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Is praying effective?

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Is praying effective?

Post by Luney on Tue Aug 23, 2016 6:00 am

I personally have prayed extremely rarely and only over things that are truly important to me . Curiously it has worked every time, although I don't believe in a personified God that would sit and listen to prayers and then grant them if I deserve it. It's more like an intention setting in an energy/intelligence field for me.

Anyway, my local forum's mod posted this today and I thought it was a hilarious example, surely this will make even a firmest atheist a believer (you know I'm looking at you Evie... cough) Laughing


I am covered in bug bites. If I'm outside, everybody else nearby is safe because the mosquitos loooove my blood. And every time I'm scratching miserably I am reminded of a childhood memory that I will share with you now:
I was raised in a very conservative religious family. And we were supposed to ask God for things we wanted. In retrospect this was probably a way to keep us from nagging our parents, but pray to Jesus and he shall answer was the rhythm of my childhood.
I was about 7 and all my friends were complaining about their itchy bug bites. They were counting them and seeing who had the most. I had none. I felt left out. And so I prayed that Jesus would give me a bug bite. The next day I played outside and was certain I would soon receive a heaven sent mosquito.
I don't know what bit me. But it was absolutely of the supernatural variety. It bit my knee and at first I was thrilled. Praise the Lord my prayer had been answered! But the bite didn't stay small. It got bigger and bigger and bigger. It turned into an enormous lump that was hot to the touch, oozed a clear fluid, and made my entire knee swell to twice its size. Walking was painful. My mother debated taking me to the emergency room but didn't because this was the 80s and my leg was a grotesque mess but it was still attached. You had to be less than two clicks from the morgue before you earned yourself a trip to the ER back then.
I cried and cried and told my mom it was all my fault. my leg hurt, the itching was unbearable, and I had done this to myself. My mother was obviously confused so I explained that I had prayed to Jesus for a bug bite. I had coveted my neighbor's itchy bumps and wanted one for my own. And I was being punished for my sin of jealousy. But my mom knew how to make it all better. Somehow, with a straight face, she suggested I pray and ask forgiveness. And so I did.
But every summer since then I'm the best meal in town for the mosquitos and all their blood sucking friends. And I've never forgotten. Ask and ye shall receive indeed.
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Re: Is praying effective?

Post by Evie on Tue Aug 23, 2016 6:15 am

@Luney wrote:
Anyway, my local forum's mod posted this today and I thought it was a hilarious example, surely this will make even a firmest atheist a believer (you know I'm looking at you Evie... cough) Laughing

Nope. Sorry. Razz I used to get those massive blisters too and they're not remotely supernatural.

But I do believe in the power of thought/prayer in healing people, though only to an extent. It's complicated but I'll explain later. Good thread. Smile

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The mind can go in a thousand directions, but on this beautiful path, I walk in peace. With each step, the wind blows. With each step, a flower blooms.” - Thich Nhat Hanh
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Re: Is praying effective?

Post by Luney on Tue Aug 23, 2016 6:37 am

Lol I got one of them too once, but I didn't pray for it the night before.
If you pray for $20 and find one on the ground 10 minutes later, would you say- oh I've found money on the ground before so clearly this is completely unrelated? Very Happy
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Re: Is praying effective?

Post by Evie on Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:04 am

Yep. Very Happy I would joke that someone up there must like me, though. Wink Correlation does not imply causation. But the meaning we assign to events helps us to shape our worlds. E.g. if you believe something is lucky (e.g. finding a lucky penny) then you're more likely to have good fortune, because you have a positive mindset. Expecting success tends to lead to success.


In Maine, the amount of margarine eaten apparently affects the number of divorces
Click for more examples that show the problem of assuming that correlation proves causation

Edit: Rereading what you wrote, the claim "I've found money on the ground before so clearly this is completely unrelated" is actually going too far the other way -- it's like saying correlation disproves causation, which is also false. So I wouldn't say exactly that. Wink

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Re: Is praying effective?

Post by Luney on Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:52 am

Oh dear, I better lay off that margarine Shocked
I was really tempted to ask that lady if she had prayed for a baby once, cause she has 9 kids Very Happy

I do believe that your beliefs definitely set your limit of receiving. For example, if I was to pray for billion dollars, I doubt I would receive it.
Also I think some of the most religious countries are also some of the poorest.

