The Greatest Possible Prayer
Post Reply
 
Thread Rating:
  • 0 Votes - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
05-03-2013, 09:55 PM
RE: The Greatest Possible Prayer
Hello guys.

Thanks for your responses.

I suppose that the argument regarding prayer's inability to do anything would prove that Yahweh was lying in the Bible. I thought that a benevolent god would have no reason to deceive his worshipers (especially that he's also omnipotent and omniscient), so I thought that Yahweh would not be omnipotent, omniscient, and benevolent. (EDIT: this assumes that he exists; he may not exist all together)

However, let's assume that he can grant these prayers nevertheless.

I then thought, why don't Christians pray for the greatest possible prayer?

So far, it seems that the end of suffering is common. Salvation for all makes me think that no one will ever have to suffer again, either, and I hope that I am correct in assuming this, Starcrash.

I think that religions that claim that there exists a being that can grant any prayer are false because not every prayer can be answered.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes Chujutsu's post
05-03-2013, 11:25 PM
RE: The Greatest Possible Prayer
(05-03-2013 09:55 PM)Chujutsu Wrote:  So far, it seems that the end of suffering is common. Salvation for all makes me think that no one will ever have to suffer again, either, and I hope that I am correct in assuming this, Starcrash.

I don't pray, so I was positing the greatest possible prayer from a Christian's standpoint. But obviously, if I was wishing upon a genie's lamp (or praying, or whatever) then I agree with my friends here that the end of all suffering would be my wish. To think that there's a benevolent being who could end all suffering but doesn't (for any reason) is simply absurd. I would end suffering if I could.

My girlfriend is mad at me. Perhaps I shouldn't have tried cooking a stick in her non-stick pan.
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
06-03-2013, 03:46 AM
RE: The Greatest Possible Prayer
(05-03-2013 11:25 PM)Starcrash Wrote:  I don't pray, so I was positing the greatest possible prayer from a Christian's standpoint. But obviously, if I was wishing upon a genie's lamp (or praying, or whatever) then I agree with my friends here that the end of all suffering would be my wish. To think that there's a benevolent being who could end all suffering but doesn't (for any reason) is simply absurd. I would end suffering if I could.
Ahh. Yes. Good point, Starcrash. A benevolent being that could end all suffering should end all suffering.

Anyway, I was thinking of other issues regarding the greatest possible prayer. It seems that we've settled that the end of all suffering would be such. I asked myself if praying for something else not related at all to the end of all suffering is an act of selfishness or at least, an act that is immoral.

I was thinking that praying for the end of someone's suffering seems quite limited.

I was thinking that it would be abhorrent for someone to pray to find the car keys when someone else is starving.

So, is it immoral to pray for a prayer that is not the greatest prayer?
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes Chujutsu's post
06-03-2013, 06:47 AM
RE: The Greatest Possible Prayer
(06-03-2013 03:46 AM)Chujutsu Wrote:  So, is it immoral to pray for a prayer that is not the greatest prayer?

That's a tough question. That's like asking if it's immoral to eat while people are starving.

I guess it shows a lack of sympathy or compassion to use a supposedly powerful positive force for trivial things, but I can understand why a Christian wouldn't pray to end suffering all the time -- it would be frustrating to be constantly rejected and rebuffed. How many times can you ask for something that you know you'll never get before you give up?

But still... what a waste to use a genie's wish for finding your car keys, even if you can rub the lamp as often as you like. It's a tough question.

My girlfriend is mad at me. Perhaps I shouldn't have tried cooking a stick in her non-stick pan.
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
06-03-2013, 12:23 PM
RE: The Greatest Possible Prayer
Some of the prayers suggested would have to add, "And Lord... please eliminate everyone's free will." When confronted by someone who says they prayed to have an abuse ended that continued, I ask, "I sympathize with your suffering, but are you suggesting that God end their free will and allow your free will to continue?" and they usually say, "You're right, the abuser is to blame for the suffering and also has the exercise of free will."
However, many of the prayers mentioned will be answered as Christ returns.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
06-03-2013, 12:25 PM
RE: The Greatest Possible Prayer
Quote:One of the sickest parts of Christianity, the belief that something sent itself here, to forgive itself for something it did to us in the first place, then to kill itself, to forgive itself for something it did to us in the first place and that never happened (Evolution trumps Adam and Eve)..............


