“The Prayer” The Way of Prayer

The ‘Prayer’ within us naturally seeks wisdom, guidance, help, strength, healing or forgiveness from a sacred being, inner essence, or divine source whose capabilities supersede those of ordinary states of being.

  • Do you receive a special peace and tranquility when you pray?
  • Do you feel that prayer is an essential part of spiritual practice?
  • Do you have a daily prayer for help, guidance or protection from a higher power?
  • Do you believe that there are transcendent beings that can hear your prayers and help you?
Why do we pray? Many of us turn to prayer when we need help with a problem so grave, a situation so complex, an emergency so dire, a relationship so painful, an illness so severe, a pain so excruciating, that we simply cannot solve it ourselves and there is no where else to turn. Prayer activates an aspect of our consciousness that is different than our normal desires, wishes or hopes, for it engages the whole of our being. We put our whole selves into prayer—all of our energy, and our total focus. We mobilize a force within us that has the capacity to communicate with the transcendent dimension.

Our prayers might come in the form of songs, poetry, chanting or even dance. They might be accompanied by music, incense, ritual, or tears. They might be transmitted simply in silence, through focus on our breath, or meditation on a sacred symbol, word or truth. But, for many us, the rote prayers we once memorized, and the tidy beliefs that we were taught as children, no longer hold meaning for us or give us solace. We are haunted by questions that are still unanswered. We doubt the existence of the higher power to whom our parents and clergy taught us to pray; and we are left with the question: When I truly need to pray, to whom, or to what should I pray? We find that we are simply unable to pray fully until we redefine or re-imagine that higher power, that divine being, or that sacred essence with whom we seek to connect.

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