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Discussion 2 to Meditation 379
Not a Wish List

by Maarten van den Driest

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Prayer is not handing in your wish list.

I've said this before in Meditation 343: "It is written that any honest prayer by a believer is answered but there is some small print."

Obviously, praying is not like handing in your Agnostimas wish list. In that case everyone would get his or her whim every single time. People tend to 'want' a lot of things during a day.

If you've read Die Unendliche Geschichte by Michael Ende (funny surname) - also known as The Neverending Story - then you know that getting your wish can be extremely dangerous. 'Do what you want', says the magical amulet to the bearer...

Well, what does prayer do, then? I refer to Meditation 343 for more but in short: no magic. Prayer can give us support or strength, it can give us some kind of answers sometimes. A wise man wrote at one time: prayer is, ever so slowly, change your will into His.

That seems to me to be a good sentiment. You can take out the personal God if you don't believe in that but the idea remains the same: discovering what you really really want. After that, getting it should be a straightforward job. (Note: I didn't say it would be easy.) An adult person, in my view, tends to pray for perseverance, strength for being able to accept what comes and the like.

Also, bending your mind to wanting something really is almost equal to working towards it, the second flows naturally from the first.