The paper "The Symbol of the Praying Hands " is a wonderful example of a sociology assignment. The symbol of the praying hands is a symbol understood by everyone no matter what religion or social group they belong to. It is a very common action that mainly symbolizes submission to God; it is a universal gesture for prayer. The praying hands are not mentioned specifically in the Bible and it was not even part of the Christian practice until the ninth century. Spreading of the arms towards the skies signified devotion and calling to the heavens.
According to David Wallechinsky and Irving Wallace in ‘ The People’ s Almanac, ’ the joining together of hands lead back to the subjugating men in shackles and handcuffs and even though the handcuffs are gone the praying hands remain a symbol of servitude and total compliance to the divine power of God. Even on the Hebrew and Muslim culture, this symbol means praying to God. Prayer can have different forms in different cultures but the joining together of hands seems to be common in many religions. It is very natural that people raise their hands in supplication to ask God to fulfill their wishes and prayers.
It is like asking for something; begging God who is all-powerful to listen to him. Hands express the inner man; Prophets and men of God have been mentioned in the Bible and other Holy Books to have raised their hands towards God for his response as David did “ I stretch out my hands to thee; my soul thirsts for thee like a parched land” (Psalm 143:6; cf. vs. 8) and the prophet Jeremiah did "Let us search and try our ways, and turn again to the Lord!
Let us lift up our hearts with our hands to God in the heavens" (Lamentations 3:40-41, KJV).