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Friday, 18 August 2017

Does Prayer Work?

‘No’ is this answer, of course. No, prayer does not work. If you want something to happen or are afraid or need reassurance, praying is not going to make a difference. I used to pray all the time growing up. I still pray nowadays even though I don’t believe in God, but I think of it more as conversing with my subconscious.

Prayer makes people feel better. That is all it does. The only thing prayer does is give you reassurance or make you feel good about yourself. It’s like my dad always says; people give homeless people money because it makes them feel good. That’s the true motive. If your auntie is sick in hospital and you pray that she gets better, your prayers are not going to make a single ounce of difference. It is the doctors that will save her. If she doesn’t make it that is no one’s fault, simply she was too ill to make it. But whether you get down on your knees or not won’t change anything. Or it will do is make you feel better.

Praying is purely psychological. There have even been studies showing that people who pray do better because they feel better. Our minds are very powerful and can convince us of anything. In this respect, I suppose you can say prayer does work. It works internally to make you feel relieved and at peace. But the person you are conversing with is yourself. Your ‘higher’ self, higher consciousness, whatever.

Positive thoughts do channel positive energy, and sending out positivity brings back positivity. Praying for good things for others is more likely to help you feel happier and treat other people better. Will it have a positive impact on them? I think it’s very selfish to believe that you have the power to change another person’s life just by wishing that they’re ok. It makes it seem like you think you’re in control because you wished for something, rather than accepting that things happen on their own terms. Behaving nicely to them of course generates change. Simply praying that they’re ok does not make a difference. You don’t know how they behave when they are not with you, or when they are alone or busy. You don’t know what goes through their head.

So yes, prayer does not literally work. But it can bring some self-relief. 

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