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last updated by juju4u0913 17 years ago
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  • #64398
    Theophilia
    Participant
    juju4u0913 wrote:
    I’ve read all of the replies and I will have to say I pray to God first. I don’t pray to angels, I communicate with them.

    I realize I am in danger of starting a thread inside a thread, but how do you define the difference between praying and communicationg with. In my view, they are the same. So, what is it you are doing with God that is unique? Thanks.

    Theo-

    #95101
    Theophilia
    Participant

    There is a psychiatrist who has defined all kinds of phenomena, including angels, in a glossary at his website. http://www.dissociation.com/index2.html

    There is an entry of: Celestial Intelligent Energy which he defines as “Full time residents of Thoughtspace, nonmaterial beings who have never inhabited physical bodies. Called angels by theologians.”

    This doctor whose name I cannot recall, was the first to coin the diagnostic phrase Multiple Personality Disorder. Apparently, he has spoken to either a guide or the essential spiritual self in his treatment, in which the enitity he talks to actually guides the healing process. It’s an interesting website. He definitely has opinions on angels and guides and believes he has his information “straight from the angel’s mouth!”

    Theo-

    #95102
    Theophilia
    Participant
    Pam wrote:
    I could argue against the “celestial heirarchy” (the traids) because that belief was first developed by a syrian monk writting under the name of Dionysius, and it was orginially thought that he was a contemporary of St. Paul, and therefore authoratative. Aquinas who wrote the “Celestial Hierarchy” based his own work on Dionysius’. Later it was found out that the monk was not actually a contemporary of Paul’s, but wrote that work (and many other works of Christian mysticism) at a much later time in history.

    But the Celestial Hierarchy had already caught on anyway by that time, and is still considered acurate dogma.

    It’s worse than you think! They don’t even know if he was a monk. Or a he. (Personally, after reading Cloud of Unknowing, I decided it had to be a woman!) However, it is not dogmatic, it isn’t even doctrine or capital “T” tradition, just lower case “t” tradition.

    So little is really a fact, anyway, the hierarchy may be as factual as anything. It’s like fingerprints, no one has ever proved that all fingerprints are unique and no one ever will. It’s just a mathematical probability. But with so many mystics and now, that psychiatrist I mentioned in an earlier post, interviewing or being visited by transcendental beings, the probability that there is some sort of hierarchy seems quite strong.

    I’m simply encouraging that one learns as much as possible about the nature of angels as others believe, before deciding what you believe.

    Thing is, does it really make sense to choose a belief like picking dessert from a menu? If we learn all about what is believed and then say to ourselves, “That sounds right, I think I’ll believe that” then what does our belief mean? John says that part of the process is not only deciding what we believe but what it means that we do.

    My concern is also for those extremists who turn to angels completely instead of God. Whenever I meditate or pray, my thoughts are always of God first, and then upon the quality of an angel that might help me.

    But, why? They are following their path, having their own belief system, and are as entitled to that system and the acts of faith that go along with it as anyone. There may be no singular God to pray to, in any case. Another possibility, another system of belief, but still not atheistic.

    Theo<-- who loves the way the new system does the quotes, it's so easy to read and follow a discussion!

    #95109
    Pam B
    Keymaster

    Quote:
    Quote:
    Pam said: I’m simply encouraging that one learns as much as possible about the nature of angels as others believe, before deciding what you believe.

    Thing is, does it really make sense to choose a belief like picking dessert from a menu? If we learn all about what is believed and then say to ourselves, “That sounds right, I think I’ll believe that” then what does our belief mean? John says that part of the process is not only deciding what we believe but what it means that we do.

    I good naturedly take exception to my statement being construed to mean that I endorse choosing your beliefs from among other’s beliefs! You are quoting me out of context, oh dear quote lover :) Did you miss where I said:

    I came to the conclusion that the best teacher was experience itself

    after bemoaning the mind-boggling amount of “information” available in book form on the subject of angels. I personally have not selected my beliefs from a menu, be it a bookstore, or the church library, or any other external source.

    I had an experience. I went out to find out if I was alone, or if others had the same experience, and if they did, how did they interpret the experience? I needed context, to compare my own experience to. I’m simply advocating looking at ALL (or as many) beliefs systems as you can, instead of looking at just one and saying “oh that must be the way it is”. I’m advocating putting your experience into context, compared to many other’s.