However, while I agree completely that believing something is unlucky or lucky affects the outcome, then how do you explain my probably the most curious case of prayer.
I know I've talked about it before, but I'll type it out again.
I'm talking about the time when 2 of our cats were fighting outside and I went to separate them. One of them ran off and the other one was sitting there, looking at me and his eye was pulled out of the socket, dangling on a string/vein/whatever connects the eye to the brain. He was very close to me, I saw the blood splatters on his face, I saw the empty eye socket, our dog walked up to him and sniffed his face. I couldn't bare myself to go touch him, so I made a little circle in the garden, while repeating to myself "God please undo this, make it so it never happened". I wasn't even religious, I absolutely did not believe saying it would undo it, I wasn't even hoping. My mind was empty and I just repeated it as in a state of shock, but in no way did I believe things would get undone.

I walked inside and told my aunt what had happened. She went outside and came back holding the cat that was completely fine, not a single scratch or drop of blood, both eyes where they belong.
Now- how would you explain that? No, I wasn't drunk or on drugs, I didn't imagine it, yes it was our cat, not another cat, the dog wouldn't have gone up to it so friendly had it not been ours and he sure wouldn't have started sniffing the eye unless it had been out of the head.
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Re: Is praying effective?

Post by Night Eyes on Tue Aug 23, 2016 8:48 am

OOOO interesting topic!

Although I have no idea if prayer works or not as I've never really tried it, not in a religious sense anyways, maybe as a kid I tried it but I dont remember any results, and of course we always did the Lords prayer in school (life was a lot kinder back then but not sure if that was down to praying).

I'm open that it could work I guess its a bit like setting an intention with Loa, and perhaps aswell as visualising its speaking it out loud, putting it out there in the hope that some higher force is going to be there for you, much the same as asking the Universe, I do prefer myself to ask the Universe but I can see other people might prefer prayer Smile
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Re: Is praying effective?

Post by Evie on Tue Aug 23, 2016 9:05 am

@Luney

My first reaction was I have no idea how that could happen.
Second, perhaps there are some things we can't explain. You had a very powerful healing intention perhaps?

But it is possible to get a pet's eye back into the socket once it has popped out. Maybe your aunt did this without telling you...or your cat was able to do it herself (himself?).
https://www.families.com/blog/first-aid-eye-out-of-socket

Unless of course you had some kind of momentary hallucination/vision. They do happen, doesn't have to have anything to do with alcohol or substances. I'm pretty sure I've had hallucinations in the past though I can't think of a specific example.
https://www.reddit.com/r/askscience/comments/21w879/can_hallucinations_occur_in_a_normal_situation/ Or your dog was friendly with another cat because the cat smelled like your cat after the fight...

Or maybe you somehow shifted into another universe......ahem. What a Face
In any case, poor kitty. Sad Glad it was okay in the end though, however that happened.

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Re: Is praying effective?

Post by Luney on Tue Aug 23, 2016 11:23 am

I know what you mean, whenever something unexplainable happens to me, the brain automatically starts to look for explanations and the first question it asks itself is "Maybe I imagined it", but  I am absolutely confident that no, I know what I saw. Especially with many ghostly incidents we've had at home, we can ask if we imagined it collectively, since there were usually more than 1 witness?

My aunt definitely didn't put it back, I wasn't a kid, I was around 20 maybe and she didn't have a problem beheading chicken in front of me when I was a child, so she's not one to sugar coat things. While I believe eyes can go back, I seriously doubt that this cat's eye would've magically gone back in the head without any sign of blood, redness or damage. His face was white and everything around the eye was completely dry. This whole thing happened very fast, it wasn't like I took a half an hour walk and then told my aunt. It all happened like in a minute or 2. Trust me, it was a very gory scene, it's clearly engraved in my brain.

I do believe that I moved to a parallel reality where the cat was fine (My very own Schrödinger's cat Very Happy ), whether it was by the direction of God, my own higher self, or accidental, it did answer my prayer, even though the prayer was consciously speaking- faithless.
If I had some healing intent or any belief it could happen, it was definitely not conscious. It's literally as much realistic in my brain as if someone had died and me believing my prayer can make them wake up from the dead.

Perhaps life is one big simulation and it just translated into my strong intent to switch the current scene to a parallel reality. I've heard that when that happens, we won't have any memories of the past and just remember as if it never happened, but in this case I do have the memories.
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Re: Is praying effective?

Post by Night Eyes on Wed Aug 24, 2016 4:04 pm

Do you think it was the power of prayer or the power of your mind that caused the shift Luney?
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Re: Is praying effective?

Post by LittlemissSunshine on Wed Aug 24, 2016 9:22 pm

Isn't it the believe in prayers that give them the power? When you say a prayer and you end it with amen, you are basically handing everything over to the universe/God believing that it's done.
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Re: Is praying effective?

Post by Night Eyes on Wed Aug 24, 2016 10:14 pm

Yes I think so Lms, it makes sense, i wonder if perhaps we find it easier to believe a higher power has got our back rather than we create ourselves?
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