• Oh please, "I don't believe in a maker of all things", let this be "OK" instead of a misunderstood  mess ! I'll ask in the name  of "Nexus" ! Ain't nobody else,.....right ? If I may, I would care to share something with my comrades here at A.N. I was, like many of you, born into religion. Can't help that,..don't want to. Oh shit ! He doesn't want to ! Problem is,..I love that old country building, and ,the people it represents. I bare no shame with that statement, and, I am prepared to defend it, if I must. I am still a member there and will be for the remainder of my life, I hope ! It was instrumental in my upbringing and I like who I am . I feel that everyone can read between the lines and save me the trouble of typing this on out (poor eyesight). Please understand,.. I never claim to ,any one lucid ,to be something that I am not . If they the are 99, I'm not gonna give 'um a heart attack by telling them the fucking truth !! I have little trouble coming out . For one ,.. most are dead,.. second, Bible belt are not, I don't give a shit !

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No, you don't have to be anti-religion to be an atheist.  It's just the most-heard point of view. 

I've thought it would be interesting to have a group on AN, "the good side of religion".  It would probably have to be moderated though, so it didn't fill up with "the bad side of religion". 

Often when atheists criticize certain religious points of view, they aren't seeing religion from the inside.  They are evaluating it as a nonbeliever, and it would look different to a believer. 

I think praying is just talking to yourself, but that's just my opinion.

I would not use the term "wrong", I would use the term "moot".

I read in Scientific American a while ago an article on the placebo effect. In the case of pray, the placebo effect will never grow a limb back or fight the Black Plague, but it might set a 'true believers' mind to rest and/or reduce their mental stress.  This may then have positive flow on effects for mental health and even allow the immune system to go back to normal, and from this fight infection to a better degree.

Dawkins also did an interesting documentary 'The Irrational Health Service'. In it he said something similar to the above.

So, if you truly believe in pray, and if it helps you to become calm, then I think it is a good thing for those who do it. 

Personally I never pray. And I don't think it is right or wrong. 

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