    To this day, I don’t fully accept, or picked from the menu as you might say, my belief system. My beliefs about angels are shaped mainly from my own experience, and all the other things I have read, and have heard from other people’s experience is just semantics and “nomenclature” for a wordless experience and a wordless belief. Just as we can’t arrive at the number of angels who can dance on the head of a pin, we can’t arrange angels into neat categories on a menu. (this is mainly why I have a huge problem with the celestial hierarchy, being a huge org chart rivaled only by IBM, but many people enjoy the CH and who am I to diss the CH? That’s a whole other discussion for another thread on the CH.)

    Quote:
    Quote:
    My concern is also for those extremists who turn to angels completely instead of God. Whenever I meditate or pray, my thoughts are always of God first, and then upon the quality of an angel that might help me.

    But, why? They are following their path, having their own belief system, and are as entitled to that system and the acts of faith that go along with it as anyone. There may be no singular God to pray to, in any case. Another possibility, another system of belief, but still not atheistic.

    I said “concern”, not prejudice or dislike, or that I’m ready to go out and protest against it. Concern.

    Because if we split hairs about the word “angel” the word means “messenger of God” – not “the message”, and not “God”. For one reason, what I think some people are truly searching for is that connection with “God/Goddess/Creator/Architect of the Universe/etc” and they get stuck at the angel level and don’t fully experience the Godhead because they’ve forgotten there’s a higher power involved. They know it deep down, but can’t figure out why they don’t feel the connection. That’s their lesson to learn or not to learn, none of my business, correct. I simply observe and report my opinion ;)

    It’s similar to people who become fixated on John Edward, and forget that he’s just the telephone, and that there’s a different healing energy behind what he does. The angels are just the telephone for the different healing energy.

    Secondly, there is always a dark side to anything, and the same is true of angelology. I know that some people may not be aware of (I’m sure you’re aware of it Theo) and that’s the dark path that has the intent of calling on angels in order to perform magic for dark purposes, for example, the teachings of Crowley. These are not always used for dark purposes and I don’t have a problem with using these techniques to manipulate energy for light purposes, but spells and incantations, and angel sigils & seals used for the dark path. Again, you’re right, the bottom line is, “none of my business” but I call it out, as I see it.

    #95114
    starlasue
    Participant

    Theo –

    I know your post re:

    So, what is it you are doing with God that is unique?

    was addressed to Julie. But there is a difference to me too. I think in Pam’s post, she answered that rather eloquently. Especially the part of folks forgetting who and what angels are. Focusing on the higher power keeps one from getting hung up on the path at the wrong place. Angels of Light (and I do believe there are darker angels) always point to God, so starting with God at the top is definitely a good starting place.

    For me, in my belief system (not proselytizing but explaining my view), God and Jesus are above all. I believe everything I am, and the gifts I have, eminate from that higher power.

    Because of my experience with angels, I know that they are of God. I believe we shouldn’t pray directly to them, but to God through his Son. That is why I pray to God and if He sends angels, I communicate with them.

    It is one of those concepts that is hard to explain, but for me is a matter of faith and core belief – I don’t have to prove it, it just is. So that likely did not answer your question adequately, but it is how this one person views it.

    Peace
    starlasue :musicnote :musicnote

    #95117
    paige
    Participant

    Don’t suppose anyone else watched “Banned From the Bible” last night on the History Channel? It basically revealed how so much info/writings were forbidden text and deliberately excluded from the bible.

    One area of particular interest was the Gnostics. Their records accredit Mary Magdelan with “special” teachings from Jesus and considered her one of Jesus’ “beloved.” In a male dominated world, this was absolutely not acceptable. Consequently, the Gnostic writings were on the list of forbidden text. The show went on to explain so many inconsistencies between the different religions. They also made the point that it appeared that religion wasn’t so much about the truth, but making sure that the “majority” remained so, because it was the “minority” who would go to Hell.

    I bring this up because it is an excellent example of why I struggle with relying on the Bible or any holy documents. I’m not knocking it – I think the Book of Psalms is a wonderful resource. I just think that soley relying on any one source is unwise.

    When I watch shows like “Bible Secrets,” “History of the Bible” and so many others, I’m not looking to discredit the existence of a Higher Power, Angels or Guides. Quite the contrary – great strides in modern science have afforded mankind the knowledge needed to make our own decisions. More importantly, it has forced us all to turn our spiritual journey inward, where I believe it belongs.

    p.:thumbsup:

    #95145
    Theophilia
    Participant
    starlasue wrote:
    Especially the part of folks forgetting who and what angels are

    But we don’t know “who and what angels are.” What we know is what various people believe about angels, whether they’ve had a personal experience or not. We don’t know what it is that people who have had experiences with angels have had experiences with! (How’s THAT for a confudsing senntence!!)

