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Everybody's pray-ay-ing...don't pray on meeeee!

post #1 of 63
Thread Starter 
That's a fantastic Bad Religion song but also a very appropriate thread title. See, the results are in from the latest multimillion dollar, 1802 patient prayer-efficacy trial. They split up coronary bypass patients into three groups. One group received no prayers. Another group received prayers but neither the doctors nor patients knew about it. The third group received prayers and did know about it.

Group 1: No prayers - 52% complication rate.
Group 2: Prayers without knowledge - 52% complication rate.
Group 3: Prayers with knowledge - 59% complication rate.

Not only are your prayers entirely unhelpful, they actually are counterproductive when your victims know about it. Keep your prayers to yourself. If you insist on believing in fairy tales and Canaanite war gods, at least take your allegedly divinely inspired book to heart.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matthew 6:5-6

And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

Your religion is hurting people. Keep it to yourself.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Bad Religion - Don't Pray on Me

I don't know what stopped Jesus Christ from turning every hungry stone into bread.
And I don't remember hearing how Moses reacted when the innocent first born says lay dead.
But I guess God was a lot more demonstrative back when he flamboyantly parted the sea.
Now everybody's praying...don't pray me on me!

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
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“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
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post #2 of 63
And the anger continues to build. Anger leads to hate, BR. Hate leads to public acts of stupidity.
The evil that we fight is but the shadow of the evil that we do.
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The evil that we fight is but the shadow of the evil that we do.
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post #3 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post

And the anger continues to build. Anger leads to hate, BR. Hate leads to public acts of stupidity.

Yeah, I know! How DARE those Atheists! Christians never do anything like that. And of course we know that just because SOME Atheists do something dumb, it means ALL Atheists are intolerant. That's what we know. Yep.
post #4 of 63
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post

And the anger continues to build. Anger leads to hate, BR. Hate leads to public acts of stupidity.

What does that have to do with a study showing prayer is not only ineffective, but harmful?

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
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post #5 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by BR View Post

That's a fantastic Bad Religion song but also a very appropriate thread title. See, the results are in from the latest multimillion dollar, 1802 patient prayer-efficacy trial. They split up coronary bypass patients into three groups. One group received no prayers. Another group received prayers but neither the doctors nor patients knew about it. The third group received prayers and did know about it.

Group 1: No prayers - 52% complication rate.
Group 2: Prayers without knowledge - 52% complication rate.
Group 3: Prayers with knowledge - 59% complication rate.

Not only are your prayers entirely unhelpful, they actually are counterproductive when your victims know about it. Keep your prayers to yourself. If you insist on believing in fairy tales and Canaanite war gods, at least take your allegedly divinely inspired book to heart.


Your religion is hurting people. Keep it to yourself.

Funny thing about this and any other prayer study. Outside of the actual study controls they cannot say who is or is not praying for any one person in the study. It is absolutely impossible to control this in any meaningful way. In other words, this and any other study is scientifically useless as they cannot ensure their controls are effective.

And you can stop quoting verses out of context. It is not referencing prayers for healing, but self promoting prayers that are intended to make you look better in the eyes of your peers. read the context.
NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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post #6 of 63
Thread Starter 
They had a specific group of people to do the praying in the study. Sure, others might have as well, but it was the knowledge vs no-knowledge variable that actually turned out to have an effect--and that IS something that can be controlled. Knowing that you were being prayed for was correlated to a significantly higher complication rate. In other words, shut up and keep your prayers to yourself. They probably won't do anything anyway, but at least you aren't making things worse when you remain silent.

Also, a lot of the "I'll pray for you" I have run into has been grandstanding. My context is just fine. Pray behind closed doors so Yahweh doesn't get angry.

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply
post #7 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by BR View Post

They had a specific group of people to do the praying in the study. Sure, others might have as well, but it was the knowledge vs no-knowledge variable that actually turned out to have an effect--and that IS something that can be controlled. Knowing that you were being prayed for was correlated to a significantly higher complication rate. In other words, shut up and keep your prayers to yourself. They probably won't do anything anyway, but at least you aren't making things worse when you remain silent.

Also, a lot of the "I'll pray for you" I have run into has been grandstanding. My context is just fine. Pray behind closed doors so Yahweh doesn't get angry.

