Posts Tagged prayer

Prayer doesn’t work, no wait yes it does

Prayer is a big conundrum.  If prayer really worked my career would be cruising along fine through these tough economic times.  My parents are continuously praying for me yet I’m still struggling to find new clients.  But yet we carry on.  Why?  Because (1) it makes us feel better and (2) we perceive results whether or not there are any results to be found.  The later works the same with fortune cookies and horoscopes as it did back with the Oracle at Delphi back in the ancient times and the writings of Nostradamus.  If something is vague, we can pull meaning out of it after the fact to match it with actual events.  In prayer we ask for something and then look at what we get and interpret that it was for the best.

But prayer works best in the way that it is presented in The Secret.  We don’t get something because God or the Universe magically gives us something we want, we get it because we are focused on it.  By praying hard on something we focus hard on that something and then we base more of our lives around achieving what we are focusing, or praying on.  So while prayer may have some magical yet unanswered cause-and-effect, it is effective in focusing people on achieving what it is they desire.

But then if praying to the zombie god is the only way, what of the billions and billions of people now and throughout history who prayed to other forms of God or their ancestors or polytheistic deities?  Why are their prayers answered?  The truth is everyone’s prayers are answered the same way.  Prayer for yourself works because it focuses you, prayer for others or things out of your control is just as likely to work as not work.  There was a study a few years ago where random people prayed for the safe outcome of other random people going through surgery.  Those getting prayed for actually had more complications than those who did not have anyone praying for them.  So praying for things out of your direct life is just a waste of time, except it isn’t because it will make you feel better.

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