Prayer and Meditation, Action or Inaction

Many people use prayer, contemplation, meditation, silent endurance, and self-reflection as a form of communication to what they believe to be a superior of higher power. The religious practices have provided hope for people since the beginning of time. But no proof has been found to support the ideas that an action is taking place when performing prayer or forms of meditation. According to the definition of an action, in order for one to take place, there has to be a response. Since there has been no evidence that God in deed is a reality then is it really an action?

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When communicating with God through prayer, meditation, or any other form of contemplation one does act, with love, faith, and hope. Therefore, it should be categorized as an action. Although no one has proven a greater being, who is to say there is not? These forms of prayer or meditation help ones spiritual being and come to peace. Whether or not everyone agrees on the belief of the faith of others, they should be respected and transcended in the heart and mind. Prayer has been described as “an exercise in dialogue with a divine being that holds simultaneously great hope and immeasurable risks. ” (Guiber).

Every one seeks what is true in order to believe. In other words, they have to see it to believe it. Nonetheless, truth, is not needed for an action to take place. Faith in someone is all you need when performing the action of prayer and meditation. All the religious forms of prayer and spiritual reading play an important part in the practice of the action. They supply the material that stimulates the activity of the will. If properly used, affective prayer grants many benefits to the soul. Psychologically, it provides a delightful relief from all the labor that may affect one on a day-to-day basis.

It also prevents believers from becoming too engaged and over-thinking upon misfortunes, or tragedies occurring in the world. Relying too greatly on prayer can easily become an inaction if never allowing the will to break forth in acts of love. Because affective prayer is essentially an operation of the will, it serves to deepen the union of the soul by God with acts of love. Another approach of acting upon prayer is by Prayer of Simplicity. According to Jacques Bossuet the prayer is defined as a simple loving gaze upon some divine object, whether on God himself or on some other Christian truth.

The prayer is ascetical, meaning that the soul is able to attain to this type of prayer by its own efforts with the help of ordinary grace, but often it is the transition point to mystical prayer. (Pourrat, 129). This not only takes action of love of the deity, but the desire of giving glory. Praising, in prayer as well as in a psychological aspect to honor, and pay tribute to God. It may strike as a fanatical obsession, but to some believers this is a way of giving by to God for all that he has done for them; a simple way of serving him. The word contemplation signifies knowledge along with delight.

Contemplation is an operation in which one experiences the happy blending of the cognitive and the affective powers in ac activity providing great delight. (Guibert). It is known as an experimental knowledge of God. It grants gifts of wisdom and understanding to perfect the act of faith by charity. By having someone say “… it is my calling, by Gods name. ” they believe that they must perform specific labors under Gods name. Performing acts of charity is a way of working, and helping God with his labor. They can ask people to become a part of their church, pray for people, and help people.

One of the many ways prayer and meditation conveys action; charity, whether in a church or giving back to a community is an action of contemplation. Through spiritual practice some get a glimpse of divinity, purity, ethics, and love. The radical objection to the validity of prayer or it even being an action starts at secularization. Science and technology have ripped religious views in the 20th century and desecularized human responsibilities in the world, opposed to Christianity and the view of serving God as a responsibility for all humankind.

The image of God has been denounced. Today, many people think that prayer and meditation for God is outdated. With all the technological advancements, the word presents itself as “methodologically” atheistic. According to Christian Duquoc and Casiano Florestan, the present day world aims at “objectivity” and explains events and phenomena on the basis of their interconnections, necessarily eliminating any resources to ‘the creator’ God. It is very difficult to have yearning for God, and the reason is that God does not seem a reality.

Religion to most of us is something highly amateurish and a kind of fashion, just like so many other fashions (Yatiswarananda). Many hear of the term God and do not even know what it means, that does not mean that we should change the world or abolish free religious practice now. Prayer and meditation are personal and peaceful forms of religious practice, therefore they should not be a problem to society nor there should be a dispute on whether the world should be changed.

Although many can debate on whether religious acts such as contemplation, prayer, and meditation are categorized as actions or inactions, there are many proceedings to support that the events carried out through those religious forms are in fact actions; even if it is not proven that there is actually a greater being to perform these acts for. Man trying to approach God in it self is an action. Changing the world because some can not agree with these events or beliefs would make civilization ignorant.

Everyone should go beyond what they believe and open their minds, accept others beliefs into their hearts and minds. Work Cited Guibert, J. de. Documenta ecclesiastica christianae perfectfonis stadium spectanita (Italian to english). Rome: Gregorianum, March 7, 1914. Yatiswarananda, Swami. Meditation and Spiritual Life. Bangalore India: The President Sri Ramakrishna Ashrama, 1979. Duquoc, Christian and Florestan, Casiano. Asking and Thanking. Philadelphia, Pa: Stitching Concilium and SCM Press. 1990. Pourrat, S. SP. Christian Spirituality. Westminister, Md: Newman. 1953