Three persons were walking through the road discussing prayer. The priest among them said that the best prayer is while on knees. May be a temple priest who said that the best prayer is with open hands raised towards heavens. The monk with them said, none of these but lying down on the belly is the best. Hearing this, a man repairing the power line, head down on the post aside the road said, “The best prayer is always when you hang somewhere head down.”
Prayer, it’s a process on which much can be said. Still there is some space for a few aspects. On the one side we have a very reserved God and on the other side we have ever crying humans. Many studies had been done on the efficacy of prayer. The study done by CentraState Healthcare System, the biggest hospital network in New Jersey has invariably stated that prayers found to be making substantial differences in the body. But it is impossible to prove that something happened only because of prayer. During prayer, an energy flow was observed to be happening between points. Some are of the opinion that prayers for others manifest fast.
Once a young aspirant journeyed to an ascetic, crossing a big desert. In the Ashram, he happened to hear his talk. The master there talked on the importance of silence and meditation, thus leading a life of continuous prayer. In the evening the same Guruji asked the young man to join a road work to the next village. The young man asked him if it is not remaining in prayer that is required most. The ascetic replied that with a better relationship with the neighbour, prayers are better. Certainly, the best prayer is improving relationships. One reason is that everything in this universe is part of the bigger Self only and establishing relationships with other elements is another way of getting connected with the whole. At every tomb, the dates of birth and death are marked. In between there would be a dash. The brightness of this dash depends upon the number of relationships one could build in the lifetime.
Both exterior and interior silence is necessary for a genuine prayer. In deep silence, we disappear into the epicentre of our own self and rest there in the void palace of the Highest. In spite of all His three visits to the imperial temple of Jerusalem, the Bible never says that Lord Jesus prayed there. Whenever He wanted to contact ‘His Father’, we read that He retired to virgin mountains and lonely seashores, where silence reigned. The best choice of every Indian sadhak (a spiritual aspirant) is always that lonely forest camps. The purpose of silence is to grow emptiness within, which happens only through the slow dissolution of the ego. When we go deeper into silence, we identify ourselves more with the universe and feel for higher responsibilities. In most of the modern prayer exercises, importance is given not for the healing of the souls but for the generation of psychedelic experiences that are soothing to the minds – hearts do not vibrate. There could be a few exceptions. In an ideal prayer, the subject and the object dissolve into the target and no two – only one remains. There, we never pray for our selfish causes. Prayers with non-directive intention are found to be working best.
Negative thoughts go out and spread self-doubt in others too. It is this hidden agenda (or understanding) of the praying that is going to manifest first. Do not allow others, who do not know how to pray, help you in your needs. It will be more dangerous than entering a lion’s den, unarmed. Be responsible for what you intend rather than continuing to be happy on the profound meaning of those words you have chanted.