Something About Prayer

"We are the cold spring water that is poured, and we are the jug", says the Guru-ji. Can such wisdom be sustained in action, outside of the retreat and the bed of nails, in the heat of production? Disconnecting from the race is not the answer; bringing the ice-pure spring water into the marketplace and the workshop and the marriage bed is.

A kind of division of duties is the belief -- I will handle the noise and chatter of the trading floor; and my creation of God will handle my spiritual well-being. A solution to a problem, an age old response to the confusion of "being one facing in two directions". Since it tears us in half to have to know two different things at once, two choices of action, two different realities, two beings Being, two partridges in the same pear tree -- surrender consists of letting one of them go.

The catch comes when, having dropped one, or adopted a third one that ignores both ( I can't love Sally AND Jane so I'll withdraw from women as a rule) the solution itself attracts an opposite which forms a new conflict (I'm a confirmed bachelor who is falling in love). Solving confusions of direction by getting off the road is an age-old, popular form which simply does not work very well. Yet every human being in the world carries a score of major problems overlaid with solutions, held still against the storm of conflict and in turn inducing further stresses.

Electing God as an equal partner in the firm of Self Incorporate has similar liabilities. It invites us to lower our direct experience of the world in its myriad tossings, because it is in His hands. It invites us to withdraw from feeling the pangs of others and the hungers around us because they are the will of Another. And although it is attractive to have someone to share responsibilities with, it requires a sense of "Glad I didn't do it" and "Leave it to George", a faltering of the clear light of total responsibility beyond the edges of clear thought.

There's the rub. Being responsible for more than you can clearly see. Since it is "out there", and not clear to us, it must be in some Other's hands. Logical except for the prior retreat from Self that left those storms and distant views out there on the dim horizon, fully created and abandoned. Well, the me I'm being NOW isn't big enough to have created them so they must be God's. Maybe He can help Me. Let us pray. Or let us look with the certainty that we can see whatever is there, and that we are only visiting our own factory no matter how extra-terrestrial the workings of it are. Abandoned creations are angry orphans -- they knock harder and harder until the portals succumb.

We beg for the courage to do what we believe is right: God grant me the serenity, the knowledge, the courage...what is going on here? Why would a man pray for a quality he "thought" was right to have, even though he was not feeling it?

If we want the courage to act we must pray to whatever god seems most believable and then assume the position of the listener, become the God and grant the wish. Because the wish is never going to occur from any other source no matter how devoutly I protest my need to the Universe. The fulfillment of prayer comes surely when it comes from the hands of the prayer.

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