“Bless what there is for being.” bless it because it exists; you need no other reason.

Br. David Steindl-Rast, quoting W. H. Auden

Each and every moment, we can cultivate deeper awareness of the blessing of simply being alive, greater appreciation for all that works and is sufficient in our lives, and wonder and awe for the miracles that are within and around us at all times. 

This short film is an invitation to drop in to what is alive and life-giving—the very fact of life is a blessing. Open your heart to the sacredness of every moment and to the great fullness of life with Br. David’s words.

 Br. David Steindl-Rast. Photo: Doug Menuez

“May this patchwork quilt of blessings help to sharpen your taste for the gift of life in its innumerable facets.May you grow ever more blessed, ever more able to bless,” offers Br. David.

Br. David Steindl-Rast is co-founder of A Network for Grateful Living. He has written, contributed to, and co-authored numerous books including 99 Blessings: An Invitation to Life—the inspiration for this video, no longer in print. 

Recorded in 2019 during Br. David’s most recent visit to the United States, “Blessings” was produced by Pear Urushima and directed by renowned documentary photographer and director Doug Menuez

Blessings was made possible through the generous support of our community. Make a gift to support and further our work, and to honor Br. David’s 96th birthday.


Video Transcription

Bless what there is, for being. Whatever it be, bless it because it exists; you need no other reason.

Source of All Blessings,
you bless us with breath

In and out, in and out, ever-renewing us, ever anew, making us one with all who breathe the same air.

May this blessing overflow into a shared gratefulness, so that with one breath I may praise and celebrate life.

Source of All Blessings,
you bless us with humility

That down-to-earth quality that has nothing in common with humiliation but makes us stand tall and acknowledge both the humus that feeds us and the stars to which we aspire. 

May I learn to practice, and to honor in others, this sparkling humility which is the dignity that we, as human beings cannot afford to lose. 

Source of All Blessings,
you bless us with imprecision

With all that is vague, close but not quite; all that leaves room for the more specific, the more precise, and room for the imagination.

May I know when to be exact and when to move freely and blessed in the space so generously provided by all that is not perfectly defined, giving full scope to my dreams and my creativity.

Source of All Blessings,
you bless us with memory

That sacred ingathering of the past that allows us to recognize faces, learn poems by heart, find our way back when we are lost, and bring forth old and new from its nearly inexhaustible store. 

May I know what to forget and what to retain and treasure, keeping in mind the smallest kindness shown to me and spreading its ripples for a long time to come.

Source of All Blessings,
you bless us with change

In the seasons of the year, from snow to greening, flowering, fruiting and harvest, in the seasons of life, from childhood to youth, full ripeness, and saging. All living things keep changing. 

May I welcome change as a sacred opportunity to grow and savor in each unrepeatable moment’s fleetingness what IS beyond change.

Source of All Blessings,
you bless us with departures

For they are a necessary part of our journey, necessary for the arriving. 

May I always be ready to take leave, always aware that every arrival is a prelude to departure, every birth a step towards dying, and may I thus taste the blessings of being fully present where I am. 

May blessings help to sharpen your taste for the gift of life in its immeasurable facets. May you grow ever more blessed, ever more able to bless.


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Br. David Steindl-Rast, OSB

Br. David Steindl-Rast, OSB

About the author
Brother David Steindl-Rast — author, scholar, and Benedictine monk — is beloved the world over for his enduring message about gratefulness as the true source of lasting happiness. Known to many as the “grandfather of gratitude,” Br. David has been a source of inspiration and spiritual friendship to countless leaders and luminaries around the world including Desmond Tutu, the Dalai Lama, Thich Nhat Hanh, Thomas Merton, and more. He has been one of the most important figures in the modern interfaith dialogue movement, and has taught with thought-leaders such as Eckhart Tolle, Jack Kornfield, and Roshi Joan Halifax. His wisdom has been featured in recent interviews with Oprah Winfrey, Krista Tippett, and Tami Simon and his TED talk has been viewed almost 10,000,000 times. Learn more about Br. David here.