Fruitless prayers

  • Episode 92
  • 05-12-2022
  • 10 Min Read
Fruitless prayers

This story is related to a chapel near Heathrow Airport. Many pilots used to come to this chapel before they reported at the airport. One fine day when the chaplain there saw a few of them together, he asked them some questions.

“Have you studied aeronautical engineering?” “Yes!” they replied. He continued to ask a few more questions like, ‘What happens if the engine of an aircraft fails, while flying’, ‘What happens if heavy lightning strikes?’ Then came the question, “Who really established all these universal laws?” “God!” The pilots had no doubt.

“Does God violate the laws He Himself has established?”

They all understood what the chaplain meant. The chaplain again asked, “What would have been the nature of this universe, if God had been granting every human prayer?”

He further said that if their prayers are for the necessary will to handle situations of crises, God might grant them gracefully. There are no standalone rules in this universe and so any change done somewhere results in corresponding ripples that spread all over the universe.

There are a few big pieces of thought here. One is that a prayer may not change any law of nature on a permanent basis. The next is that all developments in this universe are mutually connected. Physics knows that the light from a candle reaches the edge of this universe, if there is one like that. The fact that we can’t feel it beyond a definite distance does not at all matter. No small thing is unimportant here. See how the second world war began. It all began the moment the heir to Austro – Hungarian kingdom was shot dead. A cause need not necessarily end up with an immediate effect. Also, all that happens here belongs to an ever-continuing cause and effect chain. And all that happens and everything that exists are well in the most appropriate slots of time and space.

All that happens in life are only part of it – be it episodes of uneasiness or soft composure. What we call obstructions in life are to be considered chances to grow empowered. The ability of a tree to withstand winds is likely to be poor, if it hadn’t any wind experiences in the past. There, its roots stay on the surface and the tree easily falls at a small push.

There were two ascetic friends, who lived close in their ashrams, in the forest. Both of them planted one olive plant each. One of them prayed for rain and he got it; he prayed for light and he got it. He asked for snow and he got that too. The plant stood glittering in the sun. But, after a few days, it began to wither. Quite surprised, this ascetic went to his friend to see if his plant also was withering. But, ‘no’; it was found to be healthy and vibrant. This ascetic didn’t at all prayed for any favours. He trusted in the appropriateness of Providence.

Our future may seem to be pre planned or pre decided. But the purpose of life here is doing our karma. That is, handling situations the way they come and go.

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