Why Prayers Aren't Answered
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15-05-2017, 12:10 PM
Why Prayers Aren't Answered
There's no one to answer them is the standard answer, but some dude on his knees beseeching his deity to make sure his team wins the soccer match isn't going buy that answer. So look at it from a different perspective:

Imagine that you are a superb architect, that a project like the Taj Mahal is something you could have all planned down to the last section of plumbing and last square of tile in an easy weekend. As site supervisor you'd have the building finished in a few months, defect free, at two thirds the allotted budget, and four thirds the planned degree of quality, finish and detail. Engineering something like the Golden Gate Bridge scaled up to span the Bering Strait would roll up off your drafting table without cracking a reference table or shaking dust off your calculator.

Yet the only thing anyone ever asks you do is patch a hole in sheetrock with spackle, or drive an auxiliary nail into a loose fence board.

How much of that kind of mundane drudgery would you waste your talent taking on?

With rare exceptions prayer asks for the trivialest of trifles, somebody's bone marrow cancer put into remission, someone else's midterm paper graded higher than a C+ - nothing that could ever be confused with being, say, miraculous. Why indeed would some deity able to relocate Mars to a more posh neighborhood in another galaxy, after designing said galaxy, waste its time redirecting a $5000 lottery win from Mr. B to Mr. J?

It'd be bored out of its mind. It wouldn't just not bother to answer such a prayer, it'd never even acknowledge that a request was even made.
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15-05-2017, 12:15 PM
RE: Why Prayers Aren't Answered
(15-05-2017 12:10 PM)Airportkid Wrote:  There's no one to answer them is the standard answer, but some dude on his knees beseeching his deity to make sure his team wins the soccer match isn't going buy that answer. So look at it from a different perspective:

Imagine that you are a superb architect, that a project like the Taj Mahal is something you could have all planned down to the last section of plumbing and last square of tile in an easy weekend. As site supervisor you'd have the building finished in a few months, defect free, at two thirds the allotted budget, and four thirds the planned degree of quality, finish and detail. Engineering something like the Golden Gate Bridge scaled up to span the Bering Strait would roll up off your drafting table without cracking a reference table or shaking dust off your calculator.

Yet the only thing anyone ever asks you do is patch a hole in sheetrock with spackle, or drive an auxiliary nail into a loose fence board.

How much of that kind of mundane drudgery would you waste your talent taking on?

With rare exceptions prayer asks for the trivialest of trifles, somebody's bone marrow cancer put into remission, someone else's midterm paper graded higher than a C+ - nothing that could ever be confused with being, say, miraculous. Why indeed would some deity able to relocate Mars to a more posh neighborhood in another galaxy, after designing said galaxy, waste its time redirecting a $5000 lottery win from Mr. B to Mr. J?

It'd be bored out of its mind. It wouldn't just not bother to answer such a prayer, it'd never even acknowledge that a request was even made.
I don't care if some guy on his knees doesn't buy, that "standard answer" is the best one we have. Yours is rather convoluted.
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15-05-2017, 12:39 PM
RE: Why Prayers Aren't Answered
(15-05-2017 12:10 PM)Airportkid Wrote:  With rare exceptions prayer asks for the trivialest of trifles, somebody's bone marrow cancer put into remission, someone else's midterm paper graded higher than a C+ - nothing that could ever be confused with being, say, miraculous. Why indeed would some deity able to relocate Mars to a more posh neighborhood in another galaxy, after designing said galaxy, waste its time redirecting a $5000 lottery win from Mr. B to Mr. J?

It'd be bored out of its mind. It wouldn't just not bother to answer such a prayer, it'd never even acknowledge that a request was even made.
Not much of an argument for someone with bone marrow cancer. They are begging the deity for something that's gigantic and represents everything to the petitioner. And they're doing it because the scriptures unambiguously and lavishly invite them to do so, and promise that anyone with just a bit of faith and a good heart can expect their needs to be granted.

Of course people don't ask for all the stars to be redone in mauve or for the plans to an antigravity generator, when they can't get god to find their frigging car keys or save their loved ones from painful deaths, despite promising in multiple ways to do so. No, they hoard their chips because they know that "answered prayer" is capricious at best, full of caveats and exceptions, and they are probably unworthy of being prosperous and happy. So they wait until the wife or child is dying horribly in searing pain to even ask.

Stepping back to a generic level, away from the specifics of the Bible, sure, the notion that any god would care individually or even corporately about a particular species on a particular planet and would want to be bothered incessantly by billions of highly insignificant beings asking for highly insignificant things, seems like a rather impertinent, entitled thing to expect. But the Abrahamic faiths have always held out the possibility of divine largesse as part of their value proposition, and made claims for their deity's benevolence and lovingkindness that suggest that such requests are welcome and easily dealt with.
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15-05-2017, 01:06 PM
RE: Why Prayers Aren't Answered
Actually my "standard" answer to someone praying (who clearly believes in god) would be:

Don't you think that if "your" god exists it would already know what you need and when you'll need it?

A friend in the hole

"If we're going to be damned, let's be damned for what we really are." - Captain Picard
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15-05-2017, 01:49 PM
RE: Why Prayers Aren't Answered
To those people, everything is an answer.

If it happens, it was god blessing them. If it doesn't happen, god is testing them/god knows what's best/insert other bullshit.
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15-05-2017, 03:06 PM
RE: Why Prayers Aren't Answered
(15-05-2017 01:49 PM)ResidentEvilFan Wrote:  To those people, everything is an answer.

If it happens, it was god blessing them. If it doesn't happen, god is testing them/god knows what's best/insert other bullshit.

Yep, and the results exactly equal random chance, because that's what they are.
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15-05-2017, 03:08 PM (This post was last modified: 15-05-2017 05:40 PM by Rachel.)
Why Prayers Aren't Answered
(15-05-2017 12:10 PM)Airportkid Wrote:  It'd be bored out of its mind. It wouldn't just not bother to answer such a prayer, it'd never even acknowledge that a request was even made.

Uh huh. Very convincing. How would you distinguish a non-answer from non-existence from a non-answer from some fatuous claim like it was bored? If you have no way to detect this conjectural supernatural being, how would you know it was bored? Is boredom something this deity is capable of experiencing? How would you know?
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15-05-2017, 05:03 PM
RE: Why Prayers Aren't Answered
OBVIOUSLY you're praying to the wrong deity.

The Flying Spaghetti Monster has far fewer unanswered prayers per day than Yahweh.

"If I ignore the alternatives, the only option is God; I ignore them; therefore God." -- The Syllogism of Fail
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16-05-2017, 04:41 AM
RE: Why Prayers Aren't Answered
Prayers aren't answered, because god(s) don't exist.

On a similar topic, using logic, how to people think Prayers even work? Like if you talk/think whatever you are saying, surely the deity of choice could hear you no matter what position you physically strike before saying it? Like why sit on your knees/close your eyes/hands together at all? I don't really understand the thought process behind it. "the only way to talk to my god is kneeling with my hand clasped together, what about you?" "Well my god requires one eye open, balancing on one leg whilst having my mouth wide open and thinking about my prayer", It's exactly the same. It suggests we all telepathically transmit our thoughts/speech into outer space or something like that, mind boggling.

"I don't do magic, Morty, I do science. One takes brains, the other takes dark eye liner" - Rick
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16-05-2017, 04:47 AM
RE: Why Prayers Aren't Answered
I was once banned from a website for arguing this point so I'll just keep this straightforward. No honest person would say the NT, or Christian belief in general, says God will answer any prayer of petition. It's a special kind of stupid in the strawman game.
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