As the religious holidays are approaching, even some of the most reticent among us turn to prayer or invoking a higher spirit or power for the purpose of giving thanks, worshiping or requesting something for ourselves or others.
Depending on one's religion or culture, prayer can take the form of meditative silence, a formal or personal utterance, chanting, singing or dancing.
The question in our secular age is whether prayer has any power or benefit other than making one feel better by the very act? Studies have been done with mixed results, always with criticism of the methodology whatever the outcome.
Recently, however, I heard of a study that had nothing to do with prayer, but which I believe proves the efficacy of the practice, if done correctly.
At the University of Minnesota, under the direction of Professor Bin He, a Brain Computer Interface was constructed. By imagining a movement, the currents generated by the thoughts of a subject wearing an EEG cap, comprising 64 electrodes, sent signals to a computer that translated the subject's thought waves into commands, allowing the subject to maneuver a small drone through complex flight patterns around a room.
Imagine what harnessing the thoughts of hundreds, thousands or millions of people in a common effort might be able to do! Perhaps, faith can move mountains...or thoughts did hoist the stones in the building of the pyramids.
Science has, therefore, proved the power of prayer in my mind. Now, the remaining issue is to what purpose the act of praying is directed.
Sending positive thoughts of thanks or worship should be beneficial...unless, of course, these are directed to dark entities or for dark deeds done. But, it is in the matter of requests where things become complicated.
Praying for the recovery of a loved one can be helpful, as long as it is done, calmly, with the understanding that, if the individual's contract with Creator is up, their passing can be eased, but not stopped and, if individuals don't want to be healed, their free will can't be trumped.
Praying for a team to win or a war to be won, might overcome the opposition's prayers, but only if done with the understanding that Creator champions everyone working for a positive outcome and remembering that the true Code of Honor extends to forgiving those we may have subdued. Nelson Mandela's legacy serves as an example of such honor.
So, in this season of celebration and prayer, I urge you to realize the power of your thoughts and put them to positive endeavors. Then, join with others in a unity of minds directed to making this world a better place.
Blessed be one and all.
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