"Darwin was the first to use data from nature to convince people that evolution is true, and his idea of natural selection was truly novel. It testifies to his genius that the concept of natural theology, accepted by most educated Westerners before 1859, was vanquished within only a few years by a single five-hundred-page book. On the Origin of Species turned the mysteries of life's diversity from mythology into genuine science." -- Jerry Coyne
Monday, July 24, 2017
Praying is talking to yourself. It's a mental illness. This is what someone else wrote about praying. This is a copy and paste job.
The true purpose of prayer is to make the people who pray feel better – it is a way of making believers feel they have exerted some degree of control over a situation that is beyond their control. Indeed, this is one of the major purposes of religion. Human beings have always been, and still are, at the mercy of a complex and often frightening world. It is only natural that people in such circumstances would be eager, even desperate, for a way to calm their fears and give themselves confidence, and this is what prayer provides. It gives believers a “direct line” to the highest power in the universe, the one whom they are told is on their side and will make sure everything turns out all right for them. This ability to cope has always been one of the major perceived benefits of religious belief, and atheists who seek to make inroads against theism would do well to remember it.
As long as believers picture atheism as a bleak existence bereft of meaning or hope, they will always reject it regardless of the arguments offered in its favor. If atheism is ever to spread and flourish, we must overcome these misperceptions and show that, on the contrary, it leads to empathy, purpose and positive action. The most insidious effect of prayer is that it encourages believers to remain passive in times of crisis, waiting for divine deliverance that will never come rather than taking effective action. Atheism, by contrast, teaches human beings to get up off their knees and begin living life. Rather than ask for all our wishes to be fulfilled, it is up to us to bring into existence the world that we want to live in. As the great agnostic orator Robert Green Ingersoll wrote, “The hands that help are holier than the lips that pray.”