The following essay is a guest post from an atheist mother in response to the massacre in Connecticut on December 14, 2012.
“Some of God’s greatest gifts…are unanswered prayers…” sang country singer, Garth Brooks. It sounds so wonderful, doesn’t it?
Why do we keep praying to a god that obviously has no interest in us-or more accurately, probably does not exist at all? My theory is that we do it because we feel we have nothing else to offer. The danger being that we start to believe it and prayer is all we do. Prayer will not change the incidents of December 14 or the days before or the days to come. Action might. At least action has a fighting chance. Continue to pray if it helps you in some small way, but do not stop there. Unless you are so egotistical to believe that your desires are more important than others’ desires, that your prayers somehow deserve the attention of some deity that the other prayers obviously did not, DO SOMETHING MORE THAN PRAY.
Why do we offer prayers for the families whose children were murdered? Do we not, as parents, know that every god believer in the group had spent every day – no every moment – since the birth of their children praying for their well-being, just as each of us who are parents would have done? I know I did. I spent hours in conversation with a “god” in desperate plea that my children would be safe, happy, healthy, not to mention joyous and compassionate.
Why should your prayer for these parents be any more effective than all the prayers those parents made for all those years? Were they praying to the wrong god? Do you pray to the right one? Please do not even attempt to tell me that God loves each of us more than our own parents. BULL SHIT! Don’t even try to compare your god’s love with my parents’ love or the love I have for my children. I guarantee you that either of my parents, being in the building as God was supposedly, would have stopped that idiot shooter or died trying to save me or any other child. No force on earth could have stopped me from getting in between a shooter and one of my children…where was your god?
Do not tell me that we cannot know God’s will. God gets let off the hook time and time again using this ridiculous claim. If it was “God’s will” that those children were gunned down, then what the fuck are we doing worshipping such a god?
Then comes, “…but god gave man free-will…” You might be right- we might have free-will, but that makes any god ineffective, no longer omnipotent. What then is “god”? If you claim God is omnipresent, then I repeat, where was your god? Omniscient? Then God should have known not to give us freewill.
If you live in fear of eternal damnation, then when the time comes to decide to obey God on your appointment to hell, just use your all-powerful free will and choose not to accept. In the meantime, continue to pray if you must, but do not stop there. It is dangerous to believe prayer is all we can do. Prayer will not change the incidents of yesterday or the days before or the days to come. Action might.