New thoughts on prayer


My prayers are largely ineffective

Everyone in the gospel has a weakness. Mine is prayer. Although I have received answers to prayer on many occasions, for the most part it has been hit-and-miss. During times of sin, this is understandable, but during times of righteousness, unanswered prayers can be awfully frustrating, especially in the light of the Savior’s promise that whatever we ask for in faith, nothing doubting, would be received.

It is written,

Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts. (James 4: 3)

Yea, I know that God will give liberally to him that asketh. Yea, my God will give me, if I ask not amiss; therefore I will lift up my voice unto thee; yea, I will cry unto thee, my God, the rock of my righteousness. Behold, my voice shall forever ascend up unto thee, my rock and mine everlasting God. Amen. (2 Nephi 4: 35)

The word amiss is an adverb that means “in a faulty manner; contrary to propriety, truth, law or morality.”  This means that if a person prays to God for something and does not receive, he is praying incorrectly.

Starting from scratch

I once learned from a certain person that most men, when trying to win the hearts of women, will use the techniques they think are best. If their techniques don’t work, they try harder, using the same techniques. The idea is that if the square peg ain’t going in the round hole, use a bigger hammer. The wiser course of action, though, would be to re-evaluate the techniques and perhaps throw them right out the window and start altogether from scratch.

This is what James McCanney did when tackling the prime number enigma (which he ended up breaking as described in his Calculate Primes book). I heard that he took all the books and papers he had in his library about prime numbers and put them away, out of sight, and then took months of time to work to forget it all. When the information that others had written about prime numbers was completely out of his mind, he looked at prime numbers with a clean sheet and was finally able to crack the code, without any false presuppositions to cloud his view.

In the same manner, I decided a few days ago that everything I thought I understood about prayer was wrong and threw it all out the window (mentally).  So, with this absolutely clean slate in front of me, I looked at prayer again.  Here is what I saw:

What prayer isn’t

Prayer is not how we talk to God, nor how He talks to us. When we pray, we are not to be picturing God in front of us, or standing on a cloud above us, or sitting on a throne, etc. Prayer is not designed to be a conversation, similar to one we would have with another person, with the exception being that we can say anything we want to say, and bare our whole souls without fear of judgment because the person we are talking to is mute (doesn’t talk back) and invisible. Prayer is not even communication, in the typical sense, with anyone, at all. It is not meant to be the means to tell God what we need or want or desire. He already knows all that. In fact, prayer cannot tell God anything more than He already knows. Nor is it designed to reveal us to ourselves. It is not intended to express or reveal how we feel, such as gratitude, praise and desires, or fears, guilt and hatred. It is not designed to humble us or make us feel guilty or miserable or lowly or meek, by kneeling down, folding our arms, bowing our heads, speaking in reverent tones, using reverent language, lifting up the arms, prostrating oneself, etc. It is not so that we convince ourselves to repent or that we are okay or that the principles of the gospel are true, etc. It is not designed to be a psychological tool, although it can be used as one. The frequency of prayer is not random, nor are the types of prayers offered. In short, virtually everything I thought I knew about prayer is wrong.

What prayer is

Prayer is an ordinance

Just as the sacramental prayer is, in fact, nothing more or less than a prayer, yet we consider it a sacred ordinance of the gospel, all prayers are likewise sacred ordinances of the gospel. They are performed by the power of the priesthood. Not the Melchizedek, Aaronic, Levitical or Patriarchal orders of priesthood, but a different order available to all the children of God, priesthood being a divine language. Nevertheless, all priesthood is Melchizedek, meaning that all priesthood power and authority is an appendage of the Melchizedek priesthood.

Prayer is a role play

The words of the prayer are the words that God wants to hear.  They are the words that Jesus Christ would say in our place.  We are not to say what we want to, or feel like, saying.  We are only to say what God wants to hear.  (And it is through the scriptural patterns of prayer that we learn what God wants to hear.)

Prayer is an exercise to develop the right-brain-heart

In a previous post, I wrote:

Belief, Doubt and Prayer

The right-brain-heart is the believing brain, whereas the left-brain-mind is the doubter, unless the belief is based upon logic, facts, peer-reviewed evidence, etc. So, when the Lord instructs us to pray in faith, believing that we will receive, nothing doubting, he is explaining the manner of using both hemispheres of the brain. Verbal prayers require the left-brain-mind, while faith and belief both originate in the right-brain-heart. And by saying “nothing doubting” He is explaining that the left-brain-mind is to speak but do nothing more. So, there is to be no conflict between left-brain-mind and right-brain-heart. Belief and faith are to come from the right-brain-heart without any doubt from the left-brain-mind. In our prayers, then, we are to be one, meaning that our left-brain-mind and right-brain-heart are to be united, with the right-brain-heart in its proper role as the primary and dominant brain. Prayer, then, becomes a means whereby we may train our left-brain-minds to be subservient to our right-brain-hearts.

