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babaji's avatar

Do you think that prayer actually accomplishes anything?

Asked by babaji (1440points) February 14th, 2010

Many people say prayers on a daily basis, some say prayers in critical situations. Do you believe in prayer? and do you feel it works?

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23 Answers

rebbel's avatar

If you were praying for an answer, i guess yes.

jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities's avatar

I think it can help the person who is praying to feel better, but nothing more.

ChaosCross's avatar

Yeah, I’ve seen it happen several times, and not in the “it’s probably just a coincidence” way either. Many times the only possible logical explanation is that your prayer has been heard by someone who answered it, though many people would not want to accept it.

TLRobinson's avatar

For me, YES! I’ve gotten peace, a better understanding and/or direction on a issue. Prayer is comforting for me. When I’m praying, I’m conversing with God. It reminds me i’m not alone and I’ve unburden my spirit.

Captain_Fantasy's avatar

Prayer assumes the existence of an all power force to listens to those prayers.
The existence of such a being is questionable.

Shae's avatar

I beleive in God, and I pray, but I really do not beleive God plays an active part in our lives. I believe in intent though. Praying puts your mind into action. You put your intent out to the universe and you will help yourself make that prayer come true.

laureth's avatar

Intercessory prayer can cause some complications in the recovery of cardiac patients, per this clinical study.

tragiclikebowie's avatar

In critical situations I think prayer can act as a sort of focus, or a meditation and help someone to figure out what to do and or calm someone enough to think clearly. Regardless whether they’re heard or not.

Before you explore the possibility of a divine side to it, I think it should be mentioned that the human mind and simple belief in a thing, or a prayer, can do amazing things (like the placebo effect).

Harp's avatar

Louis Pasteur said that “Luck favors the prepared mind”. A mind that is focused and receptive is more likely to perceive connections and opportunities. For some, prayer does condition the mind to expect positive outcomes, and I would think that such a mind would be more attuned to developments in line with those expectations.

davidbetterman's avatar

Praying sounds so dogmatic. It is simply having a discussion with god. Of course, since 90% or more of you don’t believe this guy exists, then the answer would be no, it does no good for you non-believers.

Sarcasm's avatar

Prayers are to be answered by a supernatural being.
I don’t believe in the supernatural.
So I think it should make sense when I say I don’t believe in the power of prayer.

If it was given that supernatural beings do exist absolutely, I still find it hard to believe in the power of prayer, given the terrible status of so many people in the world, regardless of how much they pray to their gods.

josie's avatar

It serves the same purpose as meditiation, which for some people is relaxating and “mind clearing”. So if one thinks that those are good things, the answer would be yes. If you imagine somebody else is listening and waiting for the opportunity to respond, the answer is no.

borderline_blonde's avatar

I think prayer helps people who genuinely believe in it – not because the deity of choice has responded, but because the power of the mind is phenomenal. As @josie said, it’s almost like a form of meditation, and I have the feeling that people who believe their prayers will be responded to are more likely to look for signs that then act as affirmation. Of course, it doesn’t apply to all situations, and the more specific the request of the prayer, the less effective. I have a relative who prays regularly to have her hearing cured instead of getting a hearing aid as her doctor recommended. She’s still deaf.

absalom's avatar

@ChaosCross

Well, can you elaborate?

OpryLeigh's avatar

To be honest, there have been times when I have felt at my wits end and the onlyu thing left to do was pray. If nothing else it has made me feel a bit more at ease but there have been time when I have felt that my prayers have been answered. Now, I believe in a higher being but I am not overly religious so I am well aware that it is more than likely just a coincidence but it is a very nice, peaceful coincidence and, at the time, it has made me feel a little less alone.

Facade's avatar

Speaking from past experiences, it accomplishes a great amount of things. (Keeping in mind that the Lord has the right to say “no” or “wait”.)

Berserker's avatar

They can give piece of mind and alla dat, to either yourself or the people you pray for, if they know about it, but I doubt it goes beyond anything like that.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Well it helps the person praying feel better about whatever but no, it doesn’t actually accomplish anything they’re praying for – however, I know it provides some people closure and clarity in their situation and so they can better address it and positive results can come from this.

Irishmar's avatar

I can’t get into my answer, I just erased it all. I think prayer can help,,,,its grace…you just have to trust and beleive. I mean what about that Focus Hocus Pocus Ophra has going on with the Secret, just imagine it and it will happen…lol, I;ll pray over tht any day.

mattbrowne's avatar

A single grateful thought toward heaven is the most perfect prayer.—Gotthold Ephraim Lessing

nomorebelieving's avatar

Nope; I don’t believe in any of it anymore. Prayer only convinces the person that’s praying that God is actually listening or that “He” cares about whats being saying so they feel better but in reality, it accomplishes nothing.

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