Meditation and prayer are not the same thing, but they are very closely related, kind of like tasting and swallowing. It is possible to just taste and not swallow, but it is rare. Occasionally you might swallow something without tasting, like swallowing a pill, but it is not the norm. Ordinarily, the two are part of one process, and often experienced as one event.
Meditation is the art of being; prayer is the art of relating to Being. In meditation, you cease having a particular point of view, and instead you have more of a space of view. You discover your awareness as the space within which experience is happening. That space has no preference, though preference might exist within the space as part of experience. I said experience, not your experience, because in that space there is no claim of “me” or “mine”; there is just whatever is happening.
Prayer, on the other hand, happens on the level of heart. Within the space of consciousness, a door is opened through which flows a special inner fire. This fire might be described as love, adoration, devotion or reverence. It may take the form of words or actions, or it may simply glow in silence. Like physical fire, this inner fire has the power to burn and transform one’s whole inner world, remaking one’s self in its fiery image.
If there were a god who created the universe- even one who wields absolute power over it- that god would only be a part of Reality. The universe together with that god- that would be Reality, that would be the Whole, and so that totality would be the True G-d. And if there were no god, Reality (Whatever That Is) would still be the Whole; Reality would still be the True G-d.
How do you relate to Reality? Do you complain about it, criticize it, try to escape it, lust after things in it, avoid it? Or, in trembling awe and gratitude for the infinitely unlikely fact of your own existence, do you humbly receive Its blessings and challenges? From this place of receiving, the present moment is Sinai, and every happening is G-d’s revelation.
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