In the Christian tradition, prayer often takes place on the knees, with hands together. Native Americans, on the othe hand outstretched and facing the sky, while Muslims put their heads to the ground. Beyond this - the basic physical position adopted - few are taught in any detail how to pray. we may even be given the wrong information.
I was taught, for example, to pray only for others, not myself. It took me years, and a certain amount of guilt, to get beyond this notion aand accept that it was okay.
in the processs of praying for oneself, we often learn what it is we truly want, which may be very different to what we think we want, ot tell other people we want. So imagine this: people praying for other people without being in a position to know what they really want! Indeed, we may not be getting what we need because someone else is praying for the opposite!
I often hear of accounts of people who are so distresed at the thought of losing a partner, they sit at the deathbed, sometimes for days , willing the partner to live. The partner may themselves be praying to die in peace, without having to worry about the partner taking it so badly. Any such cross purpose of wills can take many forms, including praying for prople who don't actually want to get better.
This may seem an unkind thing to say, but doctors and healers of all kinds are very familiar with this syndrome, when someine puts up an often subconscious barrier to healing. in these cases , it may be better to pray that the person is led to understand why they did not really want to get better.
often tainted with ulterior motives. Iv'e heard people say they want a loved one to live for ever, or at least until they themselves die, and they ppray for that, although the loved one may be in great pain and would prefer to die now. I recall on ewoman saying to me, that she didn't want her husband to get well enough to come out of hospital until she'd had a chance to decorate the bedroom; and another who wanted her partner to get better extra quickly so he'd come home in time for her birthday. Better perhaps to pray that the person being prayed for gets their own prayers answered.
Many people find it easier to communicate with a messenger of God, an angel perhaps , because the infinite consciousness is so awesome. Fair enough, but just make sure you don't pray to the angel and make an idol of it. Give the message to the messenger as a message.
Many people find it akward or embarrasing to pray and for them the written prayers may be an answer. The same sacred place in the mind , as used in thought or spoken prayer , can be used when writing down what it is you want to say - in a relaxed way aware of the divinity that permeates all existence. Some put their written prayer in a special place; or create a prayer box : or burn the prayer and watch the smoke ascend to heaven.