Too many variables to make any conclusive connection either way. God is not a test subject that performs on command and dispenses like a vending machine. Read the last 2 paragraphs of your article for a couple of responses that have a bit of validity.

I would agree, people do grandstand saying they will pray for you. It's almost the same as saying, I'll be thinking of you. Discipline in any form is not what it used to be for most people. And to pretend that knowing someone is praying for you makes you sicker is bogus even from a non-believing perspective. That is like, for someone who does not believe in the power of prayer, a sentimental hope you that get better is best kept to yourself. Makes no sense at all. There are far too many variables that have been omitted here to make any correlation.

Your context is not fine, as you make claim that no public prayer is acceptable, and there are many instances in scripture of Jesus himself openly praying in public. There is a place for public prayer, as well as private prayer. Your context is wrong.
NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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post #8 of 63
Thread Starter 
You failed to read the beginning of the article which clearly gave some reasons for the higher rate of complications. Also, of course a FRIAR and a PRIEST are going to come up with excuses--just as you have. The friar says its sinful to think of Yahweh, the Canaanite war god, as an instrument. The priest says its unfair to test Yahweh, the Canaanite war god. In fact, dissecting the priest's statement, he is in fact admitting to the utter futility of prayer to Yahweh, the Canaanite war god, analog to the Greek Ares and the Norse Tyr. Regardless, the last two paragraphs really don't bring up any valid arguments against the study whatsoever.

By the way, why do you keep speaking as if Yahweh, the Canaanite war god, were real?

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
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post #9 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by BR View Post

You failed to read the beginning of the article which clearly gave some reasons for the higher rate of complications. Also, of course a FRIAR and a PRIEST are going to come up with excuses--just as you have. The friar says its sinful to think of Yahweh, the Canaanite war god, as an instrument. The priest says its unfair to test Yahweh, the Canaanite war god. In fact, dissecting the priest's statement, he is in fact admitting to the utter futility of prayer to Yahweh, the Canaanite war god, analog to the Greek Ares and the Norse Tyr. Regardless, the last two paragraphs really don't bring up any valid arguments against the study whatsoever.

By the way, why do you keep speaking as if Yahweh, the Canaanite war god, were real?

For your last question, because he is real. If you don't like it, too bad, it does not hurt you for me to believe it.

For your assertion of cause, here is what they said:

Quote:
The team speculated that telling patients about the prayers may have caused "performance anxiety," or perhaps a fear that doctors expected the worst.

So according to you and from your perspective, since prayer is totally in your mind anyhow, people should not express any well wishes towards someone or a hope for recovery since it might cause ""performance anxiety", or perhaps a fear that doctors expected the worst." Lets stop treating them as people and instead go with a sterile, they are just numbers, so there can be no misunderstanding of intent. That would be awesome, thanks BR. You have just made my healthcare less personal and caring. Awesome.
NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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post #10 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by BR View Post

That's a fantastic Bad Religion song but also a very appropriate thread title. See, the results are in from the latest multimillion dollar, 1802 patient prayer-efficacy trial. They split up coronary bypass patients into three groups. One group received no prayers. Another group received prayers but neither the doctors nor patients knew about it. The third group received prayers and did know about it.

Group 1: No prayers - 52% complication rate.
Group 2: Prayers without knowledge - 52% complication rate.
Group 3: Prayers with knowledge - 59% complication rate.

Not only are your prayers entirely unhelpful, they actually are counterproductive when your victims know about it. Keep your prayers to yourself. If you insist on believing in fairy tales and Canaanite war gods, at least take your allegedly divinely inspired book to heart.


Your religion is hurting people. Keep it to yourself.


There are plenty of other studies that show the exact opposite.
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post #11 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

There are plenty of other studies that show the exact opposite.

Yep. And weighing all of them together, one can see that at most, prayer is a good placebo.
post #12 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

Yep. And weighing all of them together, one can see that at most, prayer is a good placebo.

Fair enough. But suggesting that it actually hurts people (as this study appears to claim) is ridiculous.
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post #13 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

Fair enough. But suggesting that it actually hurts people (as this study appears to claim) is ridiculous.

As is claiming that it helps.
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From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
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post #14 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

Fair enough. But suggesting that it actually hurts people (as this study appears to claim) is ridiculous.

