On the subject of prayer: this is addressed to the more atheistic or agnostic ones amongst us.
Now, all those years I prayed really hard when times were tough, and then things worked out. I now believe it was my own hard work that gave the solutions. Prayer was helpful in that I felt I had help. But looking back, it was me that did it.
And I/we still all have the same strength--maybe more--that when we attributed it to supernatural help. It was us all along.
That's liberating, don't you think?
Yes, I think it is very liberating. When we draw on our own inner resources, we usually solve our own problems, and I think the process makes us stronger in solving our problems in the future.
Patio-as you say this question is not directed at me because
I believe in Jesus. But I've been following you around the
board tonight[seems like we are the only two up] so I will
add my two cents. I do not think its liberating because we
all feel at some point in our life we need help. Look at
Simons wonderful broad is it not help for some or all?
Has it not answered many prayers? I think it to be more
liberating that HE is there and willing to help you. If you
choose to ask HIM. HE does not twist your arm to ask HIM
it is your FREE choice to do so or not. That I find liberating
Peace and Love-Goodnight-Mark
Why don't you stay out of this one. Patio asked for responses from particular people. If you want to prove your ideology, please do it on another thread or start your own.
I did not pray, and I found Simon's site, so your poetic words prove nothing.
It is after 2:00 A.M. where I live, and I am pondering that very question as I type these words.
It is liberating once we realize that it's our own hard work,and focus that helps find solutions! So many think it's divine intervention when it's simply working on a solution. We do have many strengths,and too often give little credit to them.
Excellent topic,thanks! regards,Tina
Prayer was helpful in that I felt I had help. But looking back, it was me that did it.
I think prayers seeking favor, permission, forgiving, etc., helps people who don't realize their full potential. Religion has a history of keeping people on their knees, and in need of the higher power of the church, and then to God. When that barrier is crossed, we can become moral, forgiving, etc., for reasons other than a higher power frying people in hell because they didn't kiss up to the church.
Okay, joke time; Epitaph on atheist tombstone reads:
Here lays JAVA
All dressed up
And nowhere to go
--JAVA...counting time at the Coffee Shop
This quetion reminds me of the old addage, "God helps those who help themselves". To me at one time it was kind of a copout to give credit to an invisible hand when I was out working my boney butt off to succeed and when it came, a fundy would talk about me being "blessed".
It's been many years and many "cause and effect" experiances and many totally unexplainable events that have forced this skeptic to accept that metaphysical reality is lurking in the background and interceeds in ways that defies left brain rationality. The mysteries of live, anecdotal as as they are, force each of us to weigh the events and make up our own minds. Events in my life have no meaning for how you sort out your definition of what is "real". Being open to connecting the dots in different patterns, though, will provide some amazing spice in your life.
Great thread. OBTW, I responded since I spent nearly 18 years defining myself as agnostic.
Loved that post! There is little I feel that I can add to it. I used to believe so deeply in
divine intervention...I'm still not willing to rule it out entirely but I do know, just as
you said, that it was up to me to take action to change the things in my life that really
needed to be changed.
Reminds me of one of Dr. Phil's life laws, "Life rewards Action." You've got to be doing
something to get results. Same sentiment as God helping those who help themselves.
I don't know, still, exactly what I believe...I don't know if God is out there or if it's just some
universal law of Karma or something like that...I'm still investigating. But I do believe that
I have been very blessed in my life, and am grateful for whatever reason those blessings
Sometimes I doubt that my husband can be entirely human. I keep teasing him that he
must be hiding his wings and halo somewhere. That's about as spiritual as I get :)
I just don't know. I guess that makes me an agnostic eh?
I find myself "praying" sometimes, very rarely. Mostly to wish good things for people who are
struggling. I think that it helps, even if only because people know that another human is
aware of their struggles when you tell them "I'll pray for you."
They know that someone is with them, even if not a divine personage.
Am I making any sense at all? I'll stop talking now :)