Best Prayer is that which doesn't request or demand or seek any worldly thing from God
Prayer is the sign of devotion. It includes respect, love, pleading and faith. By praying a person expresses his helplessness and surrenders to the Master (God) and pleads for help. It is the connecting link between Master (God) and the self.
Many people generally pray with specific motive based on the belief that if you pray sincerely you would get what you pray for. People pray for many reasons such as personal benefits or for the sake of others. An average person mainly prays to God when he is unable to face difficulties in his life.
Prayer as a method of worship is common in every religion. It may involve the use of words of praise or songs by an individual or group of people. The people who pray about some worldly benefits like job, money, power, etc. and some other requirements like recovery from illness, happiness etc., are generally in the initial stage of their spiritual journey. Prayers of spiritually progressing persons are without worldly expectations, but there is also some sort of pleading to GOD for spiritual progress and for removal of obstacles in their spiritual practice, reduction of their ego etc.
The following are the examples of prayers in the three religions viz Hinduism, Christianity and Islam respectively which have some kind of pleading to God:
- నీ పాద కమల సేవయు, నీ పాదార్చకులతోడి నెయ్యము, నితాంతాపార భూత దయయును, తాపస మందార నాకు దయసేయగదె (Nee padakamala sevayu, Nee padarchakulathodi neyyamunu nitaamtaapaara bhoota dayayunu, Tapasa mandaara naaku daya seyagade) which means, "O Almighty the source of pleasure to the Tapasvis (sages), bestow upon me the opportunity to serve your lotus feet, to befriend your servants, to develop kindness towards all creations".
- Oh Saviour! Pour upon me, Thy spirit of meekness and love, annihilate the selfhood in me, Be thou all my life.
- Oh God! Whatever share of this world, Thou hast allotted to me, bestow it on Thine enemies, And whatever share of the next world, Thou hast allotted to me, bestow it on Thy friends, Thou art enough for me.
Having said the above, it must also be noted that the whole religious philosophy can't be summarized in a single phrase and we can't claim that there are no other methods of worship. But from the perspective of what we observe in the society today, the followers of all religions perform their prayers with some wish or some demand to the God, or they ask for removing obstacles from their path.
Instead a perfect prayer shall be without any want or wish or any pleading to God, because such a spiritual seeker knows that God doesn't give us what we want, but only gives us what we deserve. What we can control in our human capacity is only to 'take and control' our actions and the 'results' we get aren't in our hands. So if based on our past actions (whether you believe in past lives, or not) or for any other reason, we deserve some result, the God gives us the same, and we need not plead anymore to God about it asking for a change.
Instead let us have a look at arguably the best prayer below: (one of the greatest saints of modern India, Sri RamaChandraji has prescribed this for the abhyasis (spiritual seeker) of Sahaj Marga Sadhana):
"O Master you are the real goal of human life.
We are yet but slaves of wishes putting bar to our spiritual advancement.
You are the only God and Power, to bring me up to that state."
The prayer offered with extreme meekness placing our inabilities before the Master (GOD) never goes unheard. In this prayer we are not praying for anything. We are of the conclusion that the WILL of God will let things happen and we accept it with full satisfaction, without any negative thought. This prayer is simple and placing our real status before the Highest asking for nothing. There is no other prayer better than this or that can be comparable to this, as this is praying the God just for the sake of praying, not for wishing or demanding anything from Him.
Sri RamaChandraji Maharaj of Shajahanpur, who is the founder of Sahaj Marg movement, with astounding logic and interpretation of ancient scriptures, has critically opposed all the useless dogmas and traditions that have crept into the modern Hinduism (which is falsely considered by many as an orthodox religion now) and in general in other religions of the word.
His movement 'Sahaj Marg' is aimed at making people understand in the simplest way possible, the whole wisdom of the great sages in a practical way suited to the current times. Through Sahaj Marg, Swami RamaChandraji has prescribed 10 maxims to his disciples (Commentary on Ten Maxims of Sahaj Marg).
In one of the maxims, "Begin your puja with a prayer for the spiritual elevation, with a heart full of love and devotion", it is mentioned that the Prayer should be offered with a heart full of love and devotion because we should create within us a state of vacuity so that the currents of Divine Grace may descend smoothly. We should create room for that due to which so much attraction may be created so as to make the Divine currents begin to descend directly on us.
A poet has said 'O thou, thirsty for the Divine wine, empty thy heart of every desire; for the head of the wine bottle bows only over an empty cup'. Continuous practice brings one gradually to a state in which he feels himself as the Prayer itself all through. This state is acquired when an abhyasi practices fully according to the above mentioned rules, and Divine Grace begins to get set into motion fully. When the final stage is reached, he begins to dwell in a state of Prayer all through even while discharging his worldly duties and the same state prevails during all his worldly engagements without the least disturbance or interruption. If someone has developed such a condition it means that he is in the state of Prayer only.
To know more about Prayer, our readers are requested to go through the article 'The real goal of human life' and other articles related to "spirituality" on this website
Courtesy: Sri. B.E. Sampath Kumar and Sri. P. Subbarayudu of Sri RamaChandraji Maharaj Seva Trust, Kadapa.