When (if ever) did you stop praying?
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30-11-2012, 04:20 AM
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
(30-11-2012 03:04 AM)Vera Wrote:  
(30-11-2012 03:00 AM)amav.eram Wrote:  After I had finally stopped believing...just in case...I spent a few weeks intentionally praying for God to open the skies and prove that he exists etc...I made a deal that if he didn't, then it was goodbye...then after a few weeks I told Him it had been good knowing him and that I was leaving. That was about 6 months ago, haven't prayed since then and don't see any reason to. Whenever my Christian friends and family pray, I now just see it as them trying to care and love in the way they know best.
Oh, I prayed to god to not let me lose my faith for quite some time. (I'm obviously a stubborn - and slow on the uptake - b**ch). I think that's how it turned into a meaningless compulsion. For which I thank him Laughat
"For if a son asks his father for a fish, he will not give him a stone", or some b******t like that. Thats at least what all of my Christian friends trumpeted when I lost my faith. Not believing in "sky-daddy" is the best fish a son could ever ask for.
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30-11-2012, 04:33 AM
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
(30-11-2012 04:20 AM)amav.eram Wrote:  "For if a son asks his father for a fish, he will not give him a stone", or some b******t like that. Thats at least what all of my Christian friends trumpeted when I lost my faith. Not believing in "sky-daddy" is the best fish a son could ever ask for.
If said sonny boy asks for a fish with sufficient insolence then Daddy has the mandate of heaven to send a truckload of stones his way according to Deuteronomy.
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30-11-2012, 06:16 AM
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
(29-11-2012 07:24 PM)Missbeth12891 Wrote:  This may sound odd, but when bad things happen I still find myself reaching for that old security blanket of prayer. There is a current medical situation in my husband's family. It's a 6 yo girl and it could be something deadly. I find I want to pray to calm myself and try to work things out, not really to petition a deity for help. I have only called myself an atheist for a short time, I was a theist for almost 30 years. Does this urge ever stop?


I quit at age 10 so I don't have a lot to say about it. It wasn't an addicition yet.

But - there is a physical reason for prayer. It releases endorphins in the brain. These calm you and make you feel better.

Chanting does the same, as does exercise, chocolate, spicy food, yoga and a slew of other things.

Part of your need to pray is habit, and part is physical.

That makes it a true addiction and hard to quit.

Try exercising instead, or one of the other things that release endorphins, and you will only be faced with quitting the habit. That will make it a lot easier.

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30-11-2012, 06:22 AM
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
(30-11-2012 04:20 AM)amav.eram Wrote:  "For if a son asks his father for a fish, he will not give him a stone", or some b******t like that. Thats at least what all of my Christian friends trumpeted when I lost my faith. Not believing in "sky-daddy" is the best fish a son could ever ask for.
I've been realising lately just how lucky I've been. I became religious out of my own choosing (yeah, I know, just how stupid was I?), same goes for becoming an atheist. I didn't flaunt my religion, didn't talk about my struggle with losing my faith, nor did I make a point of officially coming out as an atheist. What I'm going through is nobody's business but mine, be it religion, depression, suicidal thoughts or plain boredom.

I also come from a country (and a family) where people don't really impose stuff on you, so nobody's tried telling me my faith was weak and that's why I lost it, or some such crap (not that many would dare, I've been told I intimidate people, which is ridiculous, but also not really relevant here).

So yeah, I'm thankful I've been allowed to go through this whole process without external (and unwanted) influences.

"E se non passa la tristezza con altri occhi la guarderò."
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30-11-2012, 09:16 AM
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
I still find myself acting as though I am praying to something. I still speak mentally as though something is listening. It is Christian programming, and it is very hard to be rid of.

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30-11-2012, 09:20 AM
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
(30-11-2012 09:16 AM)Logica Humano Wrote:  I still find myself acting as though I am praying to something. I still speak mentally as though something is listening.
"You don’t understand the humiliation of it - to be tricked out of the single assumption which makes our existence viable - that somebody is watching."

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30-11-2012, 12:32 PM
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
I was raised Southern Baptist, but I never attended church on a regular basis. We only went to church for family weddings. My mother and grandmother are religious, but they feel they don't need to go to church in order to be faithful Christians. They mainly read the bible on occasion. I think my grandmother's upbringing influenced her views on church. She grew up in the boonies of Kentucky, far away from any church. Likewise, my limited exposure to church certainly influenced my own views on religion. I guess you could say I was more a deist as a child than anything else. Organized religion just seemed silly to me. The only time that I remember praying was with my mother when I was a child. We said the "Now I lay me down to sleep.." prayer every night before I went to bed. I honestly don't remember praying on my own, at least wholeheartedly, anyway. If anything, I said the aforementioned prayer out of habit. My mother eventually stopped praying with me before bedtime because I guess she figured I was getting old enough to pray on my own. I felt no need to keep it up after that point.
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30-11-2012, 12:36 PM
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
I think the last time I prayed was when I was in 9th grade.

Now instead of prayer I offer people my help, and if they want it I try to do everything to keep my word on it.

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30-11-2012, 02:49 PM
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
Thank you everyone. I'm glad to know I am not alone. Maybe someday I'll be able to give up the 'prayer talk' in my head.

The situation is not a grim as we first thought, prognosis is good for this little girl.
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01-12-2012, 06:16 PM (This post was last modified: 01-12-2012 06:24 PM by Misanthropik.)
RE: When (if ever) did you stop praying?
Wow. That's a hell of a good question.

I don't really remember when I stopped. I do remember that as my faith began to slip; praying felt like more of a chore than an action stemming from a desire to talk to God. I'd do it at random intervals throughout the day (for whatever reason), but the one time I always prayed was when I layed down in bed, pulled the covers over myself and let out that long breath of relaxation. I really can't recall an exact time when that stopped, but I know that as I began to have doubts, I made a kind of mental deal with God that I'd be putting my prayer ritual on hold. It sounds stupid looking back on it, but it was like telling a boyfriend/girlfriend that you need to take a break for a little while to clear your head; and that you'll talk to them soon. I think part of me wanted to see what life could be like without calling on God for every trouble or thanking him for every beautiful sunset. What I ultimately found was that life is a lot more relaxed without the obligation of turning to God at every turn.

Sometimes I still lay down in my bed, spread my arms out and let out that long, shrugging-off-the-day breath, and the old habit of immediately going into prayer comes to my mind. I kind of chuckle a bit, then close my eyes and drift off to sleep.

Edit: I was just answering to the title of the thread - bad habit of mine. Tongue Having read your post, though: it should end eventually, yes. Of course, that depends entirely on the person and their level of disbelief. I went through the same thing for a while; feeling the urge to call upon God, but realizing that it was likely a pointless endeavor. Every now and then, I'd give in a bit - like sneaking one cupcake while on a diet - and pray when I was really upset about something. But that's since passed entirely. I'm now in total control of things, and if something goes wrong, I face it head-on with full confidence in my OWN strength; rather than wanting to lean on God.

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