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The contradiction of prayer

Double_R
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11/28/2013 12:53:23 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Why do you pray?

God gave us free will, which is always the excuse when horrible things happen. So how can you simultaneously believe that God will interfere on your behalf because you ask him to, while using the fact that he does not interfere as the excuse for why horrible things happen?

Also, when you pray, and your prayer does not come true as you asked it, why do you accept that God must of answered your prayer in prayer in some other way? Is this not just a clear case of confirmation bias? On the other hand, if you aren't one to claim that "God works in mysterious ways" and accept that your prayer was just unanswered then doesn't that tell you that prayer doesn't work?
21st_Century_Occultist
Posts: 65
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11/29/2013 6:55:25 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/28/2013 12:53:23 PM, Double_R wrote:
Why do you pray?

God gave us free will, which is always the excuse when horrible things happen. So how can you simultaneously believe that God will interfere on your behalf because you ask him to, while using the fact that he does not interfere as the excuse for why horrible things happen?

Also, when you pray, and your prayer does not come true as you asked it, why do you accept that God must of answered your prayer in prayer in some other way? Is this not just a clear case of confirmation bias? On the other hand, if you aren't one to claim that "God works in mysterious ways" and accept that your prayer was just unanswered then doesn't that tell you that prayer doesn't work?

I don't see the contradiction... If we have free will, why would prayer contradict that? We are free to pray and God is free to interfere as he feels necessary. Most people who believe this way would not claim that God does not interfere, they are more likely to believe God is constantly getting his hands in everything, waging a spiritual war and all. Also, it seems that if a prayer is answered in a way that you did not ask, and you accept this actually happened, it logically follows that God decided to answer the prayer in His own way. Something as beyond the human mind as a deity is, by definition, something that works in "mysterious" ways.
The Method of Science, the Aim of Religion
Double_R
Posts: 4,886
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11/29/2013 10:01:44 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/29/2013 6:55:25 PM, 21st_Century_Occultist wrote:
At 11/28/2013 12:53:23 PM, Double_R wrote:
Why do you pray?

God gave us free will, which is always the excuse when horrible things happen. So how can you simultaneously believe that God will interfere on your behalf because you ask him to, while using the fact that he does not interfere as the excuse for why horrible things happen?

Also, when you pray, and your prayer does not come true as you asked it, why do you accept that God must of answered your prayer in prayer in some other way? Is this not just a clear case of confirmation bias? On the other hand, if you aren't one to claim that "God works in mysterious ways" and accept that your prayer was just unanswered then doesn't that tell you that prayer doesn't work?

I don't see the contradiction... If we have free will, why would prayer contradict that? We are free to pray and God is free to interfere as he feels necessary. Most people who believe this way would not claim that God does not interfere, they are more likely to believe God is constantly getting his hands in everything, waging a spiritual war and all.

You either believe God interferes in the world or you do not.

If you believe he does not, then prayer is pointless.

If you believe he does, then you have taken away the only rational excuse for why an all good, all powerful God allows horrible things to happen.

You state that the latter does not contradict prayer itself, which is true. Yet I have never heard anyone religious enough to pray make the argument that God is either not all Good or not all powerful. If that is your position or anyone else's, then I wonder exactly what God you think you are praying to and why you would bother in the first place.

Also, it seems that if a prayer is answered in a way that you did not ask, and you accept this actually happened, it logically follows that God decided to answer the prayer in His own way. Something as beyond the human mind as a deity is, by definition, something that works in "mysterious" ways.

It logically follows because you changed the question. I didn't say that the prayer was *answered* in some other way, I said if did not come true as it was asked. Whether some element of the prayer coming true counts as an answered prayer is the point.

And no, it doesn't count. That is no different then me believing a fortune cookie telling me "you will succeed". Succeed at what? When? How? So if I win at a game of poker next week did my fortune cookie prediction come true?

The problem is that if we are to accept such a broad standard then a proposition can never be proven true or false, so it is entirely useless to impose one.
000ike
Posts: 11,196
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11/29/2013 10:06:54 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/29/2013 5:17:34 PM, Double_R wrote:
I guess no one here prays.

or prayer really doesn't serve any rational function, and many christian adherents understanding this, but rather than abandoning the practice, reject the finality of reason itself.

