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(MSNBC)   More than half of all American adults believe prayer can save them from terminal illness. Bill Maher surrenders   (msnbc.msn.com) divider line 535
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5083 clicks; posted to Main » on 19 Aug 2008 at 6:54 AM (6 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2008-08-19 08:52:52 AM  
strafe: If praying helps you then do it while it's still legal.

Are you implying that it may soon be illegal?

Also, the rest of your argument confuses me. It looks like some roundabout version of Pascal's Wager (new window).
 
2008-08-19 08:53:41 AM  
michaellasalle: It looks like some roundabout version of Pascal's Wager (new window).

And Pascal's Wager makes god sound like an idiot.
 
2008-08-19 08:53:55 AM  
The fundie twist on this topic obscures the fact that positive thinking is actually a big part of oncology and other treatments. Of course, so is chemo and radiation. When my step-daughter was diagnosed with lymphoma, she was told right away to think positively and keep a strong outlook. I stress no-one told her to pray per se.

She is in remission now and who is to say that the mind over body thing does not work?

Dr. John Sarno has helped thousands overcome backpain with essentially positive thinking.

So some call it prayer/faith others call it a good attitiude.

If it helps, what is the problem?
 
2008-08-19 08:58:02 AM  
Believing something can cure you is helpful. It wouldn't necessarily matter if the "something" is prayer or sacrificing a goat. It just so happens that prayer is socially acceptable (everywhere but Fark that is). The human mind can be pretty powerful. We all know about the "placebo effect" for a reason...
 
2008-08-19 08:58:11 AM  
Lt Shiny Sides: michaellasalle: It looks like some roundabout version of Pascal's Wager (new window).

And Pascal's Wager makes god sound like an idiot.


I'm not sure which side of the argument you're making... Are you attacking god or attacking Pascal's Wager?
 
2008-08-19 09:02:03 AM  
Deathfrogg: My great grandmother was a christian Christian scientist. She let one child die of spinal menengitis meningitis, leaving my 8 year old grandmother to take care of her older sister while her mother prayed, and did nothing. The death took months, and was excruciatingly painfull painful and ugly (to hear my grandmother tell it). It was a major part of my grandmothers personality structure, and the main reason why my family has been athiest atheist for three generations now. There is no god. There is no miracle. There is only medicine, biology and then there are the people that reject it out of hand because they don't trust intellect or intelligence.

Those are the people that are running our government now.

Religion is a scam system, put in place to provide a funny puppet show on a city sidewalk while the dips work the back of the crowd. That is its sole purpose. The church teaches that knowlege knowledge and reason are works of satan Satan. That systematic study and hypothesis are the enemies of faith.

Religion is the tinfoil hat the ignorant and sociopathic personality wears to keep the cruel realities of the world out of their brainwaves.


i237.photobucket.com


Damn dude, back off a bit on that caffeine, will ya?

/no need to thank me for correcting your spelling errors
//I'll leave the piss-poor grammar, redundancy and incorrect terminology up to you
 
2008-08-19 09:02:58 AM  
lhinds: The fundie twist on this topic obscures the fact that positive thinking is actually a big part of oncology and other treatments. Of course, so is chemo and radiation. When my step-daughter was diagnosed with lymphoma, she was told right away to think positively and keep a strong outlook. I stress no-one told her to pray per se.

She is in remission now and who is to say that the mind over body thing does not work?

Dr. John Sarno has helped thousands overcome backpain with essentially positive thinking.

So some call it prayer/faith others call it a good attitiude.

If it helps, what is the problem?


Because if it's only appearing to help, it's not a real cure. Just a delay in receiving actual treatment.

For example: I can stand outside during the winter while it's snowing, wearing a tshirt and swim shorts and I can fight off the cold for a little, but there's a decent chance it's only going to get colder. Now, I have two options. I can ignore the cold and let my mind aide my body in blocking out the feelings of discomfort. Or I can go back inside, and grab a jacket and some shoes.

