Friday, March 2, 2012

Thoughtful prayers and prayerful thoughts


I am a Christian and I share my views from a Christian perspective. Since I was born and raised in India prior to migrating to U.S., my thoughts are also deeply influenced by the Eastern and Hindu spirituality.

What’s prayer? Prayer is a communion and communication with the higher being. And, why we pray? Prayer heals. The more we learn about technology and develop our skills, we also learn about the uncertainties and human limitations. Prayer and faith can remove human limitations. It helps one accept reality without pains. Holy Bible says, “Come to Me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).

In the Eastern and Hindu culture prayer and meditation plays a central role. One of the oldest forms of medication reported in human history is in Hindu Vedas dated back in15th century BCE. Subsequently, meditation spread in the Taoist China and Buddhist India around 5th and 6th century BCEs by the influence of the Vedas.

The repetitive, rhythmic chants and offerings have its own healing power. Religious practices like Orthodox Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, and Taoists follow this tradition. There are several references on mediation and prayer; hāgâ (means to sigh or murmur, but also to meditate) in Hebrew Bible, dhyaana in Buddhism and in Hinduism are two typical examples.

Atheists may have a concern on prayer to a higher being. But they can always focus on meditation which is generally an inwardly oriented, personal practice, which individuals do by themselves.

This is Lenten time for Christian around the world; preparation of the believer—through prayer, penance, repentance, almsgiving, and self-denial. Let it not be a ritual.

Let’s offer the best to the world, selflessly.

5 comments:

Cassie said...

What a beautiful intention to have, to offer the best to the world, selflessly!

Dr George Easaw said...

Good writing boss. Dhyaana is what you are mentioning, right ?

Expect firing from salim and co.. :-)

ge..ttn3 ouregai

skymom81 said...

And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words.
Matthew 6:7

Do not confused! There is a difference in 'spirituality'
and accepting that Jesus Christ is the only way to be in the presence of a Holy and just 'higher being' in an after life. His WORD says so. It became flesh and dwelt among us. He died in our place because we are unholy. Only He can make us holy. Read the whole book!

Rajan said...

> Prayer and faith can remove human limitations.

Yes it can for some. But assuming that that is the only way, as a lot of religious folks do, is simply and deliberately choosing to be misinformed. There are many, many atheists who have overcome limitations. Einstein is one of the most recognisable ones.

> It helps one accept reality without pains.

I am not trying to be rude, but so does smoking pot.

At the end of the day, every individual has to find (for himself/herself) what works for them. For some the power to overcome problems and limitations may come from within, for others it may come through a nudge from friends and family, and for some others it may be religion, god or their community. And for many others it may never happen.

My problem with people with religious convictions is not their conviction per se, but rather their assumption that because it worked for them, it will work for everyone - their refusal to understand that people are different, their backgrounds are different, their outlook on life is different, the way each one deals with problems is different, they all have their own problems and perceive their personal problems as (irrespective of whether that perception is accurate or not) as particularly unique to themselves.

Trying to beat scripture into them may work, but more often than not I would hazard a guess that it does nothing. I feel sorry for the (financially) poor boobs who relentlessly throw hard-earned money into the coffers of churches, temples and mosques.

Saju Skaria said...

Rajan, great sharing. I was offering one of the ways, not necessarily applicable to all. It all depends on one's convictions.