Prayer, Tefilah, just talk to God. Tell the Master of the world how much you love Him, and thank Him that he is there."
In the Torah, the first act of Creation was "God said, Let there be Light: and there was Light. And God saw the Light, that it was good: and God divided the Light from the darkness." God spoke the Word to create.
Of all the Father’s earthly Creation, only humanity possesses the ability to form the Divine Alef-bet of Creation into words. Speaking the Word, as God spoke the Word to form the heavens and the earth, is the essential step in perfectly powerful prayer. The gift of speech is much more than a means of communication. It is our God-given talent to reach out to our surroundings — and ultimately to all of creation — to incorporate it into our consciousness and create something new. We can use our spoken words to connect with all the universe (incidentally, the word universe means one word) and create new reality.
The gift of speech is our most valuable tool for making, forming, and creating form from Light. Therefore, as students learning how to become full co-Creators with God, we pray aloud to release the Power of the Word.
There are many avenues of spiritual growth that we must persue, and desire, paths that can be followed by people working together in pairs or larger groups, as long as those seeking together love each other and feel able to be very honest and open with one another. However, hitbodedut — the secluded meditation and prayer that lead to self-transcendence and communion with God — is by definition a solitary practice.
Our Rabbi himself taught us valuable guidelines in prayer, he said: “When you pray, you shall not be as the hypocrites are, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the open streets, that they may be seen of men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward. But you, when you pray, enter into your room, and having shut your door, pray to your Father in secret, and your Father seeing in secret will reward you openly. But when you pray, do not babble vain repetitions, as the heathen, for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. Therefore do not be like them, for your Father knows what things you have need of, before you ask Him. Therefore, you should pray this way”:
Luke 11:2-14 He said to them, "When you pray, say, ‘Our Father in heaven, May your name be kept holy. May your kingdom come. May your will be done on Earth, as it is in heaven. Give us day by day our daily bread. Forgive us our sins, For we ourselves also forgive everyone who is indebted to us. Bring us not into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one."
Noah’s ark, called teivah in Hebrew, contained a microcosm of all creation. Besides meaning "ark," teivah also means "word." In one of the most all-inclusive teachings of the Ba’al Shem Tov, he explains that God’s directive to Noah to "enter the ark" is also a directive to all mankind to enter the "word." Every word that we think and speak should be holy — whether they are words of Torah, prayer, or even seemingly mundane words spoken to create union with another soul. The universal consciousness of all of creation — mankind and the entire animal kingdom — should permeate every word that we speak.
You must pray for everything. If your garment is torn and has to be replaced, pray to God for a new one. Do this for everything. Make it a habit to pray for everything you need, large or small. Your main prayers should be for fundamentals: that God should help you in your devotion and that you should be worthy of coming close to Him. Still, you should also pray even for seemingly trivial things. God may give you food, clothing and everything else you need even though you do not ask for them. But then you are like an animal. God gives every living thing its bread without being asked. He can also give it to you this way. But if you do not draw your life through prayer, then your life is like that of a beast. For a man must draw all the necessities of life from God only through prayer.
The path of prayer is often difficult. Worst of all is the sense of discouragement that comes from praying repeatedly without seeing results. God is truly merciful and compassionate… He certainly wants to draw me near to Him as it is said in the Tehililm (Psalms) 145 18 HaShem is nigh unto all them that call upon Him, to all that call upon Him in truth..
The tiller of the field must wait patiently until the effects of his own labors combined with the power of the earth, the sun, the rains, the winds and God’s other blessing cause his fruits to ripen and mature. So too one who follows the path of prayer must wait with consummate patience, until his eyes will be opened and he will see that his field is all abloom with flowers and rich in abundant fruits.
Rabbienu (our teacher) felt he needed to get alone to speak with His Father. After a busy day of teaching and performing miracles and before the start of another such day, Rabbienu (our teacher) arose "a long while before daylight . . . . went out and departed to a solitary place; and there He prayed" (Mk. 1:35). Luke records this custom of Rabbienu (our teacher) in Luke 5:16. "So He Himself often withdrew into the wilderness and prayed." After the feeding of the 5,000, Rabbienu (our teacher) "went up on a mountain by Himself to pray. And when evening had come, He was alone there" (Mt. 14:23).
If there ever was a man who prayed without ceasing (cf. 1 Thess. 5:17), it was Yeshua. He prayed "in the morning, having risen a long while before daylight" (Mk. 1:35). He prayed during the day (Matt. 15:36; Jn. 11:41-42); and He prayed during the night (Matt. 14:23). Yeshua was also One who prayed everywhere (cf. 1 Tim. 2:8). He prayed in the mountains (Mk. 6:46), in the wilderness (Lk. 5:16), and in the city (Mt. 26:26-29). He even prayed before he died (Mk. 15:34; Lk. 23:34,46) and of course he prayed when he left to be sitting on the right hand of God..
Most of us don’t pray because we don’t think it will make any difference. We pray and nothing happens, so we think prayer has no power. This thinking is erroneous. The reason we see nothing is because our prayers lack true kavana (intent). We do not believe that HaShem cares, that He would actually hear us, or even act in our behalfs. A person needs to pour out prayers and supplications in solitude, in his house, from the depths of his heart. A prayer like this will certainly not return empty.
Go and speak with HaShem, in the merit of our Messiah, Yeshua. Do teshuva (repent) ask HaShem HaShem Sefatai Tiftach. Open up my lips. U’fi yagid tehilatecha. And my mouth will declare your glory. Amen
Tags: alef bet, avenues, communion with god, Consciousness, creators, hypocrites, light from the darkness, means of communication, meditation, new reality, open streets, rabbi, self transcendence, solitary practice, spiritual growth, spoken words, synagogues, Torah, valuable tool, word universe
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