Peril of Prayer and why it has a harmful side

The Catechism of Christian Doctrine goes,

330. Which are the three eminent Good Works?

The three eminent Good Works are Prayer. Fasting, and Alms deeds.
To claim that prayer and fasting are that important - even more important than nursing the sick and the dying is anti-humanitarian. It plainly declares that if we help others we must do it because the faith tells us to and not because it is the right thing to do.

Let us proceed to a deeper examination of prayer.

What is prayer?
Communication with God. It involves telling him you submit to his will whatever that may be, that you thank him and that you want his blessings. It implies God is the most powerful of beings.
Why is prayer wrong?
It implies there is a being who can stop suffering but who is right to let it happen which is a direct assault on human dignity. You need absolute proof that God is right to allow suffering. That means you need to know exactly why he lets it happen in each individual case.
Does prayer imply approval for the evil that God allows to exist?
Yes. If we invent a pill that makes everybody free from sickness and ageing and death and from evil intentions that we shouldn’t avail of it unless God permits it which clarifies that prayer and spirituality put doctrine and allegedly supernatural forces before us.
What good does it do?
God will do what God will do whether we pray or not. We would only be doing it for ourselves so that we match up better to God's goodness. But it's our "choice" that will do that not prayer. Prayer is useless.
How is it alleged that prayer helps us align ourselves with divine goodness to become better people?
Because we simply contemplate goodness. But to focus on God's qualities is not focusing on God. Therefore it is not prayer at all.
What is the relationship between prayer and responsibility?
You worship not God but what your belief tells you is there. So you adore your own creation.
Why is prayer selfish?
It is not trying to help another person. God will do what he does. It's up to him. Praying is a waste of time. At least with casting spells you would believe you are actually doing something. In your mind, you believe you are helping which makes you a better person inside. Prayer can't do that. If you feel it does, then you are doing magic but pretending its prayer.
Is praying or sorcery the best?
At least with casting spells you would believe you are actually doing something. In your mind, you believe you are helping which makes you a better person inside. Prayer can't do that. If you feel it does, then you are doing magic but pretending it's prayer.
Why is prayer popular?
Because people think it helps them feel good though they have prayed instead of doing something worthwhile for another. It is evil to feel you have accomplished something for others by praying when you have no proof. The really good person would go and do something instead of praying. It is not right to put a belief before people.
Does prayer help people feel better?
No. Religion says God is boss and prayer does not change him. Praying to a God who will do what he wants should not make you feel better. If you feel good after the reason cannot be prayer.
What if prayer leads to delusion?
It is better to have the agony of seeing your illusions dissipate than to live under illusions. Strive for authenticity. You owe it to yourself and others.
Does prayer lead to delusion?
Prayer is delusion. People think it works. They remember the times when they got what they wanted and forget the failures or excuse them. You could say taking aspirin magically brings you what you ask except when you ask for what is unknowingly bad for you.
Can you ever judge any action to be selfish or unselfish?
No - except prayer! The greedy banker may be trying to get money so that his children may have the best of expensive private medical care and he will not admit this for he doesn't want to embarrass them.
What does the fact that we cannot determine what action is selfish or what act isn't tell us?
That we could fool ourselves into thinking we are good to others when it is not about being good to them at all. Praying for them if it helps them is non-testable. So we should be more suspicious about the motives for praying than we would be for doing some testable good for others - eg giving them medicine.
Does belief in God imply that if there appears a pill that can make us totally happy forever we shouldn't take it?
Yes if it could appear from magic against his will. It implies that we must not take shortcuts. The belief is intrinsically dictatorial.

But would life be boring if it were perfect meaning we are better without the pill?   
But that is because nature reduces the pleasure we take in something if we have too much of it. But what if our human nature could be altered to maintain the pleasure? Life would then be anything but boring. Drugs can make us happy for a while but what if there was a harmless drug that could make us happy for ever?

Is it better for us to fight evil to achieve good and become spiritual than to have good on a plate?
This really means that the suffering is more important than the goal so good is not the goal at all and it is wrong. Therefore prayer is evil because it affirms this evil thing. The journey is the goal.
What should you do if you are afraid that God will get you for being an atheist?
If God is good he will understand and reward our sincere efforts. Fire can burn you even if you sincerely believe it will not. This does not prove that God will condemn you for meaning well for he is not letting you be burned for meaning well but because he will not change reality all the time to suit your beliefs for that would be chaotic.
What will those who think God answers prayers at least sometimes end up doing?
Religion encourages people to think that if they pray for something and get it that it is an answer from God. But even people who pray for evil things think they often get what they ask for. They will end up praying to hurt people. People will soon learn that you don’t have to just ask for nice caring things! It looks as if it works even then!
What else may happen?
People may use prayer or meditation or magic or just about anything to get the feeling that they can obtain things and get enough control over the future. Nobody expects full control and everybody hopes for sufficient control and a sense of control. You could move on from prayer to black magic!
When a praying community falls into terrible times what may happen?
Everybody gets a bad deal several times during life so the bad prayers may look more effective than the good ones!

Is it true that for religion, it is more important to believe that prayer is answered than it is to believe that prayer is only answered when it means well?
Yes. If you have to choose one or the other, religion will encourage you to believe prayer is answered. Prayer is an insult to human wellbeing for it puts God first.
Is praying for a sick person really caring?
People will deep down be happy to think that they have caused some beneficial or desired things to happen and thinking it will be what matters most to them. It is more important to do than to have or to feel. Prayer necessarily undermines that truth.
What if you say a person would never have succeeded in an exam or in being healthy had you not prayed?
You have no right to tell others that they will be useless and suffer without your prayers.
What about prayer and God's plan in which the innocents may suffer and die?
If you are going to take the risk of seeing evil as less evil than what it is for it fits a good plan then how do you know the risk is worth it? If it is worth it for you that does not make it right. What about the little babies who suffer and die?
Do believers think that God when he hears one prayer contradicting another that he will decide to not intervene and just let things run their course?
They don't want to think that at all. They do not see that as answering prayer but as ignoring it. But it shows they should not be so sure that when they get what they prayed for that God really answered their prayer.
What if a person offers to pray for you?
Firmly tell them that you find that offensive.


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