Well, when prayer is used in addition to scientifically proven treatment, it may not hurt. But when it's used instead of scientifically proven treatment, it can actually hurt people quite a lot. And it does. My grandmother died from fully treatable pneumonia because of religion.
post #15 of 63
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

There are plenty of other studies that show the exact opposite.

Cite them and their methods.

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
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post #16 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by BR View Post

Cite them and their methods.

Now you're just being unreasonable!... you know darn well that it is up to you to prove that those studies DON'T exist ... if you can't prove, absolutely, that they DON'T exist, then by default, they DO exist !!!
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
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From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
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post #17 of 63
Yes, because the scientific study of Prayer has never come up before at PO. Let's just all repeat everything ad nauseum.

Personally, I don't really care what atheists think of prayer.
I am, however, fascinated by their apparent constant dread and fear of this thing, which they claim they don't believe in at all.

I don't believe in Allah, or Buddha, or any other God but Yahweh. However, I don't post thread after thread denouncing the millions of people who pray to those deities. I may personally think that atheists are fools for not seeing the forest for the trees, but in all my years here I don't think I've ever started a thread specifically to mock or challenge atheism.

That BR sees the need to flash giant coloured signatures at Christians is amusing.
That he sees Rick Perry's attendance at a prayer rally as threatening is actually somewhat entertaining.

Tonton tries to pin his grandmother's death on religion to raise the stakes, but no denominations I'm aware of ban the treatment of pneumonia. The New Testament actually records that Timothy was instructed to use wine medicinally to help his stomach problems. Granted, it says nothing of antibiotics, but that's probably understandable.
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post #18 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by KingOfSomewhereHot View Post

As is claiming that it helps.

You are free to believe that. This one study doesn't prove prayer is ineffective definitively.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BR View Post

Cite them and their methods.

There's really no point in me doing that. You'll blast anything that even appears to show prayer can help. As to the study you've presented, it doesn't really prove anything. I think you're smart enough to know why.
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post #19 of 63
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

You are free to believe that. This one study doesn't prove prayer is ineffective definitively.

But the results are indeed intriguing and further study should be done. The authors did say that the effect indeed had statistical significance. You can't pretend it did not because it is inconvenient to your worldview.



Quote:
There's really no point in me doing that. You'll blast anything that even appears to show prayer can help. As to the study you've presented, it doesn't really prove anything. I think you're smart enough to know why.

No, I'll blast anything that uses inappropriate methodology. I just think you froze like Eric Cartman did.


Quote:
Cartman: Suck my balls.
Ms. Choksondik: Present them.
Cartman: What?
Ms. Choksondik: Present: Whip them out and I'll suck 'em.

Present them. Oh? You won't? Then sit down, shut up, pay attention, and learn something in this class.

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
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post #20 of 63
While I dont wish to derail this thread, I think I have to point out some details.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank777
I don't believe in Allah, or Buddha, or any other God but Yahweh. However, I don't post thread after thread denouncing the millions of people who pray to those deities.

Allah is not a name, its the Arabic word for God (like Dios, Alaha, Theos (θεός) Gott, Dio, Dieu, etc.). In the Middle East, Christians (of all denominations), Muslims, and Jews, have been using the word Allah to refer to God for many centuries, and they generally agree (one of the few things they actually agree about) it is the same deity.

In recent years though, I began hearing, mostly from North American sources, that it was a separate deity. For the time being, I have failed to detect the origin of that misunderstanding.

Incidentally, there has recently been a controversy in Malaysia when a Christian congregation began using in its liturgy the word Allah, which is also the word for God in Bahasa Malaysia. Malaysian Muslims felt it was an affront to Islam or something, which shows the misunderstanding is more common than I thought.

Other than that, I have found that within most religions, one finds many different opinions and approachs (often depending on individual thinking) about what prayer is and what its purpose is supposed to be.
The one Im most familiar with (full disclosure: its the one mentioned somewhere in R Mosheh Ben Maimons Dalalat Al-Hayirin) is that the reason for prayer is to fulfill a human need rather than to bring certain outcomes, so to speak.

This said, I presently lack enough information on the study above-mentioned to form an opinion about it.
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post #21 of 63
Now that I think of it, I remember that in the Canaanite pantheon it was Anat who was the goddess of war, among other things.

