The problem with prayer

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The problem with prayer it gives the believer the false belief that he/she is actually doing something. It satisfies a brief need to do something which should be satisfied by action, not prayer. I submit that if people who pray knew it was futile, they might actually go out and volunteer or make a donation that would really help society. I would rather see action than people on their knees talking to an imaginary friend.

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Falkenbird
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Mar. 13, 2011 4:37 pm

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'Awesome Holy Host Whose Name I Do Not Know'

'Hallowed Breath of Life'

'Ocean of Most Wholesome Love'

... for me, these represent powers of creation
I cannot begin to name, define or even comprehend
beyond this moment of perception ... not 'imaginary friends'.

Sometimes, the best action is inaction. Try telling that
to a runaway train, banging into and breaking everything
as it rolls on down the tracks and off into who knows where

... and give thanks that someone like me can find peace
and true ground in such a prayer - so maybe I can contribute
something of value to this culture beyond the confines of
my own obcessive, regressive, destructive personality.

Food banks and soup kitchens are good - they have served me well
over the years. I give back in every way I can, and will continue to so do.

That said, first and foremost ... this is where I stand in prayer ...:

Heaven ... Earth ... Breath of Life

... in this moment i stand,
held by heaven holding earth
... I am horizon embracing earth
in all ... i feel the embrace of heaven
... surrounding ... pervading all ...
large and small, in every atom, every star
... near and far away ... throughout the night,
every day, lifewinds blow through with every breath.

I live ... I die ... One breath at a time
... winds of life keep carving this passage
through me ... life waters continue to flow

... I give thanks ... ask only for guidance
to be worthy of this gift ... to live it well
... in peace ... this is the ground of being
for me - whatever I think, feel, say or do.

...this doesn't seem futile to me, though granted,
if 'its all in the mind' anyway, maybe its a way to
focus imagination/intention for positive purpose,
life and good health ... especially if you live
on that slender threshold between life and death
(( ... who does not ...? )) ... awareness of
and gratitude for the breath of life itself
becomes paramount - even singular ... as does
the ability to relax ... to let go and let flow
... which I find vital and necessary
to live in any kind of health.

k. allen's picture
k. allen
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Nov. 19, 2012 11:57 pm

What is this, "New Age Night"?

Steven.PBarrett
Joined:
Nov. 1, 2010 10:01 am

Expressing gratitude, thanks and desire for the good of others can never be a bad thing, even if it goes unheard.

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Laborisgood
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Thank you, Laborisgood! Considering the 'age' we've been coming through, I'm not so sure something 'new' would be such a bad thing ... then again, word has it, 'there is nothing new under the sun' ... so, whatever it is - call it what you will - this approach truly is helpful to me.

k. allen's picture
k. allen
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Nov. 19, 2012 11:57 pm

Let's give believers the benefit of the doubt as to whether a god, or a responsive universe, exists, and assume He, She, It, does exist, just for the sake of my question— that is, to ask, What makes believers think a supernatural being/thing with omniscience needs prayers to rescue whatever it is they think needs rescuing? Doesn't their god already know what's needed?

What makes believers think a god, or the universe, needs to be thanked? Does that god, or that supposed all-knowing universe, already know your heart, without your getting on your knees and making a fool of yourself? ;-)

If I were God, or the Goddess, I think I'd see those folks who take action in support of the oppressed, the poor, the war-ravaged, without a thought about Me watching from above, as sending the most moving of prayers. Isn't to act, to pray?

Zenzoe
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

“….. your Father knows what you need before you ask him.

Pray then like this:

….. your will be done …..” - Matt 6:8-10

On one hand “your will be done” seems just a lazy cop-out of a prayer, but on the other hand it may be the most enlightened.

Of course, Jesus was also rebuking those who utilize boisterous public prayer as a means of showing their piety to the rest of the world. Would not a God already know their true piety within their heart before they put their proud religious peacock feathers on display? A selfish-minded prayer intended to raise you up at the expense of others is not much of a prayer is it? That's more of a human foible than an expression of thanks and love.

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Laborisgood
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

I have no problem giving thanks.

Everything I have is given - including life -
and could be taken, just as easily. Who knows,
maybe gratitude serves the server more than
the served. Here in the quantum soup,
reciprocity is inherent (seems to me.)

