I went to the Silver Dragon retreat at the Great Vow Monastery and went outside on a sunny day and visited the Shrine of Life Vows.
A vow is a deep commitment to see something through no matter the obstacles. Vows ask us to continually return, over and over again, to our deepest intentions. Vows help us orient our life to what is most beneficial. And vows emerge from our own unique life and circumstances.
To consider making a vow, perhaps spend time in prayer and reflection about any changes you want to make–major–or minor, lifelong or temporary. Think ahead to the ways this vow may affect your life, your friendships, future plans, etc.
Then work on wording of your vow. Mature planning makes for a mature vow.
The most important thing about a vow is, don’t take if until you know you will keep it….
or perhaps say “I will strive to..”
Make a practical time limit also…one that you can keep…a day, a week, a month?
Once the vow has been properly prepared, the next step is to “”declare it” in a little ceremony with one or more friends as witnesses.
Implementation– Then comes the bottom line: day by day, abiding by the vow you have taken. I encourage you to repeat your vow out loud, along, at the beginning of every day. Read it or recite it as sincerely as you did that first day, and remember the feelings which prompted you to take this vow. It’s very useful to repeat your vow every day…like even taking your marriage or commitment ceremony vows. Both the husband and wife take them every day to actually keep the vows very fresh.
Remember to respect all vows equally. Whether you vow to stop eating sweets for a week, or to never take a sip of alcohol for the rest of your life, a vow must be respected fully. A sincere vow is an expression of our willingness to work, to sacrifice, to change and grow emotionally and spiritually.
Adapted from VOWS PRACTICE from Deep & Simple by Bo Lozoff.
WE THEN FREELY SHINE OUR LOVING HEART INTO THE WORLD!
Our friends, family, and the whole world are affected by our vows to open to life fully!