What do you associate the word 'prayers' with? What comes to your mind when you think of praying? Do you pray? What are prayers anyway?
Does Prayer Really Work
For a lot of people, praying is when they ask God for something. They want their wishes fulfilled but either there is no one else to turn to or they believe in the higher power, in God, so they pray to God. While it can work, you still need to do it properly for it to bring you what you wish for. Some people pray because of their tradition, so they do it without questioning, they do it because everyone else does it, because they were taught to do so. There are some, though, who pray because they understand the power of prayers and it's not about asking for material things. Praying is one of the ways to get into meditative state, to the alpha brainwave. Praying is a way to connect with the divine. Praying can help you on your spiritual path. And did you know that praying can also be healing, and when done right, it can be sent to heal others as well?
Is Prayer About Communicating with God?
I'm not religious and I'm not really a prayer. I never liked praying when I was growing up. My Muslim mom would make us (me and my brother) pray 5 times a day like normal Muslims. I never saw the point of it. Worse, why pray in a language I don't even understand? Shouldn't it be about me communicating to God? Why would I try to communicate with God in a language I don't speak and in the end, not really communicating? And why 5 times? Also why only at particular times? I never got my answers. In fact, a lot of my questions went unanswered because people were so stuck in traditions and the doctrine that they lost the meaning and wisdom somewhere along the line...a long, long time ago! Telling me I'd go to hell if I didn't do as told didn't help, either. If hell was for bad people, then it wasn't for me, I was so sure I didn't belong in that category. To be honest, at one point my mom hired an Imam to teach us religion at home during the weekend and I managed to piss him off with my questions.
I wasn't being provocative, I just wanted to understand so I asked things like 'if God created everything and everyone, and if God has a plan for everyone, then why would God then make some people 'non-believers' and then send them to hell?', or 'if it's all part of God's plan, then who are you to judge and say anything about other people, so why are you saying who's going to hell and who's not?', etc., etc. I was about 12-13 and I remember both the Imam and mom getting so angry at me. My father simply 'enjoyed the show' and he had fun watching me asking my questions and getting strong reactions instead of an answer. My dad was amused by it all, sometimes, he would pick up where I left and provoked them. He was just having fun teasing people who remember holy scriptures with zero wisdom and take things too literally. The weekend 'schooling' didn't last long, I was too much for the 'teacher'.
Universe and God
I never understood how my father could pray with us and still be a 'Buddhist'. He does go to the mosque, well, he did before all these restrictions we're having globally anyway. He said there was more than one way to reach the divine, the universe, God, and it didn't matter to him if he would join the Muslims and pray with them or go to the Buddhist temples. I took a different road, I would join neither! As a matter of fact, I spent quite a few years of my life running away from religions. I wanted to be spiritual but not religious, and definitely not fanatic. When I began to meditate regularly I didn't base my meditation on religious practices. It was about me and my mind, me finding my peace.
Can Prayers Heal?
Even when it came to healing, I had to choose my own path. My father uses a healing ritual hisRishi master taught him and during the ritual he would recite/chant Buddhist mantras so he would teach me mantras. On the other hand, my mom who heals people by praying (she's quite a powerful prayer) would give me verses from the Quran. You might have guessed, I learned neither! I was basically fed up with all of that. When my father said I was gifted I just had to see it for myself so I had to find someone to heal and see my gift at work, I asked him how, he said I would know how. Although it wasn't much help at the time because I had no clue what I was supposed to do, not technically anyway, I'm glad he gave me that freedom to choose my own path. I chose to lay my hands on people and to my surprise, it worked! Turned out I could naturally channel healing energy to people. And I kept practicing that, in a way,I was also relieved I didn't have to remember any prayers! What can I say? I do have a lazy streak in me!!!
Esoteric Traditions of Prayer
Later when I got to learn about esoteric traditions and as part of the program I also received an initiation in to Reiki tradition, I thought that just suited me perfectly. Although I could already channel the energy, so it wasn't entirely new to me, I also received a few more tools from Reiki tradition to use which come in handy in my practice and I've been pretty happy withall of that. Which means, I have been able to get by very well without praying! However, recently I began to think about prayers again. I've come a long way in my development and growth to understand the true power of words and using the words of power. Think about it, words can make or break a person. Words can curse or cure. Think of how people say things with different tones and how each of the tones makes you feel. Think of circumstances where words uplift you or make you feel even worse. Spells, curses, prayers, praises, compliments, wishes, affirmations... they are all made up using words. So words can hurt or heal, dependingon how you use them. I'm usually careful with what I say to people, I want to be responsible for my words and I want my words to bring out the best in people and in their energy whenever it's possible to do so. But that's not why I began to think about prayers.
Healing Energy Through Prayer
I have a good friend, my soul brother, who is a mighty prayer. We do an exchange now and then when I ask him to pray for me as a way to send me healing energy and I send him healing energy in return. I could feel it when he prayed. What really caught my attention was once when I was in need of help and suddenly I felt a blanket of energy pushing away the dense energy I was fighting. That beautiful, loving and gentle energy pushed away whatever was disturbing me energetically and I could finally sleep that night after feeling like going crazy battling with some invisible energy. I was in awe and it turned out that my soul brother was praying at that time. Ever since, I would pay more attention to the healing energy I receive from people. I could tell when someone prays for me. It feels different from Reiki. Different healing energy has different frequencies, so to speak. I can't say I could detect it every time someone prays for me or sends me other types of healing energy, I think it depends on how I'm feeling and what I'm doing but I often do feel it. When done right, prayers can be powerful and very healing. This, I have come to understand. But it has to be done right!
The Gift of Healing
So I wondered if I had that 'channel' open as well. I mean, if I spent years growing up not realizing I had a beautiful gift of healing, it's likely there are many other things about myself that I didn't know so it was time to know myself a little better and re-discover my true nature, my gifts, talents and abilities. I grew up with prayers, too, I might as well try. So I had an experiment with a friend recently. She's a wonderful healer, herself, and she's also psychic so I asked her to receive. I didn't tell her what I was doing until it was done. I first sent her prayers and then reiki. Not only she could tell there was a difference in the frequency, she could tell which was which and could describe each of them. It was a beautiful experiment. Different frequencies, but both equally powerful! I had another experiment with my 'soul brother' yesterday, same thing. He, too, could feel the difference between the two types of healing energy. So if I was crazy, then I wasn't the only one!
So I have both 'channels' available, then what? Every gift, every tool has its purpose. While they are both healing and powerful, I know that there are times and places where I might prefer one over another. I have an idea of where each would be best to use. Actually, I might be able to use both at the same time in some cases! I'll have to see how I feel with each case and allow my intuition to guide me (although I've never been good at it).
I have to admit, though, that even when I never liked praying very much, I do pray here and there, and I love chanting (singing along) mantras on YouTube, they're so beautiful I can't resist so in a sense I never entirely quit praying. I just didn't like doing things as told without understanding the how's and the why's because the true secret to praying, as with many other things, is your intention and attention. It's about the connection you establish between yourself and the divine. You can pray using your own words or the words that have been used millions of times before as prayers. You can choose a specific time to align with specific energy or anytime you feel like it. You can do it at temples/sacred sites or you can do it at home, or anywhere you are. You have to understand what you're doing and why, the how is the technical side that can be easily learned. I'm not going to bore you with the details here. Besides, it's best to have someone there with you to train you so while I will definitely teach this to people who seek my knowledge and training in the art of healing, I won't bother to describe everything here. It has to be felt. It needs to be experienced. And only then, you will understand the true power of prayers.