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anarkospiritual

God, Prayer etc.

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Nov. 20th, 2006 | 08:39 pm
posted by: ichzitterenicht in anarkospiritual

I'm definitely one who believes in a divine power of some sort, but I find it hard to see where and how that power affects things. When I try to think of an impersonal/ clockmaker type God, I wonder, if you have the power to create something like... well, the universe, why create it, and just leave it alone? Why leave humanity to its own devices, when we clearly haven't a clue what we're doing?

Somtimes, I just try to ignore the question all together, but inevitably, (mostly in times of hardship) I come back to the question, mostly through prayer. But there's a kind of hipocracy to prayer. When you pray for something and it comes to fruition, it's God's doing. But, if it doesn't, "it wasn't meant to be" or "God works in mysterious ways" or any other of the rediculous phrases that people dredge up to brush away the issue.

So, again, I wonder, why do I return to prayer? Is it just that when I feel helpless, I don't know where to turn, or is it something deeper, like God?

These are obviously big questions and, regardless of the answers, are pretty central to "spirituality" I seem to have a different answer for myself every day.

But, I guess I wanted to see how (or if) others of you answer these questions.

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Comments {10}

algizshield

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from: algizshield
date: Nov. 21st, 2006 02:06 am (UTC)
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It seems you believe in a god that is seperate from it's creation, and has human interests at heart.

Perhaps you should question how likely the existence of such an entity is. Doesn't the universe seem a bit sophisticated for that kind of thing?

I believe in the divine, and the pervasive presence of "intelligence" in the universe. This intelligence is not seperate from matter, and does manifest "supernaturally". It is not a singular entity with an ego or vested interest anything. It is vast, multiplicitous and omnipresent, and our human concsciousness is "like" it.

Paganism is the collection of forces, symbols and interactions that describe this divinity in a human context.

Sometimes, actions like "prayer" work. But it's the same thing as "casting a spell", or deciding to do something and then doing it. God isn't granting your prayers, rather you are harnessing already existing energies/ideas/actions and directing them. If your prayers fail, it is the failure of your intention, much like a misfiring weapon, or an attempt to catch an object moving through the air but failing. Just get better at it.

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anfalicious

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from: anfalicious
date: Nov. 21st, 2006 01:20 pm (UTC)
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The last part is exactly what I was going to say.

I seperate my ideas about possible deities, and the efficacy of prayer and meditation. I pray to certain gods, but I don't instantly assume that it is those gods granting wishes. Prayer and meditation have been effective enough in my life for me to believe in it, but I have no idea if that is because certain gods were granting my prayers, whether I'm being granted some personal strength because I pray to those gods, or am being protected by them, or whether it is just through the power of positive thought, and my prayers becoming self fulfilling prophecies. Each one of these has varying degrees of likeliness, but none can completely discount the other, so in the end I just do what I do, believe what I believe, and it all works out :)

That kind of sums up my whole spirituality though, I make shit up that sounds good to me and run with it. My life is pretty damn good right now, much better than it was as a Catholic, atheist or agnostic, so I assume that I'm doing something right. Even if that something is just putting myself in a more postive frame of mind.

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Matt Peters

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from: ichzitterenicht
date: Nov. 21st, 2006 02:09 pm (UTC)
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This is what I believe (or at least have believed until I started questioning it):

I don't believe in a god who is separate from its creation, but I do believe it has not only human interests, but interests of all living beings at heart, kind of like a Gaia with self conciousness. I believe that we all have a "divine spark" within us since we are part of that creation. I sort of see it like Jung's collective conciousness, but with volition. If we listen to that, we get all the answers we need. But, sometimes our emotion and "reason" which, when not balanced with that force, can get in the way of it so we don't hear it correctly. It's a "still small voice" that is constantly speaking to us through our intuition and through others, but it is up to us to figure out exactly what it is saying.

I also believe, that when you believe something, it becomes true in a sense. So, on the subject of gods, since many people believe or believed in those gods, they exist, and they are all manifestations of that one force. Kind of like in Hinduism. There are many hindu gods, but they are all manifestations of the OM.

Does this make sense?

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algizshield

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from: algizshield
date: Nov. 23rd, 2006 01:33 am (UTC)
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Yes, that makes sense, but it's hard to connect what you've said here to the problem you pose in your original post. It seems like you actually know the answers to your own question.

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(no subject)

from: turquoiselady
date: Nov. 21st, 2006 06:01 am (UTC)
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prayer for me is like many other things: there is no ultimate guarantee that it will work. however, prayer does give me the sense of not being alone. partly, it is much like speaking to a friend, or parent: sometimes they'll do the job for you and help you, sometimes they'll encourage you so you have the courage to go through with it, or bear with it (depending on the situation), comfort you, and sometimes they'll just listen - but in any case, i'm not alone.
Gd for me is the One and the Many; one essence, many faces, many names; personal and universal, transcendant and immanent at once.

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Nina

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from: ostara_child
date: Nov. 21st, 2006 02:48 pm (UTC)
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I have a hard time with prayer too. But there is one thing that has helped with my relation to the divine: the idea that God/Goddess/Universe doesn't have a human agenda. Ie: we aren't the center of the universe. It creates a bigger image for me of how all things are interconnected. Sure we are part of the big picture but we certainly aren't IT. Of course, my inner athiest loves this idea, and my inner pagan is gleefully chuckling, but best, my inner christian is relaxing her tight little grip on my spirituality. I still don't really pray. But the Quakers (I'm Quaker by family) believe that there is that of God in everyone. Why I bring this up is because if that's true, one thing you might try is talking to yourself or the people in your life, and you are then talking to God through them, and you are relating to God through them. Prayer doesn't have to be about asking for things. Sometimes I find my troubles are helped if not illiminated by even just acknowledging them and taking the steps I know and learn to work through them.

I hope this is helpful, useful, or even just the slightest bit interesting...in any way, it was nice communicating to the divine in you *smile*.

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Matt Peters

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from: ichzitterenicht
date: Nov. 21st, 2006 03:15 pm (UTC)
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I've been going to the local Friends Meeting in my area for a while now, and I consider myself a non-Christian Quaker. So, I am familiar with that idea. I kind of think I was a Quaker before I knew I was one. :)

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xIt Never Rainsx

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from: xfotisx
date: Nov. 23rd, 2006 02:09 pm (UTC)
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*this is a comment to the original post*

thanks

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xIt Never Rainsx

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from: xfotisx
date: Nov. 23rd, 2006 02:05 pm (UTC)
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Maybe prayer is not a means to an end but both the means and the end. An action in itself. In that sense, it doesn't matter if what we pray for comes to us, as long as we raise ourselves to the spiritual template of praying. But when we pray in order to ask for something, isn't it rather immature and childish? Like some people pray to pass exams, job promotions, even a new TV. 'God' couldn't hear such demands, I think it's more about the quality of the heart when we pray for something... maybe that creates something that echoes to the 'divine'...

Moreover, if one prays (which I don't), they shouldn't pray only in times of hardship, according to my humble opinion.

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god is everything

from: anonymous
date: Jan. 24th, 2007 10:28 pm (UTC)
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if god is "all-knowing", and the only true way to "know" something is to be it, than god must be Everything, including prayers...

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