Are all Puranas mythological stories with an underlying message? What about fasting, holy dips, lighting of lamps prescribed in those Puranas, especially Kartika Purana, that millions of people religiously follow – is there any benefit., that is are we adding punya/positive karma by doing these even though our intent is self benefit. When prayer/rituals are done with a sankalpa – what kind of karma are we accumulating ? I think if it is done without any desires, as a way of gratitude, then it is real prayer and moves us closer to the divine.
Yes all rituals/rites/stories have a symbolism.
Simple minds that were not yet on the path of spirituality found it difficult to understand that “GOD IS FORMLESS & OMNIPRESENT”. To enable such minds to be able to drop the EGO and experience few moments of silence within, rituals/rites/prayers/idol worship/ etc were created. Therefore all rituals/rites/practices/prayers will have only 1 strong significance – to move from FORM to FORMLESSNESS and experience the SHOONYATA or silence within. That Shoonyata is called GOD!
When doing these rituals if one cannot see the formlessness or experience the shoonyata, one can atleast come to a state of “quiet mind” for a few minutes.
Do you collect Good Karma with these rituals?
If the intention [Sankalpa] while doing the rituals/rites/practices/prayer is to experience the silence within, you are on the right track. You collect impressions of silence. This ‘Silence’ karma impressions are what take you higher on the spiritual path.
If you are doing it with an intent of greed, how can that be a positive karma? If you are begging for something from God, it is greed….. harsh but true!
Real definition of Prayer:
You do not need to go to a temple or have an idol to pray. God is all around. One who can see God in everything and everyone, knows the true definition of prayer!
Not asking anything but just feeling the presence is the real definition of prayer. So stop going to God as a beggar. Just be!
Just being and feeling the presence of the infinite is prayer. Listening to God is prayer. And you cannot listen to God if you have a desire making noise inside you. The inner atmosphere has to be silent and calm and devoid of desire.
Just experiencing the gratitude for everything, is prayer, is silence, is God! He who understands the silence within, truly understands GOD! He who goes to God as a beggar can never meet God…… Got it?
Time to introspect – Are you going to GOD as a beggar?
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