THINK about what I just said up there (↑).
Prayer, irrespective of who you pray to (and as such its religious connotation), focuses your brain, and thereby ‘centers you’, for a brief period of time. That is MAGIC. Just that short burst of focus is a form of “Brain Meditation“.
So the reason that so many feel GOOD about praying — and do so immediately afterwards — is because they have just indulged in some “Brain Meditation“.
You can achieve the same succor by just doing any other form of “Brain Meditation“.
As those of you who know me know, I do NOT pray. I do NOT believe in prayer. I think that praying is a superstitious waste of time.
And this from one whose adoptive mother was considered by many, including lots of Western Christians, to possess SUPERNATURAL PRAYING POWERS!
Yep, my adoptive mother, in her latter years, was like a walking-talking ‘Lourdes’. People came to her, often bearing lavish gifts (mainly in the form of expensive chocolates, flowers or pastries), asking her to PRAY on their behalf. I still vividly remember a Director General of UNESCO, a very elegant (and personable) Spaniard, and his wife, coming to visit so that they could ask my mother to PRAY that their son, who was sitting an exam in a few days in order to qualify as a doctor, would do well in the exam. My mother prayed with them and continued to do so afterwards on their behalf. She prayed, unashamedly, to an eclectical pantheon of deities — at least one of them a then living human (Sai Baba). Though she would be mightily offended IF anybody said she was anything but the MOST devout of Buddhists, she when it came to praying, prayed to anyone and anybody that she believed could intercede.
She prayed to the Abrahamic God. She always had a supply of genuine Lourdes Water (which wasn’t that difficult for her given that she lived in Paris (France) and as the extremely indulged wife of a rather rich Ambassador (with multiple pensions) had the resources and contacts to get most things she wanted). She prayed to Hindu gods. She was huge Sai Baba fan who gave Sai Baba a LOT of money over the years.
She believed in prayer. She prayed a LOT. She prayed for me BUT that never worked. Maybe that is when I started to question prayer.
[And there are people, a Catholic bishop here and there and definitely a few Catholic priests, who still pray that I will find my way … ]
To me the pope praying AFTER an earthquake is just STUPID. He should have been praying BEFORE to avoid it from happening.
And PLEASE do not give me grief that you can’t pray to God to micro-manage and intercede. IF so, why the heck was the Pope leading 11,000 in prayer yesterday. Give me a break.
But, as you also know I do not interfere or object to the religious beliefs of others — even if they are totally contrary to what I believe in (which is NOTHING). So I am happy that people pray. They are indulging in some “Brain Meditation” and that is GOOD. I am all in favor.