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WHY PRAYER IS A TRAP (FOR YOU)

(A couple of years ago a young man whom I like and that I think very sincere asked my opinion about prayer. So I wrote him a reply. Recently others, even here, have asked me basically the same thing, along with my opinion on Magic and Miracle (Theurgy and Thaumaturgy) and related matters. I had thought to do this months ago but happened to be busy at other things. So I was going to reply to them as well. But this morning I re-read my answer to the other man and realized I would probably be hard-pressed to improve upon it. So below you will find my general opinion on why modern prayer, and ancient pagan prayer, is a Trap that should be avoided at all costs, but Christian Prayer and Real Prayer is a Trap you should always have set and never avoid. Because you are the bait, and God is the Prey. Or, maybe, it’s the other way around.) * * * A young man asked my opinion on prayer. Specifically about Mathew 6 and this famous observation by Jesus: “And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.” Below is my reply to him and I post it here, after removing his name, because I think that this is a very important subject. If my reply helps you in some way then great, if not, then maybe at least it will spur you to think on these matters more. ________________________________________________ Take what I am about to say young man with a grain of salt. Because although I’ve studied these subjects since I was a kid, and I’ve lived a lot longer than you, still I’m just a guy with my own theories. Decide for yourself what you think of my opinions and of what is truly Wise and best as God leads you. Also remember this: language has its limitations. Even Perfect things cannot be said perfectly in mere Human Languages. The short answer to your question is, “No, I do not think Jesus was saying, ‘don’t ask.’” In other places he says specifically, “you do not have because you do not ask.” Now for the long-winded answer. I think Jesus was speaking specifically about two things. The pagan practice of repetitive chant-invocations (a common practice in their rituals to their gods) and the invocations and evocations of pagan sorcerers and magicians. Both of which believed that they could influence their gods by the same. The pagan cultist believed that with the proper sacrifices and incantations they could persuade their gods to assist them, and the pagan sorcerer and “magician” believed that with the proper phrases or names or spells they could actually force the gods to do their bidding. Same idea practiced in a different way for different ends, but using a similar technique. The pagan cultist or priest believed you could influence a god with the proper sacrifices, and the sorcerer or magician believed you could do so by knowing the name of a god, or a secret about him, or by promising him things, or even by forcing him to do as you wished. Their “prayers” therefore were power-based or object-based. Now, I actually do believe in magic, but I believe in Godly or Holy Magic. The kind practiced by the Prophets and by the Magi (from which we get the word – Magician). But that magic is not ritual based (I have nothing against rituals but don’t believe a proper ritual is required for prayers to be successful) nor can you force or make deals with God that God has no interest in. You cannot force God by prayer, or by magic, or by miracle, because God is the source of all three, not the “vault or storehouse keeper” of all three. So to a Christian much repetition or ritual is not required, what is required is that your personal will and God’s Will align (and then magic and miracle become not only possible but likely) and that you have true sincerity in your prayers. As Jesus said elsewhere. I would also add Faith. So I would say the secret (and it is no real secret, just not much practiced) to successful Christian prayer is this: align your will to God’s as best you can do that (for you are Mortal and do not perfectly understand God’s Will, but with practice you get better at this), believe in your own prayers and that God (unlike the pagan gods) has your best interests at heart (the pagan gods were just after worship and power and things, and were self-involved, but God is after everyone’s Good and Best interests), and be sincere in your requests, and have faith God will do what is best, even if it is not what you wish to happen. (Let God outthink and outmaneuver you whenever he can, which is often, if not always – I mean he knows everything and you only know some things. Do the best at what you do know, but understand how truly limited you really are.) I might also say that I do not believe in “passive prayer” – “Oh God do this for me,” and then you do nothing in return. The Aramaic word for prayer that Christ used was much closer to “set a trap” or “hunt after” than to “make a request or petition.” Prayer is “setting traps” to catch prey, including “the thoughts and nature of God.” So your first prayer should be, “how do I catch you God?” Which is an Act on your own part, not a request - but an Action. What do you catch a prey animal with? Food he likes to eat. What do you catch God with? Godly behavior. Or a Common Nature with God. Just as True Friendship is built upon Common Interests and Natures (one Soul in two bodies) think of Companionship with God as being Mutual Interest in Being Godly or God-like. Those things that God most likes. You must become the bait, which again, is not a request, but an action on your own part. Now, who easily “caught God?” Jesus. Why? Because he was most like-God (in human form) and was concerned first and foremost with those things God loves most. You become that. And you cannot do that by request, but by Action. (However God is not interested in “Power” as modern men are, or as low and petty men have bene throughout time. Say, “Be Godlike” to most men and the very first thing they think of is a pagan ideal – to have the Power of God, that is, to have the power to do as you wish or desire. This is in no way “Power to God.” Power is God’s Nature, not his desire. Not for Himself nor for you. Good, Truth, Virtue – this s God’s Desire – for everyone for those things are True Power. And True God.) Let all your prayers become Action like God’s, or at least preparation for such action, and your nature and your works and your being will be filled with those things that most attract God. Then God will look to Bless you and do you Good. And to be around you, and vice-versa. Which is, let’s be Honest, His Greatest Blessing. To desire your company as being like him. (Let God hunt you and trap you as often as you hunt or trap him.) But just as rotten food or stones do not attract animals, so you cannot bait God with evil. Or with counter-Godly things. (I know you are a very upright young man and so I am just speaking in general, not about you.) But the more like God you become the more likely you are to attract him, and then the more he is likely to rub off on you as well. So do not think of prayer as something you do or say, but something You Are, Your True Nature. You should become a Continuous, Unceasing Prayer. And an unfailing trap. A Trap constantly baited for God, with God. (You will fail from time to time, or course, but, you’re only human, and I am speaking of the Ideal – that is if you were Perfectly Human, which also means Proto-Divine.) And sometimes you will get what you want, and sometimes other things will happen, but regardless God will do his best for your best at all times. Does that make sense to you? You “become the Prayer” rather than you just “saying the prayer.” You become the “Companion of God,” and allow him to become “Your Companion,” rather than just asking for God’s help. And that goes back to what Jesus was saying about God already knows, because you’ve already baited him and you are already together. As Friends. As Companions. As Buddies. As Father and Son. He knows you as well, or better, than you know yourself. God already knows what you need and want. (Unlike a human Father think of God as being “Perfect Father” just as you are striving to be “Perfect Child” or “Perfect Friend” or “Perfect Human Being.” However again, none of those things are passive and unlike you God can actually be a “Perfect Father.”) And you’re already confident that he’s about those things, but he wants you to be about them to. In Action. (Now there are times when things cannot proceed at the time you wish, maybe other things have to fall into place first, maybe even evil will happen, not because God wishes it but because Life and this world are far from perfect, but still, the idea is that you are working together to Actively achieve Godly and Good things, not just waiting around to receive them. God is your Friend and Companion in Life, not your banker. He actively throws in with you, rather than just passively gives out things. You are doing them with God. And the more things you do Together the more kinds of things you will both achieve and obtain. And that is Holy Magic. And of course there are also times when you have done all you can, you’re only mortal after all and your powers are limited, and then ask God to step in and do what you cannot. And he will. Many people call that “Miracle,” and so do I. Magic is when you’re working with God, together, and you are both doing great things, and Miracle is when only God can do something because it is beyond your current abilities. (Just as the Father can do more than the Child. However the Father wants the Child to make the attempt so that one day he can do Miracles too.) But most of the time it is a Dual-Job, God does his part, and you do yours. But none of that requires a ritual, or repetitive chants or prayers, though I have nothing against any of those things. Those things are to help men, not