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The Power Of Prayer

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Prayer is the most important spiritual discipline we at Optimum Health Institute (OHI) practice to create and nurture our connection to God, and renew our spirit .  Prayer is simply talking to God.  Meditation is listening for God’s answer.  Because we’ve been given the divine gift of free will, prayer is actually our first step in reaching out to God, and affirming the existence of a Higher Source.

There are thousands of ways to communicate with God.  Some people get out in nature; others use music, a candle or incense to silence mental chatter.  There are others who can pray anywhere, any time.  When we connect to God on a heart level, we can stay mindfully in the moment without mentally over analyzing the experience.

When you learn how to quiet the mind, you become more aware of God’s healing presence and your direct connection to Him.  It can be particularly powerful to open all your prayers with an expression of gratitude for God’s many blessings.

The Power Of Prayer

While we encourage individual prayer at OHI in the manner that’s most comfortable for each guest, we also cherish our tradition of prayer circles before meals and ceremonies.  There’s great symbolism in prayer circles.  When two or more are gathered together in the name of the divine, their prayers generate powerful, purposeful energy and there’s a deep spiritual fellowship.  While a group prayer may be more general, there is an undeniable healing energy that enfolds everyone.  A circle symbolizes eternity, the perfection of creation without beginning or end.  We hold hands and appreciate our community of caring, mutual respect for individual differences, and fellowship in our love for and surrender to God.

Another OHI group prayer tradition is our Friday morning testimonials, where guests and adherents share their experiences.  I remember when a young woman told how God had answered her prayers, but not as she anticipated.  She endured a tough childhood, and was raised by her grandmother.  The girl fell in with a bad crowd and got involved in drugs and destructive relationships.  Each time she began to straighten up, she sabotaged herself. 

She prayed for help, and found a substance abuse recovery center.  When she still didn’t feel whole, she kept praying for assistance and met a person who suggested she come to OHI.  Her first few days she was sick as a dog while her body released years of toxins.  By the middle of the week she turned the corner, and was transformed in time for Friday morning testimonials.  She developed a personal connection to God, and resumed her spiritual path with clarity and joy.  What made the difference?  She had to just trust that God really WAS answering her prayers, even through those tough first days at OHI.

Sometimes God responds to our prayers in ways we didn’t anticipate.  Other times He responds so much more magnificently than we could have possibly imagined.  The bottom line is this – the only true prayer is the sincere desire of the heart.  And all true prayers are answered.

Science Proves the Healing Power of Prayer

“Studies have shown prayer can prevent people from getting sick,” says Harold G. Koenig, MD of Duke University, ” and when they do get sick, prayer can help them get better faster.” After analyzing 1,500 reputable medical studies, Koenig concluded that people who pray more have better mental and physical health. He adds, “They have stronger immune systems, lower blood pressure, and probably better cardiovascular functioning.”

Science is also showing us why prayer makes us feel so peaceful. Herbert Benson, MD, a cardiovascular scientist at Harvard University, who has conducted studies on prayer for the past 30 years says, “All forms of prayer evoke a relaxation response that quells stress, quiets the body, and promotes healing.” He discovered what he calls the “relaxation response” which is a physiological state of the body during prayer. It shifts the body’s dominant state from the fight, flight, freeze mode in which people tend to spend most of their day to the rest and digest mode. He has also observed that prayer increases the brain’s release of dopamine which helps us feel more relaxed, focused, and happy.

If you’ve ever thought that prayer only works because you are programming your subconscious to believe that it does, then I have good news for you. Praying for another person’s healing, or having others pray for yours actually works, even when the recipient doesn’t know about it, and science has now proven it.

OHI – A Place To Pray

OHI provides a safe and sacred place for healing and prayer. Our campuses offer many comfortable spots that are private where you can pray.

Praying to a higher power will help you develop a healthier life and strengthen your relationship with God. Prayers for healing can provide a clarity that can’t be achieved through your works alone. If you are looking for a holistic healing program, in San Diego or Austin, visit Optimum Health Institute.  We can help you achieve your mental, physical, emotional and spiritual goals for optimal health. Call us at (800) 993-4325 to learn more.