When (if ever) did you stop praying?
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15-12-2013, 03:41 AM
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
It helps me to remember why I prayed in the first place. I wanted comfort, hope, and security. Prayer calmed me, and made me feel as though everything would be alright.

In many ways prayer was a substitute for a loving parent who was always there to comfort me in times of pain and sorrow.

These needs do not die simply because I realized that there is in fact no one listening to me. Does that even really matter given the purpose of the prayer to begin with? If I truly believed in a intervening, benevolent, all knowing god, wouldn't he have already acted on my behalf? If he had not already, for what was I praying?

I think I knew deep down that it didn't matter if I was heard or not. I wanted the comfort of the ritual. That was the most important part.

In my new life as an Atheist, I still fulfill this fundamental needs in myself. First I seek out my wife's embrace for comfort and love. If I cannot do that, I fall back on quiet meditation, and the reading of a good book. Comfort is to be found in many places, and I need not search out mythical beings to find peace anymore.

Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, just as it is the spirit of a spiritless situation. The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness.

-Karl Marx
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22-12-2013, 09:57 AM
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
(07-12-2013 12:40 AM)thedudette Wrote:  I stopped praying when I turned 13... 2 years ago now O.o
The difficult part was removing a cross from my bedroom though. That was, in my mind, me telling myself that I was officially done.

Congrats on removing the cross. I haven't even left the church service ministry message group, but I think I'll do it now. So thanks, your post got me thinking about that. Thumbsup

Music is my religion
- Jimi Hendrix
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22-12-2013, 10:00 AM
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
My praying slowly 'subsided', then my faith. So I guess by the time I realised I was an atheist, I already said extremely short prayers, so I just stopped.

Music is my religion
- Jimi Hendrix
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04-05-2014, 09:57 AM
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
I prayed for years after leaving the church, usually when I was very stressed or worried about something, or when I was treating a patient who had little chance of recovery. I still read medical texts and journals, treated using medicine, and consulted colleagues, but I would add in prayer as a bonus. I think the last time I prayed was on 9/11, and it did zilch, nada, zero to make me feel better about 9/11. Still, I didn't officially stop believing in god until this year. Instead, I called myself 'not religious' or 'Christian but not religious'.

Confession: Though I haven't been deeply religious since I was a little girl, and have never been one to have bibles and other religious texts or knick knacks around the house, I have one religious item. This is a little wooden plaque with a photo of a young sailor in stormy seas pasted to it and shellacked. Jesus is standing over his shoulder pointing the way and helping to guide the ship. I made it in Vacation Bible School one summer, and I found it very comforting as a child. I have no idea why I kept it, but it was something I took with me to college, and again when I moved into my first home. It hangs on my bathroom wall, and I have no intention of removing it. I like it even though the thought of an invisible sky man having any influence over a ship in stormy seas if ludicrous to me, I still like looking at it.
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04-05-2014, 10:35 AM
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
A lot of people not only said they would pray for me but also that I should pray when I was diagnosed with cancer. I didn't care if they prayed for me...it really didn't matter one way or another. I knew that they didn't know what else to do. But it didn't enter my mind to pray. It certainly didn't do me any good when I was a kid and praying with full belief, I sure didn't figure it was going to help then. And the idea of praying to an entity for help/strength when that same entity is the one that made me sick was a maddening concept. It has a master/slave feel to it.

The theist argument that you will turn to god if you are ever faced with something awful makes me angrier than a lot of the other arguments. Inner strength and trust in my medical team made a lot more sense to me that offering up words to the sky.

I’m not anti-social. I’m pro-solitude. ~Author Unknown
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05-05-2014, 11:15 AM (This post was last modified: 05-05-2014 11:20 AM by BlackMason.)
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
Well my story will link up to what I may post in the deconversion thread more or less. Anyway I just remember being furious. I was broken. I was beaten and my world was falling apart around me. I was losing...no I had lost the love of my life. The way I prayed... goddamn I prayed! How the hell was this happening to me? I asked god to speak to me, guide me, console me. I asked god to honour my efforts to serve him by reaching 23 and still being a virgin. I remeber just laying in bed and crying the night before I had a test. I flunked hard!! God's silence mocked me. God's silence was choking me. God's silence was perfect and showed no signs of letting up.

Then after I heard about the writings of Zacharia Sitchin (which is all crap by the way) I just stopped. I was in rebellion to god. I literally stopped on a hair pin, that's how angry I was.

Praying before meals didn't even pose an issue for me. When I did start muttering words before I dug in I'd immediately cease and desist. It was full rebellion. I felt I was going to repay gods unyielding silence to my petitions with silence of my own.

8000 years before Jesus, the Egyptian god Horus said, "I am the way, the truth, the life."
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06-05-2014, 09:06 AM
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
I stopped praying long before I realized I was an athiest. I do not know specifically when it happened.
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10-05-2014, 06:58 PM
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
I was a good christian wife, loved my husband so much, and gave him 2 amazing children. All the while, my husband was a horribly abusive....using the bible only to demand unquestionable obedience....from me.

I begged and sobbed to god for protection, and to help him change. This went on for years, and only changed when I took the kids, and became my own hero. It still took me a while to fully realize, that had it been up to god, the kids and I would've been 6 feet under. I clung to the ridiculous religion and prayer for a long time after that. Undecided

So, I finally stopped praying when I realized that I was the one who actually answered my prayers, not god. His eye might have been on the sparrow, but he fucking ignored me.

It's easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled. ~Mark Twain
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10-05-2014, 08:02 PM
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
(10-05-2014 06:58 PM)CindysRain Wrote:  I was a good christian wife, loved my husband so much, and gave him 2 amazing children. All the while, my husband was a horribly abusive....using the bible only to demand unquestionable obedience....from me.

I begged and sobbed to god for protection, and to help him change. This went on for years, and only changed when I took the kids, and became my own hero. It still took me a while to fully realize, that had it been up to god, the kids and I would've been 6 feet under. I clung to the ridiculous religion and prayer for a long time after that. Undecided

So, I finally stopped praying when I realized that I was the one who actually answered my prayers, not god. His eye might have been on the sparrow, but he fucking ignored me.

Thats what religion does. It sits with a smile with a knife behind its back.

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