You must forget yourself in prayer.
Think of yourself as nothing
and pray only for the sake of God.
In such prayer you may come to transcend time,
entering the highest realms
of the World of Thought.
There all things are as one;
Distinctions between “life” and “death,”
“land” and “sea,”
have lost their meaning.
But none of this can happen
as long as you remain attached
to the reality of the material world.
Here you are bound by the distinctions
between good and evil
that emerge only in the lower realms of God.
How can one who remains attached to his own self
go beyond time to the world where al is one?
* * *
The human body is always finite;
It is the the spirit that is boundless.
Before he begins to pray,
a person should cast aside that which limits him
and enter the endless world of Nothing.
In prayer he should turn to God alone
and have no thoughts of himself at all.
Nothing but God exists for him;
he himself has ceased to be.
The true redemption of man’s soul can only happen
as he steps outside the body’s limits.
from Your Word is Fire – The Hasidic Masters on Contemplative Prayer
ed. & tr. Arthur Green and Barry W. Holtz