Children, worship is the greatest way to establish a lasting emotional relationship with God and to open our hearts to God. It is a bridge that connects the individual self to the supreme self. A small child comes home from school, drops his slate and pencil and runs to his mother. He eagerly narrates to her all that happened at school, the stories his teacher told and about the birds he saw on his way home. Similarly, praying will help us develop a heartfelt connection with God. When we share our burdens with God, it helps us unload them.
We must have the attitude that God is our only solace. We must consider God as our best friend—a friend who will always be there with us, in every situation and in any danger. When we open our heart to God, unknowingly we are uplifted to the higher planes of devotion.
However, today, many people do not understand the proper use of prayer. Many think that prayer is just a means to fulfil their own worldly desires. The love of such people is not for God but for material things. In today’s world, people even pray that others befall tragedy.
A true devotee should never even think of harming others. Our prayers should be, “O God! May I not commit any mistakes! Please, give me the strength to forgive others mistakes! Please, forgive my mistakes and please bless everyone in creation!” When we pray like this, we will become peaceful. The vibrations of such prayers purify the atmosphere. When our environment becomes pure, it produces favourable effects in our life as well.
Prayers for the benefit of the world are the highest form of prayer. What is needed are prayers totally devoid of selfish desires. When we pluck flowers for worship, we are the first ones to enjoy their beauty and fragrance—even though that is not our intention. When we pray for the benefit of the world, our hearts become very expansive. Moreover, these prayers help the world as well.
Just as a candle melts down to give light to others, a true devotee desires to sacrifice himself to help others. His goal is to cultivate a mind that gives happiness to others, forgetting his own suffering. Such people do not have to wander searching for God; God will come looking for them. God will be with them, like a servant.
Amma, Sri Mata Amritanandamayi Devi