Our prayers receive more attention than many of us believe. One of the recurring themes in Spiritist literature is the care and consideration of our prayers. We are listened to in the spirit world. No matter how small or inconsiderable we think ourselves to be, our requests are analyzed.
The importance of prayer for ourselves and how the spirit world reacts to our devotions is discussed in the book, Life Beyond the Veil, in The Lowlands of Heaven section. It was a communication to the Rev G. Vale Owen from Astriel in the spirit world that touches upon the power of prayer and meditation:
“Prayer is not merely the asking for something you wish to attain. It is much more than that, and, because it is so, it should receive more careful consideration than it has yet received. What you have to do in order to make a prayer a power is to cast aside the temporal and fix you mind and spirit on the eternal. When you do that you find that many items you would have included in your prayer drop out from the very incongruity of their presence, and the greater and wider issues become to you the focus of your creative powers. For prayer is really creative, as the exercise of the will, as seen in our Lord’s miracles, such as the feeding of the five thousand. And when prayer is offered with this conviction, then the object is created, and the prayer is answer – that is, the objective answers to the subjective in such a way that an actual creation has taken place.”[i]
There are several concepts presented in the above that are not normally associated with prayer. First, is the aspect of thinking about the eternal, since we are here on earth to learn to be more loving and spiritual, praying for superfluous material possessions will get all of the attention it deserves! Which is to say, very little. On the other hand, desiring to be given strength to successfully end a trial with newfound knowledge, is an imperishable attribute we would take with us for life after life.
Praying for enlightenment, such as a solution to a problem, or for the benefit of others will always receive due consideration. This type of request which illustrates a desire for spiritual or intellectual self-advancement is a sign to the spirit world that one is serious about their assignment on earth.
The second concept is that our thoughts are translated into action. What we pray for, if it is worthy of an answer, is transformed into physical reality. Praying for help in finding shelter for your family, so they may strive through their own trials without the worry of homelessness, could, for instance, cause a person to decide to rent out their house to the requesting family at a lower rate or with a smaller deposit or no last month’s rent. All actions brought about by the manipulations of the spirit world on behalf of the person requesting Divine assistance.
My example isn’t merely an intellectual exercise. I have known people in dire straits, people who have selflessly helped others, receive free housing, which comes out of the blue. A woman, who was recovering from the aftermath of a near death experience, wasn’t able to work, yet she still insisted in providing care for others, was given the opportunity to stay rent-free in a house. All she had to do was to take care of a small park. These are not coincidences, but planned assistance from the Spirit Realm.
While on earth, we consider our thoughts to be perishable. As quick as we think, they are gone. They are meaningless. This is not true. Our thoughts radiate outward from us. Each thought is tagged with our personal identification and most probably, a time stamp and a location.
We know this by two sources; first, by what is told to us in Spiritist literature and secondly, accounts from near death experiences. When people who have reported a life review during a NDE, they invariably describe the ability of the spirit world to recount their thoughts, second by second, and the feelings of others interacting with them. Nothing is lost or forgotten.
What Happens to a Misguided Prayer
Now that we have learned what a prayer should be, we would like to know what happened to all of those selfish prayers. Like the ones I used to make as a kid, wishing for a new bike, or the most regular prayer I had; asking that school be closed tomorrow, or the whole week if possible. We are told:
“Then the project of the will glances off tangent, and the effect is only proportionate to the scattered rays by which the objective is touched. Also, when the prayer is mixed with motives unworthy it is proportionately weakened, and also meets with opposing or regulating wills on this side, as the case may require; and so the effect is not attained as desired.”[ii]
In essence, if we pray for something selfishly, it is duly noted, but mostly ignored. When we pray for what we should not have, the answer may come back to us in another lesson. Be careful where you turn your attention, for your thoughts and desires may have unintended consequences.
A woman recounted a near death experience, where she started it off by asking God to make her happy. She had a good job and a wonderful husband, but this wasn’t enough for her. Her prayer was answered. She was in a terrible automobile accident where she was in intense pain. So bad, she could no longer work. It was the lowest moment of her life.
Then she yelled at God, telling the Supreme Intelligence that her life was even worse. Again, her prayer was answered. After taking her pain medicine and going out to dinner, she became so drunk, that on her way home she vomited in the car, and then insisting she could walk to the front door, without the help of her husband, she fell and hit her head. Her husband drove her to the hospital.
Only when she was recovering, did she feel a transformation. For the first time, she felt what others felt. Instead of being a stand-offish person, patients and even the staff gravitated to her to tell her their innermost thoughts. Her husband was astounded. She was a changed person. Her original prayer was truly answered. She became content with her life. She didn’t miss the old job and the bountiful salary, she dedicated herself to helping others. But to come to this point, involved pain and anguish. It wasn’t an easy road for her.
