When the writings that became the Christian gospels were translated from the original Aramaic in which they were spoken into the Greek in which they were written into the Latin in which they were taught throughout Europe into the English in which most of us Americans learned them, quite a bit was lost in the translation. And this particularly applies to the “prayer that Jesus taught.”
According to the gospels, Jesus was responding to the disciples who were asking ‘How then shall we pray?” This is important, because the Hebrew men then, like their Muslim cousins today, prayed a long prayer of forgiveness, gratitude, and praise 5 times every day. The disciples understood that they were being given a different kind of understanding and that meant a different kind of practice.
What the gospels tell us is that Jesus replaced that very long ritual prayer with a short, summary version, to be expressed with feeling–a deep emotional connection that begins with the very first words. In the ritual prayer these are “Baruch a tov Adonai Elohim:” “Blessed are You, Lord of all Beings.” But Jesus started, instead, with “Abwoon” which is a very loving term addressing the source and nurturer of one’s life. This term of endearment completely transforms the feeling, and so tells the disciples to pray in a very different way. The English words “Our Father” barely come close.
Other phrases in the prayer were also different from what the common English translation says, and if we use what Jesus says in other parts of the gospels to help us “translate” them, we get a very different meaning.
Here’s my version, based on that analysis:
I feel the connection with and call upon the source of my being, the power within all beings that “does the work,”
The loving presence we experience
Art in Heaven
When we’re in the state of bliss-love-consciousness that is within each of us.
Hallowed/Blessed be thy name
We praise this essence/nature/characteristics/qualities which blesses all.
Thy kingdom come
I command the fulfillment and satisfaction that is at hand–my birthright as my experience now;
Thy will be done
I accept the constantly unfolding happiness/fulfillment/satisfaction that I was born to experience
In this world I have made
As it is in Heaven
Just as I experience in the perfected Reality of bliss-love-consciousness that is within me.
Give us this day our daily bread
I command the power within me to provide for all my needs and the needs of those around me in this world I have made.
And forgive us our debts/trespasses
And I accept freedom from the consequences of all my actions, experiencing only unconditional love and support for myself and those around me
As we forgive our debtors/those who’ve trespassed against us
While I free those around me from any consequences of their actions and know only the love between us when I think of them.
And lead us not into/leave us not in temptation,
I release all thoughts other than the realization that the power within all of us works only for good in our life and world—knowing that any other thoughts are not Truth.
But deliver us from evil.
I command the power within to guide me and the people around me into more and more satisfaction and delight because I know that there is no evil in our life and world.
For thine is the kingdom,
For in the bliss-love-consciousness that is within me is all power and satisfaction
The power and the glory
And I recognize this glorious essence that unfolds in/through/as my true Self and all dimensions of being as the only power
Now and always, eternally, life without end.
On this awareness/understanding I stand and from this place I move forward.
The goal is to feel the connection and the power and allow it to become our experience every day. How could we not live a life of joy and satisfaction if we did?