Excerpts from a lecture given on 3/29/96 in Los Angeles, CA
Do you know the source of the power of prayer, or do you just give a prayer? Do you know what a prayer is? Prayer is when you ask a higher authority to intervene. Is that true? You all agree with me, yes or no? Prayer is when you ask God or some angel. Whenever something gets lost we call on Saint Anthony. It's not a bad idea to use Christian saints, Hindu saints and Jewish saints. Just use whatever is available.
But the fact is, you do prayer when you need the intervention of something higher than you. Sometimes you pray because you are desperate. Sometimes you pray because you are insecure. Sometimes you pray like me—I have nothing else to do. You know, what I mean? (Laughler)
My fun in prayer is. "What else am I to do?" Somebody feeds me, somebody makes my clothes and somebody brings my shoes. Somebody does everything. In being subject to that feeling of gratitude, you develop a habit of prayer. It's not that you don't make money or you are not rich. That's not the problem. Work you must. But living in gratitude is a prayer.
“I may be very sick but I am not in bed.” It's a matter of gratitude. Actually prayer is gratitude. Once prayer becomes an attitude then you are a far-out person. You are beautiful. Then everything is for you. Then nothing can stop you. When you are in prayer, your attitude is very exalted, very gracious and very kind.
It's automatic. It's not something that you have to learn. In fact, you cannot learn it. Prayer comes from within. Prayer is from the soul.
Your personal power is the power of prayer. Asking somebody higher to come in—you have been taught this in the Piscean Age. That's why religion has failed. Religion should have taught you to call on your higher self in prayer. Call on your higher self! Your higher self is easy, it is handy, it is you. You can never go wrong, never. You never feel insulted. You will never feel down in the valley. You are calling your higher self. If you undertake that prayerful attitude, you will have all the knowledge.
All it takes is for a person to make a statement like, "Ahh, it is a crazy day." Then I say, "Oh me, take me out of the crazy day, for my sake." I am out! See how fast your prayer works. Watch out.
Put your hands like this (hands in prayer pose in center of chest.) I am teaching you about prayers. Now make a prayer. "Oh Lord, God, Jesus Christ, Heavenly Father," whatever it is, "Come and please help me." Do it. In your own way. Do it the way you want to do it—whatever your practice is, just do it. Pay attention and just experience the very feeling itself. Concentrate. God, Guru, Jesus Christ, Buddha, Moses, nobody, everybody. Whomever or whatever you feel is yours, please pray on that and say "Please help." (Continues for a few minutes). Cut!
Now, do the same prayer to yourself, to your higher self. Come on, try this. Do the same for experiment's sake. Pray unto your higher self, your gracious self, your soul, your spirit. You the greatest. Just for this moment of prayer, you should feel your greatness. Expand in your vastness. (Continues a few minutes.) Now, cut. Relax.
Do you understand the difference now? What happens when you pray outside you? You can't concentrate. It's a very rare mind which can concentrate. You need a focus so you pray to something. When you concentrate on yourself, it is done on the spot.
Any time you give somebody something to impress them or to hold them, you are not giving. You are pressurizing the situation. Similarly, any time you pray from outside you, you are abnormal and trying to impress or pressurize.
In this brain of yours, there is a stem—the brainstem. It is not a big thing. It's like you see the whole United States and then you see that little Florida down there, hanging like a little pinkie. That's how the brainstem is. It will be thoroughly investigated in the future. That stem is not just a stem. It is the base of your total personality, projection and progression. That is under control of this stem. You can be very fortunate if you understand how it works.
Please hold your hands like this (fingers interlaced) and lock them (thumbs crossed) and put these two Jupiter fingers up like this (index fingers point up and touch) and just sit straight.
Think just as you throw a stone into the water and the waves go out, similarly your thought waves are going out. Personify yourself. Lead yourself consciously into this meditation. Consolidate yourself and expand your waves. Send your waves out. Just like you are a stone dropped in the middle of the water. The circles go on and on to Infinity.
Imagine you are on the top of Mount Everest. You are sitting and sending waves out to the entire globe. Send the waves out. You are a beautiful magnetic field and you vibrate. For your good luck, best luck, and for your best self, send the waves out.
Just mentally see those waves. Don't become spaced out or dreamy. Go deeper into it. Project your personal power. Go higher and higher; more powerful and more powerful. Project yourself consciously. If you concentrate you can have fun and experience this, which may not be easily possible otherwise.
The first step to life is to learn to send vibrations out. Become a beacon of vibratory power of your soul. Let it touch the unlimited shores.
All other powers are useless if you don't have your own power. And the power of your soul is the pure power. Let the vibration go out from you. It is your prayer. It will meet all challenges unto Infinity. Concentrate. Consolidate.
Now concentrate so that your spine is like a tube of light. It is lit between the base of your neck and your base where you are sitting. Now it is sending out light rays.
You have one more minute. Please do Breath of Fire. That's a good way to awaken. For one minute just do a heavy Breath of Fire so that you are balanced. Now shake your hands like this. like going out to the Universe. Now relax.
Can you imagine what you can achieve in only eleven minutes? (In class he guides us for 15 minutes.) It doesn't take much time, it's just a matter of practice. What does this practice establish in you? You shall not have a problem. Problem is when you stand against you. Problem is solved when you use yourself to solve it. You must reach out for your Self.
If you want to live in the Age of Aquarius, learn to call on yourself. Learn to be yourself. Learn to vibrate. That's the one good thing we can all learn. Let us become prayerful in attitude. Then God will bless you in every field, whatever your field is.
Dr. Sat Kaur, can you use some of your time to counsel these people instantly out of impulse? Come on, let's put you on the spot.
Dr. Sat Kaur: To curtail the impulse is to stop and think. To stop and think means to call on God. To call on God is prayer and that's what he was talking about tonight. If you use your power of prayer, you can change your life and it only takes a second to stop and think and pray, and it will stop the impulse. Sat Nam.
Yogi Bhajan: That was very quick and sweet. But let's understand one thing. Within us there lives the most calm, serene lake of wisdom; a most beautiful, powerful pond of precise kindness, compassion and clarity. Let's understand that and let's dive into it within ourselves.
© The Teachings of Yogi Bhajan
Complete instructions for this meditation can be found here: Meditation to Learn to Pray