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with peace in mind.

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Quick Overview


  • Text: Sacred, Various

  • Language: English, Latin, Hebrew

  • Use: Concert

  • Ensemble: SATB (div., some double chorus) 

  • Accompaniment: a cappella

  • Genre: Sacred

  • Duration: 20.0 minutes

  • Page Count: 19

  • Catalog Number: NWC-198


See and hear the score


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...with peace in mind, Introduction - Wertsch

...with peace in mind, Sim Shalom (Hebrew) - Wertsch

...with peace in mind, Om Shanti (Hindu) - Wertsch

...with peace in mind, Largire quietem (Christian) - Wertsch

...with peace in mind, Ya Salaam (Muslim) - Wertsch

...with peace in mind, O Great Spirit (Native American)

I wrote “...with peace in mind.” for the New York Virtuoso Singers in 2011, the tenth anniversary year of 9/11. As the date drew near I became more and more aware of the need for reconciliation in the world. To that end I decided to find and set prayers for peace from some of the world's great religions.

As I was setting the various peace prayers I could not help but notice how they are all very similar. They all pray to a Creator - Adonai, Allah, Great Spirit - each through their own unique approach, and they ask for the same things. Interestingly enough, the only reference to the Earth I found in the five prayers is in the Native American prayer. Since I personally believe an important way “Godward” is through loving and being a part of nature, I am particularly fond of this incantation. This is the reason I chose a quote from this prayer “...with peace in mind” as the title for my piece. My objective was to set each one in a distinctly different style according to the part of the world it comes from and paying attention to the kind of music which is typical of that culture. Although I did that to a certain extent, the essence of each prayer spoke to me so much of their similarity that I ended up setting them in a way that they musically relate to each other. We are all of one essence. It remains for us to realize that, and when we do, we will know that we are truly one. Only then will we have attained that which we all pray for - true peace. The composition is in five movements with an introduction, with each movement representing a different faith.

Five settings of peace prayers from different faiths.

INTRODUCTION
From  “A NATIVE AMERICAN PRAYER FOR PEACE”
O Great Spirit of our ancestors,
I raise my pipe to you.
To your messengers the four winds,
and to Mother Earth who provides for your children.
Give us the wisdom to teach our children to love,
to respect, and to be kind to each other
so that they may grow with peace in mind….

1. HEBREW PRAYER FOR PEACE

Sim Shalom tovah uv’rachah,
Chein vachesed V’rachamim,
aleinu v’al kol Yisrael amecha.
Bar’cheinu, yotzreinu, kulanu, k’echad
b’or panecha,
Ki v’or panecha natata lanu,
Adoni Eloheinu,
Torat chayim v’ahavat chesed,
utz’dahkah uv’rachah v’rachamim
v’chayim v’shalom.
V’tov b’einecha l’vareich et amecha Yisrael
b’chol eit uv’chol shaah bish’lomecha.

Baruch atah, Adonai,
Ham’vareich et amo Yisrael bashalom.

Grant peace, goodness and blessing, grace, kindness and mercy,
to us and to all Your people Israel.
Bless us, our Creator, all of us together, through the light of your Presence.
Truly through the light of Your Presence, Adonai our God,
You gave us a Torah of life—
the love of kindness, justice, and blessing, mercy, life, and peace.
May you see fit to bless Your people Israel
at all times, at every hour, with Your peace.

Praised are You, Adonai,
 who blesses Your people Israel with peace.

2. HINDU PRAYER FOR PEACE

Oh God, lead us from the unreal to the Real.
Oh God, lead us from darkness to light.
Oh God, lead us from death  to immortality.
Shanti, Shanti, Shanti unto all.
(Peace,Peace, Peace)
Oh Lord God almighty, may there be peace in celestial regions.
May there be peace on earth.
May the waters be appeasing,
May herbs be wholesome,
and may trees and plants bring peace to all. 
May all beneficent beings bring peace to us.
May thy Vedic Law propagate peace all throughout the world.
May all things be a source of peace to us.
And may thy peace itself, bestow peace on all,
and may that peace come to me also.

3. CHRISTIAN PRAYER FOR PEACE

Vota pro Angilberto
Rex aeterne, mihi veram largire quietem,
Es quia tu requies et sine fine quies.
Lux aeterna, mihi lucem concede manentem,
Me semperque tuo fac vegetare bono.

Angilbert’s prayer    (7th Century)
Eternal King, grant me true quietness
For thou art rest and quiet without end.
Eternal Light, grant me the abiding light,
And may I live and quicken in thy good.

4. MUSLIM PRAYER FOR PEACE

O God! O Our Master! You are eternal life
and everlasting peace by Your essence and attributes.
The everlasting peace is from You and it returns to You.
O our Sustainer! Grant us the life of true peace
and usher us into the abode of peace.
O glorious and Bounteous one!
You are blessed and sublime.

I seek refuge in Allah from the outcast Satan.
In the name of Allah, the most beneficent,
the Most Merciful. Praise be to Allah,
the Lord of the worlds.

Ya Haakim,    Ya Wakil,    Ya Fattah,        Ya Salaam.
O Wise,        O Trustee,    O Decider,   O source of Peace.

5. NATIVE AMERICAN PRAYER FOR PEACE

O Great Spirit of our ancestors,
I raise my pipe to you.
To your messengers the four winds,
and to Mother Earth who provides for your children.
Give us the wisdom to teach our children to love,
to respect, and to be kind to each other
so that they may grow with peace in mind.

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Additional Info

Arrangement No
Use or Season General
Language English
Sacred or Secular Sacred
Voicing SATB (div.)
Type of Work Concert Work
Accompaniment A Cappella
Sample Score Click here for sample score