Non-religious Meditation On Prayer, #208 2-27-05/9-24-13.–Robert M. Shelby [371 txt wds]

The important thing about prayer is not what we imagine we pray to, but that we can pray to no one or nothing in particular, and that it is as good for us, and as necessary communal experience.

Our prayer draws us toward meditation if we are quiet about it, not trying to drown out our troubles and fears or to put something over on ourselves or fool the basis. As we approach meditation, we approach the basis — what Kirk Ridgeway calls the Sky Mind — even what can be called the Beyond Space Mind, which is not what we think of mind or mindedness at all, but rather a trans-conscious release and relief from our ego-selves.

In meditative prayer we draw near to the basis, whatever we choose to call it or miscall it, God, Overself or whatever. If we approach with wonder, simplicity and openness we are received in a similar way and left grateful. If also we approach mergence, or trans-mersion, with strong intent to change or improve something, starting with ourselves and expanding toward the world, whatever may happen, no harm results from such a period of attention or directed effort. The underlying task is to un-direct effort while maintaining it; to let it find better direction than we can provide at the start.

O all-powerless, unknowing nowhere-ness, there is no need to disempower me. I get out of my own way so there is no more obstacle to being well and doing good. I need not be made happy. Bliss follows and precedes me, surrounds and fills everything. I need neither bliss, esteem nor ecstasy. I am not needful but abundant.

In poetry composition, I see, somewhat fancifully, a counterpart to the Universal Background Radiation of cosmological physics. I suggest a Cosmic Semantic Radiation always ready to bombard or insinuate itself into the open mind of meditation. It draws on the person’s experiential roots and adds novel insights. Like lightning, it rises from the ground of human being and is felt as a bolt of sight, gentle or thunderous with one’s joyful response, the gratitude of receiving a hoped-for gift, nonetheless with surprise.

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