Prayer is to be performed in a temple of God

The kingdom of God is within you, said Jesus. It is located in the right-brain-heart. It is the temple of God, where the Holy Spirit dwells. When we pray, we are to mentally enter this specific temple and offer our prayers there, in the midst of the right-brain-heart. We are not to imagine looking outward at an image of God, but are to imagine looking inward into this eternal area of man, even the organ of eternity. Only by mentally entering and focusing on this organ, which is eternal in its scope, being patterned after the brain of God, can we access its powers and gifts and fully develop them.

Prayer is to be performed vocally three times a day

Just as the sacrament ordinance is performed routinely (weekly), daily prayer ordinances are to be offered up morning, mid-day and night, creating a routine. These are vocal prayers in which the individual enters the temple of God and performs the ordinance with mind, body and spirit.

Prayer is to be performed vocally and in secret (in one’s heart), publicly and in private

These prayer ordinances, when performed in one’s head, are done using mind and spirit, but not the body (for they are not voiced out loud). This means that we speak in our minds, hearing our own voices in our heads, but not in our ears.

Prayer is to be carried around in one’s heart continually

This refers to prayer done using only the spirit. It means to remain centered or focused on the right-brain-heart, meaning that we imagine that we are still in the confines of this sacred, inner temple, and that we feel towards God continually, praising Him, thanking Him and asking Him for blessings upon us and others using only our feelings, with no mental or spoken words.

Prayer is to be done with family and friends

The promise is that when two or more are gathered in the Lord’s name, He will be there and whatever they ask in faith, believing they will receive, will be granted. All of the family or friends gathered should be “in their temples” for these prayers to be effective.

Prayer, whenever possible, is to follow the true order

The most effective prayer is one in which the ordinance is done in complete union. The true order of prayer given during the endowment shows, first of all, that such a prayer is to be offered only in the temples of God (the right-brain-heart) and secondly, that each person is to repeat the exact words offered by the one acting as voice. In this way, all voice the same prayer. Although the church will crack down on anyone attempting to perform the full true order of prayer outside of a church temple, meaning that the signs of the priesthood are made also, anyone can gather around an altar and perform the true order of prayer outside of a church temple and merely leave out the signs. As long as each of them are focused on their right-brain-heart (their inner temple), the Lord will bless them even as they ask.

In the ordinances the power of godliness is manifest

Without the ordinances of the gospel, the power of godliness is not manifest. This is why the ordinance of prayer has been given to us, all of us, that we might have the power of godliness manifest to us in the flesh. But unless the ordinance of prayer is performed properly, no power will be manifest.

Everything is found in the right-brain-heart

It is not necessary to feel what you are praying for. Everything is found within the right-brain-heart, all variations of feelings. So, even if you don’t feel grateful, once you mentally “enter” the inner temple of God and begin to pray, you can speak words of gratitude in truth. Every feeling is there, perhaps found buried deep within, but there nonetheless. We are directed to praise God, even if we don’t feel like praising Him; to thank Him, even if we don’t feel thankful; to ask Him for all things, even if we don’t feel faith. The inner temple is an environment devoid of doubt. It is endless and therefore contains endless power and possibilities. Once we “enter” it, or center our thoughts upon it, looking inward and not outward, and then begin saying the words of the prayer, not what we want to say, but what we think God wants to hear from us, the temple comes to life and responds with faith, powers and gifts. Prayer is an ordinance that trains us to be like Christ because once we enter the inner temple and voice a prayer that God wants to hear, we speak the words of Christ, for only prayers that speak the words of Christ please God. Prayer trains us, then, to speak by the power of the Holy Ghost, for the Spirit speaks the words of Christ and when we pray in the Spirit, we also receive in the Spirit.

The routine of prayer is necessary

We are commanded to say so many daily prayers, of the three types (spirit-mind-body, spirit-mind and spirit-only), because this is a training ordinance. Man learns by doing. He learns to walk by walking, run by running, ride by riding, talk by talking, etc. Prayer can only be learned and mastered by praying. And it must be mastered by all disciples of Christ. But repetitively praying amiss does nothing except causes doubt and despair to come upon us. So, a proper understanding of what prayer is, how to perform it correctly, and why we need it is necessary for it to have its designed, divine effect upon us.

