Clarifying Good Purpose Through Prayer and Meditation
Life with purpose for many is lived based upon individual perceptions of reality for what is perceived to be self-evident in the world. What many come to know and experience as self-evident has brought about conceptions, beliefs and sciences about the universe (cosmology), creation and existence (ontology) knowledge and intelligence (epistemology) and existence and intervention of the divine (theology). Cosmology, ontology, epistemology and theology all make up individual beliefs for individuals as to what is self-evident for them. Beliefs and values of what is self-evident in the world is at the heart of what a person may determine to be their purpose, existence or lack of self-worth for living.
Clarity for purpose in the world can come from inspiration or consciousness to plan and act for a particular outcome in life. The question becomes from where does such inspiration, consciousness or clarity to act emanate from? One perspective is to acknowledge that all individual collective consciousness is part of a whole consciousness within the universe.
By way of example and explanation, water, in part, varies in amount, use, capacity and purpose. Nonetheless, water when combined in any amount becomes part of a larger whole. The surface area of earth has been determined to be composed of 70.8% water. According to the USGS Water Science School , the human adult male body is made up of approximately 60% water. Consciousness, compared to water, can be likened unto each individual’s possession of a portion of spirit. God is scripturally recorded to be a Spirit that hovered over the face of the waters and the darkness of the deep. (Genesis 1:2) The Spirit of God is also recorded to have breathed His Spirit into earthly matter formed in His own image and what became known as man became a living being for the expressed purpose of having dominion over the earth. (Genesis 1:26-28 and Genesis 2:7)
Concept of the Universal Mind
Individual consciousness to become one with what for many is believed to be a Universal Consciousness promotes inner clarity for living and determining life purpose of a good nature. Spiritual connection is the manner by which many come to inwardly and consciously connect to a sense of their purpose for living and origin of life. Some individuals pray, some individuals meditate and some exercise a form of both to connect with their sense of the Universal Mind or belief and concept of God, who for them is infinite and immortal in existence. All mankind can be said to be individually connected because collectively we are each other in spirit. All can be said to be connected in consciousness. Without such consciousness, man can be viewed as relegated to being nothing more than inanimate, biodegradable matter.
When physical consciousness yields to one’s acceptance of their spiritual consciousness, their individual-infinite spiritual consciousness, or higher-self, becomes enabled to connect to, and invoke, petitions of the universal-infinite Spirit consciousness. Physical self-consciousness of doubt and despair can be overcome with God-consciousness for clarity of purpose.
Adherents of Judaism, Christianity and Islam are each respectively reverent to believing in a “One True God.” Although each faith is worshiped differently and from different perspectives, each follower chooses to believe in their tenets of choice for worshiping the “One True God.” Consider passages from texts of each faith shown below.
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. – Deuteronomy 6:5, NKJV
May he grant you according to your heart’s desire, And fulfill all your purpose. – Psalm 20:4, NKJV
Be still and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth! – Psalm 46:10, NKJV
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths. Do not be wise in your own eyes; Fear the Lord and depart from evil. – Proverbs 3:5-6, NKJV
Remember your Creator before the silver cord is loosed, Or the golden bowl is broken, Or the pitcher shattered at the fountain, Or the wheel broken at the well. Then the dust will return to the earth as it was, And the spirit will return to God who gave it. – Ecclesiastes 12:6-7, NKJV
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart. – Jeremiah 29:11-13, NKJV
I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them. – Ezekiel 36:27, NKJV
Jesus said to them, “’You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ – Matthew 22:37, NKJV
“Are You greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well, and drank from it himself, as well as his sons and his livestock?” Jesus answered and said to her, “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again, “ but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst, But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.” – John 4:12-14
God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” The woman said to Him, “I know that Messiah is coming” (who is called Christ). “When He comes, He will tell us all things.” Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am He.” – John 4:24-26, NKJV
God, who made the world and everything in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands. “Nor is He worshiped with men’s hands, as though He needed anything, since He gives to all life, breath, and all things. “And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their preappointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings, “so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; “for in Him we live and move and have our being, as also some of your poets have said, ‘For we are also His offspring.’ “Therefore, since we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Divine Nature is like gold or silver or stone, something shaped by art and man’s devising. – Acts 17:24-29
For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God. These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. But he who is spiritual judges all things, yet he himself is rightly judged by no one. For “who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct Him?” But we have the mind of Christ. – 1 Corinthians 2:11-16, NKJV
Praise be to Allah, The Cherisher and Sustainer of the Worlds; Most Gracious, Most Merciful; Master of the Day of Judgement. – Surah 1:2-4, The Holy Qur’an
How can ye reject The faith in Allah? – Seeing that ye were without life, And He gave you life, Then will he cause you to die, And will again bring you to life; And again to Him will ye return. It is He Who hath created for you All things that are on earth; Then He turned to the heaven And made them into seven firmaments. And of all things He hath perfect knowledge. – Surah 2:28-9, The Holy Qur’an
Nay, seek (Allah’s) help With patient perseverance And prayer: It is indeed hard, except To those who bring a lowly spirit – Who bear in mind the certainty That they are to meet their Lord, And that they are to return to Him. – Surah 2:45-46, The Holy Qur’an
When My servants Ask thee concerning Me, I am indeed Close (to them): I listen To the prayer of every Suppliant when he calleth on Me.: Let them also, with a will, Listen to My call, And believe in me: That they may walk In the right way. – Surah 2:186, The Holy Qur’an
Prayer to one’s Deity evokes one’s thoughts, desires and intentions. The sincerity of one’s prayers drives their actions for manifesting invocations into reality. Patience and trust are essential in prayer for hope of prayers being acknowledged and answered.
