"In the first place, what do we mean by Prayer? Surely just this: the part of our conscious life which is deliberately oriented towards, and exclusively responds to spiritual reality. God is that spiritual reality, and we believe God to be immanent in all things: He is not far from each one of us: for in him we live and move and have our being."
'Prayer' says Walter Hilton, 'is nothing else but an ascending or getting up of the desire of the heart into God by withdrawing it from earthly thoughts." It is ascent says Ruysbroeck, of the Ladder of Love. In the same spirit William Law defines prayer as the rising of the soul out of the vanity of time into the riches of eternity.
It entails, then a going up or out from our ordinary cirlce of earthly interests. Prayer stretches out the tentacles of our consciousness not so much towards that Divine Life which is felt to be enshrined within the striving, changeful world of things; but rather to that 'Eternal turth, ture Love and loved Eternity' wherein the world is felt to be enshrined.
The whole of a person's life consists in a series of balanced responses to this Transcendent-Immanent Reality. Because we live under two orders, we are at once a citizen of Eternity and of Time. "