The reason why prayers are ineffectual

People are not praying in inner temples of God. That is the main reason. They are praying as if they are speaking to some invisible, mute person. They are saying words that they want to say. They are not trying to please God with their words, but are only saying what they are thankful for, instead of thanking God for everything; they are only confessing the hand of God in the things that they can see it in, instead of confessing His hand in all things; they are only asking for those things they want or those things they think they can get, instead of asking for all things. They are only praising God when they feel like praising Him, and not all the time. They are in the wrong environment. They are utilizing only the left-brain-mind, which is selfish. (The right-brain-heart is selfless.) They are looking outward from their perspective, not inward from God’s perspective.

Once we look inward, at ourselves, as if we were God (or Christ), and pray after this manner, always remembering that God dwells in the right-brain-heart and not the left-brain-mind, and thus looking to or “entering” the right-brain-heart, our prayers will become effectual and we will receive what we ask for.

Conclusion

I admit that this new way of looking at prayer may not be correct. I am currently trying it out, testing the waters, so to speak. I plan on reporting whatever results I get from this new understanding and prayer experiment. If anyone would like to try to pray in the manner explained in this post and report back on their experience, with comparison to how they normally pray, that would be great, also. I would recommend an extended test, such as a seven-day experiment, with three vocal prayers a day minimum, including all the other prayers we are supposed to do, but always in the way stated in this post.

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63 Comments

  1. I’m there with you for the whole “what prayer isn’t” explanation, but can you back up your beliefs of what prayer is with some scriptures… specifically where we are told to pray 3 times a day. That is beginning to sound a little like Islam, but maybe that’s how it’s supposed to be.

  2. Here you go:

    Alma 34: 21
    Psalms 55: 17
    Daniel 6: 10

    Amulek, David and Daniel all prayed three times a day, morning, mid-day and evening. (Btw, the Jews do this, too.)

  3. Prayer is to be performed vocally three times a day

    I can testify that this is correct. I have had similar issues to the ones you spoke about in the My prayers are largely ineffective section. Two months ago, I began praying at the same time three times each day. I started b/c I figured if orthodox Jews and Muslims can make it a point to pray three times a day, then I should be able to handle it too.

    However, I think the reason I still haven’t received according to my petitions is the “square peg in a round hole — use a bigger hammer” thing.

    Thanks — enjoyed the post.

  4. My wife read this post to me while we were going to the Temple. To be honest my wife and I were a bit dissappointed. But after going through the temple I realized something that made your post make more sense. And you might have even said it but i missed it. What i can te realize after going through the endowment is that prayer is becoming one with God. I’m sure you did mention that but it was kind of lost on me. We pray not to tell God our desires, or ask Him for things we want. rather we pray to commune and become one with God. When we are one with God, what He wants for us is what we will pray for. We wont go to him with the list of requests and praises. Rather we will let Him tell us what we are to praise Him for and what we are to ask of Him. The goal would be to become one mind with God. His will becomes our will and when communing through prayer that becomes a powerful thing. After realizing this your post made much more sense.

    I had some other inspiration ideas but I’ll post it later.

    I wish you would have expounded a bit more about the dating thing. hahaha.

  5. Once we look inward, at ourselves, as if we were God (or Christ),

    zo-ma-rah, try this experiment. Try saying a prayer in which you see yourself as if you were God standing there looking at you, in a first person perspective. In other words, imagine that you are God, that you are in His body, standing before you and you (God) are looking down at you while you are praying. Don’t even try to imagine the body of God. Just as we look around us while we are standing and do not see our body, but see what is around us, imagine you are in the body of God doing the same. This frees up the mind from imagining what you are praying to. Now pray with that image (of you) in your mind, again, seeing yourself kneeling there, and pray with the intention of pleasing you (God). What would you like to hear? What words would please you (God)? Again, it is a role play.

    I have found that when I’ve done this my prayer feels altogether different. Suddenly it becomes natural to say praise, thanksgiving, ask for all things (because God is ready to bestow all things) without doubt. I find myself praying to please God. It is a oneness with God in more than one sense, because I’m actually imagining myself as God and not as me. But then, how do I ever expect to be like God unless I start imagining myself as God? Prayer, then, is the training to that end.

