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Dear Atheist, Why Do You Care if I pray to God? The Answer.

Christian adult places cheesy question in photoshopped child's easel: Dear atheist, if you do not believe that God exists, why do you care if I pray to him? Smiley face.  Response: Dear Christian adult masquerading as a child, atheists don't actually care if you pray to your God.  Go right ahead.  Atheists just don't want you to use public schools and government to force everybody to observe your religion.

My answer to the Facebook meme.

18 comments to Dear Atheist, Why Do You Care if I pray to God? The Answer.

  • This statement, “atheists actually don’t care if you pray …” is a bleeding heart, apologetic, Single Sentence Logic answer typical of poorly informed or newly “already born thank-you” atheists. The real problem with praying is that it allows the prayer to mentally check out from taking responsibility for making life work. There’s a plague going around. How do religious people deal with it? Pray? How about dealing with the epidemiology? The second problem with praying is let’s people practice hypocrisy and denial. This quickly get out of their religious world and into everything. So, a simple but repeated prayer of trust for “god” to “protect” the earth easily turns into climate denial. I’m writing this comment to focus the much bigger problem; a very subtle but serious problem.
    How often do we hear, “let’s just let everyone believe what they want to believe” ? YOU, who are reading this, do you believe that? It’s hard not to. This is the modern world’s most fundamental politically correct sound byte. The problem with it, is that it’s logically, philosophically, IMPOSSIBLE! Just consider one example. What if every doctor did that? What quality of medicine would the world have? We’d be back in the days of the Witch Doctors!
    And, ironically, the cause is religion – specifically the “multiple religions problem”. ( See http://www.a3society.org/MultipleReligionsProblem-T ) The modern world introduced advanced transportation technology. This brought multiple religions together, In order to keep peace, political leaders, using their best skills at denial, invented the “politically correct” disaster we know as “blind tolerance”: “let everyone believe what they want”. Failing to understand this and FIX it, allows the poster jousting of this article to go on infinitum.

    • Dave

      Hey Sport, just exactly who do you think shoud “FIX it”? You? Me? Some third party? I know, let’s let the government decide. We could set up a whole department devoted to the task of making sure no one is allowed to believe what they are fully persuaded in their own mind to believe.

      You talk like you don’t like political correctness, but you’re baptised in it, Dude. I use a religious metaphor because it so perfectly describes what’s going on here. You have laid out your entire religious belief system in one sanctimonious paragraph.

      So people who pray aren’t as alarmed by all the buzzwords of the day as you are. Not unhappy enough for ya? What’s your point, send ‘em to the camps?

      “Climate denial.” What the hell is that? When you get out of middle school you’re going to be completely unprepared for the rigors of ninth grade. Damn, you’ve gotten my goat.

      • Dave

        Also Bruce, you tell how religious people deal with a plague by praying and then you ask “how about dealing with epidemiology?” Did you know that modern hospitals trace their origins to A.D. 331 in Rome and were conceived by Christians? Did you know that hundreds of hospitals in the U.S. were organised and built and maintained by Christian Evangelicals, Mormons, Jews and Catholics – all praying people? Of course not. Your ignorance of the practices and accomplishments of religious people is stupifying.

        • What about the Sumerians and Egyptians? They had meeting places to heal the sick in many ways. Specific outhouses for various types of illness or maladies. Do these not count toward the beginnings of hospitals? It’s nice how sanctimonious it sounds and plays out for Christians. That being said, many were and are just don’t know if I can give them credit. Over 500,000 clay cuneiform tablets have been unearthed with a mere fraction 10-30 thousand being translated. Sad there are only a couple hundred people on earth able to even begin to translate and understand this great civilization, some say the first. You don’t hear much about them or their beliefs, although it is known that it would seem Christianity has plagiarized from them as well as the other many cultures and civilizations throughout time. Bottom line is there is nothing truly unique about Christianity except for its bizarre ability to survive where others have failed.

      • Jim Cook

        Dave, I’m with you here. Bruce isn’t an atheist here — he’s an anti-theist. If you follow his link you’ll find that more than that, he’s at heart a Brucist. This is someone who says he’s the answer to everything. A religion of one.

  • Randy

    I have no issue in people praying as long as it a)isn’t government sponsored b)is not bothering me by its loudness and c) doesn’t take the place of actual action

  • marciahi

    This is still the land of the free…Our right to pray and your right not too…your right does not trump mine…If you can’t look away and not notice you have the problem…I am so tired of everyone thinking their right trumps everyone else.. mind your own business…look after your own affairs and let other people live their lives without your interference. There is no proof people that pray do t get things done.
    Usually Christians have great work ethics and do their job happily…

  • marciahi

    Also Christians don’t force anyone to do anything…what a blatant lie…Christians are the ones being told they can’t read a Bible…they can’t pray before eating…so your argument has no merit whatsoever

  • Dave and Jim. Thanks for taking the time to reply. And the tone of the replies, once again, shows how deeply people feel about this. Each of your points, if followed more deeply, can help everyone understand this issue better.

    Dave asks, “who do I think should FIX it?” My answer, and the goal of my effort, is to give EVERYONE insights into the larger questions so each of them can find NEW ground – new fundamental understandings – to work from. Hopefully, most people will finally end up at a new same place. I don’t think it will be any of the dogmas we now have, and surly won’t be a COMPROMISE between them. To be clear, I don’t think any government should be allowed to decide this. The role of a government in the process should be collecting and ORGANIZING wisdom so people can make “truth” based logical choices. And if this statement leads you to ask, “then, who decides truth?” that’s the basis of the new effort I’m leading to create the National Opinion Collection System (which would ultimately become international). Notice, again, this is based on individual views, not anything based on government, academic or commercial propaganda.