Ignoring the cold this way is a great way to lose your toes, as well as your fingers, ears, and nose. Though it's completely possible to ignore the cold up until that point of frostbite, you'd have to be pretty farking stupid to choose to. I'd be a lot simpler to "treat" the cold and dress warmer.

/Obviously the best choice would be to stay indoors entirely, but sometimes we can't make that one.
 
2008-08-19 09:04:23 AM  
Science trumps all gods in all forms of healing.
 
2008-08-19 09:04:56 AM  
omega-x: Believing something can cure you is helpful. It wouldn't necessarily matter if the "something" is prayer or sacrificing a goat. It just so happens that prayer is socially acceptable (everywhere but Fark that is). The human mind can be pretty powerful. We all know about the "placebo effect" for a reason...

Agreed, the placebo effect is real, but wouldn't you rather have the placebo effect alongside real, proven science-based medical treatment rather than the placebo effect and the hope that: a) god exists, b) you're praying to the right god, c) this god actually gives a crap, etc...?

Also, wasn't there a study done recently that showed that prayer is ineffective? IIRC, the subjects were divided into three groups: not prayed for, prayed for and knew it, and prayed for and didn't know it and the folks that were prayed for and knew it actually did worse than the other two groups? Wouldn't that imply a negative placebo effect?
 
2008-08-19 09:07:23 AM  
michaellasalle:

I'm not sure which side of the argument you're making... Are you attacking god or attacking Pascal's Wager?


Pascal's Wager.
I'm just saying that if you are going to wager that god exists just to be on the safe side, I think that god would be able to see through that and know that you don't actually have faith.
I had a better explanation for this, but I have been up all night and I am not thinking too clearly at the moment.
 
2008-08-19 09:08:52 AM  
I quietly believe in something, I'm just not sure what.
 
2008-08-19 09:08:55 AM  
michaellasalle:

Also, wasn't there a study done recently that showed that prayer is ineffective? IIRC, the subjects were divided into three groups: not prayed for, prayed for and knew it, and prayed for and didn't know it and the folks that were prayed for and knew it actually did worse than the other two groups? Wouldn't that imply a negative placebo effect?


Yep. I have an issue of Skeptic where they did that. The outcomes had no effects whatsoever, regardless of who prayed what for who, and who didn't get prayed for. It made zero difference.
 
2008-08-19 09:08:55 AM  
michaellasalle: It looks like some roundabout version of Pascal's Wager (new window).


Thanks for including the window, I have not thought about Pascal since Philosophy 101 25 years ago. Back then, I thought he and Descarte were sheer brilliance. Today, I cannot help but think that they and others like them were just self-obsessed depressed wretches who really are not too far removed from the founders of various religions. Like religious zeolots, philosophers love a following. But I digress.
 
2008-08-19 09:09:18 AM  
Mormon were the correct answer...

/suckers...
 
2008-08-19 09:12:50 AM  
I have a nice long list of friends who are 'energy' workers (aka 'light' workers) that use reiki, healing touch and other hokey techniques that come from a wide range of religious backgrounds. All of it works. Belief is irrelevant. Anyone with a basic understanding of quantum mechanics will grasp why intent and will can shape reality, albeit on a small scale. Religion has nothign to do with it; truth is, being fundie is more of a hinderence than anything else.

http://www.courant.com/news/health/hc-healingtouch0728.artjul28,0,4379719.story

Read it and be amazed, ye non-believers.
 
2008-08-19 09:12:55 AM  
ysoythejosh, You are talking about a placebo effect. Your analogy would hold up if there was an organic illness going untreated or a legitimate physical injury. Without rehashing Sarnos books, most backpain is stress induced and can be dealt with when confronting the stressors.
 
2008-08-19 09:15:34 AM  
Lt Shiny Sides: michaellasalle:

I'm not sure which side of the argument you're making... Are you attacking god or attacking Pascal's Wager?

