I’ve ceased praying for a while, again, after intermittent prayers. Time and again, which is pretty often, I lose hope. Having prayed for what I would say is a significant amount of time and see that nothing has changed for the better, I would fall into the ‘routine’ of reciting occasional prayers. It’s kinda like a sputtering engine. The rationale being, why put so much effort into praying when still, things do not turn out well ? Why ?
The urgency to produce results, to ensure an obstacle-free life, to have miracles is the first mistake. Prayers should not and cannot be hurried. When the time is right, when your heart has changed through prayers, when there is that inner change happening in you, you will see the outer changes. You see, Most times, I can’t even get past 3 months of praying every single day. I may be living in the era of instant gratification, but there are some things in life that just cannot be instant. Life cannot be instant.
The next fallacy is believing that prayers will ensure an obstacle-free life for me. That the force around me is so strong that all will yield and make my life, not just trouble-free but easy. Nobody is without obstacles ; it is how we deal with what is blocking us that makes some lives worth living. Because of this belief, I stopped praying. The question is did my stopping of prayers turn my life for the better ? Should that be the case, stopping prayers would be the right move. You guessed it right. It didn’t become better. In fact, I pretty much speedily got worse. Why are changes for the good slow to come yet changes for the worse quick to prevail ?
Sigh. This is even worse. Who am I to believe that with my utterance of prayers, I could produce miracles, let alone a miracle. Perhaps in some deeper part of me, I have this egocentric thought that I am THAT powerful, I can be THAT powerful. Hah !! Talk about setting up for failure. I’ve obviously set myself for big time failure, no wonder I just could not maintain my prayers long enough to routinize it. Is the miracle the result I am hoping to produce ? I guess you could say that, given the fact that I was hoping for an instant solution, winning the lottery. I can see you ROTFLOL and I can’t say I’m surprised.
So what is the purpose of this piece of writing ? Remember things got readily worse after I stopped praying ? Perhaps, my praying actually protected me from worst things to come and there I was hoping for good things to come. Being safe and sound is probably the best thing one can hope for in life. I had that and yet I wanted something else. Therefore, the only other action to take was to start praying again. How many times do I have to start and restart prayers before I truly know its importance ? Hopefully this is the last. I hope you will start praying with me, for yourself, your family, for your friends, for all beings. I started my first prayer this morning. This time, I have to do it without all the expectations and burdens thrown out of the window. Wish me luck !?
I end here with the Metta prayer ;
May I be happy
May I not be unhappy
May I be without enmity
May I be without malevolence
May I be without physical or mental suffering
May I be happy in both body and mind
May I be able to protect myself from danger.
May all beings who are subject to birth, aging, disease and death, be happy
May they be without enmity
May they be without malevolence
May they be without physical or mental suffering
May they be happy in both body and mind
May they be able to protect themselves from danger.