What do you say to a deity?
I didn’t grow up in a religious household but I am beginning to understand the power of prayer. I’ve always followed the motions of prayer but for most of my life I never felt like anyone was listening on the other end. I still don’t know who hears my prayers but I strongly believe that pulsating positive vibes can only be a good thing.
I’ve been gifted two deities who sit side by side on my desk. Ganesha, the remover of obstacles and god of auspicious beginnings, sits next to Lakshmi, the goddess of abundance. I’m not Hindu but I believe that they can hold that power. After all, anything can become an idol, it’s your perception of the object that gives it value. With little experience in the religious realm, I’ve followed my instructions to provide sweet offerings on occasion and making sure to either eat or bury the offerings after some time. I’ll chat with them and will try different approaches. But overall, this ritual has left me with some questions.
When communicating with a deity, what do I say?
Do you ask for a favor?
Something feels selfish about asking the gods for a personal favor. Am I attracting the right kind of karma by doing so?
Do you just send out a prayer of loving kindness?
If I’m communicating with a deity in the hopes of a certain outcome, can I get what I want from the deity by wishing the whole world well? I would assume that the gods would favor the selfless over the selfish. But if I’m not specific about what I’m hoping for, can the universe really provide?
Do you say please?
When talking to the gods, does it help to be polite? It must, right?
Do you wish the deity well?
Rather than asking for something for me, what happens if I pray for the gods themselves? Shouldn’t I care about their wellbeing? Or does that not apply to a deity?
When you give it an offering, should I expect something back or is it just a kind gesture?
If the only reason I’m offering a gift to the gods is to get something in return it seems disingenuous. Is it appropriate to ask for something in return or is it solely about making an offering out of the kindness of my own heart?
Does giving a chocolate covered espresso bean add energy to my prayer?
Seriously, does caffeine help?
I know that there are no right or wrong answers, that you can communicate with the gods however you please. Over time I’ll find what works for me and what works will likely change day to day. I’m curious to know, what are your thoughts on the matter?