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The tragedy in Las Vegas last month put yet another tally on America’s rich list of massacres inspiring more unspeakable fear, pain, sorrow, anger, and grief. We bow our heads—again—and pray.

After the Las Vegas massacre and the scores sadly like it, without exception, love took over, soaring to new heights in greater abundance. The care, the concern, volunteerism, self-sacrifice, and outpouring of support from strangers worldwide overwhelms these senseless crimes. For a few days, we are one. It’s odd that nothing unites America like a massacre.

And then division unravels the good. We scream Howard Beale’s rallying cry from Network—“I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take this any more!”—until everyone’s hoarse, weary, and numb because every day brings a new reason to scream. Myself included.

So I pray.

If the words prayer or God cause you to stop reading, I use Affirmative Prayer, developed by New Thought ministers in the early 1900s. It’s the arrogance of organized religion to believe its name is the only right one. So, I substitute God with mystical words.

I’ve written my godless prayer in the first person, not from an egotistical point of view, but because all I can control is my mind. Hopefully, you’ll join me.

A Prayer for America

As I sit here in the silence, I simply breathe in and out, deeply and often, letting the noise of the world fade away. The years, the months, the days, the last hours are nothing but memory. I cannot know the future. All I know lives in this one second and everyone that came before.

I breathe the energy that animates me and energizes the entire universe. I know this vital presence is all-knowing, all-powerful, and everywhere. It is that power of life, of love, of the laws that govern the universe. It simply is, always was, and always will be. It is the creator, the great changeless, yet always changing, for It is always creating.

Since this divine presence is everywhere, It must inhabit my consciousness, which impels me to live. And if this is true, then the divine presence is in all of humanity. Everyone wears the face of divinity, everyone is holy, and we are united to this presence. Through It, we are united to each other. Nothing separates me from every woman and man; indeed, nothing separates me from the entire universe. I am one with a grain of sand, with a galaxy of stars.

And in this state of mind, I realize the oneness of life, that when I picture the world I see an energy of pure love.

I pray for the world. I pray for America, my country ‘tis of thee. I pray for all its citizens. I know there is great grief, great pain. I know there is division and strife and fear. When one suffers, I suffer, humanity suffers. Nothing separates me from another. Nothing separates each from the other. And in this moment I know that healing, whatever form that takes, occurs. The hungry are fed. The thirsty are given drink. The unemployed are employed. The angry are soothed. Those who suffer loss and heartache are given comfort. For when one heals, we all heal. When one triumphs, we all triumph. As I open my heart, I connect to the Heart of Spirit, to the heart of Mother Earth, to the heart of everyone, everywhere, and each connects to me.

This happens now.

I pray America heals. I pray the world heals. Love and joy are everyone’s birthright. Let us find the courage to embrace our individual birthright and support each other to find theirs.

I pray for the world’s leaders. I pray for America’s leaders. I surround them all with the light and wisdom of the one mind, that they may be moved to protect the people and resources they govern, for the benefit and good of all.

These thoughts, these pictures, appear in my mind, and as unified with the one mind have no recourse but to become reality. From my mind to the one mind, the power of love is unconquerable. These pictures from my intellect drop into my heart. My heart grows and united with all hearts, peace and understanding manifest easily and effortlessly through our shared humanity and shared compassion. Not in my time, but in perfect divine time, and perfect divine manifestation always occurs.

With fearless feeling, with the conviction of my word, with the strength of my love, united with the divine, I declare nothing can prevent a perfect demonstration. Any doubt, negativity, residue, fear, or worry, I consciously and lovingly replace with light and life and love and laughter and learning. For that is the Truth—with a capital T.

For the blessing of my life, I am so thankful. I bless all animals and oceans and plant life, all religions, all people everywhere. I am thankful for this glorious city and state and country and magnificent world I live in, for the joy of its wonders and miracles, from the simplicity of a butterfly to the majesty of the Grand Canyon. I am grateful to be a loving presence. I trust that the divine guides me. I give this to the world I am responsible for, and am honored.

I release my words into the creative cosmos. I let them go into the power of the universe. I accept the gifts. I know spirit paves my way to receive, for the world to receive Its blessings.

I pray for our America. I pray for our world. I know spirit makes Itself known in ever greater joy, for the potential of peace and love and harmony is present here and now. I pray the peace that passes all understanding is indeed understood by all, is within all, given to all, each to the other.