Prayer: the Ultimate Selfish Conceit
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10-02-2015, 09:36 AM
RE: Prayer: the Ultimate Selfish Conceit
(09-02-2015 03:38 PM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  
(09-02-2015 11:07 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  It would be an astonishing conceit if it were so, yes. But to quote C.S. Lewis, who was asked why he prayed often after his second wife passed, "Prayer doesn't change God, it changes me!"

According to the Bible, God has a plan for everyone, and all of life’s events have a divine purpose. As humans live in a sometimes cold, unfriendly and unfair universe, some Christians think that God lets terrible things happen. They ask questions.
“Why did I lose a parent to cancer?”
“Why did he commit suicide?”
“Why did a little girl get run over?”
“Why were people killed in a tsunami?”
“Is God angry? Am I being punished for not having enough faith or for having wicked thoughts?”

God never answers because he does not exist. Patronizing platitudes promoted by preachers about “God’s plan” only add insult to the pain.

Rather than imagine there is an omnipotent man in the sky controlling everything, is it not better to accept that the world is sometimes harsh and unfair, and there is no moderator who will one day even things out? Anger about injustices might then soften into grief. Reality dawns: people are flawed, and always will be, and things occur due to unforeseen circumstances, so shit sometimes happens.

Prayer is pointless. The idea that the laws of nature and the vagaries of chance respond to wailings and incantations is pathetic. Instead of cowering before an imaginary master who moves in mysterious ways, people should analyze what went wrong and why to help prevent a repeat. That means putting thinking caps on and asking for help from our fellow men, who, unlike God, will answer back. That is productive and empowering. Praying is not.Drinking Beverage

You may have forgotten that part of prayer and relationship is that sometimes god answers. He's certainly answered some of my prayers here at TTA. Absolutely.

I'm told atheists on forums like TTA are bitter and angry. If you are not, your posts to me will be respectful, insightful and thoughtful. Prove me wrong by your adherence to decent behavior.
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10-02-2015, 09:37 AM
RE: Prayer: the Ultimate Selfish Conceit
(09-02-2015 08:14 PM)Bear100 Wrote:  I don't even have problem with prayer when it comes to just praying for yourself in order to feel better. If you genuinely believe that and keep that thought to yourself then fine.

But if you want to help, do something useful to help instead of praying.

Why can I not do both--help others in prayer and with my time and resources? I'm sensing a little suspension of the 1st amendment here, as well as (not you, the whole body of people at TTA) the suspension of logic.

If god exists and can bring us to heaven or hell, saying prayer is stupid--is stupid.

I'm told atheists on forums like TTA are bitter and angry. If you are not, your posts to me will be respectful, insightful and thoughtful. Prove me wrong by your adherence to decent behavior.
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10-02-2015, 09:45 AM
RE: Prayer: the Ultimate Selfish Conceit
(10-02-2015 09:35 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  It sounds like you're saying that if god exists, it is inappropriate for us to pursue relationship and communication with god. That is nonsensical to me in terms of:

*if my marriage is to survive and even thrive, I need to communicate and enhance relationship
*ditto for my kids
*ditto for work colleagues
*mega-ditto for atheists at TTA, who constantly lose sight of the real goal posts and accuse me of being dishonest or disingenuous--in my heart and mind, I am free of those ills toward those I witness my faith to

WTF is wrong with your ability to understand things. I never implied that god exists, and you again make the point that prayer does nothing for anyone or anything besides the one doing the praying. I also never said it is inappropriate to communicate with an imaginary figure like god, it just does nothing outside of making you feel better. Why do I bother man!