How people in the 21st century can find this morally acceptable is ridiculous (especially in the Western world)..........
Substitutionary atonement for lost children is as "ridiculous" as me having a child and later, donating a kidney for that child. The lack of love required to call self-sacrifice "ridiculous" is why Christians are assured freethinkers are in the wrong...
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
06-03-2013, 05:46 PM
RE: The Greatest Possible Prayer
(06-03-2013 12:23 PM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  Some of the prayers suggested would have to add, "And Lord... please eliminate everyone's free will." When confronted by someone who says they prayed to have an abuse ended that continued, I ask, "I sympathize with your suffering, but are you suggesting that God end their free will and allow your free will to continue?" and they usually say, "You're right, the abuser is to blame for the suffering and also has the exercise of free will."
However, many of the prayers mentioned will be answered as Christ returns.
You believe that everyone has to have free will simply because they do. However, you seem to forget that the bible tells us about a place without free will -- Heaven. And thus, free will is not necessary.

Furthermore, you ought to remember that not all suffering is caused by people. If God put an end to natural disasters such as earthquakes and tornadoes, no one would have their free will infringed.

Also, it is important to acknowledge that to have free will, we don't have to have *every* choice available. If you wanted to respond to me, you could insult me, compliment me, agree with me, or turn me into a unicorn with the power of your mind. Obviously that last choice is impossible, which means that we don't have to be provided with every choice to have free will. You don't even have to insult me to have freedom of choice (given just the two friendly options in my example). So why are evil choices even available to us? They aren't necessary for the cause of free will (again... Heaven! Either people don't have free will there or we have an example of free will without evil choices)

Lastly, there is a lot of suffering that violates free will. Consider a woman getting raped. Obviously that happens against her will, and what you're suggesting is that God ought not to infringe on the rapists' free will, even though he would be protecting the free will of the victim. If someone's free will is going to be tread on anyways, why not the evil person's?

Your attempts to rationalize the weakness of prayer are poor. I gave an example above of a prayer that God ought to be willing to grant -- that everyone would gain salvation. It's clearly in God's will, and it doesn't violate free will (because God would know what would make it appealing to each individual person so that they'd choose it freely). And if free will really is a limiting factor to whatever God wants to accomplish, then what does God have power over? It would make him impotent.

My girlfriend is mad at me. Perhaps I shouldn't have tried cooking a stick in her non-stick pan.
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes Starcrash's post
06-03-2013, 05:51 PM
RE: The Greatest Possible Prayer
(06-03-2013 12:25 PM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  
Quote:One of the sickest parts of Christianity, the belief that something sent itself here, to forgive itself for something it did to us in the first place, then to kill itself, to forgive itself for something it did to us in the first place and that never happened (Evolution trumps Adam and Eve)..............


How people in the 21st century can find this morally acceptable is ridiculous (especially in the Western world)..........
Substitutionary atonement for lost children is as "ridiculous" as me having a child and later, donating a kidney for that child. The lack of love required to call self-sacrifice "ridiculous" is why Christians are assured freethinkers are in the wrong...

The missing part of your analogy is that, to be equivalent to the Jesus narrative, you would have to be responsible for your child losing the kidney that you're replacing. If God created everything, who do you think invented sin? Who created hell? Who is responsible for the rules about who goes to hell? Who decided that the only way to fix the problem was the murder of God's son?

My girlfriend is mad at me. Perhaps I shouldn't have tried cooking a stick in her non-stick pan.
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes Starcrash's post
08-03-2013, 06:21 AM
RE: The Greatest Possible Prayer
(06-03-2013 06:47 AM)Starcrash Wrote:  That's a tough question. That's like asking if it's immoral to eat while people are starving.