Pascal's Wager.
I'm just saying that if you are going to wager that god exists just to be on the safe side, I think that god would be able to see through that and know that you don't actually have faith.
I had a better explanation for this, but I have been up all night and I am not thinking too clearly at the moment.


I'm going to have to agree with you here. An omniscient god would see right through that. In which case I still shouldn't even bother with gods.
 
2008-08-19 09:16:25 AM  
michaellasalle: strafe: If praying helps you then do it while it's still legal.

Are you implying that it may soon be illegal?

Also, the rest of your argument confuses me. It looks like some roundabout version of Pascal's Wager (new window).


Will it be illegal one day? Perhaps, but I can't tell the future.

Now as for my argument confusing you, well that's because it's not an argument. I'm not trying to argue if God exists or not. It has nothing to do with wagering. I don't particularly like Pascal's Wager argument.

I'm only stating my opinion about this one particular argument that people use which is, why does God let bad things happen to good people? I'm also not claiming to have an answer for said argument. I'm only saying what I hear in my head every time someone uses that argument.

Here's what I question every time someone uses that argument. If God came down and answered all your prayers what would be the need of a new earth or a Heaven or an afterlife to begin with? We could just stay here because it would be perfect. You couldn't harm anyone with your prayers because everyone would just pray that they never got hurt. You could just throw physical reality out the window and forget about ever worrying about an afterlife.

Never mind the fact that it would be a paradox for God to answer every prayer. What if everybody asked for the last piece of cake? It couldn't happen. I'm a little smarter than that though. I'd just pray for a whole different cake.
 
2008-08-19 09:16:31 AM  
Let's test their faith with vials of Ebola-infected blood, shall we?
 
2008-08-19 09:17:20 AM  
Spanky_McFarksalot: If its a terminal illness does it really matter what helps them cope with it?

/Apparently to some farkers it does.


I'm an atheist, but I have no problem with people seeking solace in their beliefs.

What concerns me are that according to the stats in the article 1 in 5 US medical professionals believe that God will help out in a crisis. I'm sorry but I would prefer an atheist doctor who believes that this is my one and only moment of existence and that they alone are available to fight for it. Pope Innocent VII's judicial philosphy of 'kill them all and let god sort it out' is only a stone's throw from a medical philosophy that patient death is a more acceptable option if there is an afterlife.

Secondly, and this is often voiced on Fark, what irritates me is when people are pulled from a fire by brave firefighters, rescucitated by skilled paramedics, patched back together by awesome surgeons, and then go on the news to 'Thank Jesus Christ'.

Still waiting for spontaneous remission in an amputee. And for a talking snake.
 
2008-08-19 09:17:39 AM  
strafe: Will it be illegal one day?

We can hope so.
 
2008-08-19 09:18:26 AM  
michaellasalle:
Also, wasn't there a study done recently that showed that prayer is ineffective? IIRC, the subjects were divided into three groups: not prayed for, prayed for and knew it, and prayed for and didn't know it and the folks that were prayed for and knew it actually did worse than the other two groups? Wouldn't that imply a negative placebo effect?


Oh, I also meant to say that the group that knew they were being prayed for did worse because they thought there was something seriously wrong with them, since they needed to be prayed for.
 
2008-08-19 09:19:57 AM  
You have to do it right....

img529.imageshack.usimg411.imageshack.us

You see? Its like one of those classic arcade verticle scrollers where you got power-ups and could emit a devastating energy beam obliterating all oncoming attackers:

img145.imageshack.usimg185.imageshack.us


img385.imageshack.us

img411.imageshack.us

Source: Spiritual Fesearch Foundation
 
2008-08-19 09:20:06 AM  
God answers all prayers.

Sometimes the answer is "no".
 
2008-08-19 09:20:42 AM  
Empty Signal Gray : I quietly believe in something, I'm just not sure what.

