To Whom Are We To Pray? The God who caused Hurricane Harvey, or the God who did nothing to stop it? Trump declares “National Day of Prayer.”
President Trump has declared Sunday a “National Day of Prayer” in honor of Texans and others affected by Hurricane Harvey. At a signing ceremony in the Oval Office, Trump, surrounded by conservative Christian leaders, said:
From the beginning of our nation, Americans have joined together in prayer during times of great need to ask for God’s blessing and God’s guidance. When we look across Texas and Louisiana, we see the American spirit of service embodied by countless men and women. We invite all Americans to join us as we continue to pray for those who have lost family members and friends, and for those who are suffering from this great crisis.
Trump is a poseur, and a charlatan, and in this he has a great deal in common with the conservative Christian leaders gathered around him. His declaration of prayer is nothing but pomp and circumstance meant to impress and placate gullible rubes.
As for the “National Day of Prayer,” the uncomfortable truth that many cannot accept is that God does not exist, and that prayers are ultimately futile gestures – empty expressions of existential desperation and metaphysical confusion.
For all intents and purposes, prayer is spiritual masturbation: it might make the person doing the praying feel a little better, but prayers do nothing to effect change in the real world.
Prayers will do nothing to help the victims of Hurricane Harvey.
Prayers are the consequence of irrational beliefs, and it is irrational beliefs that allow people to do hurtful and irrational things, like kill and maim the innocent, or demonize LGBT individuals, or shun family members who reject religious superstition, all in the name of a God that does not exist.
If not prayer, if not religion, what are we to do?
We must rise above the religious superstitions that divide us. We must be honest with ourselves and our communities.
There is a lot of hate, bigotry, and ignorance that comes with following ancient and discredited religious dogma.
We must transcend that hate.
Bottom line: Religion divides us. We must reject religious superstition, and embrace our common humanity.
For those who want to help, don’t pray, donate here: Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund