Thoughts on prayer or sending intention to spirit guides or talking to God or angels or seeking wisdom from ancestors

in spirituality •  21 days ago 

Thinking about what many call prayer or sending intention to spirit guides or talking to God or angels or seeking wisdom from ancestors. There are many descriptions, but they have similar forms. What if all of this is real and the same thing, but not in the way most people think. What if, by taking our rational (System 2) thoughts formed as words into intention and sending them out as forms, we release them from our anxious minds. This frees up our sub conscious (System 1) to work on the problem in a non-linear way without the constraints of the pre-frontal cortex or language or even ordered causality. When an answer does bubble up, it appears (from System 2’s perspective) to come from nowhere but the ether. The more active, imaginative, and creative minds among us might then create (without realizing it) fantastical explanations complete with fully realistic visualizations and emotional experience where they “hear from” the entities they intended to commune with. From a certain perspective, it’s all made up.

And yet, it’s also real. The results, benefits, and ultimately changes to reality that come from this process are felt by millions around the world on a near daily basis. Our minds are powerful things creating our perceived realities moment by moment via interpretations of sense data to our consciousness.

Or...

The gods, angels, spirit guides, ancestors, etc are more real than the illusion of this physical “reality” and those with too much entropy in their consciousness (people like me) have yet to fully experience these entities, so we discredit them as non-existent.

Which camp are you in and why?

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I like the topic. Some thoughts:

If you read books like "Pragmatic Thinking And Learning" (a top read for computer programmers, but generally applicable to anything), I think it explains the process very clearly (certainly more clearly than most other sources, except perhaps neuroscience papers on intuition and loss of it in early-stage Parkinson's and Huntington's disease). Visualization, touch, feel, imagining, relaxation, not directing your thinking, stepping away from the problem, etc. are key. The gestalt often comes under the shower, while eating, while walking, and so on, precisely because we are not directing our attention. The book also talks about giving yourself a problem and closing your eyes and then certain visualizations loosely related to the problem may appear. It could be anything... the color or shape of things, voices, activities, really anything. You just have to notice it. It does pop up all of a sudden, when you don't expect it. And I find it most fascinating to engage in this sort of creativity and brainstorming. Due to the non-linear connection-making of certain subcortical structures implicated in this (e.g. basal ganglia), inventions coming from this process are bound to be much more substantial and innovative than sitting on a chair and linearly thinking about something new. After all, many an invention has come out of inventors' dreams during the night, or naps during the day, or otherwise from leisurely doing things that may seem like a waste of time to some.

Now, not understanding these processes our nervous systems are capable of and instead calling it angels and gods and spirits and so on, I think can be very dangerous. Our maps (understandings) of the world direct our actions. If we think there are supernatural beings directing us, or interfering with our affairs, then this will influence our actions. I would think that an incorrect map would lead to incorrect actions. Certainly we've seen lots of both cruelty and ineffective action in the past related to religion/superstition. Curious to hear others' thoughts on this as I may be missing different points of view.

I would think that an incorrect map would lead to incorrect actions. Certainly we've seen lots of both cruelty and ineffective action in the past related to religion/superstition. Curious to hear others' thoughts on this as I may be missing different points of view.

I certainly agree this has potential for major problems, AND I've really enjoyed Thomas Campbells My Big TOE series which (along with many other very interesting people I've connected with and who have shared their personal experience stories with me) has caused me to step back and bit and think many of the things previously discredited as woo, science fiction, or other "psi effects" might be worth a second look. Just as you said, the incorrect map leads to incorrect actions. Most of us operate under a "little theory of everything" meaning we have no map or framework for what might be beyond what Thomas calls NPMR (non physical matter reality). If such a map could be determined with a limited set of axioms using logic and reason (and it has predictive power for how to navigate our lives), that's quite interesting to me and truly scientific to explore instead of just throwing out unexplored things.

Our minds are powerful things creating our perceived realities moment by moment via interpretations of sense data to our consciousness.

This is what I resonate with. Every human experiences this world uniquely and 2 people will perceive the same situation differently. Hence why I am not sure that we can use broad concepts to cover the way everyone experiences and perceives reality. There is the angle that your experiences are YOUR reality, so a person who talks to God, that is THEIR reality. This is where I tend to lean at least.

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This reminds of a video I watched about the Power of words..