    As for the origin of “modern hospitals”, I don’t think your example is correct. The Greeks had both “hospitals” and “medical cities” before 460 B.C. ( Hippocrates ). The city of Epidaurus was a good example. The museum there has a case with a full array of surgical tools. Modern manual surgical tools have changed very little since then. And remember, Julius Caesar was delivered by Caesarian Section in 100 B.C., a procedure named for him. But, in response to your comment, its important not to confuse SOME of the things religious people have done with practices going on today. The Greek and Roman empires, considering the technology they had to work with, far exceeded ANYTHING modern society has today. Ephesus, 550 B.C. had roads paved with marble slabs, underground utilities, evaporatively cooled streets in their shopping areas, multi-story buildings with running water and “indoor” plumbing and heating. The utilities were designed to expand as the city grew, without replacement!

    My point is, while we can point to great achievements in the past, the human race screwed up! The world fell into the dark ages, and we have not yet even recovered may of the great achievements of 2500 years ago. My issue is not that religious people can’t do great things. It’s that in the face of all the great things religious people have done, they have not been able to get their act together. This is my point about the “multiple religions problem” – 54,000+ religions listed in the encyclopedia of religion. The people who show up on my door step Sunday morning, asking me to pray with them, have NO CLUE about the complexity of the science behind hospitals or epidemiology or how they integrate with human culture. Which is the problem modern society faces. Life has become way too complex to be understood or operated based on the available religious information – Bibles, Torahs, Korans, prayers, with the style used in their writings. So, relying on prayer to replace communication which must often be much more relevant to complex issues doesn’t provide people with critical information that they need.

  • Dave

    Ah, Utopia. I know a man who has a low opinion of the opinions of mankind. Will his opinion be included in the opinion bank? Modified? Rejected out of hand? Who will decide this?

    Oh wait. Let’s average them all together. That would be the ticket, but an average of all opinions is pretty much what we’re working with now. Oh well.

    • Jim Cook

      “Modern manual surgical tools have changed very little since” 460 BC? That’s the best line I’ve heard all week. Hey, guess what? Automobiles are old hat, nothing new. After all, the ancients used screws, levers and wheels. Ispe faxit carpe diem QED ergot absinthe!

      • For anyone reading this thread, let me just say, I have worked with surgeons developing surgical tools for 25 years. When I visited Epidaurus, I was amazed. They had already figured out the ergonomics, the surgical approach issues, and manufacturing methods. They didn’t have 400 series stainless steel, or plastics for the disposables, but they had discovered phosphor bronzes, so they could produce very hard edged blades. If you want to see them, look at http://bit.ly/A3Society-Epidaurus and scroll down to the medical section.

    • Dave. The answer to your questions are right in your question. Do you feel your post to me should be heard? Should it have been moderated out? Modified by someone else? I don’t think that’s what you want. So who gets to decide? The only reliable decision maker is the person who is making the statement. Should we average them all together? As you said, that is what we have now, and I’m sure you’re implying that it loses a lot of the message. So, in the system I developed for Occupy Wall Street, EVERY opinion was captured. EVERY INDIVIDUAL’S VOICE was captured.

  • Brian

    The main problem with prayer as I see it, is that it often is used as a substitute for getting the help that one actually needs. Taking actions to solve issues are thrown to the wayside, because “god’s on the case”. This leads to dillusional individuals who believe that someone somewhere is actually helping them, while their problems just get worse. So many people thank god for all the good things that have happened to them, but the same people never consider god to be the source of their problems. If god is responsible for the good things, then he’s also liable for the bad things too. Just once, I want to see a pro athlete blame a loss on god. “we were doing pretty good in the fourth quarter, but then jesus made us drop the ball and lose” Christians love to tell you about their prayers that they believe to have been answered, but they never talk about all the prayers that go “unanswered”. Try praying in one hand and shitting in the other and see which one fills up first!

  • I think I may have a different point of view. A friend of my wife recently left the meme on the left on her page. My wife and I are both non believers ( still don’t really care for the term atheist, I am not a non astronomer…), and pondered on a response. She went the with, ” I don’t care” stating her non belief In a less non threatening way. I love my wife but she did not want to offend her friend. I on the other hand wear no gloves…
    My personal response is, because I don’t feel it is right to pray to a god that teaches & condones misogyny, rape, homophobia, incest, pedophilia, racism, slavery, genocide etc. Now if you started out your prayer with ” Dear misogynistic, incestual, infanticidal raping murder who art in heaven” at least your being honest. It is this lack of honesty within themselves that I appall most of all. The sanctimonious hypocrisy in which the live their daily lives in complete denial that who they exult most is the most worthless piece of shit that would ver walk the earth today. Any person committing a single act of “godliness” as portrayed in the bible would be strung up and dispatched in many countries and at the least thrown in jail for life if not put to death in the US. But somehow he gets a pass? And you lean on him for guidance and direction in your life. You condemn mankind and give all thanks to this giant asshole in the sky. And to the Dr. Who survived Ebola, science takes a bow and says you or welcome, along with your fellow man who actually did the saving. Maybe we should have had 2 doctors side by side with Ebola. One can pray to god to survive and the other can accept medical treatment and care made possible by mankind and science. Talk about your foxhole Christians. Let’s see who has the deathbed confession now, that’s right Sister Christian, your time has not come, science can save you, your time is NOT done.

  • skarp

    I don’t. I object to the religious inflicting their belief in prayer on others in public life.

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