The Yahweh Prayer by Richard Rohr

by Christine Sine

Today’s post in our series Return to Our Senses in Lent,  are words of wisdom from Richard Rohr. As many of you know I am very keen on breathing prayers, but it was Richard’s work on the Yahweh prayer that really inspired me. Make sure that you watch both these videos as the second is a continuation of the first and in many ways was the most inspiring for me.


Richard Rohr from Wikimedia Commons

Richard Rohr from Wikimedia Commons

The Jewish name for God – Yahweh – was not spoken, but breathed. Its correct pronunciation is an attempt to imitate the sound of inhalation and exhalation. We do that every moment: our first and last word as we enter and leave the world…. The one thing we do every moment of our lives is therefore to speak the name of God. This makes it our first and our last word as we enter and leave the world. (Richard Rohr: The Naked Now)


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Tish Baumann March 4, 2013 - 10:44 am

I have always said that if I am breathing,…I am praying. Affermation is such Blessing. Thank you.

Christine Sine March 4, 2013 - 11:04 am


Jim Fisher March 7, 2013 - 7:09 pm

“The first word any of you ever spoke when you came out of your mother’s body, was the name of God.” <– lost it right here.


Christine Sine March 7, 2013 - 8:25 pm

Jim sorry you found it a little overwhelming – to me it is deeply inspiring but I also recognize that we all encounter God in different ways

Jim Fisher March 10, 2013 - 1:13 pm

Overwhelmed in a really good way, Christine. My best days start out with the Spirit tears streaming down my cheeks. Drenching. Cleansing. Thank you.

Christine Sine March 10, 2013 - 3:56 pm

So glad to hear that. I used this prayer in conjunction with one that I wrote for a group I was together with this weekend. We were all in tears by the end of it.

Karen February 2, 2021 - 5:40 pm

I’ve never heard this until now
I am totally overwhelmed and in tears
Breathing in and breathing out

Christine Sine February 2, 2021 - 6:31 pm

It is such a beautiful concept isn’t it. I have a similar exercise using the word Jesus – Je on the inward breath and sus on the outward. Also very inspiring.

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