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What, When, Where, How, Who?


Introduction, Important Definitions and Related Concepts:

Prayer is the act of attempting to communicate, commonly with a sequence of words, with a deity or spirit for the purpose of worshipping, requesting guidance, requesting assistance, confessing sins, as an act of reparation or to express one's thoughts and emotions. The words of the prayer may take the form of intercession, a hymn, incantation or a spontaneous utterance in the person's praying words. Secularly, the term can also be used as an alternative to "hope". Pray entered Middle English as preyen, prayen,and preien around 1290, recorded in The early South-English Legendary I. 112/200: And preide is fader wel ȝerne, in the sense of "to ask earnestly." The next recorded use in 1300 is simply "to pray." It came from the Old French preier, "to request" (first seen in La Séquence de Ste. Eulalie, ca. 880) In modern French prier, "to pray," the stem-vowel is leveled under that of the stem-stressed forms, il prie, etc. The origin of the word before this time is less certain. Compare the Italian Pregare "to ask" or more rarely "pray for something" and Spanish preguntar "ask." One possibility is the Late Latin precare (as seen in Priscian), classical Latin precari "to entreat, pray" from Latin precari, from precor, from prec-, prex "request, entreaty, prayer." Precor was used by Virgil, Livy, Cicero, and Ovid in the accusative. Dative forms are also found in Livy and Aurelius Propertius. With pro in the ablative, it is found in Plinius Valerianus’s physic, and Aurelius Augustinus’s Epistulae. It also could be used for a thing. From classical times, it was used in both religious and secular senses. A deity is a postulated preternatural or supernatural being, who is always of significant power, worshipped, thought holy, divine, or sacred, held in high regard, or respected by human beings. Deities assume a variety of forms, but are frequently depicted as having human or animal form. Some faiths and traditions consider it blasphemous to imagine or depict the deity as having any concrete form. They are usually immortal. They are commonly assumed to have personalities and to possess consciousness, intellects, desires, and emotions similar to those of humans. Such natural phenomena as lightning, floods, storms, other 'acts of God', and miracles are attributed to them, and they may be thought to be the authorities or controllers of every aspect of human life (such as birth or the afterlife). Some deities are asserted to be the directors of time and fate itself, to be the givers of human law and morality, to be the ultimate judges of human worth and behavior, and to be the designers and creators of the Earth or the universe. The English word "deity" derives from the Latin "dea", ("goddess"), and '"deus", ("god"). Related are words for "sky": the Latin "dies" ("day") and "divum" ("open sky"), and the Sanskrit "div," "diu" ("sky," "day," "shine"). Also related are "divine" and "divinity," from the Latin "divinus," from "divus." The English word "god" comes from Anglo-Saxon, and similar words are found in many Germanic languages (e.g. the German "Gott" — "God").

Theories and narratives about, and modes of worship of, deities are largely a matter of religion. At present, the vast majority of humans are adherents of some religion, and this has been true for at least thousands of years. Human burials from between 50,000 and 30,000 B.C. provide evidence of human belief in an afterlife and possibly in deities, although it is not clear when human belief in deities became the dominant view. Some deities are thought to be invisible or inaccessible to humans—to dwell mainly in otherworldly, remote or secluded and holy places, such as Heaven, Hell, the sky, the under-world, under the sea, in the high mountains or deep forests, or in a supernatural plane or celestial sphere. Worship usually refers to specific acts of religious praise, honour, or devotion, typically directed to a supernatural being such as God, a god or goddess. It is the informal term in English for what sociologists of religion call cultus, the body of practices and traditions that correspond to theology. Religious worship may be performed individually, within informally organized groups, or as part of an organized service with a designated leader (as in a church, synagogue, temple, or mosque). In its older sense in the English language of worthiness or respect (Anglo-Saxon worthscripe), worship may sometimes refer to actions directed at members of higher social classes (such as lords or monarchs) or to particularly esteemed persons (such as a lover). Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy distinguish between adoration or latria (Latin adoratio, Greek latreia, [λατρεια]) which is due to God alone, and veneration or dulia (Latin veneratio, Greek douleia [δουλεια]), which may be lawfully offered to the saints. The external acts of veneration resemble those of worship, but differ in their object and intent. Protestant Christians question whether such a distinction is always maintained in actual devotional practice, especially at the level of folk religion. Orthodox Judaism and orthodox Sunni Islam hold that for all practical purposes veneration should be considered the same as prayer; Orthodox Judaism (arguably with the exception of some Chasidic practices), orthodox Sunni Islam, and most kinds of Protestantism forbid veneration of saints or angels, classifying these actions as akin to idolatry. Similarly, Jehovah's Witnesses assert that many actions classified as patriotic by other Protestant groups, such as saluting a flag, are equivalent to worship and are therefore considered idolatrous as well. According to the Qur'an, mankind was created only for the purpose to worship God (Qur'an 51:56). Prayer or pilgrimage are just special forms of worship; obedience to God and the attempt to assume the attributes of God as far as possible (2:138) are forms of worship which should ideally encompass every human action. See e.g..[1] In Sikhism, Worship takes after the Guru Granth Sahib. In the Guru Granth Sahib is the work of the 10 Sikh Gurus all in one. Sikhs worship God and only one God, known as "One Creator" or (Waheguru) "Destroyer of Darkness". The Guru Granth Sahib is known as the final Sikh Guru by Guru Gohbind Singh, the 10th Sikh Guru. Guidance means the act or process of guiding the direction provided by a guide advice on vocational or educational problems given to students the process of controlling the course of a projectile by a built-in mechanism. Sin is a term used mainly in a religious context to describe an act that violates a moral rule, or the state of having committed such a violation. Commonly, the moral code of conduct is decreed by a divine entity (such as God in the Abrahamic religions). Sin is often used to mean an action that is prohibited or considered wrong; in some religions (notably some sects of Christianity), sin can refer to a state of mind rather than a specific action. Colloquially, any thought, word, or act considered immoral, shameful, harmful, or alienating might be termed "sinful". Common ideas surrounding sin in various religions include:

  • Punishment for sins, from other people, from God either in life or in afterlife, or from the Universe in general. The question of whether or not an act must be intentional to be sinful. The idea that one's conscience should produce guilt for a conscious act of sin. A scheme for determining the seriousness of the sin. Repentance from (expressing regret for and determining not to commit) sin, and atonement (repayment) for past deeds. The possibility of forgiveness of sins, often through communication with a deity or intermediary; in Christianity often referred to as salvation.

Crime and justice are related secular concepts. The word sin derives from Old English synn, recorded in use as early as the 9th century.[1] The same root appears in several other Germanic languages, e.g. Old Norse synd, or German Sünde. There is presumably a Germanic root *sun(d)jō (literally "it is true").[2] The word may derive, ultimately, from *es-, one of the Proto-Indo-European roots that meant "to be," and is a present participle, "being." In philosophy, action has developed into a sub-field called philosophy of action. Action is what an agent can do.

For example, throwing a ball is an instance of action; it involves an intention, a goal, and a bodily movement guided by the agent. On the other hand, catching a cold is not considered an action because it is something which happens to a person, not something done by one. Generally an agent doesn't intend to catch a cold or engage in bodily movement to do so (though we might be able to conceive of such a case). Other events are less clearly defined as actions or not. For instance, distractedly drumming ones fingers on the table seems to fall somewhere in the middle. Deciding to do something might be considered a mental action by some. However, others think it is not an action unless the decision is carried out. Unsuccessfully trying to do something might also not be considered an action for similar reasons (for e.g. lack of bodily movement). It is contentions whether Believing, intending, and thinking are actions since they are mental events. Some would prefer to define actions as requiring bodily movement (see behaviorism). The side-effects of actions are considered by some to be part of the action; in an example from Anscombe's manuscript Intention, pumping water can also be an instance of poisoning the inhabitants. This introduces a moral dimension to the discussion (see also Moral agency). If the poisoned water resulted in a death, that death might be considered part of the action of the agent that pumped the water.