Perhaps theres more recent scholarship updating it, Ill have to look for it
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post #22 of 63
Thread Starter 
You are correct about Anat. However, in many of these ancient pantheons there are multiple gods of war. Odin and Tyr are gods of war in the Norse pantheon, Athena & Ares in the Greek. You can also find Yahweh cited as a Canaanite war god in Karen Armstrong's "A History of God."

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply
post #23 of 63
Thank you BR, Ill search these documents.
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post #24 of 63
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Immanuel Goldstein View Post

Thank you BR, Ill search these documents.

Hey, so apparently I remembered incorrectly. Yahweh was a Canaanite storm god who was then taken as the Israelite war god. Sorry about that!

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
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post #25 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by BR View Post

But the results are indeed intriguing and further study should be done. The authors did say that the effect indeed had statistical significance. You can't pretend it did not because it is inconvenient to your worldview.

I'm not ignoring or pretending anything. I'm simply saying there are problems with the study. Ugh...I really need to go through this for you?

Quote:



No, I'll blast anything that uses inappropriate methodology (and anything that shows prayer is effective.) I just think you froze like Eric Cartman did.

There. Fixed that for you.


Quote:
Present them. Oh? You won't? Then sit down, shut up, pay attention, and learn something in this class.

I don't feel like looking things up for you this evening. I'm really not interested in having a pissing contest with you.
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post #26 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

There. Fixed that for you.

No, you didn't. You just lied about what someone said or meant. As you often do.
post #27 of 63
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

No, you didn't. You just lied about what someone said or meant. As you often do.

That he did.

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply
post #28 of 63
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

I don't feel like looking things up for you this evening. I'm really not interested in having a pissing contest with you.

Present your balls your sit down, Cartman.

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
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post #29 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by Immanuel Goldstein View Post

Incidentally, there has recently been a controversy in Malaysia when a Christian congregation began using in its liturgy the word “Allah”, which is also the word for “God” in Bahasa Malaysia. Malaysian Muslims felt it was an affront to Islam or something, which shows the misunderstanding is more common than I thought.

It was/is sheer stupidity. It's the same God FFS. Even as a kid in Malaysia I learnt that Islam refers to Jesus as Nabi Isa (Nabi meaning "prophet") and Christmas as "Hari Natal" or simply "Hari Krismas".

The divergence is between East and West Malaysia. In East Malaysia there are a variety of races and tribes so Bahasa Malaysia is used as a common language. However Islam is not a common religion due to East Malaysia following a slightly different path than Peninsular Malaya. So Allah is allowed to be used by churches.

For Peninsular Malaysia though it becomes a big deal because while freedom of religion is supposedly allowed, ethnic Malays must be Muslims and non-Malays cannot "proselytise" to ethnic Malays. Hence "Allah" used in Christian sermons is feared... in fact Christian, Buddhist or Hindu services of any kind conducted in Bahasa Malaysia is rare for fear of being seen as an attempt to convert ethnic Malays.

"Tuhan" is generally the politically correct term to use as it means "God" in the most generic sense. "Dewa" and "Dewi" are used for polytheistic religions like Confucianist Buddhism and Hinduism. But "Allah" need not be exclusive. For example from our Indonesian neighbours:



"God is Love"

"Allah" would at this stage NEVER be allowed for a church sign in Peninsular Malaysia. It would almost certainly be vandalised overnight.

The main issue is that Malaysia is by now a de facto Muslim state. And where would they look to for guidance? Mainly the Middle East being the last "strongholds" of Islam... Not Indonesia, ironically, which is seen as somehow being more liberal.

The clusterfuck in Malaysia will not ease up as long as by birth you are assigned a religion and rights based on your race.

I'm in Australia right now, having moved a few weeks ago to give things a go here.

To BR... people praying or not praying for me was the least of my worries in Malaysia, trust me.
post #30 of 63
Any moderate Muslim, Christian or Jew I think would normally accept it is the same God... There are some differences, but also similarities:

The Malay Islamic view of Jesus:
http://ms.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nabi_Isa_a.s.

