Praying to Awaken My Soul

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(this blog is recorded on the full page: quick time player needed)
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I
I am consciousness eternal
a spiritual spark of Divinity
equipped with all essentials—
no need of happiness outside
not titles, trophies, names, profiles—
instead, blissful awareness of Truth
natural identity and purpose
Spirit cooperator, giver to God—
selfishness isn’t a requirement
with no material necessities to covet—
ignoring soul satisfaction is darkness
the shackles of angry frustration
crushed dreams and dashed hopes
phantasmagoria, the will-of the-wisp
green paper appears valuable
what’s built up, crashes down
still we chase the mirage
betting our future on hallucinations
since material bodies hide our soul.

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II
Life’s missing divine substance
changes our compass’s North
creating a foundation for construction
structures of love and service
building platforms for emergence
preparing to fly at super-soul speed—
beyond our universal conceptions
three dimensions covering our vision
weighing us down, tying our hands
while we think this is freedom (maya)—
becoming equipped now, to transcend
by grace and endeavor in bhakti
even as we uncover and use
our conventional sense of self
the mind becomes a friend
by new awareness for spirit-utility:
the way out is through
using who we are physically
to uncover our soul’s nature.
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III
To realize these truths
while chanting Hare Krishna japa
I repeated pray, “Please help me”:
let my soul awaken
as ice becomes water
turning ignorance to ashes
allowing my love to consume me
effortlessly being authentic, honest,
confident, humbly wise, convinced,
joyfully remembering you Lord
having my path illuminated
transformed by the pure holy name
the light of realization shines
a testimony of Krishna’s grace
inspiring others to emulate
by effusive words of soulful heart
serving and helping devotees
aspiring to live for Guru and Krishna
the key to fulfillment: celebration.
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IV
Life is not mine, but Thine
beyond sacrifice to self-forgetfulness
absolutely giving our heart
individually united in “one love”
as we give, so we become
watering the root of existence
lets our soul colorfully blossom
without material conceptions
good or bad, happy or sad
nothing to defend, or take credit for
I am not the doer, always dependent
ecstatically serving the Lord of Love
taking the Name as my life
revering Shri Chaitanya and Nitai
following the six Goswamis
as my gurus live and teach
recounting the pastimes (lila)
of Radha Krishna and associates
entering into it eternally.
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The Prime Benediction

Praying does a lot more than

Praying does a lot more than awaken souls. It changes things and the more people who will pray the better the world will be, as long as they are praying for the right things that is.

Effects

Thanks for your comment. As is natural in writing, one can't bring up everything, since one has a particular focus. Thus, it is good that you have brought up more aspects of prayer. If you would allow me, I would like to add to your post:

There are many types of prayers, with different results. For a soul to "wake up," which means to realize their soul in loving relationship with God, is no small thing. If we all woke up in this way, there would be no need for any other type of prayer. We could simply glorify God, go deeper into our love for Him, and share this with others. That is what chanting the Hare Krishna mantra is about in its highest aspect.

We can all note that prayers are often self centered or for material gain, although at least there is recognition of God's existence, albeit, as the order supplier. We think then that He is our servant, instead of the fact that we are constitutionally meant to serve Him. The problem with such materially motivated prayers is that if we don't get what we are praying for, we sometimes become mad at God and blame him for our circumstances, rather than understanding a deeper perspective. Studying the Gita and other such Vedic literature are meant to educate us about our actual spiritual home, and our unnatural condition in the material world. We are an eternal spiritual being, part of God, and we are now identifying with a fallen condition, and therefore suffering. If we don't know who we are, we won't really know how to pray, or for what. The highest prayer is for service, and asks nothing material for oneself. At least that should be the goal of those who pray.

From another perspective, anyone who approaches God is considered pious. Krishna teaches us this in His Bhagavad Gita: "O best among the Bharatas, four kinds of pious men begin to render devotional service unto Me -- the distressed, the desirer of wealth, the inquisitive, and he who is searching for knowledge of the Absolute. Of these, the one who is in full knowledge and who is always engaged in pure devotional service is the best. For I am very dear to him, and he is dear to Me." [Bg 7.16-17] So while anyone who approaches Him is recognized, to know God's position and our relationship with Him is celebrated, and even more celebrated are those who love God. And specifically, Gaudiya Vaishnava's have an experience of God, as Krishna, who is considered, "all-attractive." This is a matter of realization through taking up the path of bhakti. Krishna is seen as the source of all incarnations, or aspects of God.

As you have shared, "prayers change things," yes, because as we change by remembering and taking shelter of God, then the world also changes. The more we associate with Krishna through His holy name, render devotional service, and read holy books, as well as spend time with His saintly devotees, the more our conditioning will dissipate, and our souls awaken. The more we awaken spiritually--since it is gradual--the more we will understand the true benefit of prayer--communion with God, purity of heart, and loving God, who includes every living being, and everything. The many books of philosophy are meant to bring us to the point of loving and serving God. One result is that we will be more kind and compassionate to others, and want to help them understand the solution to all problems.

Prayer is a big subject, though I have touched on a few aspects of it.

your friend in Krishna,

Karnamrita