VBT – Meditation 16.5
In Prayer You Are Not
Prayer is one of the indefinables, because prayer is the fragrance of love.
Even love is indefinable. Love is a flower, tangible, you can see it, you can touch it, you can smell it, you can feel it. You can close your eyes and you can touch the texture of the flower, the softness of it, you can see the beauty of it; it is visible. But prayer is the fragrance released to the winds, offered to the sky. It becomes even more indefinable because you cannot see it, you cannot touch it.
You can only have a very subtle relationship with it, not one of words, not one of philosophy, not one of theology – only the silence of your heart, the utter silence of your heart, can have a little glimpse of it, of what it is.
Bowing down before a statue made by man, manufactured by man — and you think you are in prayer? You are simply being stupid, you are simply showing utter ignorance. This statue has been purchased in the marketplace, and God is not a commodity and God cannot be made. It is God who has made us – how can we make God? But we are worshipping, praying to man-made Gods.
And what are your prayers? They are also your desires. You want this, you want that; you are trying to use God as a means. You have been told certain prayers from your very childhood and you have crammed it all; you have been forced to cram it. It has become a habit, a mechanical routine; you go on repeating it but your heart is not in it. Your prayer is a corpse, it breathes no more.
Yes, when Jesus called God ‘Abba’ he meant it. When you call God ‘Father’ you don’t mean anything. And between ‘Abba’ and ‘Father’ there is a great difference. ‘Father’ is an institution, legal, social; ‘Abba’ is a heart-to-heart relationship. Jesus looked at existence as the source of our life.
A disciple asks Jesus, “What is prayer?” Jesus falls on his knees and starts praying. The disciple says, “I am asking what prayer is, I am not asking you to pray!” And Jesus says, “There is no other way. I can pray, you can participate. I INVITE you to be a part of my prayer. I cannot say what prayer is, but I can go into prayer – because prayer is a state of being, not something that you do.”
Prayer is a state of simplicity. It is NOT of words but of silence.
A prayer is not a dialogue between I and thou; a prayer is a merger. The I disappears into the thou, the thou disappears into the I. There is nobody to say anything and there is nobody to say anything to.
The river disappearing into the ocean is prayer. The dewdrop slipping from the lotus leaf into the lake is prayer. Seeing the early morning sun and you are silent, and something starts rising in you too – that is prayer. A bird on the wing, and YOU are on the wing; you forget that you are separate – THAT is prayer. Wherever separation disappears, prayer appears. When you become one with the whole of existence, that is prayer.
Ego is a state of no-prayer: egolessness is a state of prayer. It is not a dialogue, it is not even a monologue. It has nothing to do with words; it is wordless silence. It is an open, silent sky; with no clouds, no thoughts. In prayer you are not Hindu or Christian or Mohammedan. In prayer you are not: in prayer God is.Tags: In Prayer You Are Not