What is Prayer?


‘Prayer is an invocation or act that seeks to activate a rapport with a deity, an object of worship, or a spiritual entity through deliberate communication’. (source: Wikipedia)


How does prayer differ from a spell? Well, not by much! In both cases someone mutters some words and hopes they will result in his wishes being fulfilled! As if! And neither of them reliably produces the desired outcome. The only difference is prayers always call upon a ‘supreme being’ to do their bidding whereas spells don’t.


Investigations have been performed to check the effectiveness of prayer. In hospital experiments, no convincing evidence has been found to confirm that prayer works any better than the placebo effect. In fact, one study showed a statistical correlation between patients knowing they were being prayed for and delayed recovery!


Way back in 1872, Francis Galton conducted a famous statistical experiment to determine whether prayer had a physical effect on the external environment. Galton hypothesized that if prayer was effective, members of the British Royal family would live longer, given that thousands prayed for their well-being every Sunday. He therefore compared longevity in the British Royal family with that of the general population, and found no difference.


Sadly,  20,000 children will starve to death today. 20,000 died yesterday and 20,000 will die tomorrow. Their prayers and those of their relatives will not be answered. Is god not listening (not omniscient)? Or is he unable to save them (not omnipotent)? Or is he on holiday (not omnipresent)?


Do you imagine god will listen to your prayers? Why?


Oh, you’ve heard god’s voice in your head, have you? How do you know you weren’t dreaming or drunk? If it happens regularly, maybe you should go to a Doctor about it!


Belief in prayer often goes along with belief in the existence of ‘souls’ and/or ‘spirits’ which live in the ‘hereafter’ and can be contacted by ‘séances’. None of this has ever been supported by evidence. In fact, you can win a million dollars if you can provide such evidence! Just contact the James Randi Educational Foundation.


Instead of praying, Scientists prefer to take action


To those who say that not everything can be explained by logic, I say, “‘Logic’ is just the name for the thought process of deductive reasoning. How desperate do you have to be in defending your religion to require the abandonment of thinking?

That’s an argument of last resort.

REMEMBER: Scientific Facts are based on evidence. Remind me, what are Religious Beliefs based on?

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