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Author Topic: Why we pray?  (Read 5497 times)
HeartShadow - Cutethulhu
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« Topic Start: February 28, 2007, 03:55:44 pm »

Why is it that you pray?  Do you?  If so, to who/Who and why?  How?

What is the point of prayer in your religion?
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« Reply #1: February 28, 2007, 04:09:07 pm »

I'm still figuring a lot of this out.  LOL  The joys of being new on a path.  But I do pray.

At the moment, most of my prayer gets directed to my Patron.  It's...  kind of a lot of things there.  Partly it's kind of an acknowledgement of the relationship, kind of "I know you're still there and I'm thinking of you".  Partly it's honoring Him.  Sometimes it's thanking Him for something, or asking Him for something.

Other deities get thanked/asked as appropriate for the circumstances.  For example, when we had all that ice a week or so back I asked for Hermes to keep an eye on me while I was travelling and thanked Him after I'd gotten through it OK.  (This is part of what I'm still figuring out, Who gets honored when and for what and how and stuff like that.)

The point?  The formality of that method of communication works for me on a religious level, and it seems to be accepted pretty well from the other end.  *shrug*  I resisted the idea of "prayer" for a while, I think because I associated it with something that I felt I was no longer a part of (and vice versa).  But I've decided that really, my brain does work better with some form of structure, and prayer is a part of that (developing) structure.
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« Reply #2: February 28, 2007, 05:55:41 pm »

Hmm.  Good one and a very interesting topic.   Personally, I don't really pray.  I have yet to of found a "Patron" of sorts, so I am not really sure of whom to pray to.

I will say that I do Thank the Gods in general for things that happen, and I would ask the Gods for things that I may need a bit of extra help.

Still trying to figure all this out on my path(s), but I can say that I have not really been into searching for it recently with all that has been going on.
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« Reply #3: March 02, 2007, 08:25:03 am »

Hmm.  Good one and a very interesting topic.   Personally, I don't really pray.  I have yet to of found a "Patron" of sorts, so I am not really sure of whom to pray to.

I will say that I do Thank the Gods in general for things that happen, and I would ask the Gods for things that I may need a bit of extra help.

I was sort of like this. Because I don't really have a set path, I did resist the idea of prayers for a while, but there is just something about praying. Thanks to Shadow's very own FlameKeeping, I pray to the Divine. I pray to the Divine in myself, in others, and the Divine itself. I do believe we are individuals, but I also hold the belief that there is a *piece* of the Divine in us all, hence depending on what I'm praying for, I may pray just to the Divine in myself and of Itself, or to the Divine in others as well.

Edited because I wrote a thought down wrong, and to add a Capital.

I'm not sure if I have explained what I mean as specifically as I would like to, but perhaps I can explain my view further as the discussion continues. I will say though, that FlameKeeping is not actually my path, rather that I am influenced by it, and a lot of the larger beliefs in the system appeal to me (in other words, I'm ecelectic and I steal a bit from FlameKeeping Wink)
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« Reply #4: March 02, 2007, 09:06:41 am »

Why is it that you pray?  Do you?  If so, to who/Who and why?  How?

What is the point of prayer in your religion?

Prayer in FlameKeeping is actually something I'm wrestling with at the moment.  I do pray, but I'm not sure I've explored all the reasons why enough.

I think one of the most important functions of prayer is an opening up.  It's not just to ask for things .. it's to open ourselves up to act FOR the Divine, not just ask it to act for us.
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« Reply #5: March 02, 2007, 09:12:56 am »

I was sort of like this. Because I don't really have a set path, I did resist the idea of prayers for a while, but there is just something about praying. Thanks to Shadow's very own FlameKeeping, I pray to the Divine. I pray to the Divine in myself, in others, and the Divine itself. I do believe we are individuals, but I also hold the belief that there is a *piece* of the Divine in us all, hence depending on what I'm praying for, I may pray just to the Divine in myself and of Itself, or to the Divine in others as well.

I'm curious.  How do you pray to the Divine in others?  I've never heard of that, but it sounds fascinating.
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« Reply #6: March 02, 2007, 09:17:38 am »

Why is it that you pray?  Do you?  If so, to who/Who and why?  How?

What is the point of prayer in your religion?

I'm not really a theist (Im undecided on the existence of Gods), but I do on RARE occasions pray.  I have prayed to random Gods in desperate times, because I figure it cant hurt.  Its essentially purely pragmatic for me, not ideological.  However, in the spirit of Chaos, and thereby experimenting, I have on occasion prayed to my own 'High Self', using a Ceremonial MAgic concept.  It feels different, but I think that may be my own hang up.  So in that sense it's about exploring my own abilitis, and trying to accidentally detect what the structure and properties of prayer are.
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« Reply #7: March 02, 2007, 09:38:58 am »

I'm curious.  How do you pray to the Divine in others?  I've never heard of that, but it sounds fascinating.