“Truth does not demand belief. Scientists do not join hands every Sunday, singing, yes, gravity is real! I will have faith! I will be strong! I believe in my heart that what goes up, up, up, must come down, down, down. Amen! If they did, we would think they were pretty insecure about it.”
— Dan Barker —
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10-02-2015, 10:54 AM
RE: Prayer: the Ultimate Selfish Conceit
(10-02-2015 09:45 AM)Timber1025 Wrote:  
(10-02-2015 09:35 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  It sounds like you're saying that if god exists, it is inappropriate for us to pursue relationship and communication with god. That is nonsensical to me in terms of:

*if my marriage is to survive and even thrive, I need to communicate and enhance relationship
*ditto for my kids
*ditto for work colleagues
*mega-ditto for atheists at TTA, who constantly lose sight of the real goal posts and accuse me of being dishonest or disingenuous--in my heart and mind, I am free of those ills toward those I witness my faith to

WTF is wrong with your ability to understand things. I never implied that god exists, and you again make the point that prayer does nothing for anyone or anything besides the one doing the praying. I also never said it is inappropriate to communicate with an imaginary figure like god, it just does nothing outside of making you feel better. Why do I bother man!

Actually I was making a different point--that prayer has to do with relationship. But since you're repeating your earlier point, prayer can and often also has things it does for others besides the one in prayer and God.

I'm told atheists on forums like TTA are bitter and angry. If you are not, your posts to me will be respectful, insightful and thoughtful. Prove me wrong by your adherence to decent behavior.
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10-02-2015, 11:40 AM
RE: Prayer: the Ultimate Selfish Conceit
(07-02-2015 06:13 PM)TheStraightener Wrote:  As we are throwing quotes around..

Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day.

Teach a man to fish and you'll feed him for a lifetime.

Teach a man to pray... And he'll die waiting for a fish.
...

... And a further corollary ...

Teach a Straylian to fish and he'll sit in a boat all day drinking beer.

Big Grin

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10-02-2015, 12:04 PM
RE: Prayer: the Ultimate Selfish Conceit
(07-02-2015 02:34 AM)Airportkid Wrote:  I've heard some justify prayer as letting "god" know that the matter at hand is important to you; that your taking the initiative to tell god what's up "tells" god it matters. But that's bollocks: omniscient deities are eavesdropping your thoughts 24/7; giving some thought voice only raises the decibel level, not the information level.

It's worse than that, even. If God is omniscient, it means
  • God knows that X will bother you before you tell him,
  • God knows that X will bother you before you are aware that it bothers you, and
  • God knows that X will bother you before X even happens.

"God, I come to you humbly in prayer to-"
"I know."
"But if you know, why-"
"Mysterious ways."
"I guess, but-"
"I know."
"..."
What? I like feeling important."
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10-02-2015, 12:04 PM
RE: Prayer: the Ultimate Selfish Conceit
(10-02-2015 11:40 AM)DLJ Wrote:  
(07-02-2015 06:13 PM)TheStraightener Wrote:  As we are throwing quotes around..

Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day.

Teach a man to fish and you'll feed him for a lifetime.

Teach a man to pray... And he'll die waiting for a fish.
...

... And a further corollary ...

Teach a Straylian to fish and he'll sit in a boat all day drinking beer.

Big Grin

If you take a Baptist fishing with you, he'll drink all your beer.

To keep him from doing so ---

Bring two Baptists.

Then, they won't touch a drop.

.......................................

The difference between prayer and masturbation - is when a guy is through masturbating - he has something to show for his efforts.
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10-02-2015, 12:11 PM
RE: Prayer: the Ultimate Selfish Conceit
(10-02-2015 12:04 PM)onlinebiker Wrote:  If you take a Baptist fishing with you, he'll drink all your beer.

To keep him from doing so ---

Bring two Baptists.

Then, they won't touch a drop.

Jews don't recognize Christ as the Messiah.

Protestants don't recognize the Pope as a religious authority.

Baptists don't recognize each other in party stores and strip clubs.
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10-02-2015, 12:13 PM
RE: Prayer: the Ultimate Selfish Conceit
gotta remember that one...

Smile

.......................................

The difference between prayer and masturbation - is when a guy is through masturbating - he has something to show for his efforts.
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10-02-2015, 12:25 PM
RE: Prayer: the Ultimate Selfish Conceit
[Image: prayer-ridiculous_zps847dbe91.png]
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