Ideally, prayer is invoked with the belief that supplications will be answered according to God’s purpose(s), rather than praying for a specific result or outcome. Prayer requires that one accept in faith that their Deity, being all knowing, knows what is best. Consequently, prayer is an invocation for God’s will and purpose to be done over personal, physical desires that are not in keeping with good purpose or one’s spiritual best interest. God being viewed as whole and complete in Spirit, and having designed man for His purposes, is presumed to know what is best. When one acts of their own accord outside the bonds of spiritual clarity, the consequences are one’s own to bear within the bounds of their Deity’s mercy.
Meditation for many involves seeking an altered state of consciousness to attune one’s inner-self to the Infinite. Through meditation, one is believed to awaken the inner, higher nature of them self without conscious participation of the five outer senses of seeing, listening, smelling, tasting and touching. One’s inner subconscious mind, rather than one’s outer conscious mind (once quieted), links the inner-self with the infinite sources of energy, enlightenment, wisdom, knowledge, peace and tranquility. The Mayo Clinic advocates the practice of meditation to relieve stress, eliminate negative emotions and increase self-awareness.
Proper breathing is an important factor during many forms of meditation that awakens and energizes the inner-self for enlightenment and good purpose. Breathing is believed to be under the control of the subconscious mind and the inner-self. One’s breath is the source to becoming attuned to the Infinite. Through inner-awareness – that may or may not be accompanied by mantras, chants or affirmations – one seeks with the inner-self and disregard for the outer-self to gain access to the Infinite for enlightened communion.
Heaven and Hades
Heaven and Hades can metaphorically be found to exist within. Each of us lives from the inside out. What is decided within incites the will to manifest decisions without. James Allen in “As a Man Thinketh” wrote:
Thought in the mind hath made us. What we are by thought we wrought and built. If a man’s mind Hath evil thoughts, pain comes on him as comes The wheel the ox behind . . . If one endure in purity of thought joy follows him as his own shadow – sure.
Religions speak to a man being subject to what he harbors within his heart with the admonishment to guard the ways of the heart. Theology views the body as being a temple in the sense that the body is the temple of one’s inner-spirit. Meditation observes that the outward senses attune to the physical world whereas the inner senses attune to the Infinite.
When individuals act toward their higher-selves, they ascend within themselves to their spiritual nature. They are creative in thought, actions and good purpose. When individuals act toward their animal nature and lower-selves, they descend within themselves. They are subject to being destructive in thought and actions. They risk marginalizing actions of good purpose. Each individual becomes subject to living with the consequences of his or her actions and his or her own Heaven or Hades within.
Clarity of Life-Purpose
Prayer and meditation are each a means of establishing gateways for connecting with a sense of wholeness to personal truths for existence and a sense of life-purpose. Connecting with spiritual prayer or an altered state of meditation to a greater sense of enlightened clarity increases one’s opportunity to become inspired for achieving a clearer sense of purpose for living.
Religion serves no good purpose without acts of kindness and good deeds in life. Truth lies within you for determining which paths beckon you toward a life of purpose. One only needs to appeal to one’s better nature for effecting positive and good purpose in the world. To serve others in the Spirit of Love, without self-ulterior motives, is to render divine service to one’s greater-self. One’s life-purpose is the ultimate measure of one’s labor and accomplishments achieved over a lifetime in the service of goodness.