Steve Pavlina on God

January 2007

Steve Pavlina on God:

Some beliefs I found consistently disempowering, meaning that if I adopted them, I would be denying myself access to valuable potential. These included the belief in heaven/hell and the belief in a higher power. That second one may seem surprising, but I opted to let it go because I consistently found it less empowering than a belief in a lower power. An example of a higher power would be a consciously aware God or gods such as found in Christianity or Greek mythology. A lower power would be like a field that is able to respond to your intentions, sort of like “the force” in Star Wars or what some people refer to as “source.” You can pray to either type of power, but in the first case you're asking, and in the second case, you're declaring. Many people, myself included, have noted that declarative prayer works better than no prayer and better than asking prayer. I see it mainly as putting out an intention.

Incognito commented:

Interesting... but strange.

Nato commented:

If there were no such things as powers, or spiritual realities, I imagine a belief in a 'lower power' would have a greater psychological effect on individuals than a 'higher power'. Basically it would equate to visualizing what you want, which some forms of self-help seem to use quite a lot to help empower people. On the other hand, passively asking for things probably wouldn't do much for motivation. (But I would argue, it might help perspective)

Also, I wonder if he took into account the pente 'name it and claim it' approach to prayer. That's fairly declarative.

Matt commented:

I found it interesting, because I think that perhaps there is a kind of lower power—I mean, I often think of the 'Holy Spirit' more as a natural force than as a person, and I don't think that the Bible is opposed to that view.