Making your way through the noise, escaping the pull of unending desires, beyond the folds of its material blanket, you will find life waiting with all its tiny offerings of immense beauty.
I say ‘tiny’ not to undermine their significance but to underline how we often choose to overlook such simple things by putting a label on them. Irony strikes later when we find ourselves regretting at our ignorance. And then, in that moment, we fret and pray.
This, by the way, brings me to the point.
Oh lord! You are not going to lecture us on religious praying now, are you?
Not the slightest. I would never curtail the infinite expanse of praying by assigning it a label too. Although religious connotation is what praying usually gets associated with, I refer to it in a higher meaning here - not as a means of spreading your hands and asking but as a conduit of liberating yourself.
Even higher than religion, you mean? Seriously?
Yes, seriously. Now let’s not try to twist the context here.
Praying is one of the most underrated gifts of this life and the worst we could do is place it on a secluded pedestal in some forgotten corner with religion wrapped around it. What pity!
Prayer is a very up close and personal instrument – one which deserves to rest nowhere else but in one’s heart. I take praying to be synonymous with reaching out to the one you trust the most, one you feel closest to, with whom you don’t ever need to pretend with, one you don’t want to keep any secrets from, to whom you could cry your heart out without holding back, the one who has you covered in all your lows, one who gives you the strength to move on and the balance when you are taking life hands on.
How can you not want to be in such company?
Will you ever stop contradicting yourself? Prayer is not religious, you say, and here you are glorifying 'the one' you pray to!
Well, it all starts with realizing that each and every one of us carries a belief system. We all believe in some one, some higher presence, some divine existence, in nature maybe, in stars perhaps, in a concept, in time, in our very own selves if nothing else; prayer is our only medium of connecting with whoever and whatever we believe in. It gives us the ability to submit ourselves to the ‘supreme’ will. Gives us the courage to face our vulnerabilities. Helps us in accepting that we also need help. It provides us with the ever so needed assurance that we have someone to fall back to, that we are not alone.
Religion, my dear friend, has nothing to do with praying. You may belong to any faith or none whatsoever, you may know all your hymns by heart or may not even find the slightest sign of god anywhere, but you will still find yourself believing. You will still find yourself praying. Subconsciously, if not purposefully.
Such a mystic gift of life, prayer is.
So, stop fighting. Stop strangling yourself in paradoxes. Stop finding the right way. Stop keeping yourself from this tiny offering of immense beauty. Just:
- Close your eyes and sit with your back against the wall,
- Track your breath as it fills your lungs and leaves your mouth,
- Block all noise and just listen to your yourself, and