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Be Careful What You Pray For, You Might Just Get It: What We Can Do about the Unintentional Effects of Our Thoughts, Prayers and Wishes [Paperback]

By Larry Dossey (Author)
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Item description for Be Careful What You Pray For, You Might Just Get It: What We Can Do about the Unintentional Effects of Our Thoughts, Prayers and Wishes by Larry Dossey...

Bestselling author Larry Dossey delivers a dramatic and controversial exploration of the negative side of prayer--how it can be used, intentionally or unconsciously, to harm, and what readers can do to protect themselves.

Publishers Description
This text warns that just as prayer can be used to positively affect health, it can also be used for negative and destructive means. Through true stories, case histories, and scientific analysis, the author explores the nature of toxic prayer and teaches us how we can protect ourselves.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: HarperOne
Pages   259
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.12" Width: 5.32" Height: 0.69"
Weight:   0.45 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Feb 3, 2004
Publisher   HarperOne
ISBN  0062514342  
ISBN13  9780062514349  
UPC  099455013956  

Availability  156 units.
Availability accurate as of Oct 28, 2016 05:14.
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More About Larry Dossey

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Larry Dossey, M.D., is the author of the New York Times bestseller, Healing Words, and Prayer Is Good Medicine. An authority on spiritual healing, he lectures throughout the country and has been a frequent guest on Oprah, Good Morning America, CNN, and The Learning Channel. He is responsible for introducing innovations in spiritual care to acclaimed institutions across the country. He currently resides in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Larry Dossey currently resides in Santa Fe, in the state of New Mexico. Larry Dossey was born in 1940.

Larry Dossey has published or released items in the following series...
  1. 365 Blessings, Poems & Meditations from Around the World

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Reviews - What do customers think about Be Careful What You Pray For...You Just Might Get It?

inspired, intelligent worshipping of a knowable God  Jan 28, 2007
Having read several hundred books on spirituality, prayer, religion (etc), I'd say this is one of my top five favorites. The only downside is the title. The book's focus is a little bit more on the power of NEGATIVE prayer than anything else.

I've never had any patience for religious teachings or faith systems that require you to check your intellect at the door before entering into a holy and inspired place. That's the beauty part of this book. It's written for people who love God and people who refuse to ignorantly worship "an unknown God."

Nearly every page of my copy of this book has been highlighted, as I've found so many powerful truths contained there. One of my favorite stories is Dossey's telling of "The Death Prayer."

He writes, "When Europeans first came to the Hawaiian Islands, they encountered a practice they literally called the 'death prayer'. They developed a horror of this practice, which came to be the 'most feared phenomenon in old Hawaii.' Eventually, laws were drafted prohibiting it" (p. 98).

Dossey then goes on to write in depth about why this prayer is so powerful and how The Lord's Prayer is truly a strong weapon against this "negative prayer."

"One native healer said, 'Have you ever heard of the Lord's Prayer. Do you remember the words, 'Deliver us from evil?' You white people have one of the best forms of protectoin, and you don't even know it! Why, I even use it myself!' he said with a grin" (p. 196-197).

On page 24, Dossey writes, "I have often thought that a handy definition of negative prayer is 'prayer without empathy.'"

As a mature believer, I'd highly recommend this book for all people who take their praying seriously. For Christmas, I purchased a copy of this book for my dearest friends, so they could understand a bit more about the awesome power of prayer - for good and for evil.

Some of the best quotes:
"We can feel the presence of another as keenly through animosity as we can through love" (p. 183).

"Curses permeate our religious life. The most obvious example is the condemnation of the unsaved to eternal, unimagineable suffering in hell" (p. 12).

And in talking about the death prayer of the Hawaiian Kahunas, he wrote,

"Not only did [William Tufts Brigham] confirm Long's [early 1900s American psychologist] impression that the kahunas could kill people at a distance with negative mental intent...he also described how the curse could be fatal to the individual who perpetrated it" (p. 98).

Powerful book. I highly recommend it for anyone who wants to protect themselves from evil people and their evil thoughts and purposes.