    If you have an experience with a supernatural being of some sort and you live in a culture that has no beliefs about angels incorporated into their society, then you would call the being something other than an angel.

    My question wasn’t about what or who anyone’s prays to. My question was about someone saying they “pray” to God but “talk” to angels and I didn’t know that there was a difference. To me, personally, talking to God, or anyone who’s passed is praying. So, I was wondering what the difference was.

    I almost never care what people do personally, but am curious about people’s processes and definitions.

    For instance, if you pray to God, Who do you think you are praying to? What, in your mind, is God? If angels are messengers between God and you, does that make God a discrete person, a singular entity sending out cosmic FedEx packages?

    If we are going to talk about all of this, I think it would be good to define our terms. Otherwise we have no discussion, just a lot of people posting their personal opinions.

    Theo-

    #95146
    Pam B
    Keymaster

    Theo (or anyone else so inclined) if you want to, feel free to start a new thread, asking the question you want to ask of others. That’s fine, anyone can start a new discussion and set the topic :) For example, if you are curious as to how others define the word “angel” than you may want ask that question in another thread.

    In my opinion, expressing opinions is discussion, and is welcome here, and no one needs to feel that there needs to be formal guidelines about what qualifies as discussion and what doesn’t.

    This thread, (prior to my splitting it off into another thread) was “welcome to the angels discussion folder” and was simply here to announce the new folder, and any comments, opinions, etc is a-ok with me, the topic starter :thumbsup:

    #95147
    Theophilia
    Participant
    Pam wrote:

    Just as we can’t arrive at the number of angels who can dance on the head of a pin, we can’t arrange angels into neat categories on a menu.

    But we can and a lot of people do. That you or I might think it sort of silly, doesn’t mean it isn’t common and may not be closer to the reality of the way things work on the other side than some other system. You also can’t prove or demonstrate in any controlled double-blind study that astrology has the slightest merit, but that doesn’t keep us from posting all about what stars or planets influence which personality traits or life paths or whatever and no one blinks an eye.

    The angel people, those who are studying “angelology” are just as likely to be correct as the astrrology or numerology or any other ology people.

    That’s a whole other discussion for another thread on the CH.

    Seriously, how can you seperate them? All this stuff overlaps and the hierarchical nature of the other side is integral to any angel discussion. Or pretty much any delving into the nature of the non-temporal state. John says it, all kinds of mystics say it, all kinds of religions say it, there is movement and direction, that is cross-culturally perceived as “lower” to “higher.”

    Because if we split hairs about the word “angel” the word means “messenger of God” – not “the message”, and not “God”.

    I’m not into splitting hairs, nor do dictionary definitions bring any enlightenment to these discussions, they just shut the door on intuitive expression, but since you brought it up, “angel” does, indeed, just mean messenger. If you want the Hebrew to Greek to Latin to English progression of the word, I can look it up. In context, it has gained the specific connotation of “messenger of God” but it is used in many more ways and has other definitions. So, if that is your definition, then so be it, it fits with your personal philosophy.

    For one reason, what I think some people are truly searching for is that connection with “God/Goddess/Creator/Architect of the Universe/etc” and they get stuck at the angel level and don’t fully experience the Godhead because they’ve forgotten there’s a higher power involved. They know it deep down, but can’t figure out why they don’t feel the connection. That’s their lesson to learn or not to learn, none of my business, correct. I simply observe and report my opinion ;)

    Except that there may be no “higher power” involved at all. Or there might be. Like angels, we have no concrete facts, just belief systems. And, unless you are a whole bunch more psychic than I am, you certainly don’t know what “They know deep down.” Yes, it is your opinion. It is also pretty much my opinion. But, (also my opinion) if anyone “fully experienced the Godhead” they’d have to be crossed over.

    Secondly, there is always a dark side to anything, and the same is true of angelology. I know that some people may not be aware of (I’m sure you’re aware of it Theo) and that’s the dark path that has the intent of calling on angels in order to perform magic for dark purposes

    Well, Pam, I guess they can intend anything they want, but there is no such thing as magic, there is no use of supernatural energy without the express consent of the Creator, Who has the patent on that all tied up for eternity, so I’m not sure how it’s relevant to anything we’ve said here so far.