Wow. Humble and inoffensive? Get the hell out of here!
 
2008-08-19 09:21:58 AM  
Brettster808
If God con indeed perform these types of medical miracles how come amputees never have their prayers answered?

duh, if you don't put your hands together, god can't hear you because your prayer sounds like "the shrieking of a neutered gay donkey being raped by a tennis racket" - Leviticus 18:22

alicialicia.files.wordpress.com
 
2008-08-19 09:22:33 AM  
Philbb: Confabulat: The people who prayed and still died anyway are unavailable for comment.

They must not have prayed hard enough or they prayed to the wrong god(s).


They were praying to the wrong piece of wood?
 
2008-08-19 09:22:50 AM  
Descartes: Is it bashing season already?

Calling someone deluded because they think praying real hard can cure disease is hardly bashing.

There's a TF thread about Kinoki foot pads. Are we bashing people who buy Kinoki foot pads?
 
2008-08-19 09:22:56 AM  
lhinds: michaellasalle: It looks like some roundabout version of Pascal's Wager (new window).


Thanks for including the window, I have not thought about Pascal since Philosophy 101 25 years ago. Back then, I thought he and Descarte were sheer brilliance. Today, I cannot help but think that they and others like them were just self-obsessed depressed wretches...


That may be true...

...who really are not too far removed from the founders of various religions. Like religious zeolots, philosophers love a following. But I digress.

...but I think your analogy is a false one. There aren't churches filled with followers devoted to Pascal and Descarte claiming to be able to cure people's illnesses or affect governmental policy or even killing others who follow Nietzche or Kant. (not that all religions do that last part, but there is this certain religion of peace...)
 
2008-08-19 09:23:50 AM  
If Medical Science has reached the limit of its treatments, then I see no harm in putting your hope in prayer -- it can't make things worse at that point.



If you're using prayer as a substitute for medical care though, then it's a problem.
 
2008-08-19 09:27:13 AM  
liberalish: Reach out and touch faith.

www.matthewmaynard.net

Am I doing it right?
 
2008-08-19 09:28:03 AM  
You know who I pray to? Joe Pesci

...he'll straighten any cocksucker right out
 
2008-08-19 09:29:19 AM  
vengo97: mungo: But why won't God heal amputees? (pops)

Funny how people always forget about this Luke Ch 22:
"47 As he was yet speaking, behold a multitude; and he that was called Judas, one of the twelve, went before them and drew near to Jesus, for to kiss him. 48 And Jesus said to him: Judas, dost thou betray the Son of man with a kiss? 49 And they that were about him, seeing what would follow, said to him: Lord, shall we strike with the sword? 50 And one of them struck the servant of the high priest and cut off his right ear. 51 But Jesus answering, said: Suffer ye thus far. And when he had touched his ear, he healed him. 52 And Jesus said to the chief priests and magistrates of the temple and the ancients, that were come unto him: Are ye come out, as it were against a thief, with swords and clubs?"


So what you are saying is that god demonstrably can heal amputations, but has deliberately left every single one suffering since? What a bastard.

Oh, and citing the Bible proves nothing. Superman comics do not prove the existence of superman.
 
2008-08-19 09:30:16 AM  
michaellasalle, I think we are mostly on the same page, but my analogy is valid in that philosophers often created schools for their followers to congregate. They did not have the size and scope of, say, the Catholic Church but they certainly ran their plays from the same book.
 
2008-08-19 09:31:01 AM  
OTA BENGA: You have to do it right....

Source: Spiritual Fesearch Foundation


Wow, I was tempted to call Poe's Law on that, but then I clicked the link and holy crap!
 
2008-08-19 09:31:36 AM  
Bartleby the Scrivener: God answers all prayers.

Sometimes
ALMOST ALWAYS the answer is "no".

