The difference between hoping and praying
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08-03-2014, 03:33 PM
The difference between hoping and praying
I had a discussion with my husband yesterday (he's an atheist) as to the difference between hoping and praying. To me praying is hoping for something for which god will provide. But as a life long atheist I still hope for things, like nice weather or a better grade, etc. But I'm not sending my hope up to some deity to fulfill. However, my husband asked me if in hoping for something, exactly why am I doing it. It really isn't logical. It's somewhat akin to magical thinking. But I can't really live my life with zero hope since there are aspects of life that one doesn't have any control over even if it's mundane stuff like, gee I hope I don't break the egg yolk when I flip the egg over for sunny side up.

I feel that hope makes it easier to live through the tough and not so tough times. It's part of human nature. When people play poker there is a lot of strategy involved but a good bit of hope too. I don't think it's magical thinking because I'm not asking for a god to bring me what I hope for. My husband sorta feels it's slightly magical. Hummmm.

Shakespeare Insult 13 – Henry IV Part 1
“That trunk of humours, that bolting-hutch of beastliness, that swollen parcel of dropsies, that huge bombard of sack, that stuffed cloak-bag of guts, that reverend vice, that grey Iniquity, that father ruffian, that vanity in years?”
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08-03-2014, 03:48 PM
RE: The difference between hoping and praying
Being realistic doesn't necessarily means to be cynic. Hoping is a state of mind, a yearning for good things to come, praying is reciting words as if they were incantations that will cause some real effect in the world.

Some times hoping is wishful thinking, but it's not wrong or bad to have them, the bad things is to let those thoughts to get control over our lives as if they were absolute true. When you stop doing what you have to do in the hope that everything will just fix itself out, then that's magical thinking, or a dangerous bet. But if you just work and do what you have to do, hoping that those things that are beyond your control will work in your favour, well, that's just being a bit optimistic, and that's a good thing.

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08-03-2014, 03:53 PM
RE: The difference between hoping and praying
You can't help but hope for better things... Its perfectly rational, I would call the absence of hope irrational.

The difference is, an atheist knows that the only way to make their hopes a reality is to actively make them happen. They aren't going to just happen because you muttered some words under your breath.

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08-03-2014, 03:58 PM
RE: The difference between hoping and praying
Hope is the wanting something to naturally go a good way. Praying is wanting someone to magically shift things and make things go in the desired direction, even if that's not what should and would naturally happen.
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08-03-2014, 04:00 PM
RE: The difference between hoping and praying
My understanding is that the purpose of praying is not consistently interpreted.

I've heard christians tell that it is more a form of meditation where one 'communes' with the external, supernatural supervisor in order to gain insight into 'his' divine plan.

For my Buddhist friends, it's a chance for reflection about loved ones past and present and perhaps a little wishfulness for the future.

Some recognise that it is a means of re-establishing some focus about how they want to be.

There probably are some who pray for a lottery win or for sick people to be healed but by luck (or more probably by design) those are not the type with which I associate.

I can't speak of hope for I am hopeless.

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08-03-2014, 04:01 PM
RE: The difference between hoping and praying
Hope = When you wait for opponent to fuck up in a game of chess.
Praying = When you ask god to fuck up your opponent in a game of chess.
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08-03-2014, 04:40 PM
RE: The difference between hoping and praying
(08-03-2014 03:58 PM)CleverUsername Wrote:  Hope is the wanting something to naturally go a good way. Praying is wanting someone to magically shift things and make things go in the desired direction, even if that's not what should and would naturally happen.

Years ago when my mother had an aneurysm and was in the hospital having her brain operated on I hoped for her recovery so badly that it almost bordered on praying. It stopped just inches short of being a prayer . I simply couldn't step over the line from hope to prayer. I even went to a church, sat in the parking lot and debated whether to go inside and pray but had second thoughts, realizing that prayer was hopeless, yet I hoped for her recovery. It was a situation which I had no control over.

Shakespeare Insult 13 – Henry IV Part 1
“That trunk of humours, that bolting-hutch of beastliness, that swollen parcel of dropsies, that huge bombard of sack, that stuffed cloak-bag of guts, that reverend vice, that grey Iniquity, that father ruffian, that vanity in years?”
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09-03-2014, 05:10 AM
RE: The difference between hoping and praying
Not too much difference, IMO.

Maybe praying is more of a desperate effort?
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09-03-2014, 08:45 AM
RE: The difference between hoping and praying
Praying is a ritual, it's mandated and a crutch. Hoping is just an internal desire to see things turn out in your favor. You're telling yourself internally what will make yourself feel better, it's just a psychological soothing mechanism and perfectly normal. Big difference between helping yourself and begging some fake all-powerful deity to do what you most desire.

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09-03-2014, 09:01 AM
RE: The difference between hoping and praying
(08-03-2014 03:33 PM)dancefortwo Wrote:  However, my husband asked me if in hoping for something, exactly why am I doing it. It really isn't logical. It's somewhat akin to magical thinking.
That's stupid! your husband doesn't seem to realize the basic difference between hope and wishful thinking.

Everyone hopes for things to happen for them,unless you are total pessimist you are guaranteed to hope for something.

Wishful thinking is something which is projecting your desires and simply pretending like its true(like God&supernatural) now this is what i presume your husband is talking about praying is a part of wishful thinking being hopeful is a positive attitude towards life.

Dreams/Hallucinations/delusions are not evidence
Wishful thinking is not evidence
Disproved statements&Illogical conclusions are not evidence
Logical fallacies&Unsubstantiated claims are not evidence
Vague prophecies is not evidence
Data that requires a certain belief is not evidence
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