Join the Unexplained Mysteries community today! It's free and setting up an account only takes a moment.
- Sign In or Create Account -
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 3
Ashyne

Is Prayer a form of Petition?

19 posts in this topic

Petition; noun: a formal written request, typically one signed by many people, appealing to authority in respect of a particular cause.

I have always wondered about the reasons for religious people praying to their God when something goes wrong or when they hope for a change. For example, someone is involved in an accident and is fighting for their life and their loved ones are praying to their God for blessings or help. Sometimes these people go on social media (like Facebook or Twitter) to set up and spread hashtags pleading for others (mostly strangers) to pray for the blessing of their loved one who is in critical condition.

To me, an Atheist, this seems no different from a petition. A petition as I quoted above, is basically the same idea of having a group of people raising their voices to be heard by an authority figure, with the more people signing up for the petition, the likelier they are to be heard and listened to. Is this not similar to prayer, when huge groups of people pray to their authority figure (their God/deity) and using the power of many voices to influence the attention of their deity?

Why, then, would a God, benevolent as he is, be so selective and specific as if to say, for example: "If I do not get 10000 prayers, I will not save his person's life!" Would not their God, omnipotent and all-knowing, already have known of this person's struggle which would make redundant the need for prayers in the first place? And if he already knows of the situation and yet does not help the dying person, how would having 100, 1000 or 10000 prayers influence their God's choice to save or bless a person unless that same God is an egoistical being, whom the religious faithful will disagree with?

This absolutely makes no sense at all. Can the religious faithful explain this to me?

Edited by Ashyne

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 

Persons, as you state, are generally petitioned

by those whom reserve prayer for God. That

is the case not by reason of some popularity

contest. Whereas those regarded closest to

God are most petitioned, it is with prayer that

our kind share in His glory.

0:-) MGby.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Persons, as you state, are generally petitioned

by those whom reserve prayer for God. That

is the case not by reason of some popularity

contest. Whereas those regarded closest to

God are most petitioned, it is with prayer that

our kind share in His glory.

0:-) MGby.

Why are you writing poetry? And it makes no sense too.

Edited by Ashyne
1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I often think of prayers and faith as the meat and bread of gods. Food that sustains them.

And I also seem them as the bureaucratic burden of being god....drowning in billions of hopes, wishes, desires, petty lusts and so forth.

http://warprayer.org/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If I'm rhyming,

it is for God's being love

that my heart is chiming.

May love ultimately prevail.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

God knows your prayer before you have entered in the make it. He already knows what you need, and will supply it if you ask for it and do his will. He's not going to give you something wrong if you ask for something right.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Would not their God, omnipotent and all-knowing, already have known of this person's struggle which would make redundant the need for prayers in the first place? And if he already knows of the situation and yet does not help the dying person, how would having 100, 1000 or 10000 prayers influence their God's choice to save or bless a person

This is what I see as your question. And as a Christian, who does pray regularly, I agree that God already has a plan for every person. But, the how and when of that plan is not set in stone. Plus, there are the actions of the Enemy, Satan, the Devil, which (supposedly... I'm not convinced of this) can affect God's plan for a person. Praying is a way for a person to ask (Beg?) for some blessing, or miracle, that would affect something beyond that person's ability. A slight edit to how the Plan will happen.

Plus prayer serves a social binding function, in that it can be a group activity, bring a community closer together. Also it can act as a mental/emotional aid, in that knowing so many people care about you can give a person hope. And many times, that hope is what brings someone through. The same effect could be done in other ways, but prayer is a tradition that is very deep.

Prayer can edit what happens to a person, but it can only be done by God's blessing. It is not magic but asking.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have always wondered about the reasons for religious people praying to their God when something goes wrong or when they hope for a change. For example, someone is involved in an accident and is fighting for their life and their loved ones are praying to their God for blessings or help. Sometimes these people go on social media (like Facebook or Twitter) to set up and spread hashtags pleading for others (mostly strangers) to pray for the blessing of their loved one who is in critical condition.

