How to Make Your Own Prayer Flags

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Ancient spiritual traditions gave birth to prayer flags. Created with noble prayers of compassion and imbued with merit for one's care for all beings, prayer flags whip in the wind. They carry the creator's blessings and intentions to all the earth. To make your own prayer flags, proceed prayerfully. With simple materials, you can create a prayer flag vibrant with symbols and meaning only you can give the world.

1 Making Your Own Prayer Flags

2 Pray and meditate

Pray and meditate. Follow your soul's direction by going into the silence of prayerful guidance. Discern what prayers and blessings you want to offer the world. Once you know what to give, begin making your prayer flags. Consider making several flags, each with a prayer. Multiple prayer flags catch attention as their colors and prayers dance in the wind.

3 Select symbols that resonate with meaning

Select symbols that resonate with meaning. For example, if you want to send blessings of peace to all beings, paint or embroider symbols such as a dove, a peace symbol or hands joined together. If you pray for an end to hunger, add symbols of plenty and prosperity. Tables laden with food, fields of crops ready for harvesting or people sharing their food with others are meaningful symbols. Let ideas for images come to you. Trust your intuition.

4 Create your prayer flag

Pray as you create your prayer flag. As you cut the cloth and arrange symbols on your flag, vocally or silently pray your intention. Write your prayer on the flag. A prayer can be as simple as a single word. "Love" is a prayer. "Peace" is a prayer. If you have a favorite prayer, use that. Use prayers from the world's religious traditions. (See Resources)

5 Gather materials

Gather materials. Use simple squares of pale cotton. If you follow the Buddhist tradition, which teaches that everything is impermanent, use low-grade cotton squares. The cloth will degrade faster, reminding you that even the best intentions disintegrate. You will be reminded to make new flags, sending new prayers. Select colored markers or paints. Place colors on your flag that resonate with your prayers. If you feel strongly that you should use blue, do that. You cannot do this wrong.

6 Hang prayer flags vertically or horizontally

Hang prayer flags vertically or horizontally. Fold and glue or sew in place the side of the cloth trough which a rope will run. Pull the rope through your flags. Fly vertical flags along a pole or vertically along the side of your house. Wave horizontal flags by string rope between two trees or horizontally from the eaves of your roof.

Alyson Paige has a master's degree in canon law and began writing professionally in 1998. Her articles specialize in culture, business and home and garden, among many other topics.