The Five Principles – #4
Welcome back as we continue our series on the Five Principles, Unity’s five basic,
To recap, Principle One: There is only one Presence and one Power active as the
universe and as my life, God the Good. God is not out there somewhere, but in us
and around us, both transcendent and immanent.
God. Divine Spirit. The Universe. It’s all good. There is nothing but good.
Next, we explored Principle Two: Our essence is of God; therefore, we are inherently
good. This God essence, called the Christ, was fully expressed in Jesus.
And WE can express that Christ by being open and receptive to who & what we truly are. We are Divine Expressions of our Creator. Each individually expressing as ourselves. How we do that is our choice. And THAT choice leads us to Principle 3: We are co-creators with God, creating reality through thoughts held in mind. Thoughts held in mind with emotion, with feeling manifest in our world. And if we are thinking thoughts with feeling, with energy and others are thinking similar thoughts with feeling, we often find major manifestations – like a cure for a disease or some idea coming to fruation. That can work in reverse, and we can see negative manifestations like riots and war, or even family up-heveal.
We must watch our thoughts and our words, and the energy we place behind them.
This week, we move onto the Fourth Principle: Through prayer and meditation, we align our heart-mind with God. Denials and affirmations are tools we use.
Another way to say it is there is power in affirmative prayer, which we believe increases our awareness of God.
Prayer and meditation are essential elements of the spiritual life because they keep us awake and aware of our Oneness with God and all creation.
Prayer is where Spirit meets language.
In her book, “The Five Principles,” Rev. Debenport says:
Of course the universe does not need our words; it responds to energetic vibration. Words resonate within us; we say them for our own sakes. They clarify our thoughts and intentions. They are the voice by which we call forth what we want from the field of possibilities. When we speak consciously, we release our words as if shooting an arrow at a target. We refrain from saying anything we don’t want to see in our lives.
That’s what Jesus meant when he said, “Ask and it will be given.” Asking is not begging or beseeching, a many of us were taught. It is focusing our thoughts, aiming our intentions. Prayer is the time we take to focus, to align ourselves in oneness with the divine and affirm that whatever we need is already ours. This is affirmative prayer.
Like the other principles, affirmative prayer-declaring that our needs are already fulfilled-sounds presumptuous to any who were taught that humans should grovel before God. We may fear that claiming we attracted whatever shows up in our lives drives God out of the process or fails to acknowledge our gifts and blessings. But remember Principle One: It’s all God. Jesus taught us to pray in utter confidence. “Your father knows what you need before you ask him,” he said, and “Whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it and it will be yours.
Whatever we need or want already exists for us. It is already ours. We can’t get ahead of God.
In affirmative prayer, we are remembering who we truly are as expressions of the eternal life force on earth, and we are taking time to align our thoughts and feelings with our highest good. We affirm our well-being, that our needs are filled and that there is no lack in the universe. Because the universe senses our vibration, prayer is more than words we utter between “Dear God” and “Amen.” Every thought, every feeling, is a prayer.
And the response is always yes!
Through prayer and meditation, we align our heart-mind with God.
This teaching frees us from feelings of alienation, and isolation, from God and other people. Prayer and meditation free us from the mental, emotional and physical cravings and addictions that restrict our freedom. By teaching us to take charge of, and tame our unruly minds, they restore to us the freedom to choose, what and whom we will give our attention to. Silence, is our pipeline to the rich, peace-filled fields of God.
The personal characteristic of this principle is guidance!
–Søren Kierkegaard –
“This is how it is.
To pray does not mean to listen to oneself speaking,
Prayer involves becoming silent,
And being silent,
And waiting until God is heard.”
Prayer is connection
Biblical reference: Matthew 5:37 Let your communication be, Yea, yea; Nay, nay and 6:6 But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.
There are many ways to pray. Some even say, every thought is a prayer, and essentially, that is probably true, which is why we say to watch your thoughts. We do not encourage beseeching prayer, that is encouraging the thought of separation, a God outside of us.
We do encourage a prayer of listening, being open and receptive. And we teach it in five steps.
- Give Thanks
Ellen says: Prayer moves us into a state of allowing and nonresistance. We don’t receive an answer to prayer as much as we let the answer into our lives. It is like opening the shades to let the sunshine stream in. The sunlight was always there, but we were blocking it. God is not watching and deciding whether we deserve good outcomes.
Jesus said, “It is the Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom,” and the
kingdom is already among us. We need only open ourselves to it.
So instead of talking more about prayer and meditation, let’s practice…
Relax – Let’s get comfortable, take some cleansing breaths. Really get comfortable. If that means taking your shoes off, and you already haven’t, do so. If it means lying down, or sitting on the floor, do so.
Concentrate on what it is you are intending to do, in this case, clear your mind. Allow Monkey Mind to just flow through. Don’t give it energy.
Now go to that special place where you find comfort and peace, meditate in that peace, connect with your inner Christ. Pray, say what you wish to say to the God of your understanding.
Realize that you are connect with the Oneness that is —that you are, feel that connection. Listen to what the God of your understanding wishes you to know.
Gratitude – thank that God of your understanding for the time, the love, the connection, the comfort, the joy in your life. For the response to your thought, whether you received it already or for when it comes in the future.
And we all say – AMEN.
My prayer time comes in many forms. It may be a simple “Thank You” or an elaborate ritual. It may be silent or audible. It may be one of the reminders that I have programed in my phone or the final thank you at the end of the day. Regardless of how or where it happens, prayer centers me in the presence of God.
Through prayer, my perspective expands. I see beyond current situations or circumstances to the power of God at work in my life. Prayer changes my mind and heart. It lifts me into an experience of oneness with God, it transforms us.
We realize that as we transform our thinking, we also transform our personal concept of God. We realize that our God is not a God who is moody, vengeful, or angry, but a God who is the God of Jesus Christ: a God who is very much alive, a God who sees ALL GOOD, a God who is Love.
And so are you love.