    Theo-

    #95150
    juju4u0913
    Participant

    Theo- I don’t know if you read my experiences with angels, but when I saw them I was very young and really didn’t know exactly what an angel was….when I was in the hospital room and I told my dad I wasn’t gonna die,,he asked me how did I know that. I told him the angel in the corner said I wasn’t….I described the angel to my dad and he broke down into tears. So I guess what I’m saying is that I was innocent bacl then and didn’t know about life experiences ie. angels, God (I was very young and was beginning to learn about God & Jesus) but when I saw Michael and he told me who he was…I had to take what he said for the truth. At that time I didn’t know any better, so I know angels are messengers of God.

    I don’t think this helps you in your discussion!! I’m not trying to sell you on the knowing angels exsist, only what I know…..if that makes sense. :hmm:

    Love & Light,
    Julie
    :angel3:

    #95155
    starlasue
    Participant

    Theo

    I will never be able to answer your questions, so I am not going to try. Semantics is not something I have a lot of patience for. The concept of God as I know and beilieve it, is not definable in a neat little sentence. It is a journey of grace, seeking, accepting and knowing. That’s as good as I have and no, I won’t define any of those terms either :) .

    I posted my personal beliefs and that is as far as I go. I do not have the time in this type of setting, nor do I think it is appropriate, to go further at this time.

    Words are fascinating but they are not the end all to spiritual experiences. There is a knowing – it is not something you can put in a box. It is a fascinating thread though – so please continue without me.

    Peace
    starlasue

    #95160
    PsyQuestor
    Participant

    Great post Starla, and I have to say I agree. What an angel is to me and to you may be completely different things. That isn’t to say you or I are wrong, we just have a different view. I also do not wish to tear apart my belief system and explain it point for point. It is valid for me and may mean nada to anyone else. In the end what we have are semantics.

    I don’t know that the Celestial Heirarchy exists or that any one angel is any more important than any other angel. The one thing I do know is that men have different strengths and work in a field that suits their talents, I cannot say that it isn’t the same with angels. It does make a certain amount of sense to me that there are angels who are better suited to do certain things than other angels. I could be completely wrong, who knows?

    There are many many biblical references and books written about angels. In the end what we know or believe is what information we decide has truth for us. It feels right, it sounds right, however you wish to define it. Until you or I are scholars on the subject, debating who’s right and who’s wrong seems for naught.

    I believe as I believe
    you believe as you believe
    neither of us has to be wrong
    we do as we feel
    and in the end
    it feels right to us
    and therefore is correct.

    Blessings~

    #95162
    starlasue
    Participant

    Thanks PsyQuester

    Love the verse at the end! You write that?

    Peace
    starlasue

    #95163
    PsyQuestor
    Participant
    starlasue wrote:
    Thanks PsyQuester

    Love the verse at the end! You write that?

    Peace
    starlasue

    Yes Starla. That statement pretty much sums up the philosophy I was raised with. Glad you like it :)

    #95168
    Pam B
    Keymaster

    Ok, I see that I’m not the only one to perceive this discussion as becoming confrontational. I thought it was just me, and that I was tired from travelling 6 hours yesterday, and that I was just cranky.

    I do know that everyone has the best intentions with regard to this subject and this thread.

    By the very nature of our subject matter, especially in this area of our board (Other Topics) there is bound to be differences in viewpoint, opinion and what a person perceives the “facts” to be.

    But this is ok! I am not an expert or schooled in metaphysics or religion, but I have been schooled in Interpersonal Communcation, and my online experience has been that differing points of view can be discussed not only intelligently and educationally, but quite warmly — if we communicate carefully and in an assertive manner.

    This community’s goal is not to come to any conclusions about what is the “right” or “best” way to believe. We’re not here to debate or to make pithy analogies and comparisons on what other’s statements of belief are.

    The community’s goal is to grow from sharing what our own personal experiences and viewpoints are; to gain support from others who may have similiar experiences and views, or to learn from others who may have a different viewpoint you’ve never heard before.

    It’s mainly about sharing what we do believe, even if it is in conflict with someone else’s belief. If you believe something different, it’s advisable to state your belief, instead of questioning or challenging someone else’s.
    For example you could say “That’s an interesting point you make about XYZ being QRS. Here’s what I believe about XYZ: I think it’s LMNOQ”.

    Basicially, communicate carefully, in an assertive manner. Forum guidelines apply in this area of the board as well :)

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