It amazes me sometimes how people will try to mask contradictory and utterly insensate rubbish with weak logical musings and florid theological vocabulary. Rest assured, there's some such inglorious bullsh!t out there to justify the act of prayer and people will use it, and your questioning will lead you no where.
"A stupid despot may constrain his slaves with iron chains; but a true politician binds them even more strongly with the chain of their own ideas" - Michel Foucault
Composer
Posts: 5,858
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11/29/2013 10:09:23 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/28/2013 12:53:23 PM, Double_R wrote:
Why do you pray?

God gave us free will, . . . .
1. Which Supernatural god(s) are you inferring literally exist?

2. Your evidence for ANY Supernatural god is where?

3. My question to those claiming to be a believers is: "Why then do you all Freely choose to remain malignant sinners? ".
Double_R
Posts: 4,886
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11/29/2013 10:17:51 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/29/2013 10:06:54 PM, 000ike wrote:
At 11/29/2013 5:17:34 PM, Double_R wrote:
I guess no one here prays.

or prayer really doesn't serve any rational function, and many christian adherents understanding this, but rather than abandoning the practice, reject the finality of reason itself.

It amazes me sometimes how people will try to mask contradictory and utterly insensate rubbish with weak logical musings and florid theological vocabulary. Rest assured, there's some such inglorious bullsh!t out there to justify the act of prayer and people will use it, and your questioning will lead you no where.

It's really not my intent to find some enlightening answer to the question, as I don't expect one. I expect the bullsh!t to come my way, the practice of examining it and articulating why I find it to be pure bullsh!t strengthens my understanding of the issue and confidence in what I believe.

Unless of course I can't find the error, in which case I may just realize that I am the fool here. Then it would definitely be worth it.
Double_R
Posts: 4,886
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11/29/2013 10:20:40 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/29/2013 10:09:23 PM, Composer wrote:
At 11/28/2013 12:53:23 PM, Double_R wrote:
Why do you pray?

God gave us free will, . . . .
1. Which Supernatural god(s) are you inferring literally exist?

I'm not. I'll leave that to those who think they are praying to one.

2. Your evidence for ANY Supernatural god is where?

I never said I had any.
21st_Century_Occultist
Posts: 65
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11/29/2013 10:38:18 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
If you're looking for propositions that can be proven true or false you're probably in the wrong section... Hahaha
The Method of Science, the Aim of Religion
Idealist
Posts: 2,520
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11/29/2013 11:43:58 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/28/2013 12:53:23 PM, Double_R wrote:
Why do you pray?

God gave us free will, which is always the excuse when horrible things happen. So how can you simultaneously believe that God will interfere on your behalf because you ask him to, while using the fact that he does not interfere as the excuse for why horrible things happen?

Okay . . . your flesh-and-blood father can give you the space to be your own man, yet be there when you need his help, advice, or simply someone to talk to. It's not too hard to imagine that if God is "up there" then he might be capable of the same? No offense. I really like reading discussions about God vs. science and all that, because my mind is open and I'm really trying to understand people's perspectives, but this one sounds designed just to start another debate using the same meaningless arguments? In order to have a rational discussion it has to begin with a meaningful and respectful question, don't you think?

Also, when you pray, and your prayer does not come true as you asked it, why do you accept that God must of answered your prayer in prayer in some other way? Is this not just a clear case of confirmation bias? On the other hand, if you aren't one to claim that "God works in mysterious ways" and accept that your prayer was just unanswered then doesn't that tell you that prayer doesn't work?

Two armies meet on the battlefield. Both sides pray to God for victory. There is no way God can help both sides win. I like the question asked in the movie "Troy," when the king's son asked the holy man: "How many battalions do the gods command?" It's obvious that there is no God we can pray to for personal gain or material things, anymore than there's a Santa Claus that flies around the world on Christmas Eve. Even those who who are devoted to religion mostly realize that it's more about giving than receiving. I liked the part of your question where you said "if you aren't one to claim that "God works in mysterious ways"", but I think it would have been a lot better if you had finished the thought with something deeper, like asking why someone might believe in certain characteristics of God. People could build on that. Just my two cents. :)
Idealist
Posts: 2,520
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11/29/2013 11:51:35 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/29/2013 10:01:44 PM, Double_R wrote:
At 11/29/2013 6:55:25 PM, 21st_Century_Occultist wrote:
At 11/28/2013 12:53:23 PM, Double_R wrote:
Why do you pray?

God gave us free will, which is always the excuse when horrible things happen. So how can you simultaneously believe that God will interfere on your behalf because you ask him to, while using the fact that he does not interfere as the excuse for why horrible things happen?