(Some excerpts, loosely translated)
  • Jesus is one... [that has] high status / special along with ( Prophet Muhammad, the Prophet Abraham, Moses and Noah ).
  • Jesus was sent to people of Israel
  • Jesus was not God or son of God, but only one human being raised to the level of prophets as well as all other prophets sent in their respective races.
  • The miraculous birth of Jesus occurred without the biological father, on the authority of God. His mother (Mary) is of them pure and unspoiled, the power of God can happen, just like Adam without father and mother can be created on the will of the God that is omnipotent.
  • Jesus has some magic on the power of God. In addition to his birth, he was able to talk at the age of only a few days, Jesus spoke and defended his mother from charges of adultery.
  • The Qur'an also tells the story he revived the dead, healed the blind and [those with some sort of complexion problems].
  • Jesus received revelations from God through the Gospel (referring to New Testament religion of Christianity )
  • Jesus was not killed or crucified, God made him look like that to deceive His enemies. There are some opinions that say Jesus himself transported directly to heaven and that a false enemy is the one who was crucified.
  • There are other opinions that say that he who was crucified by Roman soldiers was not Jesus but Judas Iscariot.
  • Jesus is still alive and in heaven, one day he will come back to earth to fight the Antichrist (or the Antichrist in the Christian religion) and is one of the nearby signs of the Hour.
  • Jesus is not a salvation for mankind, Islam rejects the concept of sin and embraces the concept that every human being is responsible and will be judged on their behavior.
post #31 of 63
You see, ideally, Jews, Christians and Muslims can just sit down and discuss what is similar, what is different, and continue on their way.

The challenge, personally, to me, is that most of the stuff in the Judaeo- Christian texts now clash very strongly with our modern understanding and modern way of life.

So if you're telling a Christian, "this is how it is", you're possibly pushing them a bit further to one side and pushing a Muslim a bit to the other side. To illustrate, let's say on the resurrection of Jesus. Firstly, a modern day agnostic would be skeptical. A Christian would believe strongly in it while a Muslim must by doctrine reject that Jesus was resurrected in any Christian sense. You see the polarity imposed on the modern mind?
post #32 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

No, you didn't. You just lied about what someone said or meant. As you often do.

Did I? Do you really mean to claim he wouldn't dismiss evidence that conflicts with his apparently very strong anti-religious views? Come on, tonton. At least make your BS plausible.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BR View Post

Present your balls your sit down, Cartman.

The intellectual dishonesty is amazing. You know they are there. You've probably even seen them. I'm not going to play the game where I present each study only to have you discredit and dismiss it, then lob another personal attack. Have a nice day.
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post #33 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

Did I? Do you really mean to claim he wouldn't dismiss evidence that conflicts with his apparently very strong anti-religious views? Come on, tonton. At least make your BS plausible.

No. I actually find BR's respect for scientific study quite reasonable. He's not the idiotic type who will say, "I don't care about the facts, if it's from [Huffington Post], I won't even consider the possibility that the conclusion might be correct." That kind of nonsense is left for the blind partisan assholes. BR has never shown to be of the sort. He asked for am example of a scientifically valid study that shows the benefit of prayer, and that is a perfectly valid request. I'm certain there are some studies of the sort that exist. As I said, prayer is a perfectly good placebo, and the placebo effect has been proven to be scientifically valid.
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The intellectual dishonesty is amazing. You know they are there. You've probably even seen them. I'm not going to play the game where I present each study only to have you discredit and dismiss it, then lob another personal attack. Have a nice day.

Who is lobbing personal attacks, Mr. Pot?
post #34 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by nvidia2008
For Peninsular Malaysia though it becomes a big deal because while freedom of religion is supposedly allowed, ethnic Malays must be Muslims and non-Malays

That always puzzled me, as countries with much older Muslim traditions (Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia, Iran) one can be non-Muslim and still be considered Egyptian or Moroccan, in theory at least (lets just say the situation has become more difficult in recent decades).

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The main issue is that Malaysia is by now a de facto Muslim state. And where would they look to for guidance? Mainly the Middle East being the last "strongholds" of Islam... Not Indonesia, ironically, which is seen as somehow being more liberal.

Indonesias Muslim majority is overwhelming, unlike Malaysias, and yet its more pluralist. Islam in Indonesia is also known to be softer (in a sense resembling Middle Eastern Islam of Medieaeval times), one of its recent representatives was the late Abdurrahman Wahid nicknamed Gus Dur.
Perhaps its due to differences in historical traditions between those two countries, or to different colonial legacies, I havent dug that deep.
Yet, a Middle Eastern inspired brand of Islam (well, often funded by deep Saudi pockets) is currently making inroads in Indonesia. Ive heard that the Aceh province now implements Syariah law. But I havent followed the news closely.