To me, an Atheist, this seems no different from a petition. A petition as I quoted above, is basically the same idea of having a group of people raising their voices to be heard by an authority figure, with the more people signing up for the petition, the likelier they are to be heard and listened to. Is this not similar to prayer, when huge groups of people pray to their authority figure (their God/deity) and using the power of many voices to influence the attention of their deity?

Why, then, would a God, benevolent as he is, be so selective and specific as if to say, for example: "If I do not get 10000 prayers, I will not save his person's life!" Would not their God, omnipotent and all-knowing, already have known of this person's struggle which would make redundant the need for prayers in the first place? And if he already knows of the situation and yet does not help the dying person, how would having 100, 1000 or 10000 prayers influence their God's choice to save or bless a person unless that same God is an egoistical being, whom the religious faithful will disagree with?

This absolutely makes no sense at all. Can the religious faithful explain this to me?

It's not about those you pray for the person, it's about what the person on their death bed wants prayer to be...If that makes sense.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's not about those you pray for the person, it's about what the person on their death bed wants prayer to be...If that makes sense.

And one more thing, "God" doesn't know what human beings will do read Genesis, it plainly states that he doesn't...Genesis 6:5-6

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

God knows your prayer before you have entered in the make it. He already knows what you need, and will supply it if you ask for it and do his will. He's not going to give you something wrong if you ask for something right.

If "God" already knows what you need then why pray for it? "Christ" warned against that did he not?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Prayer is also a form of Relationship with God/Jesus/Spirit. Along with worship, prayer is how people communicate with the Divine. It is Relationship with Jesus that should be a Christians primary goal, and thus prayer is a major tool for having that relationship.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

While prayer can take the form of a petition, it is not always the case. At its heart, prayer is simply talking to God. This can be as simple as sharing your day with him, telling him about what went on. He already knows, he doesn't NEED you to tell him what happened, but that's how relationships work - communication. Sometimes that does mean asking for help with something. And while I've never personally sent out a hashtag request for prayers, I can see why people do. And usually it's more about letting people know that you're going through a tough time, so if you pray for them, you'll feel better that people are silently offering you their moral support, and if that makes it easier on you, then it's done its job. If it helps with the problem itself and God intervenes, then even better. But numbers don't count when it comes to prayer. If one person prays or a million people pray for something, it won't affect God's grand scheme. It's about the talking to God that's important, the relationship building between mankind and its creator, and God will intervene as he wills, within his plan.

That's how I see it, at least :tu:

~ Regards, PA

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Prayer is a form of release. A means of getting one's thoughts and feeling out of themselves. Just a way of letting go. Express it, don't repress it.

Edited by XenoFish

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No, God doesn't check His Facebook and His screen name is 216 characters long, so He never bothered with Twitter.

But what you're describing is the sad, b****** offspring of ancient tradition and the convenience of the internet.

It's been well established that the power of prayer from a community has a tremendous effect on a persons ability to come back from trauma or illness. The faithful side of me will tell you that it comes from the deepest subtleties of spirituality that exist outside of logical comprehension. Then the pragmatic side of me also reminds me that any communal animal has a much higher chance of survival, and that whether someone is consciously aware of a supportive community or not, their unconscious will be aware of it and rise to the occasion. As much as we want to think that we're our own person, there is no single greater motivator than social pressure, or the pressure to perform to our community's expectations.

Remember that a church is a congregation, not a building. Social media has taken off with the idea of alerting a community of one of their own's troubles and twisted it into a way to get attention from other people. It's not about uniting a community in spirit to take care of one of their own, if anything it dilutes it; depersonalizes it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What nearly everybody seems saying here is that it is a waste of time and will not make a wit of difference to God

fullywired

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If "God" already knows what you need then why pray for it? "Christ" warned against that did he not?

I was thinking of Matthew 6:8. "But when you pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. 8Be not you therefore like to them: for your Father knows what things you have need of, before you ask him."