    Now, me, personally, when I look at myself, I actually tear open the inner man (role playing as God) and look directly at that eternal space called the right-brain-heart. That is the place where God speaks back and that is the place where prayer is to come from, so the focus is always on that spot.

  6. Justin, if you tell me the three times that you have set aside to say your prayers, I can synchronize my own prayers to those times. In this way we will be “gathered in spirit” in the name of the Lord and multiply the effect of our combined prayers. In my experience, being gathered has no set distance.

  7. I agree. That is also why I started this thread at EOZ think-tank.

    Given in the Eastern timezone, I say my prayers at:

    8:45 am
    2:00 pm
    9:00 pm

    If you are in a timezone that makes one of those times difficult — I’d be willing to adjust in an attempt to help synchronize. I like the idea.

    Further, I have been praying for you to receive the manifestation of the two healing gifts when I offer them at those times. [Admittedly, I feel strange asking Father to “bless LDS Anarchist”, but I trust that He understands.]

  8. In case anyone is interested, there may be some scriptural evidence that prayer is, indeed, an ordinance of the gospel. When LDS think of worship, they typically think of two things: ordinances and the temple. We worship God by performing ordinances and by attending the temple (in which ordinances are performed.) Alma, though, equated prayer with worship in Alma chapter 33. Said he, “Do ye remember to have read what Zenos, the prophet of old, has said concerning prayer or worship?” So, prayer = worship, worship = ordinances and temple, thus prayer = an ordinance performed in a very exclusive temple (admitting only God and one man). Viewed in this light, Alma (and Zenos’) words about being able to worship God even after having been kicked out of the synogogues (houses of worship/temples) makes sense, since there is always a temple of God open and available to every man, woman and child.

  9. Lol. Those times are fine. I have been praying for you, also, but in the “old” way. I’ll start synchronized prayers tomorrow, in the “new” way.

  10. I hope I didn’t come across negative. After going through the temple with your post in mind changed my perspective. Even in the temple I prayed differently than I had before. I think the days of half asleep, head on the couch cushion, “prayers” are done.

    While waiting to enter the creation room I was reading scriptures pertaining to prayer. I found one(Alma 34:17-29) that says if we pray, but do no afterward take care of the poor we are hypocrites.

    It just seems interesting that taking care fo the poor is part of prayer.

  11. Don’t worry about it. I didn’t find your comments negative. Besides, I don’t know if any of this is correct. I put it up here to get feedback from others. Although I understand this new perspective while the thoughts are in my own head, putting them into words is difficult. I probably didn’t explain it right or sufficiently, even if the concept is correct. I intentionally tried to leave out a lot of scripture quotes and links so that the post wasn’t 10 miles long. I didn’t really want to expound this time around. I just wanted to get key concepts out that others could unfold in their own head. I’m glad that you told me you were disappointed in the post. I’m also glad to learn that it began to unfold with your temple experience. That’s a sign that there might be truth to this concept.

    If prayer is, indeed, a role play based upon Christ, in which we try to speak the words that Christ would say in our place, then that scripture you cite makes sense. Charity is the love of Christ. If we are going to speak the words of Christ (via prayer) but not do the works of Christ (charity), we become hypocrites.

    For my own part, viewing prayer as an ordinance makes me treat it differently, even seriously. Ordinances of the gospel should be performed with “the solemnities of eternity resting upon our minds.” These are serious matters, not to be taken lightly. So, prayer should be afforded the same reverence and preparation, if it is a sacred gospel ordinance like the others, I would think. The change in how I approach prayer should surely change both the nature of the prayer and the outcome. Time will tell.

  12. dyc4557 is now synchronized currently traveling in US. Thank you brothers. One of the best birthday presents ever.
    Thus saith the Lord “Where two or three are gathered in my name there will I be also”

  13. Well I have to admit my prayer last night had some amazing results. I couldn’t quite get the, “see yourself as if you were God standing there looking at you.” So I mainly focused on having a feeling of oneness and unity. Doing this, I had the Lord teach me. In trying to receive what the Lord wanted me to pray for, I spoke slower and had a lot more time to pause and ponder. It was at one of these pauses that my thoughts were brought to some things I had been wondering about in the temple. I was then instructed as to the meaning of some of these things. It was relly amazing.

