“Always believe in God. Because there are some questions that even Google can’t answer.”
I didn’t realize that praying is difficult for some people until I started working in international networking with people who come from many different countries and diverse cultures. Maybe because I was born and raised in a Hindu family in Bali, praying is so natural for me.
This creates a question: How do you talk to God?
For me, talking to God is easy. My father used to say that God knows all languages. Even if you are mute. You can say your prayers in your heart or whisper or maybe say out loud.
And remember, God is not deaf. God takes many shapes and forms. God may just be a feeling for you or energy. God may be a tree or a flower.
Some people start to talk to God on social media. This is a good start as you can talk to God like you are sending an email. Here is a template:
I hope this prayer finds you well.
I would like to thank you for the wonderful life and family that I have. But lately, I have problems with my health. It would be great if you kindly give me light to solve this.
You can talk in brief, formal, poetic, or long casual prayers.
So you are talking to God now. But what do you say to God?
Just say what you want. Like you are talking to your friends or mother. So simple. My father taught me how to pray since I can eat with my own spoon. He asked me to bow my head and closed my eyes. He always “talked” to my plate like the rice is God and said, “Ratu Betara, thank you for the food that we have today, and may this food be blessed”.
When I was in kindergarten, my mom taught me to pray at our family temple before leaving for school. I usually raise my hands up to my forehead and said, “Dewa Banaspati, I will go to school, please look after me. Goodbye.”
Since I started riding a motorcycle, my grandmother taught me to talk to the motorcycle. I would pat my bike and say, “Thank you for taking me to the place safe and happy. Let’s go.”
We don’t always use a mantra in praying. The point is you understand what you are praying for. Like we say in Indonesian, “Words are prayers.” My father said, “Do not say or think something that you don’t mean because the universe will hear it and God may make it.”
Again, my father said we don’t always need to “register” to any religion just to have a God. God is inside of you, inside of an apple, inside of the dogs.
Talk to God, talk to yourself and talk to the universe.
So, would you talk to God?
Ugie Pratiwi is a Green School staff. She is from North Bali and now living in Tabanan with her husband and her little son. She loves books and dreams to open a library for Balinese kids. For now, she is only sending books to her old primary school in Singaraja and hope the kids will love books as much as she does.