Prayers ,are they answered ? or is it just self delusion ?
After 33 years as a JW and leaving 25 years ago I think prayer can be summed up with the Jews praying at the Wailing wall.
All they are doing is talking to a brick wall ,and getting no feed back
And they expect an answer to their prayers ?!
Christians /other beliefs might find that funny but they are no better off.
Prayer is always a one way street you talk either vocally or mentally to GOD however you never get the same back .
If GOD " so loved the world that he doesnt want any to be destroyed but have everlasting life " then whats the problem with him audibly answering his servants prayers ? He supposedly spoke to humans centuries ago so whats his problem now ?
Talking to a wall, who are you kidding Smiddy?
Jehovah always answers each and every prayer, but he consults Santa Claus and the tooth fairy first.
Good question...For some reason, I think talking to ones self helps relieve stress and improves a persons mood.
When you think your talking to God, you believe someone is listening to you and does care and loves you. It gives you more meaning that your talking to god not just yourself.
If its real that god is listening or not I do not know.
I really like this question. I started to question my prayers when I started to realize cartoons weren't real. When I gave up being a Jehovah Witness I found out I wanted to be spiritual but not religious. I was agnostic for awhile because I craved for something I don't think I ever felt until recently. I meditate now but I don't ask for Jehovah Jesus or a creator to help me or answer questions. I just feel myself as a part of the universe and try to find inner peace and try to do right to others. I think prayer can be a way to reflect on really anything. Like a loved ones heirloom or the smell of someones perfume that lingers on a blanket. You just close your eyes, remember, question and answer yourself. Those memories would be good I would think. If we were made in God's image we can focus on so many different aspects, and I think we can focus on anything we want. We can temper the best us, seek solitude in an opinion or favorite text and isolate it. Making it a personal mantra, or find resolve and examples from a powerful illustration or a pragmatic person, or even temper feelings of love, or that god will smite those that have done us wrong. Prayer for me is being thankful, reflection, acceptance and nurturing your best qualities while recognizing your limitations. We spend so much time going on auto pilot, we forget to take care of ourselves because we're so busy taking care of others. The main problem with prayer is the way we belittle ourselves. "I'm SUCH a sinful person, I'm not good enough, I'll never be a pioneer," and my favorite, "I'll never survive to paradise, (for whatever reason.)" The huge focus on fear and death ruins the benefits of prayer. We do need rules, and it's important to know what's wrong and right, but it shouldn't be pummeled in to our face to make us paranoid that we aren't doing enough, anxious enough to make us feel as if we are spiritually weak, or depressed to the point of possibly just giving up or wanting to end it all. Do I think praying is necessary? No, I think our actions intentions and sub conscious thoughts are prayers in themselves. That's what we want to happen. I think the way of praying needs to change. Kind of like when you pray to your heart a loved one comes home safe from a night of a terrible storm, but I think my ADD is taking over and I'm rambling. haha.
Your fact determining methodology will show you if it is just a coincidence. I'm sure you will know.
For thousands of years mankind has been praying and performing worshiping rituals to gain help from the supernatural agents up in the heavens, not once did anything occur to support the notion that anything resulted from out that endeavor from factual evidence.
I love the all-wise answer: when you have prayed your heart out and lifted your eyes for God's answer and nothing happens, know this; sometimes the answer is "no."
Yhat pretty much covers all of the bases, I think.
It's just self delusion, and here's how it can be demonstrated:
The only prayers that are ever "answered" are prayers for events that are possible without a god: Getting a new job, recovering from a recoverable illness, finding a life partner, finding your keys, etc. All these are events that are very much within the realm of possibility and so they will inevitably coincide with prayers asking for them, giving one the illusion of answered prayers.
The only prayers that are never answered are prayers for events that are naturally impossible but should be possible with a god: An amputee regrowing a limb, a week old corpse coming back to life, a mountain being literally lifted up and transferred to the sea. All these are events that are impossible with man but should be possible with god. But prayers for such things are never answered. Why? Because there is no god listening to prayers.
Possible events happen and they will inevitably coincide with prayers for them. Impossible events won't happen and will never coincide with prayers for them. There is no god listening to and answering prayers. It's all self-delusion through coincidences and confirmation bias.
Prayer of the Flying Spaghetti Monster (Parmesan be upon him):
Who art in strainer,
Whole wheat be thy grain.
Thy sauce be yum,
At home, for dinner at seven.
Give us some wine,
Some garlic bread.
And forgive us our slurping,
As we forgive those,
Who talk with their mouths full.
And lead us not into overdone-ness
But deliver us from mush.
For Thine is the meatball,
The sauce and the pasta,
Forever and ever,