FTFY
 
2008-08-19 09:32:46 AM  
lhinds: michaellasalle, I think we are mostly on the same page, but my analogy is valid in that philosophers often created schools for their followers to congregate. They did not have the size and scope of, say, the Catholic Church but they certainly ran their plays from the same book.

Gotcha. I think we are in agreement.
 
2008-08-19 09:33:17 AM  
Not too long ago, 137% of people belived the earth was flat. That didn't make it flat.
 
2008-08-19 09:34:41 AM  
I prayed, "Please God, don't let 40,000 children die today of starvation." They died, as they do every day.
 
2008-08-19 09:35:00 AM  
Fortunately, this problem kind of takes care of itself.
 
2008-08-19 09:35:36 AM  
mungo: vengo97: mungo: But why won't God heal amputees? (pops)

Funny how people always forget about this Luke Ch 22:
"47 As he was yet speaking, behold a multitude; and he that was called Judas, one of the twelve, went before them and drew near to Jesus, for to kiss him. 48 And Jesus said to him: Judas, dost thou betray the Son of man with a kiss? 49 And they that were about him, seeing what would follow, said to him: Lord, shall we strike with the sword? 50 And one of them struck the servant of the high priest and cut off his right ear. 51 But Jesus answering, said: Suffer ye thus far. And when he had touched his ear, he healed him. 52 And Jesus said to the chief priests and magistrates of the temple and the ancients, that were come unto him: Are ye come out, as it were against a thief, with swords and clubs?"

So what you are saying is that god demonstrably can heal amputations, but has deliberately left every single one suffering since? What a bastard.

Oh, and citing the Bible proves nothing. Superman comics do not prove the existence of superman.


In the animal kingdom, there are various examples of life forms growing back appendages. God can do it if he wants. This is why I believe the "chosen" are not the Jeiws. It's the Amphibians.
 
2008-08-19 09:36:16 AM  
abb3w: "Where is your evidence now?"

img64.imageshack.us

Whooho! Got to drag this out again!
 
2008-08-19 09:36:56 AM  
Brettster808: If God con indeed perform these types of medical miracles how come amputees never have their prayers answered?

you cant put your hands together in prayer with one hand

you cant get down on your knees to pray with only one knee

amputees are sinners......and probably liberals too.
 
2008-08-19 09:38:46 AM  
cowgirl toffee: mungo: vengo97: mungo: But why won't God heal amputees? (pops)

In the animal kingdom, there are various examples of life forms growing back appendages. God can do it if he wants. This is why I believe the "chosen" are not the Jeiws. It's the Amphibians.


Axolotls for Christ!
 
2008-08-19 09:39:09 AM  
GoDawgs!: Godscrack

Just sayin'

/troll for a troll


wow, when did bill start the twelve steps?

gangstarecovery.files.wordpress.com
 
2008-08-19 09:39:33 AM  
"But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly"

(Matthew 6:6)

Obviously these terminally ill people are dying because they are praying from their deathbed. Jesus makes no accommodation for this heathen practice by these uppity gnostics.
 
2008-08-19 09:39:57 AM  
300000 dead tsunami victims would like a word with God about his response system, and what they should have done in life to take priority over some spoiled criminal's need to score a touchdown that day.
 
2008-08-19 09:40:34 AM  
Impudent Domain: More than half of all atheists are shallow a-holes who like to attack other people.


And yet not a single religionist - ever, anywhere, throughout the entire history of the human race - can provide us with an operational definition for the term "God".

Funny, that.
 
2008-08-19 09:42:01 AM  
farm4.static.flickr.com
 
2008-08-19 09:42:48 AM  
omega-x: Believing something can cure you is helpful. It wouldn't necessarily matter if the "something" is prayer or sacrificing a goat. It just so happens that prayer is socially acceptable (everywhere but Fark that is). The human mind can be pretty powerful. We all know about the "placebo effect" for a reason...

Meditation has been known to calm people.

prayer = meditation.
 
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