Originally posted by Omnislash
By popular request, the prayer thread!
So, what does prayer mean to you? Why do you do it? What do you derive from it? How do you do it?
For me, prayer is first and foremost a conversation. Sometimes it's a conversation with a King, sometimes with a Shepherd. Sometimes with a Father, sometimes with a Brother. Sometimes with a Creator and sometimes with a Teacher. There was even a time in my life when it was a conversation with an Enemy. But, above all, it is a conversation. Sometimes it's about praise and thanks; sometimes it's an "I want this" or an "I'm sorry".
Why do I pray? Quite simply - to be closer to God. There's nothing I want or need that He doesn't already know about; nothing I feel or think that He can't see. So it's not about letting him know what's happening in my life. Rather, it's about me doing
something that, on my part, allows me to be closer to Him. God doesn't need my prayers, I do. Sometimes, just verbalising what I need allows me to examine them critically, prioritise my prayers, introspect a little bit.
LJ - I disagree that group prayer has no value. We are social beings. Prayer in groups brings us together as a community of believers. I love the fact that, wherever in the world I am and however far from home I might be, I can always walk into a church and meet a community of fellow-travellers ("travellers" being in the sense of a spiritual journey). As far away from friends and family as I might be, there is a little bit of home there. Group prayer, like group activities, bring people together, allows them to help, support and teach one another.
As a Catholic, there is a much simpler and greater reason why I go for Mass - to literally meet God in the Eucharist. But I don't think you're much of a supporter of that notion, so I won't say more about it.