The Power Of Prayer

Why does G-d allow people to get ill? While we don't know for sure, one of the reasons may have to do with how the rest of us respond. Just as the poor gives us the opportunity to do the mitzvah (good deed) of giving charity, an ill person allows the rest of us to grow by giving of ourselves, physically or spiritually. Prayer for the individual who is ill is one way we can connect to G-d in order to help our friends and loved ones. How should we pray for Ari? Ari's hebrew name is Aryeh Noam Chaim ben Devorah Chana. Please use this name when praying for Ari. Judaism believes that Hebrew is not just an ordinary language but it was the language G-d used to create the universe and therefore plays a very special place in our prayers. Try to pray regularly for succes in Ari's treatment using Ari's hebrew name, Aryeh Noam Chaim ben Devorah Chana.

In addition, a recent medical study from Columbia University showed not only the power of spoken prayer, but showed that the addition of having a picture of the person being prayed for incresed the success rate of the prayer. In this study women in a fertility clinic trying to have children were randomly chosen to have their picture sent out around the world to people who didin't even know them. Neither the patient nor their doctors knew of the study so there would not be a placebo effect. A control group was also randomly chosen. People were instructed to either pray for the woman whose picture they received or pray for the success of the others who were praying. (previous evidence suggested this might improve the outcome) At the end of the study those women whose pictures were sent out had twice the success rate as the control group! For those who would like, we can apply this technique to Ari as well.

So what can we do?

  1. Pray regularly for the success or Ari's treatment using his hebrew name, Aryeh Noam Chaim ben Devorah Chana
  2. For those who would like, downlaod a picture of Ari or make his picture your computer background or screensaver
  3. Pray for the success of others who are praying for Ari's recovery
  4. Pray for others who are in similar need

For further reading:
(new) Praying for the Sick-Adapted from Lev Moshe, by Rabbi Avraham Goldshmidt
(new) Making Tefillah Count-An abridged version of a powerful address delivered by Rabbi Yissacher Frand at the Young Israel of Flatbush Tuesday evening, September 25, 2001

What is Prayer?
Prayer Doubles Success