How did you learn how to pray? What did you pray to? Pray for?
I learned to pray at night before I went to sleep. I learned to be on my knees. At four, with a naive sense of responsibility and devotion, I loved the litany of individuals in my “God bless…and…and…and…and…” list. I was proud of my thoughtfulness in including my cat and my stuffed animals among my relatives and friends.
What I was praying for: safety, comfort, health, good weather, what I thought would make me happy, that mommy and daddy would stop fighting – was always clear. Who I was praying to was “God” or “Lord” or in the year I, raised Protestant, went to a Catholic boarding school (fourth grade) I thought it was pretty cool to pray to saints and martyrs and I loved saying the rosary and experiencing repetitive, impersonal prayer.
But building a real consciousness of a relationship with spiritual beings was never considered. I prayed to an anonymous power and authority. The Virgin Mary seemed human – she might hold me with the same tenderness she held the Infant Jesus. But overall whatever being received my prayers, I believed in, but didin’t know and couldn’t describe.
In my late thirties, I met the vast and amazing insights of Rudolf Steiner. Steiner’s mystical knowledge of spiritual beings provided rich meaning and profound distinctions. I found I could relate and relate and relate to spiritual beings of all sorts and purposes, angels, elementals, thrones, the Holy Spirit and so many others. I could speak to them and listen to them. I could feel them and learn from them. Steiner spoke of the longing of these beings for real engagement with human souls, so I engaged as best I could. I found joy in my humble attempts to offer what I could out of my thoughts, feelings, deeds and perceptions to these beings. And I found new thoughts, feelings and deeds arising in my soul that were clearly not self-generated. These beings were engaging with me. I moved from prayer to contemplation to holy conversation. I was consciously connected.
Now once a year, in the deep spiritual mood of Inner Autumn, I give a teleseminar on “Connecting with Spiritual Beings.” I invite you to be part of this 4 part teleseminar. I share my perception of these beings and the ways we can relate to each of them. I look at what they bring to our earthly lives and what they seek from each of us.
What would it mean to your inner life and spiritual practices to build creative, comforting and challenging relationships with the beings of the spiritual world?