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Does God Listen to My Prayer (Part 1) ?

Book  stop.gif (845 bytes)  Weekly Message Archive

WEEKLY MESSAGES

In this new feature of our website, we present every week a new selection of the teachings of Vedanta, taken from a variety of sources – lectures and writings of Swami Adiswarananda, Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Literature, and other spiritual texts.

 

 

 

 

DOES GOD LISTEN TO MY PRAYER (Part 1)?

 

by

SWAMI ADISWARANANDA

Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center

New York


 

Spiritual seekers are often assailed by doubts about whether their prayers reach God and whether God listens to their prayers. Regarding this, Sri Ramakrishna says:

One must be restless for God. If a son clamors persistently for his share of the property, his parents consult with each other and give it to him even though he is a minor. God will certainly listen to your prayers if you feel restless for Him. He has begotten us, surely we can claim our inheritance from Him. He is our own Father, our own Mother. We can force our demand on Him. We can say to Him, “Reveal Thyself to me!”

Sri Ramakrishna taught the devotees how to call on the Divine Mother.... “I used to pray to Her in this way: ‘O Mother! O Blissful One! Reveal Thyself to me. Thou must!’ Again, I would say to Her: ‘O Lord of the lowly! O Lord of the universe! Surely I am not outside Thy universe. I am bereft of knowledge. I am without discipline. I have no devotion. I know nothing. Thou must be gracious and reveal Thyself to me.’”


 

Again, in another context, Sri Ramakrishna assures the devotees about the efficacy of prayer:


 

HAZRA: “Does God listen to our prayer for bhakti [devotion]?”

MASTER: “Surely. I can assure you of that a hundred times. But the prayer must be genuine and earnest. Do worldly-minded people weep for God as they do for wife and children? At Kamarpukur the wife of a certain man fell ill. The man thought she would not recover; he began to tremble and was about to faint. Who feels that way for God?


 

You will feel restless for God when your heart becomes pure and your mind free from attachment to the things of the world. Then alone will your prayer reach God. A telegraph wire cannot carry messages if it has a break or some other defect.


 

Pundit Shashadhar, a renowned Hindu preacher of the time, asked Sri Ramakrishna, “Does God listen to our prayers?” Sri Ramakrishna answered:

God is the Kalpataru, the Wish-fulfilling Tree. You will certainly get whatever you ask of Him. But you must pray standing near the Kalpataru. Only then will your prayer be fulfilled. But you must remember another thing. God knows our inner felling. A man gets the fulfillment of the desire he cherishes while practicing sadhana [spiritual discipline]. As one thinks, so one receives.
 

(to be continued)
 

[Copyright Swami Adiswarananda]

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