that I may keep afar from my heart every evil intention and every carnal wish. Do not cast me, Lord, from your protection lest my adversary find me and trample upon me just as he desires, destroying
me utterly. It is you who grants repentance and a sorrowing heart to the sinner who repents; in this way you ease his heart of the weight of sin that is laid upon it, thanks to the comfort which comes from sorrowing and from the gift of tears.
5. 0 name of Jesus, key to all gifts, open up for me the great door to your treasurehouse so that I may enter and praise you with the praise that comes from the heart in return for your mercies which I have experienced in latter days; for you came and renewed me with an
awareness of the New World.
6. I give praise to your holy nature, Lord, for you have made my nature a sanctuary for your hiddenness and a tabernacle for your Mysteries, a place where you can dwell, and a holy temple for your divinity.
7. 0 Mystery exalted beyond every word and beyond silence, who became human in order to renew us by means of voluntary union with the flesh, reveal to me the path by which I may be raised up to your mysteries, travelling along a course that is clear and tranquil, free from the concerns of this world. Gather my mind into the silence of prayer, so that all my wandering thoughts may be silenced within me during that luminous converse of supplication and mystery-filled wonder.
13. O Sun of righteousness by which the righteous beheld their own selves and became a mirror for their generations, open up within me the gate to awareness of you; grant me a joyful mind, one which sails above the rocks of error, so that I may reach that serene haven, as
did our fathers of old who pleased you with their discerning lives.
14. Sanctify me by your Mysteries, illumine my mind with knowledge of you, make your hope to shine out in my heart, hold me worthy to supplicate for it, a God my Father and Lord of my life; illumine your lamp within me, place in me what belongs to you so that I may forget what belongs to myself. Cast upon me the constraint of wonder of you, so that the constraint of nature may be overpowered by it. Stir up within me the vision of your Mysteries so that I may become aware of what was placed in me at holy baptism. You placed within me a Guide: may he show me your glory at all times.
Saint Isaac, "The Syriac Fathers on Prayer and the Spiritual Life," Sebastian Brock, Cistercian Publications