  14. Yes it is working. I have always been concerned about how to eliminate the doubt as doubting nothing is an essential element to the promise.
    Well the concept of going into the temple of the right side heart where there is no doubt has given me the way to pray without doubt. Without as in outside of or in a place away from where doubt can exist. I have experienced times in the early morning when my brain is all right sided and there is nothing but faith, hope and love. It brings confidence that God has all power. It made me see how Christ could say doubt not all things are possible with God.
    I have already started feeling it and it is just the first day. Wow.
    I would normally say “I think this will bring good results.” But today I have no doubt that this will bring forth great fruit. It has already begun.

  15. I’m glad to hear that you guys are finding this view of prayer to be beneficial. I actually got a new thought a couple of hours ago that takes this concept a bit further. But I want to test it first and see what happens before I post a comment about it. Until then…

  16. I almost hesitate to share this. I know that without the holy spirit my comments could be very easily dismissed as being catered to this post instead of an accurate and true accounting of personal experience.
    I think it was the last week in October. I had been fasting and was preparing to end my fast. I had extended my fasting a few hours longer than usual and so was a few hours into that spiritual sharpening that comes after the hunger has been subdued to the will of the spirit. I had done some studying and felt very spiritually nourished and so figured it was an appropriate time to start a prayer to finalize my consecrated efforts as is my custom.
    I live in a little two story house. But only the south half of the house is two levels. So as I felt myself directed in the spirit to remove my shoes and ascend the winding stair case to the upper rooms, I found myself at the top of the stairs with one room that is currently unused off to the left and the master bedroom off to the right. I paused for a moment thinking maybe I should enter the one on the left since I reasoned that there would be zero distractions in that empty space (and I also really love the view from the window in there). But I felt the spirit move me with certainty and purpose into the right room. It was immediately made clear to my mind that I was to remain facing north and follow the same movements within my head, in a fractal manner.
    I sat indian style and did not fold my arms. I went in to my right brain holy of holies. I uttered a prayer for loved ones. I was then directed to ease into a silent prayer. I continued to pray with words but only in my head. Then as the feelings started to intensify I felt to let go of words altogether and it was as if I then closed the door to my heart behind me. I prayed intensely but without words. I could feel a distinct ignition of the right hemisphere of my brain. After the prayer was complete, I felt beckoned to the east upstairs window to gaze out upon the neighborhood below. I stood there and gazed and was taught a few valuable pieces of knowledge as I did this.
    The whole experience was a real spiritual high. I’ve been applying the things I was taught to every personal, family and many public (church) prayers since then. The right brain-heart came to mind today in gospel doctrine class when we read in Ezekiel about water flowing out from the east gate of the temple and bringing life. Then I was blown away to come home from church earlier today and read this post outlining the same principles that I had been taught in a very personal way and in extremely private moments during that spiritually charged experience I just related.

  17. I’ve decided to not to wait to test my new thought before writing about it on this blog. Perhaps others may find it useful. So, here is an additional thought on prayer:

    Pouring and filling the soul

    When we have poured out the soul in prayer, the Lord then fills it with the Spirit and joy.

    We partake of the sacrament to have our souls filled with the Spirit and joy.

    We pray to pour out our souls to God. It is the poured out soul that is referred to as mighty prayer.

    It takes a certain amount of time to pour out one’s soul in prayer to God.

    If one prays continually, in the correct way, it takes no more than 24 hours (one day) to pour out the entire soul to God.

    After the soul has been poured out (or emptied), God speaks, fills it with His Spirit and joy, and grants the petition.

    God does not directly answer a prayer until the soul has been completely poured out, or emptied.

    Initially, when learning how to empty one’s soul to God through prayer, it may take a longer time (up to one full day of continual prayer) to reach emptiness and have the petition granted.

    With practice, the time it takes to pour the soul completely out to God shortens, so that as one learns how to do it and does it more frequently, answers and gifts may be obtained from God more quickly and easily.

    Eventually, as one gets better at prayer, even short prayers will receive immediate answers because one learns how to quickly turn the “cup of one’s soul” upside down, spilling out the contents of one’s soul to God very quickly, exposing the empty soul to God that He may fill it.

    If, in fact, soul emptying is necessary to receive what one is asking for, this may be the reason why many people pray but do receive what they ask for. Their prayers are short and shallow. Only some of their soul is bared or poured out, the rest left to sit there. Instead of being mighty, their prayers are weak. God cannot put anything new in it because its still full of garbage.

    Using the above concepts of prayer and putting in the time necessary to get the soul fully emptied before God, it may be that anyone can receive answers from God within a single day. This leaves the wicked and unbelieving without excuse because of the simpleness or easiness of obtaining what we ask for from God. No one need spend more than a single day to be able to hear the voice of the Spirit and the more they do this, the easier it becomes to hear her voice.

