This song is an antidote for:

  • Self-preoccupation
  • Isolation
  • Pride
  • Arrogance
  • Pride of self-worth
  • Haughtiness
  • Contemptuousness
  • Superciliousness

Listen to the song (download mp3):

Watch the session with Satyaki:

Lyrics:

Joined in prayer, we worship Thee:
Rays of light that seek the sun.
Many drops do make a sea:
Thus our love, when joined as one!
Thus our love, when joined as one!

The song as an antidote (Satyaki’s comments):

Joined in Prayer, as you can hear in the recording, is a short song, which is repeated something like a chant. Swami Kriyananda wrote the song for the Superconscious Attunement Ceremony, and it’s sung before the minister leads the congregation in healing prayers.

Joined in prayer, we worship Thee:
Rays of light that seek the sun.
Many drops do make a sea:
Thus our love, when joined as one!

The suggestion for the song itself came from another Ananda member who observed to Kriyananda that when people come together to meditate, they often isolate themselves, mentally, as if no one else was there. And yet Jesus said, “Where two or more are gathered in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” That gathering in Christ’s name I think means primarily a joining together in consciousness, not so much in physical proximity. As Kriyananda said, “The purpose of group meditation it to join your vibrations together and not just do your Kriyas by accident in a group.” This song, then, was intended to emphasize that thought.

Interestingly, Kriyananda said he tried for months to get a song that would work, but, as he said, “it just wouldn’t come.” It came only a couple hours before he first shared the Superconscious Attunement Ceremony as a whole!

The metaphors used in the lyrics also help us understand that although we might think that we, as individuals, are quite insignificant—each one a single ray of light, or a single drop of water—we discover our divine value, as it were, when we join together with others in a shared aspiration. That is, it’s not that we’re each a ray of light shining in random directions: it’s that we each seek the sun, that is, seek the light of higher consciousness. Instead of being a single drop of water that might be absorbed into a desert, or evaporate into the air, our coming together is what makes it possible to form a pond, a lake, or the whole ocean.

As Kriyananda said in another lecture, “An ocean consists of countless drops. Although a raindrop adds but little moisture to the earth, once it unites with many other drops a mighty current is created which flows down to the sea. We too, united with God’s will, can help mightily in the struggle between the forces of light and of darkness. Thus, we may be instrumental in ushering in a period of peace and universal understanding.”

In the context, then, of any event that involves shared prayer—whether healing prayers as in the Superconscious Attunement Ceremony, prayers for peace, or, as happened recently at Ananda Village, the dedication of the Temple of Light—Joined in Prayer really reminds us that although it might seem we have little, as individuals, to give, little that might in some way affect something or someone else in the world, that little bit of power gets amplified when we come together with a shared purpose.

In this way, the song, when sung with that awareness, can be very powerful even though on the surface it seems like a “simple” song with only a handful of words and one simple melody. Discounting the song on such a basis, however, would be like discounting the chanting of AUM simply because it has one word on one note! With intention and concentration, chanting AUM can be deeply transforming, as can singing a song like Joined in Prayer. Through this song, you can attune yourself more and more to the “Truth that we’re all one” (to borrow a line from O, Master), that we’re all waves on the Ocean of Spirit, to use the other metaphor in the song, individual rays of the divine light, or that, put simply, our individual love (as expressed in prayers for others) comes together to express universal, divine love.

The song particularly resonates with the throat chakra, the center of expansion, which helps one rise beyond merely personal concerns to feel a greater sense of oneness with everything, just as the lyrics suggest. Such a consciousness is very helpful when doing healing prayers for others, which are a deep form of service because they encourage self-forgetfulness rather than self-preoccupation.[1]

By magnetizing the throat chakra, Joined in Prayer helps to magnetically pull energies up the spine from the lower chakras. As in all Ananda music, any references to “we” and “our” can be taken inwardly to refer to our mental citizens as well as the different chakras in the spine (where those citizens live). When those chakras or citizens join together in prayer (“we worship Thee”)—which is to say, join together in an upward flow of energy to the expansiveness of throat chakra (as expressed by the “sea” in the lyrics), and to the higher consciousness at the “sun” of the spiritual eye, then our prayers—and our meditations—become all the more powerful. (Indeed, I highly recommend singing this song at the start of a group meditation, or even mentally anytime during a personal meditation, because meditation is a form of prayer and the song helps unite the energy in the spine like Kriya Yoga. Like I’ve said elsewhere, Ananda Music is a musical expression of Kriya Yoga.)

Joining together, whether it be in a group of people or just within your own spine, helps overcome feelings of isolation, just as the suggestion that inspired the song to begin with. Thus, Joined in Prayer is an especially meaningful and powerful song for anyone who doesn’t enjoy the physical proximity of other devotees, like we do here at Ananda Village. It’s why Ananda’s online “virtual community” works so well, because proximity of consciousness is far more important than proximity of matter.

There is another kind of isolation that the song also helps to overcome: not the isolation imposed by physical circumstances, but the isolation imposed by attitudes of arrogant pride and pride of self-worth, like that of the hard-core “do-it-yourselfer.” You probably know people who go through life with thoughts like, “I don’t need anyone else! To hell with them!” or “Why bother working with anyone? I can do it by myself!” or “It’s pointless to work with or depend on others, so I just gotta do it all on my own!” I personally have relatives who think and act in this way, refusing, as much as possible, to spend any money for goods or services that they can somehow provide these for themselves, even though they’re quite wealthy! It’s one thing to be frugal when you must be (as they had to be early in their lives). But when your own needs are fulfilled, you have a tremendous opportunity to help fulfill the needs of others as well by hiring their services, buying their products, and otherwise supporting their livelihoods (because, after all, someone once helped you!). To these relatives, however, they cannot see past the dollars to the people they’d be helping by spending a little more.[2]

Such attitudes we might describe as haughtiness or, to use a couple of fancy words, contemptuousness and superciliousness. These words describe that kind of arrogance or pride that isn’t so much about denying others’ worth or value, or even denying their potential contributions, but rather denying the power of cooperation. In extreme forms, though, such a fiercely independent negative consciousness does bring one to the point of denying that anyone else even could have value or make a contribution!

Ultimately, denying the value of others takes one farther and father away from divine consciousness, because in God’s eyes, every one of his children, including every animal, plant, insect, and indeed “each particle of universal dust” (as it says in the poem Samadhi), has value—has as much value as a saint or an angel. With its ability to overcome the potential power of such negative emotions, Joined in Prayer, albeit very “simple” in musical terms, is a truly powerful song and a powerful means, as in its ceremonial use, of attunement to superconsciousness.

Footnotes:

[1] Even more so, the expansiveness of the throat chakra also helps our prayers be impersonal, and thus more attuned to universal love, than if we were praying out of personal concern from the heart chakra. For this reason, the song doesn’t feel as compassionate as, say, Mother of Us All. [Return]

[2] Ultimately, the karmic law suggests that if they continue with such selfish attitudes to the end of their lives, they will not retain their wealth in their next lifetimes. Instead, they’ll need to be on the opposite end of the equation, wondering time and again why people with wealth are not willing to share with them, even when their needs is desperate. Hopefully, the soul memory of being wealthy (and then losing it), will help them vow in their hearts to be generous if they ever obtained wealth again. I have to say that their example has certainly inspired my own generosity![Return]