Tuesday, May 28, 2019

The Science of the Fathers- Praying Like The Fathers

Because of the fall, our souls are incomplete. This idea of being complete is what is communicated in the phrases, "Be ye therefore perfect" and "Be ye holy". Because God is complete or whole, he can also make us holy or complete. In fact, God's greatest desires to make us whole and one with him. To do this, we must connect or become one with him.

In the ancient Science Of The Fathers communicated to the House of Israel, the greatest tool used along the path of wholeness or holiness is that of prayer. The practice of prayer in the Western Gentile cultures is a far cry from the practice of prayer taught by The Fathers. In our Western tradition, we often view prayer in a form of supplication where we ask God for the things we want etc. The idea of prayer taught by the ancients was that when we pray we are asking God to fill us. It does not have to do with the multiplying of many words, but depends on the desire of the heart.

In the Israelite concept of prayer, man is viewed as a vessel to be filled. He is seen as lacking, having an absence, or space within. The vessel is seen as having a lacking of love – both for God and man. This kind of love is the characteristic of bestowal- the characteristic of receiving to bestow.  In this ancient practice of prayer, the disciple is taught to pray to fill the space within like water being poured into a vessel.  This is the meaning behind the teaching of the Messiah:

" And blessed are all they who do hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they shall be filled with the Holy Ghost." (3 Nephi 12:6)

This idea of praying desire is also seen with Nephites as they prayed before the Messiah:

"And it came to pass that when Jesus had thus prayed unto the Father, he came unto his disciples, and behold, they did still continue, without ceasing, to pray unto him; and they did not multiply many words, for it was given unto them what they should pray, and they were filled with desire." (3 Nephi 19:24)

Words are not the desires.  Partaking of the Word was meant to evoke the desire or intention.

Those who hunger and thirst after righteousness feel the void or lacking within-they feel the hunger.  Hungering for righteousness was to receive the attributes of male and female, mercy and judgment, long suffering and power to reach a state of beauty, wholeness, or holiness before God. When a disciple prayed desire to be filled with YHVH or with these attributes (and the balance that should exist between them) that portion of God (the Ruach Elohiym/Holy Ghost) is poured into them and they in turn bestow that portion in blessing God and blessing others. In doing so, they receive from the never ending river of the living waters of grace by bestowing grace upon others.  This same sentiment was expressed by the Prophet Joseph Smith:

"And I, John, bear record that I beheld his glory, as the glory of the Only Begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth, even the Spirit of truth, which came and dwelt in the flesh, and dwelt among us. And I, John, saw that he received not of the fulness at the first, but received grace for grace;  And he received not of the fulness at first, but continued from grace to grace, until he received a fulness...I give unto you these sayings that you may understand and know how to worship, and know what you worship, that you may come unto the Father in my name, and in due time receive of his fulness. For if you keep my commandments you shall receive of his fulness, and be glorified in me as I am in the Father; therefore, I say unto you, you shall receive grace for grace." (D&C 93: 11-13,19-20)

When a person desires or changes his intention from wanting to receive to covet (i.e. the natural man) to desiring to receive to bestow (the spiritual child of God) it was taught that he created a screen (masach) or a reflective surface. This screen or reflective surface enables us to reflect the joy (condition of oneness with God) to both God and mankind.  The simple change of intention or desire to receive the essence or attributes of God is what was known as the mighty change of heart. This is the ancient Hebrew Idea behind the scriptures:

" And now behold, I ask of you, my brethren of the church, have ye spiritually been born of God? Have ye received his image in your countenances? Have ye experienced this mighty change in your hearts?" (Alma 5:14)

I say unto you, can ye look up to God at that day with a pure heart and clean hands? I say unto you, can you look up, having the image of God engraven upon your countenances? (Alma 5:19)

When the offering of prayer is sincere desire and intent, we are filled with strength (gevurah) and we receive the light or Spirit of God.  The light we receive is mercy which allows us to receive wisdom and understanding.  As we are filled with light and truth, we understand the attributes of a spiritual condition or world (i.e. Assiyah, Yetzirah, Beriyah, Atzilut or This world, Telestial, Terrestrial, and Celestial).  As we are filled and progress receiving the conditions/attributes/ or spiritual substance, we progress from one world to another or one degree to another. Each world or degree corresponding with a greater state of wholeness/holiness/perfection and each degree having a new name.

Each degree or world represents our state or condition of spiritual progress. As we ascend this ladder, our minds, hearts, and consciousness become closer or in a state of greater oneness with God. As we progress up the ladder, the natural man is subdued as we submit to oneness with God.  We cannot destroy the natural man because in this world it is us, BUT we can transform the natural man like a caterpillar transforms into a butterfly.

This type of prayer, the offering and purification of our intentions or desires, is real repentance.  No fruits or works are manifest until after the intentions or desires are purified or transformed. While many religions teach that repentance is the changing or stopping of an action, the Science Of The Fathers teaches that true repentance takes place in the intentions or desires with the resulting fruits being naturally produced afterward.  The focus is on mirroring our desires and intentions with God. This is why Israelite repentance looks so bassackward to the western gentile mind.  The battle is not in the actions, but the battle is in the intention or desires. This is the understanding behind the phrase, "Repent, therefore, and bring forth fruits meet for repentance;" (Matthew 3:8).

True Repentance is the purification of intention and desire.  After the intentions and desires are purified, the works or fruits will naturally be produced.  Attempting to destroy or change the fruit is like trying to destroy the fruits or branches of a tree or weed without addressing the roots.  The roots are the unseen spiritual forces (intentions and desires).  If the roots are neither tamed, transformed, or pulled up then the branches can do nothing but produce the fruit that the roots provide nourishment for.  This is the ancient teaching behind the scripture, "And God said, “Let the earth sprout vegetation, plants yielding seed, and fruit trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, each according to its kind, on the earth.” And it was so."

Every Tree (Man or Woman) produces after his or her own kind.  The outward branches and fruits (works) being a manifestation of the roots (desires and intentions).

"Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?" (3 Nephi 14:16 and Matthew 7:16)

To be continued.

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