Great Book  Jan 10, 2007
The information contained within the pages of this book is simply great. I do not like the writers' style, Why? Do not know, it is a personal matter of taste but the information is great and very interesting. The author should be proud a the great accomplishment done with this book!
Great book!  Jan 21, 2003
I thought this book was fascinating. Scientific research in the field of health psychology has repeatedly shown that our thoughts influence our health. This goes one step further to say that other people's thoughts influence our health as well. I think this is not too much of a stretch since we know from quantum theory that certain things can influence other things without coming into physical contact. That consciousness itself is enough to influence the physical world. The author discusses this possiblity and experiments with it. I liked the pioneer spirit of this author. If you want to learn about the connection between consciousness and matter, another great and easy to read book is "The Ever-Transcending Spirit" by Toru Sato. It's also a fascinating book!
Think in the Beauty Way  Jan 14, 2001
Larry Dossey describes the Navajo belief in the power of words, the importance of thinking and speaking in a positive way -- in "the Beauty Way." Counter this with how easily caretakers can "hex" a patient's recovery with such statements as, "You have three months to live if you're lucky," or, "Only 2% of people with this kind of cancer survive more than a year."

Dossey is a physician and researcher who has helped bring credibility to alternative therapies and to spirituality in medicine. In an earlier book, "Healing Words," he reported on scientific experiments illustrating the positive effects of prayer. In this book he explores prayer's potential for harm. Perhaps the most obvious illustration of this argument is how often nations have prayed for victory against each other, both invoking the protection of God! And we've all heard of the power of belief in such practices as voodoo to create harm. But there can be more subtle influences at work, as well.

Citing the sociologist Charles Perrow, Dossey describes the nature of a "tightly coupled system." In loosely coupled systems -- such as a lawnmower's gasoline engine -- the parts are relatively autonomous and can be individually replaced when they malfunction. We are becoming increasingly familiar with the interdependence of more tightly coupled systems, often learning the hard way. In "The Logic of Failure," for example, Dietrich Dorner described a city council which attempted to limit noise and air pollution by lowering the speed limit and installing speed bumps. The unintended effects: Cars were forced to travel in lower gear -- producing more noise and exhaust, increased travel time produced increased congestion, and eventually people began to prefer shopping at outlying malls -- leading to economic failure of the downtown area.

Tightly coupled systems -- such as the human body -- are highly interdependent, where a malfunction can create an entirely unpredictable cascading effect. Dossey illustrates how giving orders with prayers can invite disaster. We could pray to rack up our immune systems, for example, and overdo it. Since it's difficult to predict all the complexities of healing, he suggests resorting to the age-old invitation of leaving the details to a higher power.

One of my favorite sections of this book is entitled "Reversing Medical Curses Through Prayer." He does acknowledge that doctors don't usually intend to do us in; nonetheless, the harm is real: "Medical curses such as 'It's your funeral,'" he writes, "'You're a walking time bomb,' 'You should have had surgery yesterday,' 'There's nothing more I can do,' and so on, are not uncommon." A spiritual approach can counter the impact of such harmful and influential statements. For example, Dr. Thomas Oxman and colleagues at Dartmouth Medical School found that the factor most highly correlated with survival and a positive post-operative course after surgery was the degree of spiritual meaning in the patient's life.

In such a situation you would do well to ask yourself, "How can I participate in my recovery and not be a victim?" "What is my purpose?" "What is meaningful to me?" "How might I make a difference in the world?"

Unsupported, unadulterated hogwash!  Jul 11, 2000
Larry Dossey likes to say that prayer has been scientifically proven, but he just doesn't have a case. He avoids directly defining "prayer" or explaining how exactly it would work. Does anyone really believe that God would let someone get sick or die just because no one prayed for him or her? Dossey wants us to believe that a just God is a sort of cosmic favor dispenser, only helping those who pray. The evidence doesn't support what he says. Soft-headed, gullible New Agers will love this book; others beware.

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