Prayer is the Pinnacle of Pretentiousness and Presumption

First, yay alliteration!

Moving on, prayer is all kinds of crazy to me. This time, I’m not going to discuss whether prayer works (it doesn’t) or if it’s logical (it isn’t), but an issue with prayer that even the most devoutly religious should stop and ponder, at least for a moment.

Now, let’s look at how God (big G god, not little g god) is usually depicted. Omniscient, omnipresent and omnipotent. That means all knowing, all encompassing and all powerful. God knows everything, is everywhere, and can do anything. Based on this, the universe is cranking along exactly as he planned it. “It’s God’s will,” or “God works in mysterious ways,” or “it’s all part of God’s plan” and any number of other empty religious platitudes I’ve heard at funerals.


There there. Just know God always planned for him to suffocate face-first in a pie eating contest.

So how does prayer fit into this? Praying means you’re asking something from God. God, who apparently knows everything. It means every time you ask God for something you’re asking him to change his plans. You’re basically saying you know better than God on this particular topic. God knows what’s best, but you really think you know better than him and if you pray hard enough he’ll change his mind and you’ll find your car keys.

And people call atheists pretentious.

Look, if there is a God things are gonna go one of two ways:

1) God has a plan and things are going to unfold according to it, in which case what’s the point of praying?

2) God has a plan, but since you asked so nicely and apparently know better than him, he’ll cave and help you out, in which case how can God have a master plan?

Prayer: pointless whether or not there God exists.


~ by kriskodisko on July 30, 2013.

8 Responses to “Prayer is the Pinnacle of Pretentiousness and Presumption”

  1. Prayer “works” only if by working you mean making people feel more in control and safe and loved. Though of course when the excrement hits the fan people feel “forsaken” and abandoned and lost and all that, so there seems to be no net gain. It’s the psychological equivalent of cursing when you stubb your toe. It doesn’t do anything, but it makes you feel better. Granted no wars have been fought or minorities persecuted or politicians supported over toe-stubb cursing, but whatever. You get my point.

  2. Don’t even to pretend to understand prayer, it is much more complex than you even know. Whole books and documentaries have been done on it and you think a flippant post is going to change peoples minds. In fact, the best book I read on prayer was about 400 pages long.

    ok ok, with that being said. Prayer is not about changing God, it is about changing the believer (or it should be). But prayer is also communication between a finite being and an infinite being, so if we are asking for something, such as the health of a loved one who is dying, it may or may not happen, and it may or may not be by the hand of God.

    However, there are many people who agree that even if religion and prayer are not “real” the fact that they are real to the person does make them healthier, they tend to live longer, have more peace, and also more hope. So, who cares if it is real or fake if it is helping, as long as it is not hurting (from a psychological and physiological point of view). This is why I do dislike some of those ministers on tv who heal and ask for money (or ask for money for healing). The Spirit is not for sale, this is clearly stated in the Book of Acts when Simon the Sorcerer wishes to buy the Holy Spirit and the apostles rebuke him.

  3. I agree with the above two posts in general: Prayer does a great deal to help the person praying feel more secure, and also helps the person being prayed for feel supported by the person who was thoughtful enough to pray for their well being. Even if it doesn’t have the desired outcome, that person was (hopefully) devoting time to thinking about the other person’s plight.

    Another thing about prayer for me personally is that it is usually helping me to remember those around me, and remember what I need to work on in my own life. If I pray for help in remembering not to be irritable then I’m reminding myself not to be irritable as well as asking for support in it. If I’m praying for my friend to feel less depressed I’m remembering that I need to call my friend to see how she’s doing as well as hoping that God will be with her while she feels lonely and morose. Prayer does not shift responsibility onto God, it means I’m trying to actively work on things and am seeking God’s help like I’d ask for help from any loving mentor. Except y’know, the mentor is omnipotent and omnipresent I suppose.

  4. I imagine it goes something like this:

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