Extracted from 20131019 – General Discussion from People in Philadelphia S1:
The discussion had looked at 5 important qualities to develop:
Participant: For me, prayer is where I am gaining all this new knowledge and all of this new understanding and all of the courage to feel what I am afraid to feel and all of that so “Where does prayer fit in?” is my question.
AJ: Well prayer fits in on all of them obviously. All of these aspects of ourselves that we need to develop, can only really be developed by receiving love from God in the end and the only way in which to receive love from God is to pray as long as we know what prayer is, which in the end is having a heartfelt passionate desire to receive love from God. So yes, that is a very powerful transformative process. However it’s very simple to answer “prayer”, whereas the answer to all these things is far more complex.
So the way I feel about prayer is, that it fits into every one of these things (Faith, Will, Humility, Truth and Love). It’s a bit like most other things we can choose to do, they fit into one of these 5 things somewhere so while I agree with you that prayer – the two most important things in the universe are prayer and faith. Prayer in other words, the desire to receive love from God, as a passionate feeling and Faith that we are going to receive it, faith that it is possible, those two things are very, very essential and are the most important things. They are not necessarily the things that we will ask lots of our questions about, because usually it is other areas of our life that are causing us to not pray and it is other areas of our life that are causing us to not have faith, and it is other areas of our life that cause us to not ask God for love and it is other feelings and emotions that we are trying to shut down that cause us not to allow ourselves to go through those two basic things. So this is why these questions involving these things are quite important because it breaks down our resistance to prayer.
If you have no faith, you will not pray.
If you do not use your will to pray, you will not pray.
If you do not have a humble heart, you will not receive love, you will not even desire it in many cases.
If you do not have an openness to feeling an emotion of love, you will not pray.
So while prayer affects every one of these things, it’s knowing more about any of these things that helps break down your resistance to prayer and the main problem that we have is that we have resistance to prayer, resistance to faith – they are our primary problems. If we had no resistance and no resistance to faith, we would all already be at one with God as soon as we had a desire to have a relationship with God. It is only our resistance to prayer and our resistance to faith that causes us to not be right at this moment at one with God. So if we are going to ask questions, we are best focusing on where our resistances are – what is going to help us open up to prayer, what is going to help us open up to faith and these are the things that we will need to develop in order for those things to occur.
Without faith you will not pray.
Without using your will or understanding how your will works, you will not pray. This one here (using your will) is very much about your soul – what is your soul?- how do you pray? Do you pray from your mind or how do you pray? That is all about understanding the soul-the will of the soul. So i still feel that these are the questions that we will focus on, because they will break down your resistance to your relationship with God. If none of us had resistance to our relationship with god, then we would have one to the point of at-one-ment with god. So it’s only our resistance that causes that process to occur.