How to Practice True Prayer
“You have sought first the Kingdom of Heaven, and all else has indeed been given you.”
In your complete willingness to forget the things you think you need, Heaven can finally be remembered. True prayer is described by Jesus in The Song of Prayer as having many levels, like rungs on a ladder "How to Practice True Prayer", which lead from the early forms of praying for specifics to more advanced forms of prayer. The highest form of prayer is what Jesus calls “true prayer,” which involves a total willingness to “… forget the things you think you need.” S-1.I.4:1 For, “You have sought first the Kingdom of Heaven, and all else has indeed been given you.” S-1.I.3:6 Pray only to serve God’s Will. A course in miracles
“Jesus is teaching us through the Course—like in that early Workbook Lesson 24—that in no situation do you perceive your own best interests. He doesn’t even say ‘most situations.’ He comes right out and says, in no situation do you perceive your own best interests. It’s pretty humbling to come across that in the early Workbook Lessons. Then, in the next lesson, he says that everything is in your own best interest! Now, it is going to take a lot of mind training to take that one on. That sounds like the Bible: ‘All things work together for good, for them who love the Lord.’ (Romans 8:28) And then in the Course, Jesus says: ‘All things work together for good. There are no exceptions except in the ego’s judgment.’ T-4.V.1
So, prayer is like working with your mind and working with your desires and your thoughts, and then really having an open heart to be shown what is truly helpful; like the prayer at the beginning of the Course: ‘I am here only to be truly helpful.’ T-2.V.A.18
It is about constantly taking the parameters off; it is about emptying your mind of all these thoughts and concepts of what you believe is best. And, really, when you empty it, you are emptying the altar; you’re saying, 'Show me. You know the way. You know the way back to Heaven and I don’t. That is why I am here to pray and listen, because you know the steps to take. You know the choices to make. You will provide the guidance.'
And in the end, as you clear the altar of your mind of all these specifics and desires for certain specific outcomes, your final prayer can be something to the effect of, “Father, what is your Will for me?” And that will be answered when you pray that sincerely in your heart. But, you see, you can only approach that from where your mind is. If you believe in lack, you are going to be praying and asking for things to help change this or help sort that out, and you cannot pray above where your level of awareness is.”
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