following is an excerpt from the late great Cayce scholar
Elsie Sechrist's book
Meditation: Gateway to Light.
More information concerning Cayce's insights into prayer
can be found at the
Cayce research foundation
One the interesting
topics of information Cayce received was concerning
prayer. Cayce believed that the energy of prayer was
sent by thought - almost like a beam of white light
being sent out to the individual(s) for whom we are
does not lessen the need for prayer, because it does
not take the place of prayer. Prayer is a mental activity
on our part addressed to God. Meditation is a listening
state so that we may hear God speak to us.
Prayer comes before meditation,
before the affirmation; and we may pray, if need be,
all day long as we go about our daily work. Jesus found
it necessary at times to pray for long periods. Certainly
prayer should be a constant activity of the religious
heart. The Cayce readings remind us that, "He that would
know the way must be oft in prayer."
are many types of prayer. Unfortunately the most common
one is the "gimme" prayer, wherein we beg God for favors.
Is this wrong? Not for some people. For prayer, the
art of prayer, is an ever-growing experience. When there
is an acceptance of God's presence, one knows that God
will supply all that is truly needed to fulfill one's
purpose in life.
The art of visualization,
so common today as a form of prayer, is another type
of the gimme prayer. We want to make sure that God knows
exactly what we want, so we send him pictures of it.
If we are going to tell God that we know what is best
for ourselves what is the point in praying in the first
prayed, "Not my will,
but thine be done." The enlightened soul relegates
the gimme prayer to the nursery toy box, and turns to
the prayer of thanksgiving, of adoration, of petition
for the woes of others, always adding, "Thy will be
The Cayce readings tell us
that the daily prayer of Jesus was, "Others, Lord, others."
From this it is self-evident that the prayers of supplication
of the awakened soul deal primarily with the needs of
others. The more we pray for others, the more we gain
in the power to pray, and the more are we ourselves
blessed. For how can we sincerely pray for another,
and not be praying for ourselves, too?
God for forgiveness shows proper repentance for wrongs
committed, but unless those wrongs are righted by our
own conscious effort, we shall never feel forgiven.
We may pray for guidance,
but if we are not trying to do what we think is right,
will God hear us? Yes, but we may not hear him. As the
Bible tells us, an unrepented sin seals our ears to
the voice of God.
we pray to escape further trails and tribulations? Certainly.
Jesus did; but when he knew that he had to die on the
cross to fulfill his purpose, he accepted it unfalteringly.
God does not wish to see us
suffer; our adversities are of our own creation. We
have transgressed by either commission or omission,
something we should not have done, or something we should
have done. Just as a parent punishes a child in order
to correct it, so the laws of God prove immovable when
we try to resist them. The more we struggle to resist,
the more hopelessly do we entangle ourselves at the
mental or physical or material or emotional level, and
sometimes on all four levels simultaneously.
attitude when we are sick or suffering should be, again,
"Thy will be done." This calls for an inner submission
while awaiting recovery, but doesn't stop us from doing
all within our power to get well. A rededication of
heart and mind and an acceptance of suffering as a needed
lesson have on more than one occasion brought instantaneous
"Thy Will. Thy Spirit. Thy Ways" is the cry of the
does one pray? Just as the disciples asked Jesus to
teach them how to pray, so many people today ask the
same question; it would be presumptuous of us, however,
to tell another exactly how he should formulate the
words of anything so personal and private as a prayer.
The words themselves are not important. It is the spirit
in which they are said which is all-important. God already
knows more about the contents of our hearts than we
do; our real need is to be perpetually aware of him
as the source of our protection, and so we pray to keep
unbroken contact with him. The words in themselves are
not as important as some people would have us think.
says, "God listens not to your words save when He utters
them through your lips."
is the best position in which to pray? A group of ministers
once met to decide that very problem. They talked at
length without reaching any conclusion. Some insisted
that it was essential to kneel. Those with bony knees
said that it was just as effective to keep seated. Others
felt that they had to pace to and fro to generate the
necessary fire. When the debate threatened to become
heated, they decided to leave the decision to the only
parson who had been silent throughout. He came from
a rural parish, and he answered them thus: "One day
when I was late for service, I ran across a neighbor's
yard and fell headlong into his well. Half way down,
my foot caught in a broken board, and I hung there upside
down. Brethren, I have never prayed so well before or
I hope that proves that it
is not our position but our sincerity which makes our
directs the consciousness to God. Through prayer, we
solicit aid from divine power. Prayer encourages humility,
takes one outside of self to him, brings guidance, releases
tensions and brings healing. Many people go into a state
of meditation without realizing it when, worn out from
prayer, they wait for answering help. Here the results
of prayer are one with the rewards of meditation.
While we need always to call
on the Lord, we need even more to listen to Him, and
it is in the quiet of meditation that there is a stepping-up
of spiritual receptivity in every phase of our being.
learn so much more by listening. This is what the Bible
means when it says: "Be still, and know that I am God."
speaks of the quest of the soul for the holy grail,
the place of the Most High. The Chinese speak of it
as the "old road." The Hindus call it the "path of return."
Christians refer to it as "the way." Meditation is the
gateway that leads us to God.