Some two thousand years ago, Peter & Paul had no such concepts as the subconscious, or id, or ego. In terms of awareness, there were only man and god. The problem is that their concept of god was very different from what the religions made out of it over the years. Today, some 2 billion people of the Judeo-Christian persuasion read about those men of the past, mostly prophets and priests, going up a ‘mountain’, or at least a ‘hill’, or a ‘raised ground’, to communicate with god. Since the days of Moses, we know that to them, ‘god’ meant I AM, or, as I like to call it—Self.
Of the 2 billion ‘faithful’ few seem to know that in biblical symbolism, a ‘mountain’, or a ‘raised ground’, always symbolizes a state of raised consciousness. A condition where the great divide between ego and Self is temporarily erased. Or as Yeshûa put it, when "I and my father are one".
Even today, for the vast masses of people prayer represents a means by which an inferior being is attempting to procure something by the benevolence of a superior being. That’s it. It was, and for most people still is, a means of getting something for nothing. It means begging. On your knees. Humbly.
This has nothing to do with prayer as practiced by the ancients.
In fact, prayer, if performed in a way that it might do us some good, if we were to gain anything from it, simply means realigning our individualized consciousness with the omnipresent consciousness. It means reaffirming the oneness of the Universe. Both material and potential.
Basically this is what Peter & Paul, well, Peter anyway, meant when he repeated his Master’s words “Let thy will be done”. After all, it would be done anyway, sooner or later. And, by praying, we might accelerate the process by which we erase that elusive barrier which keeps us apart from the universal order and harmony. That is rather important because, as Buddha would say, until we do that, we shall continue to suffer.
That’s what enlightenment is all about. All we need do is stop fighting our true nature; our Self.
I’d already written a blog in which I attempted to explain why we are endowed with the ability to say no—an ability to oppose the universal order. By definition, Self is an integral, indivisible part of the universal order and thus it cannot make mistakes. The ‘masses’, people unaware of Self, or as Buddha would say the “not yet awakened”, will continue to make sufficient numbers of mistakes to assure the continuity of physical evolution. Needless to say, also as Buddha had said, such action results in suffering. By ignoring the universal laws, billions of us will cause sufficient number of unintentional mutations, or booboos (religionists call some of them ‘sins’), to assure ‘progress’, i.e. to assure physical evolution. Some of us (“the chosen few?”) can therefore relax, and attempt to align, or realign, our consciousness with the Omnipresent Oneness. After all, as Self, we are immortal. What do we have to lose? The ‘masses’ will continue to supply us with ever-new means through which to experience reality, which, after all, is infinite.
Yes, infinity is one of the attributes of reality. Likewise is omnipresence, infinite potential, timelessness, and, luckily for us, inexplicable benevolence. What makes reality different from other universal traits is that reality is flowing. It is like water; it always finds its prescribed level. A condition of perfect balance. A condition of order and harmony, which ultimately results in ineffable beauty.
Inexplicable beauty. After all, ancient Greeks called the universe cosmos. Cosmos means order as opposed to chaos. It also means “an ornament”.
Prayer should never attempt to change the future. Physically, we are the consequence of our thoughts. We are mirrors of our mind. We always deserve exactly what we get. We are never ‘punished’ for our errors, but we can observe the consequences of various chains of thoughts that we allow to perambulate through our minds. ‘Sin’ is an erroneous translation of an ancient Greek word meaning “missing the mark”. That’s all. It simply means that we are to try again.
However, there is something we can do. We can be instrumental in changing our perception of reality. Reality, let us not forget, is always directly related to our perception of it. Subjectively, it is what we decide it is. Imagined misfortunes by some are regarded as blessings by others. We might, for instance, gain exact understanding why we are in the situation that we’ve created. We might become happy that we are discharging our negative Karma and thus will be in a position to perceive a better reality.
That we might become enlightened—sooner.
As for alignment of our consciousness with the universal consciousness, well, that’s quite elementary. After all, if the Universal consciousness managed to create the universe, then our galaxy, then our solar system, then flora and fauna, then… us, then surely it can also create ideal conditions for us. This is not an attempt at a begging ‘prayer’. This is only common sense. You might say, it’s obvious.
That is why the correct prayer is always ‘answered’. But only if we know who we really are. If we know what is our true nature. Why? Because our ego can’t do that. Our Self, the individualization of the whole, can. To paraphrase Yeshûa, we might say: Let the will of our Self be done.
If interested, you’ll find many such discussions on the Amazon.com, under my name. If not, remember the words of Socrates: “An unexamined life is a life not worth living.”