How Does the Spirit World Analyze Our Prayers
In the communication from the spirit Astriel to the Rev. G. Vale Owen, we are allowed to peek behind the curtains to discern the process by which are prayers are analyzed.
“For you must know that there are appointed guardians of prayer here whose duty it is to analyze and sift prayers offered by those on earth, and separate them into divisions and departments, and pass them on to be examined by others, and dealt with according to their merit and power.”[iii]
The process seems too earth-like, too much like how it would be done in a large corporation. This is because, as much as we would wish it to be otherwise, earth is a poor reflection of heaven. How people organize themselves, how work is done and other mundane tasks we bring our inclinations from our sojourn during our spirit life to our incarnated lifespan. Hence, in heaven, as on earth, there are vast organizations and levels of management and separation of duties. Fear not, spirit bureaucracy is not like ours; uncaring, stiff, arrogant, and full of pompous managers.
The vital point to be taken is the amount of care parceled out to every one of us. The Spirituality is listening and responding. We just lack the sensitivity to recognize the effect it has on our life. It can be done, by evaluating your life, the signals and synchronicities that have shaped your present, you can begin to reveal the marvelous ways in which you have been guided. I talk about how my life has been prepared in my book, 7 Tenets of Spiritism – How They Impact Your Daily Life.
There are some prayers which must be referred to even higher authorities. Prayers which are beyond the capability of certain levels of heaven to determine the best course of action. Astriel tells us what is done with desires which are undecipherable.
“These we pass on to those of higher grade, to be dealt with in their greater wisdom. And do not think that these latter are always found among the prayers of the wise. They are frequently found in the prayers of children, whose petitions and sighs are as carefully considered here as those of nations.”[iv]
Hence, the requests of children struggling in dysfunctional families or other dire circumstances are carefully reviewed. The love of children is equal or even more profound in the spirit realm than it is on earth. In heaven, without deep love, a soul can’t enter, while earth is home to many levels of incarnated spirits, some who have no love for anything or anyone but themselves.
Finally, to dispel any doubt as to how prayers are analyzed and then acted upon, we are given this example:
“’Thy prayers and thine alms are come up for a memorial before God.’ You will remember these words spoken by the Angel to Cornelius. They are often passed over without being understood as the literal description of those prayers and alms as they appeared to that Angel, and were passed on, probably by himself and his fellow workers, into the higher realms. It is as if he had said, ‘Your prayers and alms came before my own committee, and were duly considered on their merits. We passed them as worthy, and have received notification from those Officers above us that they are exceptional merit, and require a special treatment. Therefore I have been commissioned to come to you.’ We are trying to put the case as emphatically as we can in your language of official business in order to help you to understand as much as you may be able of the conditions here obtaining.”[v]
How often do we hear that communication from the spirit world is wrapped in a parable, or the meaning is difficult to comprehend? Here is an example of a straightforward message, plain as day, as to how prayers operate.
In essence, when you pray, be worthy of what you ask for. Demonstrate previous spiritual growth or the desire for it. Ask only for what helps you or others to improve while on trial on earth or at least to successfully complete a trial.
Astriel tells us that prayers prove that Angels shed tears. They see and hear what is requested and their hearts cry out in pity and love. He asks us to remember that love and compassion are real objects in the spirit world. Just as is hate and greed. We are told they take on a type of solid form, a recognizable pattern which are physical measurements of our progress and status on earth.
On earth we are guided to learn that what we have lacked, failed, or have to atone for what we have done in the past. Hence, what we perceive as unfair suffering in our life are actually trials assigned to us for our betterment. Discover how to handle and even thrive during the blackest moments of your life; read The Problem is the Solution – 7 Life Complications Sent to Test and Teach You. The ability to emerge from each dark episode in your life a more loving and caring person is the greatest triumph you can imagine for your life on this shiny blue planet.
Brian Foster has a BSCS degree and a MBA. He has worked in R&D for medical device corporations and in IT for large financial institutions. Brian Foster has a blog at www.nwspiritism.com.
Owen, R. G. (2012). The Life Beyond the Veil. Pahrump, NV: Square Circles Publishing.
[i] Owen R. G. Life Beyond the Veil, Squares Circles Publishing, p. 118
[ii] Owen R. G. Life Beyond the Veil, Squares Circles Publishing, p. 118
[iii] Owen R. G. Life Beyond the Veil, Squares Circles Publishing, p. 118
[iv] Owen R. G. Life Beyond the Veil, Squares Circles Publishing, p. 119
[v] Owen R. G. Life Beyond the Veil, Squares Circles Publishing, p. 119