Monday, September 26, 2005

Prayer

I consider myself a panthiest - that there is some of the truth in every religious and spiritual practice. The details change, but the underlying spirit remains the same. With regard to prayer, some traditions such as Islam have a set format and method of prayer that often brings peace and inspiration to practitioners. For those who are not raised with such a tradition or do not resonate with such a practice, the following may be helpful to you.

One of my spiritual advisors once told me, prayer is a conversation that can happen anywhere.
Not having been raised in a particular tradition, I found the idea of regular, formal prayer and meditation daunting. Also my personality lends itself to weather-like patterns rather than steady, wave-like persistence. So her ideas were particularly reassuring.
This approach was completely different than my image of prayer, from mainstream practices, as asking for help in a set time and way. She said that prayer can happen anywhere - on a bus, while buying groceries, at work, in bed, while walking - and that prayer could be seen as a conversation as a friend about anything. No topic could be seen as too small or insignificant. She said to just start having a conversation when I remember to seek a connection with the spiritual, where ever I am.

With this practice, I find that my relationship with the spiritual can be small, daily, ordinary, and somehow more lasting, infused, and powerful than I had imagined.

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