Just going to a building we call a church, kneeling down and reciting what the others taught us? Using the time just to recite it subconsciously? Is this prayer? No! What's a prayer? What can prayer be, except – meditation on higher and higher subjects? For me, it is concentration, meditation and observation. And, after knowing the reality, make prayers of adoration. That means thanksgiving to the Infinite Intelligence – God.
What do you pray for?
Do you pray for the satisfaction of stupid and unbridled desires or emotions?These prayers will not be answered. If a stupid boy asks from his father to give him razor blades to play with, what father will give him that? He may cut his fingers. This is what people are often doing in what they call prayers, in church or at home. But, I assure you, allreasonable prayers are answered. So we must also study the quality of prayer.
Should we pray?
Of course we should. Prayer is a right method of meditation. Approach your real Selfinwardly, and God who is in you. Yet, what is prayer again? Just whispering mechanically and thinking many, many other things at the time you are just reciting words? These are not prayers. We have another method we call the concentric prayer, which is concentration and meditation in order to knowwhat is it we are doing in that meditation. A meditation is a prayer. When I say prayer it means meditating and understanding, making good use of the Mind and appreciating what is behind it – the God of Life. That's prayer.
Somebody asked "Should we make a prayer before we start our meditation practice?" I say, it is necessary! Anyhow, I have never started any meditation or any lecture without a prayer and an evocation. Why? Because you give thanks, and you have to give thanks, because in this way we create those positive vibrations that keep back the approach of all negative vibrations. Because we have to prepare ourselves to work on positive vibrations, casting away all negative vibrations (I won't call them devilish vibrations).
Which is the best prayer then?
Prayer is not just getting certain phrases and reciting them while in your mind you are somewhere else. Each one can make his own prayer to his or her Heavenly Father. Maybe one of the most effective prayers is "God have mercy upon us". Even that's enough. But, who will say it – the lips or the heart? We can create prayers by thought, by words or with our heart. But, clean the heart first. Now, what's a prayer? Prayer creates a helpful elemental. Every thought and every emotion creates elementals which are composing our personality.
Joshua Immanuel the Christ said "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God".My advice is that everybody should pray. Ask your soul to make the prayer you need. Start making correct use of the divine gifts, so you can become capable of helping your fellow human being, you can become the light which can disperse the darkness. Prayers are elementals of light. That is prayer – creating angelic elementals, constructive elementals, praying for the health of others, helping our fellowmen. Prayer in reality, in order to work, should be real meditation and concentration. You'll find it out by your practice. So, before a meditation practice, start with a serious concentric prayer to attune yourself to your holy Guardian Archangel, to the Archangels, to the Holy Spirit and to God. For you, God will be a reality now. You are living, you are a phenomenon of life, and God is Life everlasting. So, before starting your meditation pray for it. "Ask and it will be given to you."
Now, pray where?
In a church, which church? Pray in the church of your heart. Everybody should make his or her heart the Holy of the Hollies, to retire in it, to see that it is clean and purified, and to have in it – everybody. Because: everyone is a Son of God as a Spirit-Soul Self. Having that in mind we cannot hate anybody. We must love everybody. What about their mistakes, their behavior? Maybe they are too hostile towards us, attacking us. This is simply a phenomenon in time and place. What is the lesson behind it? It is for both sides to learn to love.
What was our prayer of invocation to God at the beginning before starting the lesson? "Clean our hearts to reflect your love to all human beings" – a Researcher of Truth has no enemies. There may be people calling themselves his enemies but, he has no enemies. Your heart must reflect only love towards God and towards all other human beings. See that there is no complaint against anybody in your sub-consciousness!
We cannot have enemies. Shall we have friends? Neither enemies nor friends – have brothers and sisters belonging to the same family. Our human family belongs to the same house. Our house is the planet. So, we should have this in mind.
Excerpts from Stoa Lessons by Dr. Stylianos Atteshlis (known as Daskalos)