The Examen is a prayer of reflection from the Ignatian tradition of spirituality. It looks back over the day, paying particular attention to the presence and guidance of God. It has been described as “rummaging for God”, which I think is a rather lovely way of putting it.
I first learnt it while volunteering with a Jesuit organisation, and my housemates and I would pray it by candlelight, as a beautiful calm settled over us.
There are different ways of praying the Examen, but this is perhaps the simplest:
- Become aware of God’s presence.
- Review the day with gratitude.
- Pay attention to your emotions.
- Choose one feature of the day and pray from it.
- Look toward tomorrow.
You may also find this video helpful as a guided way of praying the Examen:
And finally here is a way of praying the Examen through Lent, which you might like to pick up before we leave the week of Ash Wednesday.
40thoughts: be open
40acts: dig deep
Leeds Prayer Diary: InterACT