Modern prayer researchers currently identify four modes of prayer used in the west today. Does an additional mode exist? Is there a fifth mode of prayer that allows us to participate in the outcome of the events within our bodies as well as the world around us?
Recent findings in remote temple sites where these traditions remain today, combined with new research into some of the most sacred and esoteric traditions of our past, lead me to believe that the answer is “Yes!”
Much of our conditioning in western traditions for the last one and one half millennia has invited us to “ask” that specific circumstances in our world change through divine intervention; that our prayers be answered. In our well-intentioned asking, however, we may unknowingly empower the very conditions that we are praying to change. For example, when we ask, “Dear God, please let there be peace in the world,” in effect we are stating that peace does not exist in the present.
Ancient traditions remind us that prayers of asking are one form of prayer, among other forms, that empower us to find peace in our world through the quality of thought, feeling and emotion that we create in our body. Once we allow the qualities of peace in our mind and fuel our prayer through feelings of peace in our body, the fifth mode of prayer states that the outcome has already happened.
Quantum science now takes this idea one step further, stating that it is precisely such conditions of feeling that creation responds to, by matching the feeling (prayer) of our inner world with like conditions in our outer world. Though the outcome of our prayer may not yet be apparent in our outer world, we are invited to acknowledge our communion with creation and live as if our prayer has already been answered.
Through the words of another time, the ancients invited us to embrace our lost mode of prayer as a consciousness that we become, rather than a prescribed form of action that we perform upon occasion. In words that are as simple as they are elegant, we are reminded to be “surrounded” by the answer to our prayers and “enveloped” by the conditions that we choose to experience. In the modern idiom, this description suggests to us that to effect change in our world, we are invited to first have the feelings of the change having happened.
As modern science continues to validate a relationship between our thoughts, feelings and dreams with the world that surrounds us, it becomes more likely that a forgotten bridge links our prayers with that of our experience. The beauty of such an inner technology is that it is based upon human qualities that we already possess. From the prophets who saw us in their dreams, we are reminded that in honoring all life, we accomplish nothing less than the survival of our species and the future of the only home we know.
Comparing Modes of Prayer Through the Example of Global Peace
Logic-based prayer: asking for intervention:
1. We Focus upon present conditions where we believe that peace does not exist.
2. We may feel helpless, powerless or angry at the events and conditions that we are witness to.
3. We employ our prayer of asking by inviting divine intervention from a higher power to bring peace to bear upon individuals, conditions and places where we believe that peace is absent.
4. Through our asking, we may unknowingly affirm the very conditions that we least desire. When we say “Please let there be peace,” for example, we are declaring that peace is not present in a particular situation. In doing so, we may actually fuel the condition that we have chosen to change.
5. We continue to ask for intervention until we see the change actually come to pass in our world.
Feeling-based prayer: knowing that our prayer is already answered
1. We witness all events, those of peace and those that we see as the absence of peace, as possibilities without judgement of right, wrong, bad or good.
2. We release our judgement of the situation by Blessing those conditions that have caused us pain. The Blessing does not condone or consent to the event or condition. Rather, it acknowledges that the event is part of the single source of all that is. (Please see the book, Walking Between the Worlds: The Science of Compassion, for details.)
3. By feeling the feelings of our prayer already answered, we demonstrate the ancient quantum principle stating that the conditions of peace within our bodies are mirrored in the world beyond our bodies.
4. We acknowledge the power of our prayer and know (feel) that the focus of our prayer has already come to pass.
5. Our prayer now consists of:
a. acknowledging the peace already is present in our world by living from the knowledge that such changes have occurred.
b. empowering our prayer by giving thanks for the opportunity to choose peace over suffering.
About the Author:
A former Senior Computer Systems Designer for Martin Marietta Aerospace, Computer geologist for Phillips Petroleum and a Technical Operations Manager for Cisco Systems, Braden is now considered a leading authority on bridging the wisdom of our past with the science and peace of our future. Through his journeys into the remote mountain villages, temples and monasteries of times past, Braden marries the wisdom of ancient traditions and modern science to benefit our lives today.
For more information visit: Gregg Braden
It will look like this: The Lost Mode of Prayer – From Intervention to Acceptance