    A new experiment

    I am going to test this by taking time out of my schedule to pray like Enos did in an attempt to get my entire soul emptied, or poured out to God.

  18. I wonder if this concept of until the soul has been completely poured out, or emptied. is related to the idea of:

    Mark 8:34; And when he had called the people [unto him] with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.”

    Wherein to “deny” means “to affirm that one has no acquaintance or connection with someone” — essentially the word used to mean “disown”.

    In this way, one becomes disowned or empty [to the Self] — whereby he or she may then be filled by God. A cup that is already full has no room to receive.

  19. That would also give meaning to some elements of the True Order of Prayer. Specifically being filled.

  20. […] our way to the temple I had my wife read me LDSA’s post about prayer. There were something I thought were a bit strange in that post. So while waiting to enter the […]

  21. Another thought that occurred to me yesterday is that of the new sacrifice required by the Lord, namely, that of a broken heart and a contrite spirit. It is called a sacrifice, yet we hardly think of it in the historical sense, meaning that you take the sacrificial offering to the temple altar, etc. But, if the right-brain-heart is, indeed, a temple of God, well, then we ought to be able to offer a sacrifice there, right? Prayer, then, becomes the ordinance by which we sacrifice our broken hearts and contrite spirits upon the alter of our heart temples, “for a sweet savor unto the Lord.” And every burnt offering requires fire, right? Isn’t that why the Spirit of God is necessary? Anyway, the temple and sacrifice symbolism seems to match the ordinance of prayer. To continually pray in one’s heart, then, is to continually offer the sacrifice of a broken heart and contrite spirit upon our inner altar. To me, the whole shebang points to the sacrifice of the Savior, which is why prayer is such a vital part of the gospel.

  22. All of this, in my mind, shows an expanding pattern. We have an inner temple (the right-brain-heart) which is a house of prayer, a house of faith, a house of glory, a house of God, and in which we offer sacraments or a sacrifice of a broken heart and contrite spirit through the ordinance of prayer. Then, we pattern outer temples, such as the magnificent edifices we call Houses of the Lord. These also are called houses of prayer, faith, etc., and are patterned after the inner holy of holies. Planets are houses, much larger than the others, but still patterned after the first. (Or you could say that the first and second are patterned after the last.) These vast celestial bodies “call upon the name of the Lord” when they say EEAAOOAAEE, etc. And so on and so forth.

    Lastly, there is the pattern given in D&C 88 concerning the school of the prophets and salutations, prayers and thanksgiving being done with “uplifted hands to heaven, even directly.” This is patterned after the movement of the planets (the whole section is talking of planets). This “uplifted hands to heaven” stance may be useful in more fully focusing one’s daily prayers. There is, after all, a reason why the Lord mentions it.

  23. I just barely figured out what is meant by right-brain-heart. When speaking of the heart the Lord is not referring to our literal heart. Our heart has no mental faculties. So the right side of our brain is where the feelings, emotions, etc. of the “heart” happen. The right side of our brain is the “heart”. I just barely realized that, and it make much more sense now.

  24. The following is from a person’s review of a book written by Julian Jaynes, The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind.

    2,000 B.C. — 1,000 B.C.
    Gods spoke to man directly. Most Gods were earth bound and visited individuals during normal everyday activities. Often the Gods were given rest or held residence in ziggurats or household shrines. Invocation and prayer were not used, not really invented as yet, nor were they necessary.
    1,000 B.C. — 0 A.D.
    The Gods retreat back into the heavens. Their voices heard only when invoked, usually in times of great stress within certain individuals.
    0 A.D. — 1,000 A.D.
    The Gods abandoned humans completely leaving only their writings for us to interpret as to their meaning. Increasingly absurd and malicious invocations are used, in the end to no avail. The Gods have grown largely silent.
    1,000 A.D. — 2, 000 A.D.
    Even the writings of the religions now become meaningless. Doubt, hate, anxiety and fear replace the once confident and compassionate followers of the modern day Gods.

    One of the many insightful arguments that Jaynes skillfully articulates is that there is an increasingly large gap between modern man’s left brain and our right brain. Not a spatial gap but an ethereally widening ocean between man’s ability for his brain to communicate between the linear functions and the regional pattern recognition or understanding aspect of the brain. This is happening at a time when we are more aware of our entire selves; our consciousness is increasing. The separation between man and his relationship to his Gods is a reflection of the estrangement between the two equal halves of mankind’s brain.