Also, when you pray, and your prayer does not come true as you asked it, why do you accept that God must of answered your prayer in prayer in some other way? Is this not just a clear case of confirmation bias? On the other hand, if you aren't one to claim that "God works in mysterious ways" and accept that your prayer was just unanswered then doesn't that tell you that prayer doesn't work?

I don't see the contradiction... If we have free will, why would prayer contradict that? We are free to pray and God is free to interfere as he feels necessary. Most people who believe this way would not claim that God does not interfere, they are more likely to believe God is constantly getting his hands in everything, waging a spiritual war and all.

You either believe God interferes in the world or you do not.

If you believe he does not, then prayer is pointless.

A person doesn't need to believe that their God will act in the way that they specifically requested. i can't tell you how many times my parents told me no. Good parents think more of what their child needs than what he/she wants. I'm not saying that's the case here, but it's still pretty easy to imagine.

If you believe he does, then you have taken away the only rational excuse for why an all good, all powerful God allows horrible things to happen.

An all-good, all-powerful being could allow a terrible thing to happen because he knows that the ultimate result will be something very good or important. If the religion story is true then this life would mean very little compared to how it affects the next one. Again, just a logical reason why a God might make a choice which you or I find mysterious.

You state that the latter does not contradict prayer itself, which is true. Yet I have never heard anyone religious enough to pray make the argument that God is either not all Good or not all powerful. If that is your position or anyone else's, then I wonder exactly what God you think you are praying to and why you would bother in the first place.

Also, it seems that if a prayer is answered in a way that you did not ask, and you accept this actually happened, it logically follows that God decided to answer the prayer in His own way. Something as beyond the human mind as a deity is, by definition, something that works in "mysterious" ways.

It logically follows because you changed the question. I didn't say that the prayer was *answered* in some other way, I said if did not come true as it was asked. Whether some element of the prayer coming true counts as an answered prayer is the point.

And no, it doesn't count. That is no different then me believing a fortune cookie telling me "you will succeed". Succeed at what? When? How? So if I win at a game of poker next week did my fortune cookie prediction come true?

The problem is that if we are to accept such a broad standard then a proposition can never be proven true or false, so it is entirely useless to impose one.
Kassandra
Posts: 47
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11/30/2013 7:05:21 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/28/2013 12:53:23 PM, Double_R wrote:
Why do you pray?

God gave us free will, which is always the excuse when horrible things happen. So how can you simultaneously believe that God will interfere on your behalf because you ask him to, while using the fact that he does not interfere as the excuse for why horrible things happen?

Also, when you pray, and your prayer does not come true as you asked it, why do you accept that God must of answered your prayer in prayer in some other way? Is this not just a clear case of confirmation bias? On the other hand, if you aren't one to claim that "God works in mysterious ways" and accept that your prayer was just unanswered then doesn't that tell you that prayer doesn't work?

Here's how this works: One decides one wants something very much, but has been unable (up to now) to accomplish this thing on their own. Let's say, stop smoking, for example. Let's say that one is a believer, but has "fallen away" --as evidenced by the smoking (defiling the temple and all). So the party in question goes down on their knees and begs God for forgiveness and prays to be relieved of their addiction. Often this is done with a group from one's church. So everyone prays very hard for the victim of addiction, and the victim prays very hard for herself and voila! A miracle! They are able to stop smoking! Clearly, it was God who worked this miracle through the power of prayer.

Okay? What's not to like about this scenario?

I had a friend of 15 years who was a smoker and an alcoholic--propabably since childhood. She decided to get clean & sober and this is how (she claims), she accomplished this feat. Okay, this is how "God healed her of her addictions." Then I got the full testimony--page after page of how I met the Lord, how I fell away, how I came back, etc. Ad nauseum. My (former) friend knows I am (at best) an agnostic, but felt it was her Christian duty to hose me with this claptrap. I said I was glad for her that she is on the road to health, but that I do not share her beliefs as to how this was accomplised--or her beliefs in general on religion/god. So, now she is a fulltime religionist and is sorry but she cannot be bothered with a non-believer. "have a nice day!"

This sort of thing happens frequently. If you don't belong to the club, you don't have the secret decoder ring and we therefore cannot be friends, but we'll pray for you that you will one day see the light!

Get how this workz?
Kassandra
Installgentoo
Posts: 1,420
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11/30/2013 7:16:31 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/28/2013 12:53:23 PM, Double_R wrote:
Why do you pray?

