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30684"Is not Prayer also a study of truth"?

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  • Mike helsher
    Feb 14 8:21 AM
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      "And what greater calamity can fall upon a nation, than the loss of
      worship? Then all things go to decay. Genius leaves the temple, to
      haunt the senate, or the market. Literature becomes frivolous. Science
      is cold. The eye of youth is not lighted by the hope of other worlds,
      and age is without honor. Society lives to trifles, and when men die,
      we do not mention them."

      Often times on this here e-list I've taken to a one sided extreme the
      idea that "If you bring forth what is within you, then what is within
      you will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, then
      what you do not bring forth, will destroy you", and used it as an
      excuse to blather my own dark side out into cyber-space: Partly in
      fear of being destroyed by it (evil often dies in the light of
      exposure) and partly out of self righteous contempt for not having had
      a cushy fun all expence payed life. And also, partly out of self
      righteous evangelical type moralism: in that I think I'm gonna hold up
      a mirror that will reflect everyone elses double, in hope of saving
      the world.

      The above gives broader meaning to the line in an Indigo Girls song:
      "...darkness has a hunger thats insatiable, and lightness has a call
      thats hard to hear..."

      So recently, out of goofy curiosity, I decided that I might try on
      this "Prayer" idea again. Tried it in many different ways over the
      years: from the "I'll never drink again, I promise" prayer to the
      porcilen God, to all out emotional episodes native American style, and
      everything in between.

      I've always liked the idea that Prayer was about asking questions, and
      that meditation was about listening for the answers, without having
      any connections to any dogma - relates to the idea of a lemniscate in
      motion, I think. And also the ideas of "Living Thinking" residing in
      the question, and "open hearted listening".

      Anyway, I noticed that something was a little blaa... in my life. So
      while I was away on business, I decided to pop out a little formal
      prayer before hitting the hey. Which consisted of me on one knee
      saying "well, I don't know what I'm praying to, and I might be crazy
      for doing it... but ahhh.... thanks! ok ...goodnight!"

      I wont go into detail, but I will say that I'm a bit stunned at what a
      little gratitude can bring into my life.

      I've always been intriuged by the style of some of RS's verses: "I
      look into the world, in which the sun is shining, in which the stars
      are sparkling, in which the stones repose...." and the give and take
      that can take place, from a thinking perspective. And my little
      experience of actually practicing eurythmy, brings the physicial
      aspects of movement and sound into a completely new realm of
      thinking...for me anyways.

      In one way I could simply say that prayer is about action, and that
      meditation is about receiving. That would be great for my newagey self
      that likes to float around on fantacy and pink clouds and the like.
      But life is indeed complicated. My wife is studying Biology and OMG
      the process that takes place in the tiny mitacondria (sp?) to create
      ATP's that give us energy is absolutely mind boggling! and leaves
      alot of questions for the mind to ponder, if were not addicted to the
      religion of scientism.

      And the POF? ...now there's a prayer man! A very complicated one
      though, like the mitacondria process. Takes the intellect to its
      boundries, while leaving the idea of thinking as boundless...

      I do value the idea of a workout for the intellect. But I believe also
      that I am slightly gifted in the realm of understanding metaphorical
      meaning. I need both, I think... paints a picture in my mind of
      Michaels battle with the dragon.

      But then again, it's not all about me...is it? I mean, there's
      you...and the "I" of the other....

      I've always loved this quote from Emerson. Which puts into words
      romantically what Rudolf Steiner articulates with so much pain staking
      logic in the POF:

      "The reason why the world lacks unity, and lies broken and in heaps,
      is, because man is disunited with himself. He cannot be a naturalist,
      until he satisfies all the demands of the spirit. Love is as much its
      demand, as perception. Indeed, neither can be perfect without the
      other. In the uttermost meaning of the words, thought is devout, and
      devotion is thought. Deep calls unto deep. But in actual life, the
      marriage is not celebrated. There are innocent men who worship God
      after the tradition of their fathers, but their sense of duty has not
      yet extended to the use of all their faculties. And there are patient
      naturalists, but they freeze their subject under the wintry light of
      the understanding. Is not prayer also a study of truth, — a sally of
      the soul into the unfound infinite? No man ever prayed heartily,
      without learning something. But when a faithful thinker, resolute to
      detach every object from personal relations, and see it in the light
      of thought, shall, at the same time, kindle science with the fire of
      the holiest affections, then will God go forth anew into the creation."

      Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nature.