I guess it shows a lack of sympathy or compassion to use a supposedly powerful positive force for trivial things, but I can understand why a Christian wouldn't pray to end suffering all the time -- it would be frustrating to be constantly rejected and rebuffed. How many times can you ask for something that you know you'll never get before you give up?

But still... what a waste to use a genie's wish for finding your car keys, even if you can rub the lamp as often as you like. It's a tough question.
Hello. I'm sorry I hadn't replied recently.

As for your response, I had not thought of that before. Is it immoral to eat food while someone else is starving? It's an interesting point. Thank you for bringing this perspective. I've learned something new today.

I was thinking that one thing to note is that we have a limited supply of food. From what I remember, we have a shortage of food. With this, people have to compete, so to speak. But we have to make sure that the food that we eat is not wasted. Starving people do not get the privilege of eating while we do.

I was thinking about sharing food. However, I have this feeling that equal allocation to every person results to everyone coming out still hungry. Such an outcome would serve nothing, and would starve everyone instead. I fail to see how this would be a situation that people would pursue. Unfortunately, the plausible outcome is that some people eat until they no longer feel hungry while some cannot eat. If all people try to eat, everybody will be hungry and starve.

However, I thought that since prayer is technically unlimited, it is not restricted by the limitation we have encountered with the issue of food. Even a starving person would be able to pray for food if he wants to eat.

On another point, if Christians stop praying because they understand that they can't get what they are praying for, then I believe that this is a violations of the terms of prayer as laid out in the gospels. Simply asking for anything would be having it granted by god.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes Chujutsu's post
08-03-2013, 08:03 AM
RE: The Greatest Possible Prayer
Quote:You believe that everyone has to have free will simply because they do. However, you seem to forget that the bible tells us about a place without free will -- Heaven. And thus, free will is not necessary.

Furthermore, you ought to remember that not all suffering is caused by people. If God put an end to natural disasters such as earthquakes and tornadoes, no one would have their free will infringed.

Also, it is important to acknowledge that to have free will, we don't have to have *every* choice available. If you wanted to respond to me, you could insult me, compliment me, agree with me, or turn me into a unicorn with the power of your mind. Obviously that last choice is impossible, which means that we don't have to be provided with every choice to have free will. You don't even have to insult me to have freedom of choice (given just the two friendly options in my example). So why are evil choices even available to us? They aren't necessary for the cause of free will (again... Heaven! Either people don't have free will there or we have an example of free will without evil choices)

Lastly, there is a lot of suffering that violates free will. Consider a woman getting raped. Obviously that happens against her will, and what you're suggesting is that God ought not to infringe on the rapists' free will, even though he would be protecting the free will of the victim. If someone's free will is going to be tread on anyways, why not the evil person's?

Your attempts to rationalize the weakness of prayer are poor. I gave an example above of a prayer that God ought to be willing to grant -- that everyone would gain salvation. It's clearly in God's will, and it doesn't violate free will (because God would know what would make it appealing to each individual person so that they'd choose it freely). And if free will really is a limiting factor to whatever God wants to accomplish, then what does God have power over? It would make him impotent.
Free will is in Heaven. The people there will want to worship God and do right. Free will is in Hell also.

As for earthquakes and hurricanes and etc. there are many benefits to land, vegetation and etc. -- they are quite cleansing. From a naturalist's perspective, catastrophes may have influenced Evolution or Punctuated Equilibrium greatly, so I don't see them as "bad" and am not sure why you do.

You make an interesting point about evil choices. How did you define which choices are evil and which are good? I thought freethinkers don't believe in evil?

I could almost agree with you about the rapist's free will, but again, I don't understand why the rapist is more evil than the non-rapist. How are you determining this, since procreation is a natural urge?

God is certainly willing or wishing to grant all salvation. He did at the cross. Will you now receive it freely of your own will?
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
Post Reply
Forum Jump: