Discussion in 'Religion Archives' started by Orleander, Jan 18, 2009.
Why do people put their hands together when they pray?
That's it? They all bow heads in submission, why don't they all put their hands together then?
I dont know as far as religious reasons, but havent you ever put your head down clasped your hands and thought?
M*W: I particularly like the photo of the dog. Who is it praying to, the great big bone in the sky?
Clasped hands or placing hands one upon the other are a sign of vulnerability or deference, even humility.
Think of all the times you clasp your hands.
Centering with the reflection of one's being.
Hmmm... each time it was usually around a hockey stick, a baseball bat or a golf club.
Its a tradition, but not all cultures use it.
Holding your hands up, palms out, kind of like the hollywood "hands up" pose but with the hands farther forward, is also popular.
Thats all? Surely there are other things you clasp more reverentially?
Well, there was this one time in Rabat with this Moroccan woman...
Clasping your hands together signals your defeat and submission. It probably started as begging the victor in a fight not to finish you off? Then probably the tribal elders were petitioned like this and then kings and finally Gods and Godesses.
Now it's just part of praying.
Bowing probably has a similar history.
Depends on your outlook. Some people know the difference between humility and defeat
Apparently, there is symbolism in some cases:
We're talking about a time when we were near-monkey's. It may be that humility hadn't even developed as an experience.
But, really, maybe you are right, it's hard to say what proto-humans were like.
Certainly other animals lower the heads to signal defeat. Wolves for example. A female Lioness. This is clearly related to bowing and bowing seems a lot like prayer. People to this day use FEAR as one means to get other people to worship Gods. You know, say 5 prayers a day towards mecca or piss of the God and maybe see hellfire... that sort of thing.
Who's "we"? Speak for yourself. I was never a monkey, or even a near one. The OP asked about people who folded hands in prayer. Muslims btw, rarely fold hands, we have an open palm gesture.
Generally, after saying prayers, the ritual is to run your palms over your own face before turning to your neighbor to say PBWY. Some people say, this is the way of using the dua to affirm yourself [by using it on yourself] and then to affirm your kinship, by bending towards both neighbors.
In which case, if I make du'a for someone else, I run the palms of my hands over their head and face [some people extend this to upper arms and body]
I mean the human species.
If we imagine a wolf, imagine it bested in a fight, then lowing it's head in submission, this may also release the chemicals needed to put said wolf in a submissive frame of mind. It may be that humans voluntarily submitting does this as well. I can see how this may accompany a release of anxiety (so that the wolf truly has submitted, it's own biology may act here to save it - releasing the needed chemicals to truly calm it down). Evolutionarily this makes sense IMO. So, it may be that John99 is correct, it is a focal point, and you may be right as well, it may be associated with humility. Social adaptations of a biological defeat response. Now adapted towards meditation.
I could imagine this could even become a chemical addiction. The strong desire to meditate may be to release these chemicals and feel relaxed. The strong desire to pray 7 times a day kind of like people's need to drink 7 cups of java.
I suppose evolution only occurs in the western context.
There's a biological bases for prayer SAM. Why else would human's do it? There were never Greek Gods, yet people prayed to them. Allah is make believe yet you pray. Right? Yes, right.
There is an evolutionary context and it may be that you happened to end up with just a few too many receptors for a certain protein and now are stuck addicted to your belief in your own imagination. Biologically unable to progress mentally past irrational belief in Gods and Goddesses, magical stones and winged fairy creatures.
I think my explanation makes a decent attempt to explain such behavior.
Versus SAM's: There is One God, MoMo is It's very Last of the Last Prophets hence I must pray to It.
I suppose evolution only occurs in the athiest context.
I would think they copied it from......
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