Within the Nag Hammadi Library, thought to have been written during the first two centuries c.e., are ancient texts written by a group who called themselves the Gnostics. June Singer has recast the wisdom found in these texts into a book of hours, the traditional framework for an ongoing meditative practice. Its purpose is to enable readers to maintain an awareness of the presence of the divine mystery within the everyday world.
A Gnostic Book of Hours is divided into eight “offices” or prayers for different parts of the day: matins (midnight), lauds (daybreak), prime (beginning of the workday), terce, sext, none (the “little hours” during the work day), vespers (sundown) and compline (retiring to sleep). For each office, Singer has selected a text for each day of the week. She annotates and interprets the ancient text and makes it relevant to today’s readers.
“There are many paths to the holy,” writes Singer, “and each of us must find our own. Each path leads through differing labyrinthine ways. Yet all come to the same center, the kingdom within. There the nameless One who is called by many names awaits us.”