Saturday, December 11, 2010

Stupid prayers

By Googling "stupid prayer requests," I discovered Kim Kardashian used to pray for smaller breasts. Actually, this is more understandable than people praying for lost keys or lotto jackpots - especially since she was 11 and being teased. Still, is this something The Grand Master of the Universe is going to tend to?

"You know it's a myth."

I certainly think religious folk get overly hysterical about atheist billboards and bus signs. However, I do think AA's new sign is kind of jerkish. It's rude and obnoxious to tell people you know what they're thinking better than they do. Which do you find more annoying, someone who says, "Jesus is Lord," or someone who says to you, "You know Jesus is the one true God in your heart, you're just denying it."

Thursday, December 2, 2010

A little project - "Please pray"

I'm going to start collecting some prayer requests.

Asking an omniscient god for stuff makes no sense. Especially when it's Yahweh, who is pretty tetchy about puny humans thinking they know anything better than he does (see his response to Job, e.g.). But when this is pointed out in debate, apologists tend to respond that prayer isn't for asking for stuff, it's all about giving thanks, or just checking in with your buddy Jesus, or something. It's all related to the objection that atheists never pick on sophisticated versions of Christianity, just the comically backwards beliefs that a very small, benighted group of people hold.

Well, here's some evidence that lots of believers (many of them in the mainstream) believe in asking god for stuff:

Currently circulating on Facebook:
We are asking everyone to say a prayer for "Darkhorse" 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines and their families. They are fighting it out in Afghanistan and have lost 9 Marines in 4 days. Please re-post this. IT WOULD BE NICE TO SEE IT ON EVERYONE'S PAGE!! Even if it's only for an hour. Come on......people show your support.

A quick Google search turned up, where you can ask people to pray for everything from healing children with brain cancer to helping you win online sweepstakes!

Answers in Genesis is doing a radio upgrade, and they ask, "Please pray for no installation problems, improved reception and clarity." They have a whole page devoted to constantly updated prayer requests, and a page where you can pledge:
Believing that Prayer is our most strategic weapon in waging the war against compromise, I make a commitment to lift up the rebuilding of biblical foundations in our church and culture. I will pray throughout the day as God brings Answers in Genesis to mind and fast once a month, asking God to glorify His name in the specific requests relayed to me. This commitment is for one year.
And you give your digital signature and e-mail address to seal the deal. Nifty!