Here, as promised a few days back, are some of the sources that I included in my prayer “heart map”….
Overall structure is formed by two lines from this kavanah [intention] for the Amidah:
Create a pure heart within me
let my soul wake up in Your light.
Open me to Your Presence;
flood me with Your holy spirit.
Then I will stand and sing out…
— Stephen Mitchell, based on Psalm 51
Mishkan T’filah, p.75
Orienting the map is the phrase, “From eternity to eternity, You are God [מן העולם ו’עד העולם אתה אל],” from the “Nishmat” prayer, in the Shabbat/Festival morning service. Also near the top of the map, to highlight its influence — like minerals in the hills, carried by rivers and run-off to parts below — is this brief commentary:
Why fixed prayers?
To learn what we should value,
what we should pray for…
— Chaim Stern, p. 437 Mishkan T’filah
This note comes from the prominent liturgist Rabbi Chaim Stern (1930-2001); it was also found in Gates of Prayer (1975) and other Reform prayerbooks.
Connection and Points Beyond
Two rivers, running the length of the heart territory and connecting various regions, begin with “We will rejoice in the words of Your Torah…” and “Bless us, Creator, all of us…” (The first is from the Evening service, before the Shema; the second, from the Morning service, at the close of the Amidah).
The prayers themselves remind us over and over again of connections between prayer, study, and acting for justice in the world. See also, to take just two examples, Max Kadushin’s Worship and Ethics (1963, republished 2001 by Global Publications) and Marcia Prager’s Path of Blessing (NY: Belltower, 1998).
At one edge of the map, the injunction, “Do not stand idly by (Leviticus 19:16), hugs “Hope Harbor.” Farther beyond, outside the heart and its surrounding waters, the terrain is less certain.
Here’s a link to some background on this project and my whole map. Also linked is information about cordiform maps more generally and about the book suggesting “Personal Geographies.”
The graphic aspect was very helpful to me, but I don’t think it’s necessary to draw or color in order to consider what prayers or texts would play a prominent roll in your own “heart map.”