Divine providence

God gave us free will, which is always the excuse when horrible things happen.

Not an excuse :^) you need to go through pain sometimes to turn your life around, you retard.

So how can you simultaneously believe that God will interfere on your behalf because you ask him to, while using the fact that he does not interfere as the excuse for why horrible things happen?

See above answers.

Also, when you pray, and your prayer does not come true as you asked it, why do you accept that God must of answered your prayer in prayer in some other way? Is this not just a clear case of confirmation bias? On the other hand, if you aren't one to claim that "God works in mysterious ways" and accept that your prayer was just unanswered then doesn't that tell you that prayer doesn't work?

WHY DO ATHEISTS ALL HAVE AUTISM IF YOU'RE BLESSED BY NOT BELIEVING IN GOD?! :( http://www.psychologytoday.com....
bulproof
Posts: 25,308
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11/30/2013 7:19:01 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/30/2013 7:05:21 AM, Kassandra wrote:
At 11/28/2013 12:53:23 PM, Double_R wrote:
Why do you pray?

God gave us free will, which is always the excuse when horrible things happen. So how can you simultaneously believe that God will interfere on your behalf because you ask him to, while using the fact that he does not interfere as the excuse for why horrible things happen?

Also, when you pray, and your prayer does not come true as you asked it, why do you accept that God must of answered your prayer in prayer in some other way? Is this not just a clear case of confirmation bias? On the other hand, if you aren't one to claim that "God works in mysterious ways" and accept that your prayer was just unanswered then doesn't that tell you that prayer doesn't work?


Here's how this works: One decides one wants something very much, but has been unable (up to now) to accomplish this thing on their own. Let's say, stop smoking, for example. Let's say that one is a believer, but has "fallen away" --as evidenced by the smoking (defiling the temple and all). So the party in question goes down on their knees and begs God for forgiveness and prays to be relieved of their addiction. Often this is done with a group from one's church. So everyone prays very hard for the victim of addiction, and the victim prays very hard for herself and voila! A miracle! They are able to stop smoking! Clearly, it was God who worked this miracle through the power of prayer.

Okay? What's not to like about this scenario?

I had a friend of 15 years who was a smoker and an alcoholic--propabably since childhood. She decided to get clean & sober and this is how (she claims), she accomplished this feat. Okay, this is how "God healed her of her addictions." Then I got the full testimony--page after page of how I met the Lord, how I fell away, how I came back, etc. Ad nauseum. My (former) friend knows I am (at best) an agnostic, but felt it was her Christian duty to hose me with this claptrap. I said I was glad for her that she is on the road to health, but that I do not share her beliefs as to how this was accomplised--or her beliefs in general on religion/god. So, now she is a fulltime religionist and is sorry but she cannot be bothered with a non-believer. "have a nice day!"

This sort of thing happens frequently. If you don't belong to the club, you don't have the secret decoder ring and we therefore cannot be friends, but we'll pray for you that you will one day see the light!

Get how this workz?
Has anybody ever heard of a politician who asked god for forgiveness and stopped lying as a result?

Now that would be a MIRACLE.
Double_R
Posts: 4,886
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12/2/2013 4:03:44 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/30/2013 7:16:31 AM, Installgentoo wrote:
At 11/28/2013 12:53:23 PM, Double_R wrote:
God gave us free will, which is always the excuse when horrible things happen.

Not an excuse :^) you need to go through pain sometimes to turn your life around, you retard.

And how are the children from Sandy Hook benefiting?

Also, when you pray, and your prayer does not come true as you asked it, why do you accept that God must of answered your prayer in prayer in some other way? Is this not just a clear case of confirmation bias? On the other hand, if you aren't one to claim that "God works in mysterious ways" and accept that your prayer was just unanswered then doesn't that tell you that prayer doesn't work?

WHY DO ATHEISTS ALL HAVE AUTISM IF YOU'RE BLESSED BY NOT BELIEVING IN GOD?! :( http://www.psychologytoday.com....

That was quite possibly one of the dumbest questions I have ever been asked. How does someone believe they are blessed by anything if they do not believe in God?
bulproof
Posts: 25,308
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12/2/2013 5:23:30 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/30/2013 7:16:31 AM, Installgentoo wrote:
At 11/28/2013 12:53:23 PM, Double_R wrote:
Why do you pray?

Divine providence
What does manna from heaven taste like? lmfao