Dan Barker: Why Pray?

Why Pray?

"If the answers to prayer are merely what God wills all along, then why pray?"

- Dan Barker

Quote Source: Losing Faith in Faith: From Preacher to Atheist

Zaphod's picture
I guess people pray to good

I guess people pray to God in hopes of persuading him to will in their favor or in a way they feel would be better from their point of view. But if they believe in the idea of an all knowing God that stands outside of time, there is no point because he has heard it already or at the very least already knows how you feel and think.

Rob's picture
That is simply a placebo for

That is simply a placebo for people. You pray and you think this will actually help solve things. If there is a god you should just talk to god directly and not "pray". Prayer was invented by men, and if there is a god, it's a force way beyond our communication skills.

SammyShazaam's picture
I'm not a theist, but seeing

I'm not a theist, but seeing Rob and Zaphod's comments - I think that you guys are praying (or would be if you were theists, whatever, lol) for the wrong reasons! Most people that I know who are trying to believe do not pray to try to get things. They pray to try and *understand* things. To understand why what happened is really the will of God, what he might be trying to do with them, and how they can best meet His objectives as well as their own.

It's senseless to pray to god for things, and in my opinion anyone who would is doing a disservice to their own free will and disrespecting God. This is not Aladdin here people. There's no wishes. God is not your genie. The Bible's pretty clear on that.

If you want something done, ask Satan. That's the guy who's ready to make a deal!

Zaphod's picture
While I get your point and

While I get your point and have heard people praying for understanding I have also heard them praying to end world hunger and you other stuff like winning the lottery. Many props for pointing out only the devil grants wishes/makes deals. this reminds me of The Devil and Billy Markham one of my favorite stories by Shell Silverstien I found in an old playboy mag.

firebolt's picture
People pray for many

People pray for many different reasons and, most of the time, it's a coping mechanism that can get them through a rough time.

Zaphod's picture
Agreed Firebolt, I pretty

Agreed Firebolt, I pretty much feel the same way about religion in general and that's why I find it important for some people, though if they can cope without it it would be better.

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