Dictionary.com Unabridged (v 1.1) - Cite This Source - Share This
rep·a·ra·tion    Audio Help   /ˌrɛpəˈreɪʃən/ Pronunciation Key - Show Spelled Pronunciation[rep-uh-rey-shuhn] Pronunciation Key - Show IPA Pronunciation
1. the making of amends for wrong or injury done: reparation for an injustice.
2. Usually, reparations. compensation in money, material, labor, etc., payable by a defeated country to another country or to an individual for loss suffered during or as a result of war.
3. restoration to good condition.
4. repair1 (def. 7).
[Origin: 1350–1400; ME reparacion < MF < LL reparātiōn- (s. of reparātiō), equiv. to L reparāt(us) (ptp. of reparāre to repair1; see -ate1) + -iōn- -ion 1. indemnification, atonement, satisfaction, compensation. See redress. 3. renewal, renovation; repair.
3. destruction.
Dictionary.com Unabridged (v 1.1) Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2006.
American Heritage Dictionary - Cite This Source - Share This
rep·a·ra·tion    Audio Help   (rěp'ə-rā'shən)  Pronunciation Key n.

The act or process of repairing or the condition of being repaired. The act or process of making amends; expiation. Something done or paid to compensate or make amends.

  1. reparations Compensation or remuneration required from a defeated nation as indemnity for damage or injury during a war.

    Thought and thinking are mental forms and processes, respectively ("thought" is both.) Thinking allows beings to model the world and to deal with it effectively according to their objectives, plans, ends and desires. Words referring to similar concepts and processes include cognition, sentience, consciousness, idea, and imagination. Thinking involves the cerebral manipulation of information, as when we form concepts, engage in problem solving, reason and make decisions. Thinking is a higher cognitive function and the analysis of thinking processes is part of cognitive psychology. The basic mechanics of the human brain cells reflect a process of pattern matching or rather recognition. In a "moment of reflection", new situations and new experiences are judged against recalled ones and judgements are made. In order to make these judgements, the intellect maintains present experience and sorts relevant past experience. It does this while keeping present and past experience distinct and separate. The intellect can mix, match, merge, sift, and sort concepts, perceptions, and experience. This process is called reasoning. Logic is the science of reasoning. The awareness of this process of reasoning is access consciousness (see philosopher Ned Block). Aids to thinking

    Use of models, symbols, diagrams and pictures. Use of abstraction to simplify the effort of thinking. Use of metasyntactic variables to simplify the effort of naming. Use of iteration and recursion to converge on a concept. Limitation of attention to aid concentration and focus on a concept. Use of peace and quiet to aid concentration. Goal setting and goal revision. Simply letting the concept percolate in the subconscious, and waiting for the concept to re-surface. Talking with like-minded people. Resorting to communication with others, if this is allowed.
    1. Working backward from the goal. Desire for learning. Always be objective.

      Emotion is an affective state involving a high level of activation, visceral changes and strong feelings. Over the history of psychology there have been many different ways of classifying emotions. Most current theories classify emotions as a set of basic emotions that can be blended. Within psychology there are several, different, approaches towards emotions. Modern theories include cognitive functions of emotions, the neuropsychology of emotions. There is an approach that emotions are evolutionary adaptations that allow people and animals to deal adequately with a broad range of situations with very limited conscious reasoning. Outside research psychology, there is attention for emotions in sociology. Psychotherapy has a strong focus on emotional disorder. Artificial intelligence is also investigating the potential of emotions in constructing intelligent systems. Other closely related terms are:

      • Affect, a synonym for emotion; in psychology and psychiatry, the term "affect" is used when the emotional experience has been qualified (e.g., intense, labile, or appropriate affect) or quantified (e.g., a high score on a scale that measures positive emotion). Affect display, external display of emotion (e.g., facial expression, body posture, voice quality). Disposition, referring to a durable differentiating characteristic of a person, a tendency to react to certain classes of situations with a certain emotion; Feeling, which usually refers to the subjective, phenomenological aspect of emotion (e.g., the internal experience of anxiety, sadness, love, pride, and so forth); Mood, which refers to an emotional state of duration intermediate between an emotion and a disposition (e.g., depressed, euphoric, neutral, or irritable mood). Meta-emotion is emotion about emotion. Emotion is derived from French émotion, from émouvoir, 'excite' based on Latin emovere, from e- (variant of ex-) 'out' and movere 'move'. "Motivation" is also derived from movere. A word is a unit of language that carries meaning and consists of one or more morphemes which are linked more or less tightly together, and has a phonetical value. Typically a word will consist of a root or stem and zero or more affixes. Words can be combined to create phrases, clauses, and sentences. A word consisting of two or more stems joined together form a compound.


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