Have you ever considered that prayer is 2 parts–what you ask for and why you ask for it?
4 years ago
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I feel that prayer is of four parts; besides what and why, we must know how to hear the divine answer, and how to act to attain the results. If we pray for peace, He does not pour down peace from the air.
But the essential part beyond all these four is to express thankfulness to the One True God who bestows on mankind all the good things from eternity to eternity.
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Many people don’t believe in prayer, because they don’t know exactly what it is. Followers of various religions cannot find the teachings of their Prophets, so they practice religion by imitation, imagination, man’s interpretation…which result in nothing. And therefore the non-believers ridicule prayer and religion in general. Religion is not tradition, it is divine education. Let us conduct our religious life, and let them criticise, based on reading the authentic Scriptures.
Now, when I pray for peace, I read the revealed prayers for this purpose.
I meditate on these sacred verses.
I read the Holy Books for divine guidance.
I also read other books for broader reference.
I practice the divine guidance, not only at any peace conferences, but in my daily life.
And, because the results are entirely evident to my peaceful mind, so I say prayers in praise of God every day.
Here is one brief example:
“I bear witness to Thy unity and Thy oneness, and that Thou art God, and that there is none other God beside Thee. Thou hast, verily, revealed thy Cause, fulfilled Thy Covenant, and opened wide the door of Thy grace to all that dwell in heaven and on earth. Blessing and peace, salutation and glory, rest upon Thy loved ones, whom the changes and changes of the world have not deterred from turning unto Thee, and who have given their all, in the hope of obtaining that which is with Thee. Thou art, in truth, the Ever-Forgiving, the All-Bountiful.” (Baha’u’llah, Baha’i Prayers, p. 5)
“It is easy to read the Holy Scriptures, but it is only with a clean heart and a pure mind that one may understand their true meaning. Let us ask God’s help to enable us to understand the Holy Books. Let us pray for eyes to see and ears to hear, and for hearts that long for peace.” (Abdu’l-Baha, Paris Talks, p. 56)
We will pray that the ensign of international peace may be uplifted and that the oneness of the world of humanity may be realized and accomplished. All this is made possible and practicable through your efforts. May this American democracy be the first nation to establish the foundation of international agreement. May it be the first nation to proclaim the universality of mankind. (Abdu’l-Baha, The Promulgation of Universal Peace, p. 36)
These are not all the Baha’i teachings about prayer. It is only a brief example of my shallow learning about praying for peace.