Is prayer just hot air?

I recently had a friend find out he had thyroid cancer. It was literally just about a year ago when he found out. He caught it  early. Over the past year he went through surgery, scans and treatments to remove the cancer. Through it all he sent group texts to keep friends updated  and to ask for our prayers.

About two weeks ago he shot out another text to inform everyone that he was going in for a final scan to see if any cancer remained. Again, asking for our prayers. A day or two later he informed us that 100% of the cancer was gone. He then told all the recipients that he believed the prayers were a big part of the outcome. To never underestimate the “supernatural healing power in prayer.”

Don’t get me wrong. I am VERY glad that the cancer is gone and will hopefully stay gone. But when I got his message, my second thought was, cool….now lets see if god will heal all the thousands of children in hospitals with the same type of illness. If prayer works, shouldn’t he be able to hear those prayers too and heal them? But I just sent a text back saying that it was good news and glad the cancer was gone.

Dan Barker said it best when he said, “You want proof god doesn’t exist? Just walk through a children’s hospital.”

Matthew 21:22 “And whatever you ask for in prayer, having faith and believing, you will receive.”

John 14:14 “You may ask me for ANYTHING in my name, and I will do it.”

Am I reading these statements from “Jesus” too literal? Out of context? I don’t think so. The way I read it, his statements are pretty straight forward. There is no room for interpretation. There is no need to be told what he “really” meant from some biblical scholar. They are plain and simple statements coming from the “son of god.” Statements that also happen to be false. Because we can ask him to cure the children of cancer right now, and nothing happens. I’ve heard christians say things like, “well, you didn’t really believe” or “you didn’t have enough faith”. Ok, so you christians, have enough faith, right? Start praying for the kids! Jesus said it would work. Make it work!

It won’t work. Prayer is just hot air. So you have to move the goal posts and make excuses. I’m glad I don’t live in such a delusion anymore. Its really sad to see so many good people give up and devote their lives to nonsense.

It is really infuriating when I hear some one say, “god healed me!” and “god listens to my prayers.” When there are so many millions around the world that also need to be healed and listened to. Do you think the parents of the kids in hospitals don’t do some praying as well? Well…maybe the ones that aren’t delusional don’t.

Sorry, prayer didn’t heal anything. Science, the doctors who spent years in school and research cured and got rid of the cancer. The only thing that the prayers do is make people feel better, pretending to know that a supernatural sky daddy is with them.

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Cussing and kids

At the recent Skepticon event last month, my wife and I attended one of the smaller workshops. I can’t exactly remember the name of the workshop, but I believe it was called (Cursing Secularly).

We walked into the room which was pretty packed with about 50 people. We stood in the back and listened to the already heated conversation taking place. The people involved were basically discussing if it was ok to cuss whenever and wherever we want as adults. One guy was on the side that we as adults should be able to say what we want, no matter the setting. Others preferred to let the company we may be around dictate the appropriateness of the words to come from our mouths.

It seemed, at least from the people who were actually speaking out in the workshop that gatherings like free thought conventions were fair game to say what ever you want. Free speech and free thought is after all what events like Skepticon is all about.

Though my wife and I agree that free speech allows us to say the things we want, we also feel we should speak in a responsible manner, depending on who else is around. Especially if some are children.

After the workshop my wife and I then duscussed wether or not we would feel comortable bringing our own kids to events like Skepticon.

For the most part we would feel ok with them coming. It would be great to expose them to other freethinkers other than ourselves. However, we did hear the occasional F bomb and sexual innuendos during the conference and have reservations bringing our kids around that.

I mean, I do let out the occasional curses myself. But never around my kids. I’m probably like a lot of parents in this regard.

So I guess I’m in agreement that adults should be able to say what they want, when they want. But at what expense when more parents might bring the future freethinkers to conventions. I would just ask the cursers in the crowd to use discretion and be mature about it.