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tasknitter 04-25-2008 02:08 AM

What makes a prayer shawl a prayer shawl?
I'm wondering what it is that makes a prayer shawl a prayer shawl, is it the faith of the knitter or the intended recipient that's important, are there any guidelines about things like colour stitch pattern yarn type and so on?
may sound silly but I'd like to make ne for my mother in law cos I think she'd think that was lovely:aww:

Debkcs 04-25-2008 02:18 AM

I've made 'prayer' shawls just because the pattern was lovely, or I had the yarn to do one with. No harm, if you're giving it away,the recepient doesn't have to be in need or have a crisis in their life.

When I do make them for someone who can use some emotional support, I also support them through prayer. Others meditate, or just use the shawl as an expression of love and concern.

I'm sure your MIL will enjoy what you make for her no matter what the reason. For me, anything made with love is a treasure.

WandaT 04-25-2008 07:40 AM

You can find lots of info here:

msoebel 04-25-2008 10:13 AM

Basically a prayer shawl is a shawl or wrap given to someone else who might need a little encouragement, a little love or some prayer/healing energy. If's not about the religious beliefs of either person or only intended for those who are ill. My grandmother made one for my aunt, just because she was feeling lonely when her dd left for college.

It's a prayer shawl if you call it a prayer shawl.

ARiley 04-25-2008 03:28 PM

As msoebel said, it's a prayer shawl if you call it a prayer shawl, and if you want it to be a prayer shawl. You can consider that it's got your prayers for the person receiving the shawl knitted right into it.

Some people do the prayer shawl thing with spoken prayers over the person receiving it -- which may or may not be to everyone's taste. Other people do their prayer shawls "anonymously," you might say -- praying for the wellbeing of whoever receives the shawl, no matter who it is and they may not even know the recipient. There are a lot of ways to do prayer shawls.

You don't even have to call it a prayer shawl for it to carry your good thoughts for the person. You might make a shawl for a friend & call it a friendship shawl. Or you could just knit it up, thinking good thoughts about someone the whole time, and call it "the shawl I made for you just because."

(I've got one of those on the needles right now.)

LilHuskiesFootBallMom 04-25-2008 03:55 PM

I would assume the same thing that makes the items i make for preemies "Frigga Blessed" as one of the higher ups in my Tribe say... when I work on preemie items, I ask my patron Goddess, Frigga (goddess of Home and Hearth, the All Mother) to watch over the little ones that recieve the items and to help them heal and grow.

Alyce 04-25-2008 11:37 PM

What a beautiful thought. I am a retired neonatal nurse and know how appreciative parents are to get hats or other knitted items
Bless you.

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