Hmmm, how to explain when I don't really "get it" or know quite what I'm doing myself yet? Um, well, prayer requests for instance. We all hold a *piece* or *spark* of the Divine, so when I'm praying for someone who is sick for example, I pray to the Divine, but I also try to pray to the spark of Divine in that person. I pray for them to find strength within themselves for example. This explanation isn't complete, but considering this is something that I'm wrestling with at the moment, it might be the best I can do unless you can frame a specific kind of *challenge* question that will make me think about it a bit more intensively (like I need that Wink). My brain is hurting already.

Am I helping to explain what I mean or making things muddier?
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« Reply #8: March 02, 2007, 12:11:02 pm »

We all hold a *piece* or *spark* of the Divine, so when I'm praying for someone who is sick for example, I pray to the Divine, but I also try to pray to the spark of Divine in that person. I pray for them to find strength within themselves for example.

That's very similar to what I do. Sort of like divine networking.
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« Reply #9: March 02, 2007, 12:13:10 pm »

That's very similar to what I do. Sort of like divine networking.

That's really cool, actually.  I'm going to have to think about that.

Thanks, Ocelot and Jazzie! Cheesy
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« Reply #10: March 02, 2007, 12:19:19 pm »

Why is it that you pray?  Do you?  If so, to who/Who and why?  How?

What is the point of prayer in your religion?

Dang.  You do ask tough questions, don't you?

Like others who have replied, I resisted the idea of prayer for a long time.  Then I realized I was doing it anyway, just not as "prayerfully" as I had been taught as a child.  That is, I don't have a set time when I kneel and cross my hands (literally or figuratively) and say my prayers.

For me, it's more like an ongoing conversation -- often one in which I'm the only one talking, at least apparently.  If/when I get responses, it's never been a voice in my head or anything unambiguous.  Except for one time when someone was singing "You are My Sunshine".  But that could have just been me going nuts.

So, why do I pray?  Sometimes just to say hi.  Sometimes (OK, a lot of times) to ask for help -- strength to get through a difficult situation, wisdom and patience to help me communicate with my kids, help with specific things (new job and finances are big problems right now).  Sometimes to say thank you.  Sometimes to rant or whine.  Often to ask for reassurance.  I'm really terrible about that.  I'm always asking, "Are you really there??"  Interestingly, there's always a response to that one.  Usually in the form of a sign of some sort. Or I could be nuts, as I said.

I dunno.  Still coming to terms with this one, I guess.  So are others, I see. Cheesy
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« Reply #11: March 02, 2007, 11:28:50 pm »

Prayer makes me feel in contact with the traditions of my ancestors. Some of the prayers are the same ones that were said hundreds to over 1,000 or even 2,500 years ago.

It also means that I actually think, praise and honor G-d on a regular basis. I don't pray only when I feel the need. I do it on a regular basis.
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« Reply #12: March 03, 2007, 08:10:28 am »

I was sort of like this. Because I don't really have a set path, I did resist the idea of prayers for a while, but there is just something about praying. Thanks to Shadow's very own FlameKeeping, I pray to the Divine. I pray to the Divine in myself, in others, and the Divine itself. I do believe we are individuals, but I also hold the belief that there is a *piece* of the Divine in us all, hence depending on what I'm praying for, I may pray just to the Divine in myself and of Itself, or to the Divine in others as well.

Edited because I wrote a thought down wrong, and to add a Capital.

I'm not sure if I have explained what I mean as specifically as I would like to, but perhaps I can explain my view further as the discussion continues. I will say though, that FlameKeeping is not actually my path, rather that I am influenced by it, and a lot of the larger beliefs in the system appeal to me (in other words, I'm ecelectic and I steal a bit from FlameKeeping Wink)

I guess for me it is more of a I refuse to pray for something because I see praying as a request "me me me" thing.  Not sure if that sounds right, or is understandable but........   SELFISH.... Thats the word that I am looking for....  Sorry I just woke up.  I understand to pray for others and in a way I guess that I do that for energy or keeping them in my thoughts more, but I can't see praying for myself and things I would want or need.

Hope that clears it up some.. LOL
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« Reply #13: March 03, 2007, 08:37:25 am »

I guess for me it is more of a I refuse to pray for something because I see praying as a request "me me me" thing.  Not sure if that sounds right, or is understandable but........   SELFISH.... Thats the word that I am looking for....  Sorry I just woke up.  I understand to pray for others and in a way I guess that I do that for energy or keeping them in my thoughts more, but I can't see praying for myself and things I would want or need.

Hope that clears it up some.. LOL

Edit:  never mind.  I just woke up too, and said something very silly.
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« Reply #14: March 03, 2007, 10:26:33 am »

Why is it that you pray?  Do you?  If so, to who/Who and why?  How?

What is the point of prayer in your religion?

I pray every night, and every morning. To me it's about building a relationship. Sometimes I don't say much, it's just like "Yo! I'm still here and paying attention. Love you guys!" Sometimes it's far more in-depth than that.

Praying gives me a sense of comfort if I'm having a rough time with something, it makes me feel like everything is going to be OK.
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