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You see, ideally, Jews, Christians and Muslims can just sit down and discuss what is similar, what is different, and continue on their way.

Ive had the privilege to experience that, alas the trend of rising intolerant religious/political ideologies has made it more difficult, notably in the Middle East.

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The challenge, personally, to me, is that most of the stuff in the Judaeo- Christian texts now clash very strongly with our modern understanding and modern way of life.

I admit having some trouble with the term Judeao-Christian since Islam and Judaism are closer to each other than they are to Chritianity.

The Levantine (as in originating from the Levant) monotheist religions had a huge influence on a sizable part of the World, but they are now challenged by modernity.
As populations are affected by modernity, they tend to question old religious certainties.

For Chrisitans and Jews, first affected by modernity, most of the population became secular (as in no longer participating in organised religion, although many might have kept some form of belief from their religion). It seems to me Muslims are currently undergoing the same process.

The recent surges in religious/political ideologies are, in my view, last-ditch battles against the modern world, although some say theyre actually turning back the tide, we shall see about that

Those religions are often deeply wedded to the traditional pre-industrial social model so they are in trouble, I think.
If they adapt to the modern knowledge (notably scientific knowledge that indeed contradicts what one thought one knew) and modern mores such as a society of emancipated individuals where religion no longer holds political power, emancipation of women and of minorities (ethnic, religious, sexual, etc.), while still able to keep some of their main beliefs, they will make it.

Historically, weve seen religions go to great lengths to adapt to dynamic realities, even when it meant updating much of their beliefs and practices. So I think its possible, although I could be wrong.

Meanwhile, I remember reading recently, in a Catholic publication, that seculars were only a dozen or so millions a century ago, while only a few dozens millions shy of a billion today, putting them at number three behind Christians and Muslims, and ahead of Hindus.
Perhaps not the Worlds fastest growing religion, but fastest growing nonetheless.
But that doesnt mean religions days are numbered though.
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« Jparle pas aux cons, ça les instruit. »

From Les Tontons Flingueurs


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post #35 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

No. I actually find BR's respect for scientific study quite reasonable.

Sounds like a personal problem.

Quote:
He's not the idiotic type who will say, "I don't care about the facts, if it's from [Huffington Post], I won't even consider the possibility that the conclusion might be correct."

You're right. He's the other idiotic type who claims to embrace logic and dispassionate analysis while pushing a rigidly ideological viewpoint replete with personal attacks.

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That kind of nonsense is left for the blind partisan assholes. BR has never shown to be of the sort.

Eh...he's made many partisan posts, but regardless...he's blindly ideological.

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He asked for am example of a scientifically valid study that shows the benefit of prayer, and that is a perfectly valid request.

Coming from a place of intellectual honesty, I agree. But who is kidding who?

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I'm certain there are some studies of the sort that exist.

So...you're certain. I'm certain. BR is certain, though he won't admit it. Why do I need to look them up? Oh, right...because it's really about the game of mocking those with religious beliefs, not actually discussing anything.

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As I said, prayer is a perfectly good placebo, and the placebo effect has been proven to be scientifically valid.

But that is not what BR is claiming. He's claiming that prayers actually hurt the sick.

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Who is lobbing personal attacks, Mr. Pot?

Pointing out intellectual dishonesty is not a personal attack. Saying BR has been a real dick lately...that's a personal attack.
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post #36 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by Immanuel Goldstein View Post

That always puzzled me, as countries with much older Muslim traditions (Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia, Iran) one can be non-Muslim and still be considered Egyptian or Moroccan, in theory at least (let’s just say the situation has become more difficult in recent decades).

