Earlier, I always used to think myself to be someone who doesn’t believe in superstitious rituals and the conventional prayers. Although not an atheist, I have never really been interested in the conventional prayer chants and mantras and never believed in their power. The turning point in my life when I actually realized the power of prayers was when I lost my Achamma (Paternal Grandma).
I lost my Achamma to a prolonged process of multi-organ failure during my second year of MBBS training. Since, it was a long and deteriorating condition, the family was in a way prepared to face the Ultimate Truth. When the doctors announced that she doesn’t have more than a few days to live, a priest was called home to recite the ‘Vishnu Sahasranamam’ for Achamma to hear. Later my aunt told me that when the prayer was recited there were slight flickering movements by Achamma and at the exact second that Achamma left us, the lamp lit by the priest blew off.
Achamma was highly spiritual and God-fearing person. The things that occurred because of the Prayer chanting were too remarkable to be a coincidence. I have now come to realize the true power of Prayers.
The Act of Praying is not a sign of weakness and Atheism is not a sign of strength. In fact, the greatest strength lies in believing in the existence of a Higher Being who has made plans for you and knows what’s best for you. It takes courage to Hope that something good will happen when everything happening in your life is suggesting the exact opposite. Faith and Prayers help in attaining that courage. Any prayer made in good sense will definitely yield results. However, for the prayers to work efforts need to be taken to produce the result and faith empowers you to put in the best of your efforts to achieve that goal.
The Power of Prayer comes from within. It is a way to find out the answers to the numerous unanswered questions that life throws at us. It is a way to calm the inner turmoil of our conscience.
Today, I am thankful to my parents for having instilled in me, the little sense of spirituality that I have. My Ammumma (Maternal grandma) and Mom still continue to give me the strength to believe in the power of prayer whenever I get doubts. Their unwavering belief in a Higher Power is something I find very admirable.
Although the guilt of not having seen Achamma for the one last time will always remain, I believe that her Prayers had the Power that will always remain with my family as a source of constant hope and unending love, and will continue binding us in good faith and affection as it did in her presence.