I think praying might change God's mind on some things he was doing. Like you can get him to forgive, or he might forgive because of the prayer. Also you can alter big things in reality and life by prayer that would be impossible otherwise. It says in scripture if you believe you can move mountains. I think sometimes God might be waiting to act by waiting for your prayer.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am an atheist, too, and I believe in the power of directed will. This would mean that numbers may make a difference .... it depends on the strength of each individual will, I suppose.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have always wondered about the reasons for religious people praying to their God when something goes wrong or when they hope for a change. For example, someone is involved in an accident and is fighting for their life and their loved ones are praying to their God for blessings or help. Sometimes these people go on social media (like Facebook or Twitter) to set up and spread hashtags pleading for others (mostly strangers) to pray for the blessing of their loved one who is in critical condition.

To me, an Atheist, this seems no different from a petition. A petition as I quoted above, is basically the same idea of having a group of people raising their voices to be heard by an authority figure, with the more people signing up for the petition, the likelier they are to be heard and listened to. Is this not similar to prayer, when huge groups of people pray to their authority figure (their God/deity) and using the power of many voices to influence the attention of their deity?

Why, then, would a God, benevolent as he is, be so selective and specific as if to say, for example: "If I do not get 10000 prayers, I will not save his person's life!" Would not their God, omnipotent and all-knowing, already have known of this person's struggle which would make redundant the need for prayers in the first place? And if he already knows of the situation and yet does not help the dying person, how would having 100, 1000 or 10000 prayers influence their God's choice to save or bless a person unless that same God is an egoistical being, whom the religious faithful will disagree with?

This absolutely makes no sense at all. Can the religious faithful explain this to me?

Why do you view prayer as merely a petition that we put before God?

Prayer is the medium through which we talk to God, much as you would use your cellphone to make a call to your father. When you ask him for a loan, because this month you are short, that would count as a petition, but do you only call your father to ask for things, or do you also call him to say what your day was like and for telling him how much you really love him and appreciate him for all he has done for you?

Prayer is exactly that, it is the connection that allows one to speak to God. Some people may believe they are talking to themselves, but God is always present and hears everything you have to say and more. He also answers us back.

As for the last bit of your post, you only really need one prayer.... your own.

The prayers that you are talking about are not petitions, but a form of warfare against spiritual entities who are motivated in keeping someone away from God. The more troops one has, the greater the effective nature of the prayer.

I would bring to you attention something from the bible, a story about Daniel...

In Daniel 10, we find Daniel fasting over a particular revelation he had had that had left shocked. He fasted for 3 weeks and then a man appears before him.

On the twenty-fourth day of the first month, as I was standing on the bank of the great river (that is, the Tigris) 5 I lifted up my eyes and looked, and behold, a man clothed in linen, with a belt of fine gold from Uphaz around his waist. 6 His body was like beryl, his face like the appearance of lightning, his eyes like flaming torches, his arms and legs like the gleam of burnished bronze, and the sound of his words like the sound of a multitude. 7 And I, Daniel, alone saw the vision, for the men who were with me did not see the vision, but a great trembling fell upon them, and they fled to hide themselves. 8 So I was left alone and saw this great vision, and no strength was left in me. My radiant appearance was fearfully changed, and I retained no strength. 9 Then I heard the sound of his words, and as I heard the sound of his words, I fell on my face in deep sleep with my face to the ground.

10 And behold, a hand touched me and set me trembling on my hands and knees. 11 And he said to me, “O Daniel, man greatly loved, understand the words that I speak to you, and stand upright, for now I have been sent to you.” And when he had spoken this word to me, I stood up trembling. 12 Then he said to me, “Fear not, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand and humbled yourself before your God, your words have been heard, and I have come because of your words. 13 The prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days, but Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I was left there with the kings of Persia, 14 and came to make you understand what is to happen to your people in the latter days. For the vision is for days yet to come.”

What is interesting is the last part, where the angel declares that others opposed him and fought him for 21 days, before Michael, another angel, helped him because he couldn't get through the cordon on his own.

That is what multiple thousands of prayers help with, they call on God to intervene directly in this battle by sending reinforcements to clear the path that holds up solutions to real problems in peoples lives... I wouldn't bother asking for that Mercedes Benz though.... ;)

Edited by Jor-el

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What nearly everybody seems to be saying here is that it is a waste of time and will not make a wit of difference to God

fullywired

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 3

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.