It is indeed puzzling. I would say that during the pre-1900s to 1970s ethnic Malays simply considered Islam part of the Malay culture. There was enough widespread flexibility in their practice of Islam that I think they didn't question the "forcing" of religion upon them. There are many instances of more liberal dress codes, drinking of alcohol, witchcraft and other such "deviations" in the past. Post-WW2 things became more complicated because with the exposure to the modern world they caught the whiff of "standardised" Islam. In the past 20 years there have certainly been Malays that do not want to play ball with "standardised" Islam, the most prevalent strategy being paying lip service to their parents and the mosques while just doing whatever the heck they wanted (sex, drugs and rock n' roll [well, electronic music]).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Immanuel Goldstein View Post

Indonesia’s Muslim majority is overwhelming, unlike Malaysia’s, and yet it’s more pluralist. Islam in Indonesia is also known to be “softer” (in a sense resembling Middle Eastern Islam of Medieaeval times), one of its recent representatives was the late Abdurrahman Wahid nicknamed Gus Dur. Perhaps it’s due to differences in historical traditions between those two countries, or to different colonial legacies, I haven’t dug that deep. Yet, a Middle Eastern “inspired” brand of Islam (well, often funded by deep Saudi pockets) is currently making inroads in Indonesia. I’ve heard that the Aceh province now implements Syariah law. But I haven’t followed the news closely.

Yeah, I've never understood this. Indonesia has always been viewed by Malaysians as being more liberal. Their music, movies and lifestyles are thought of as being more liberal. One thing you could consider is that Indonesia has not had to contend with a large Chinese and Indian population relative to the size of the major cities. For example, the greater Kuala Lumpur metro area has significant Chinese and Indian populations though still being the minority. Jakarta is mostly "Indonesian". But I too haven't followed Indonesia too closely.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Immanuel Goldstein View Post

For Chrisitans and Jews, first affected by modernity, most of the population became secular (as in no longer participating in organised religion, although many might have kept some form of belief from their religion). It seems to me Muslims are currently undergoing the same process.

The catch is Christianity has a half-a-millenia head start in the separation from Roman Catholicism. The Church of England was the result of some rather heretical deviations from Christianity as it was known then. Protestants have a higher level of flexibility in worship compared to Islam... Since Islam didn't have a King Henry with a big army. The closest would have been the Ottoman empire(?). But I could be stretching things here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Immanuel Goldstein View Post

But that doesn’t mean religions’ days are numbered though.

I've pointed it out before. The dichotomy is this. We have all the power of modern society at our disposal. But do we know when or how we are going to die? Do we know how to prevent it? What will the air be like tomorrow? Will I get a job? Will I get cancer? There is still much uncertainty and religion of whatever kind seems to be the solution for a lot of people.
post #37 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

But that is not what BR is claiming. He's claiming that prayers actually hurt the sick.

And the scientifically valid study he cited supports that claim, at least under the arguably narrow scope of the study. Did you read it?
post #38 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

And the scientifically valid study he cited supports that claim, at least under the arguably narrow scope of the study. Did you read it?

Arguably narrow? Honestly, I'm less concerned with that than I am the logical leap BR made. We have a study showed a modestly increased rate when people were told they were being prayed for by strangers. So it's a very narrow study. From this point, BR stated:

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Your religion is hurting people. Keep it to yourself.

Surely you can see the problem here?

And as for the study itself: I'm sorry, but one study (valid or not) does not prove the point, especially when the results are so modest. Also, despite being proclaimed "scientifically valid," I'm not so sure. What specific prayers were said? Who prayed? Did they pray for a group, or one person each? What other medical variables were there? What complications occurred? How serious were they? Was treatment successful despite the complications? There are just too many variables for me to take this study seriously. Add to that the leap BR made, and the whole thing becomes, well, a joke.
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post #39 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

... Also, despite being proclaimed "scientifically valid," I'm not so sure. What specific prayers were said? Who prayed? Did they pray for a group, or one person each? What other medical variables were there? What complications occurred? How serious were they? Was treatment successful despite the complications? There are just too many variables for me to take this study seriously. Add to that the leap BR made, and the whole thing becomes, well, a joke.

I agree that the "study" could be scientifically questionable. But those same arguments you just made also easily refute every claim of the existence of God at all.
If you wish to use those claims/questions to denounce (or even merely question) the validity of this study, shouldn't you also denounce (or at least question) the existence of God based on the same questions?
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post #40 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by KingOfSomewhereHot View Post

I agree that the "study" could be scientifically questionable. But those same arguments you just made also easily refute every claim of the existence of God at all.
If you wish to use those claims/questions to denounce (or even merely question) the validity of this study, shouldn't you also denounce (or at least question) the existence of God based on the same questions?

I really don't think so. Those questions are really just to demonstrate the large number of variables that really can't be accounted for. Also, don't proceed from a false assumption that believers don't question God's existence and other aspects of their faith. Many do...including me.
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