  25. There is a post titled: This is your brain on god — it features two interesting videos on the subject of God residing in the right brain of humans.

  26. Today, a high councilman for our stake mentioned the necessity of praying in the “holier than thou” language. He quoted for his source — the 2010 CHI.

  27. Hey sorry I haven’t gotten there yet to rip that heresy out too.

  28. Justin, I found some interesting information on the modern history of the sacrament in the churchtm. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sacrament_(Mormonism)

  29. jew1967: Thanks for checking-up on that.

  30. If anyone wants to participate in a prayer/mantra experiment, go to http://mantrasoffaith.blogspot.com/

  31. Maas — that’s interesting. It appears to be a commercial version of the same technology behind the researching using the “God helmet” — there’s a video related to that in a comment I made above.

  32. Anarchist – How goes your experiment?

  33. Steve — The experiment I wrote about above on December 6th was a failure. I spent a good portion of an entire day in prayer but I was not able to empty out my heart. However, I have recently embarked on a new experiment, in which I have discovered some completely new things (to me, at least.) This new experiment is ongoing (one month now) and has produced some very interesting and eye-raising results, but I’m not finished, yet. I hope to have it finished by the end of this week, but if not, I will continue using this new information until my heart is completely emptied out and then I will post the results on this blog.

  34. LDSA on my trip here in the US I have encountered many truths the Lord is showing me. Some of personal use and others that I can use to bless others. One relates to your experiment with pouring out your soul. I met a man who has been helping people with emotional-psychological problems for more than 20 years. His method is simple and as he has used it He has come to believe it is what the scriptures are talking about when they say repentance.
    He has seen amazing results with this system. He was trained fully and used conventional psychology for years but was disappointed with the results.
    Now after using this method he no longer uses the labels such as bipolar, schizophrenic etc. because he has seen all types of emotional/mental disorders cured. He doesn’t see just behavior modified, he see the desire or compulsions removed. And it is so simple and straight forward.
    For me the evidence that this is real are 1. He does not charge money for it. 2. anyone can do it with a little training. 3. the official church social services (which he worked for for years) didn’t adopt it. 4 I tried it and it is wonderful. 5 What he describes as happening and what i experienced are described in scriptural accounts in the Book of Mormon.
    he wrote a book as yet unpublished which he gave me a digital copy of and gave me permission to use any part and modify it how ever and spread it as much as I wanted.
    You know how to contact me by email if you would like to see what I have. I plan to use it in my tribe and with the people around where I live. If i can get the money we want to build an emotional healing center. Let me know.

  35. dyc4557 – I would be interested in this.

    Steve

  36. Hi
    What a great blog. I have learned some amazing things about prayer which you refer to, one being the empty mind eg. stopping the chattering thoughts. What a revelation that was. Jesus shared his mind with me, which was an oasis of peace. Before then I was ruled by my egoic mind. Also, if you get into chinese medicine, ethereal spirituality, you will discover that you have a spiritual or ethereal/energy heart located in the center of your chest where your physical heart is. The Sacred Heart is the holy of holies and is an actual organ of our spirits. The Sacred Heart corresponds to the heart chakra in chinese medicine, of which we have 8 chakras or energy vortexes. Our spirits are light/energy bodies. Your description of right brain heart vs. left brain mind corresponds to the spiritual/ethereal heart vs. what others call the ego. The ego is part of the natural man and is literally not part of our spirit selves. Our spirit body has parts that are defined by chinese medicine; when we learn finally to subdue our natural man (the ego) we are left with our true identity, our spirit. The spirit animates the body via the 8 energetic chakras defined by chinese medicine. Once we become aware of our spirit selves we then suddenly gain access to the spiritual gifts that we have all heard of: healings, telepathy and others seemingly too fantastic for our natural man minds to grasp.

  37. I would also be interested in reading a post about the simple method that former psycho therapist developed and used to heal others. Because all true healing of our physical bodies origiinates from our spirits, only a spiritual approach results in true healing. All methods that do not address the spirit are doomed to remain mechanical manipulation of the body with limited results.

  38. LDSA – Do you know how we can get this book?

    Thanks, Steve

  39. Steve, if dyc4557 hasn’t contacted you — I’d be willing to forward you the copy of the material that he had previously e-mailed me.

    I’ll send an e-mail to the address associated with your above comment this evening.