to influence or manipulate God. It’s like saying this, “The Sabbath was created for man, and not Man for the Sabbath.” Ritual prayers and chants and songs, etc. were created for man. For his benefit. Not so that they can force anything out of God, but rather, if they are sincere and true, so that they may bait God and improve you. In other words ritual prayers and chants and songs have no power in and of themselves, they are a bait, not the Prey. And they cannot “force” anything out of the Prey, but they can entice hunger. The proper bait anyway.) Now all of that being said I do keep a Prayer Book. It is filled with prayers I have written down and repeat most every day. I do not repeat them because I think they will force God to make a deal with me or because they will force God to obey me or give me what I wish. I repeat them for my benefit, because they help remind me of what I am supposed to be praying about and what I am supposed to be Becoming. Which is more like God. Emulating Christ. And to remind me that I am just a man, and not God. I strive to be God, and Godly, but I am far too Wise to think I shall ever “be God” though I live forever. God is beyond Forever, and that is my mark too, but I cannot force my way there, not by any means. Nevertheless because I am a man, and because I am made in God’s Image, and am his child, and have decided to dedicate myself to God and to Christ I have great power. Internal power. But by far the Greatest Power and Duty and Obligation I will ever have is to become ever more Godlike in every way I can. (And because I am mortal, and not God, that will take an eternity. But still I am obligated to keep at it.) And that is not a prayer of “please give me something,” but rather a prayer of “Help me to Become Something – Something Far More Like you.” For that I don’t need a request (and no request will suffice), I need an Action, and a Trap. And, just to be Honest, a Gift from He I would trap. For if God never accepts the bait then I starve and die. And metaphysically and mystically I’d also say, God doesn’t just take my bait, He is, also the very bait itself. (And in a way, the Trap itself. God can do that. He can be the bait, he can be the Prey, he can be the Predator, and he can be you as you Truly Are. But you cannot, but you should certainly try.) A trap to snare God, and once I have him, to make myself more like him. (He’s a prey, the most important one you can possibly hunt, but one you don’t want to kill or to try to command, but to study, befriend, imitate, and emulate.) As a little post-script I often end my prayers by saying “Bless you God, may you succeed at all you desire, and may I help you to do that as you Bless and better me.” Prayer and Blessing is to me a two-way street, and a street of Action, not mere words or thoughts or ideas or wishes. It is not a mere petition of desires or for desires (though Good Desires please God) it is an Action taken to obtain, live, and become those Desires. Chief of which to be should be “to be like-God.” As a final post-script I also often pray to be “Enthused” or possessed by the Holy Spirit. So that the Holy Spirit will both entice and force me to Act, even when I don’t want to or everyone else is afraid to. I’m real big on Action and Courage, but not real big on passivity and apathy and fear. (Sorcerers, and Warlocks, and I use this by contrast with our subject matter of prayer and Magic and Miracle want to either possess and enforce their own will on things like men, or animals, or demons, or other spiritual beings, or they wish to be possessed by things, like demons or other spiritual beings, they think will grant them “power.” Power over others, powers to obtain their desires, power over Nature, etc. I would far rather be “Possessed by God,” or “Enthused.” As everything else is a mere and very limited and temporary copy of the Power of God and the Power of God is not to enslave and control, either others or yourself, but to “Liberate and Elevate.” So do seek to be possessed, and to possess, but seek to be Possessed by God, and to Possess God. For the first is the basis of True Magic, and the second is the basis of True Miracle. I hope that makes sense to you.) Anyway that’s my view of prayer, and on the differences between Christian prayer and pagan prayer, and remember I am just me. So you form your own ideas as best you can and as you feel best led by God. But those are my opinions. If they helped you then Good. If not then come to your own conclusions. But either way Godspeed and Good Fortune, and may God Bless you and your wife and family. And I feel he already has… (P.S.: Prayer is an Act at Playing at Being God. Being God is much like being a Child. And the Child is the Father of the Man. If you understand this then your Prayer is already a Trap. Even if you don't yet know it.) #Magic #Miracle #Prayer #Possession #God

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