I have just been looking over my old entries and a couple of them - particulary the May ones in which I discuss prayer - have got me thinking.
You know, I stopped praying. I can't remember exactly when but I stopped altogether. The other day I e-mailed the Traveler, who is engaged in a rigorous training program for her new career, and sympathetically told her that my prayers are with her. She replied, "Oh wait, so you're back to praying?" I was quite amused by this, and jokingly replied that her comment hurt me even though it was completely justified. I posed the question, "It's an expression, is it not?" She wrote back to thank me for my "prayers."
I remember that about a year ago when I asked Mentor to pray for me about something, his response was that it was funny that I all of a sudden believed in God when I needed something. I was terribly hurt by that comment, and when I reminded him that he knew very well that I believed in God and was only having problems with my spirituality, he said that it had been a joke and that he was sorry if it was an insensitive one. I wonder if he was right, though. Obviously prayer is about using God, no one can convince me differently. The whole religious experience is about using God. Using Him to get to heaven, or to have a nice spiritual experience, or to find fulfillment, or whatever.
I no longer pray for my father to get better. I no longer pray for safety or against apocalyptic dreams. I no longer pray for the people in my life even though I love them with all my heart. I don't see the point because I no longer believe my prayers will be answered. And if you know me at all, you will realize the weight of this, how unbelievably significant it is that I am not praying. And how sad it is.