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Prayer is also linked to sacrifice , which seems to support prayer as a cultic—as well as a personal—act and as a supplement to the bare word in human attempts to relate to the sacred or holy. In any case, the sacrificial act generally precedes the verbal act of prayer. Thus, the presentation of an offering often prolongs prayer and is viewed as a recognition of the sovereignty and beneficence of the deity or supernatural powers.
The word of a human being in prayer , however, apart from a concomitant sacrificial act, is itself viewed as the embodiment of sacred action and power. When prayer becomes dominating and manipulative in its intent, it becomes magic.
10 Prayers for a Stronger Faith (in Good or Hard Times!)
With words and songs, humans thus believe that they can ask, conjure, and threaten the sacred or supernatural powers. The effectiveness of such magical prayer is believed to depend on the recitation of a precise formula, or rhythm, or on the saying and repeating of the divine name.
Manipulation by magic, however, is neither the explanation nor the essence of prayer but rather its deviation and exploitation, a tendency that is to be noticed whenever prayer departs from its basic and essential meaning—i. Such theories, which saw in prayer no more than a development of magic or incantation, failed to recognize the strictly personal characteristics of prayer. Even if a scholar could prove the chronological precedence of magical incantations to prayer—which has thus far not been done—he would be derelict in his scholarly duty if he saw in such a precedence the only explanation of prayer.
The origin of prayer is to be found—essentially and existentially—in the recognition and invocation of the creator-god, the god of heaven. Though some scholars , such as Costa Guimaraens, a French psychologist in the early 20th century, have attempted to trace prayer back to a biological need, the attempt, on the whole, has been unsuccessful. If sometimes—especially with exceptional subjects or those with fragile nervous systems—the act of prayer is accompanied by corporal phenomena e. In order to analyze normal prayer psychologically, it is especially important to choose normal subjects.
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Affective sources such as fear, joy, and sadness doubtless play a role in prayer. Such affectations are expressed in prayers recorded in various religions and particularly in the book of Psalms in the Bible, but they do not explain the recourse to prayer itself, which is explained by a motivation deeper than affective elements.
The cause and occasion of prayer must not be confused. Moral sentiments also are integrating elements, but they are accidental to the development of prayer; virtue is not necessarily expressed in the act of praying, because there exist atheists of incontestable morality. Morality is more a consequence than a cause of prayer; and it follows more than it prepares for the development of the religious person. That is a welcome and appropriate outcome. The problem is that the appeals court also had to reckon with a misguided decision in which the Supreme Court, by a vote, upheld the policy of the town of Greece, N.
It is in the solemn events of next week that we find the very heart and center of our Christian faith.
We acknowledge the saving sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross. We draw strength, vitality and confidence from his resurrection at Easter. Yet the Supreme Court decided that those prayers were permissible — a wrongheaded decision, in our view.
Past Shows & Seasons
So that when each person performs the duties or seeks the benefits of citizenship, she does so not as an adherent to one or another religion, but simply as an American. The 9th Circuit panel sought to distinguish the Greece Town Council in the decision from the Chino school district. That argument is more clever than convincing. Senior Judge Diarmuid F. Ideally the Supreme Court would use this or a similar case to make a firm statement in opposition to prayers at all meetings of governing bodies, school boards and city councils alike.
That, however, seems unlikely; more probably the conservative majority would persist in taking a benign view of the mixing of government and religion. Justice Anthony M.
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5 Ways the Serenity Prayer Can Bring You...
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Going to church | The Church of England
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