  40. Thanks, Justin. Steve

  41. I would be interested in this book as well. Please include me too.

    Thanks and God Bless 🙂

  42. Steve and jew1967:

    I sent the attachments to you this evening. Let me know if you do not receive the e-mail.

  43. Justin: I’d like to read that as well…preferably in an unedited version straight from the original author.

  44. Justin and LDSA thank you so much for taking care of these requests I haven’t been checking here recently. Please feel free to spread it as much as possible. and you can include the comments I sent in my emails to you guys.
    Thanks again. I should add here that after I completed the session with the author of this information he said that he had a special feeling about my family finding about this information that it would help it spread. When he said that I felt like perhaps I would have a chance to help spread it. And now just a little comment and I am glad people are interested. I am thankful that at the time I took the steps to get the full book and even in a form that excerpts could be made.
    I personally plan to set up a healing center to help out people who are interested. Maybe I will do a post on it. But what has been said and the files being circulated will probably suffice.

  45. If it is not too much trouble I, too, would like to receive a copy of the emotional healing information dyc4557 is sharing.

  46. I would also like the info on emotional healing. Thanks for sharing.

  47. dyc4557: I will send the copy of that book to Jeremy and Waiting tomorrow morning if you do not respond to this comment.

  48. Thank you Justin I sent them the info.

  49. I would also be interested in the information.

  50. It interests me to observe the general “non-effectiveness” of Christian prayer as a whole.

    As a specific example of what I mean — a Christian radio host remarked on his show that during Super Bowl Sunday, his congregation held a “prayer meeting” where they spent the entire duration of the football game praying that “God’s heart would be moved for an end to child sex trafficking in this county”. I hear of other Christians do this with abortion and other similar things.

    I’m sorry — but if God’s heart is not sufficiently moved by the kidnapping of minor children to force them to have sex for money or the murder of infants in gestation, etc. in and of themselves — then I don’t think that a bunch of people sitting around bringing it to His attention can do anything more.

    In most situations — it seems like prayer is more about making the pray-er feel better [as in, “Hey, at least I prayed about it — it’s in God’s hands now.”] than it is about affecting change, etc.

  51. I would appreciate a copy of the file dyc4557 is offering.

  52. Doctrine and Covenants 25:12 says “the song of the righteous is a prayer unto me.” We are also commanded to pray always. I concluded that if I sing always, then I pray always. For the last few months I have been singing hymns all day, every day (pretty much).

    A few weeks ago I began a search to learn how to pray scripturally. I appreciate this post for giving me more ideas in that direction. I have begun to crave my prayer time.

  53. Charlotte — good call on the D&C 25:12 definition of prayer.

  54. Charlotte — you should have received the file yesterday.

  55. Just found your blog, and really enjoyed reading several posts. I’d also be interested in receiving the file dcy4557 offered, but Justin seems to be sending. 🙂 Thanks in advance.

  56. I always feel like im way behind on these posts. . . I guess being on a mission in africa can do that to you. But if im not to late a copy of the emotional healing materials would be much appreciated. I got into meditation here on mission (much thanks to the indians of south africa) its pretty much what iv been reading about above and iv had some pretty stellar experiences. I definitly feel much closer to god with my new form of prayer than i ever did kneeling silently at my bedside. The only tough thing is 3 times at the same time every day. Great post!

  57. well I enjoyed this post and the comments. I’d love to get a copy of that file if anyone is still reading and would be kind enough to message it to me

  58. I just found this post and would love a copy of the file dcy4557 offered as well. Thank you for the info and insight of the post and comments, I have long felt my prayers go unanswered.

  59. LDSA, so this “new prayer” experiment was a failure. But you said you’ll update on your other experiment

    This new experiment is ongoing (one month now) and has produced some very interesting and eye-raising results, but I’m not finished, yet. I hope to have it finished by the end of this week, but if not, I will continue using this new information until my heart is completely emptied out and then I will post the results on this blog.

    Any updates?

  60. Any updates?

    Nope. When I have information that is ready to be released, I will publish it on this blog.

  61. “The most interesting thing about the heart transplant is that one completely loses his own heart and be replaced with someone else’s heart yet still has the feelings for the same person he loves. This proves that love works in the minds of people and not in their hearts. You will learn how to forget only if you try doing so.” – Dr. Burke

  62. (1 Nephi 7:16-18) this text was great as LDSA’s latest post because it confirms and rebuilds my former belief on prayer before i discovered ldsa blog…but ldsa posts on prayer are good foundations anyway>>><<<….


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