For me, its habitual - at the root, I would rather appreciate
and give thanks for life's (mixed) blessings, than take anything
for granted. If I take anything, I want it to be _responsibility_
for what I think/feel/say/do.

Truly, who can name the immensity of creation in a word?
...only the word of life itself - spoken through the lives
unfolding of every living thing ... written in the stars ...

So many seem to need to hang it on a godhead.

...oh well, "narrow the way ... few there are that find it ..."

So, is it a responsive universe?

...i'd say, probably, depending on what is
projected. Here in the quantum soup, where
attention seems to calm the chaotic burble,
potential is inherent ... (seems to me.)

So, who, or what guides?

...call it what you will - or not.
For me, the lifeline is one breath
... one breath at a time ....

I embrace the breath of life (sometimes consciously)
... reach for true ground with every breath ...
keep my heartsong alive ...

Can anyone say where it goes?

I surrender in prayer and
trust inner vision to guide.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MwHWbsvgQUE

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k. allen
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Nov. 19, 2012 11:57 pm

... ... ...

k. allen's picture
k. allen
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Nov. 19, 2012 11:57 pm
Quote k. allen:

...

So, is it a responsive universe?

...i'd say, probably, depending on what is
projected. Here in the quantum soup, where
attention seems to calm the chaotic burble,
potential is inherent ... (seems to me.)

I am no more convinced by New Age fantasies than any other religious fantasies. But we've had this discussion before: http://www.thomhartmann.com/forum/2013/11/what%E2%80%99s-matter-supernat...

Zenzoe
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
"Isn't to act, to pray?"

I would say, most certainly ... my prayer is constant. Action taken (hopefully mindful) compels its shape and substance (actions, louder than words). Again, sometimes the best action is inaction ... a personal choice - and responsibility to know the difference - or at least, to acknowledge a need to learn and practice more deeply. Regarding _fantasy_ (i'll read that link, thanks - and I do appreciate your innate pragmatism, ZenZoe - wonderful wake-up call!) So far, fantasy/imagination have been a valued part of my life. I don't presume to know what is real or true for anyone. I can't even pin that down for myself ... so, I just accept life as it comes to me, and do the best I can to live in good health, serve the song of life and walk in peace, one breath at a time ....

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k. allen
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Nov. 19, 2012 11:57 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VlOxlSOr3_M&feature=player_embedded

...thank you ZenZoe, I have not laughed that hard in a long time!

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k. allen
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Nov. 19, 2012 11:57 pm

This one is funny too: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xPXMsnbSJ4c

Notice how nobody's laughing, knowing it has to be a prank. Oye, the gullibility of people...

Zenzoe
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

... whew! I think I just split a seem ... now, to rent the veil on illusions that invite/compel hatred and war.

...let me see now ... where to begin ... how about this notion:

'I can do whatever I want, however I want, with no concern
for impact on others, and never have to face any consequences.'

... 'coal rollers' for example ... y'know, they're just havin' fun!
Maybe I just need to lighten up! I'd drop 'em down a mine shaft
and leave them there for a while ... now, that's not very nice,
is it. Those nice boys don't deserve to be treated that way,
...do they! And what about that girl on the road who likes
to smoke, (wearing almost nothing in the high noon heat)
... why, wasn't she just asking for it?

I had a dream recently:

The air patrol was targeting me - all the way up the sidewalk at the
family home. I barely ducked their fire. Something I said caught
their attention - seems like I spoke their language, inviting respect.

So we talked. I told them what had happened to the women in their lives
... all the way from the cradle ... (they had no way of knowing - off
working hard, going to war, doing what men must do). When they realized,
they turned to the women with kindness rather than blame and retribution.

I know it was 'just a dream' but, it seemed to me,
everything got happier and more peaceful all around.

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k. allen
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Nov. 19, 2012 11:57 pm

I'm not sure what you're saying, K. Allen, but I am quite sure you have a kindred spirit in Sparrow, whose writings appear in The Sun magazine from time to time. An example, here: http://thesunmagazine.org/issues/447/the_winter_of_my_discontent

Zenzoe
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Thanks Zenzoe ... an old friend has been sending me The Sun for years,
neat connection there ... another good friend gave me a computer, with
the insight it would contribute to healing process from head injuries.
I do give thanks for such friends!

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k. allen
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Nov. 19, 2012 11:57 pm

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