This is something I was never able to get a straight answer to. When tragedy strikes you often hear the religious say things like "it's in god's hands", "god has his reasons", or "god has a plan". O RLY? Then what's the point of praying and asking for peace/strength/hope/a cure, etc. if god has already decided if he's going to screw you over? When you probe further you inevitably end up with some totally contradictory explanation of "Free Will". I'm sorry but NO. You can't have it both ways; it simply does not make sense. Sounds to me like the sick game of some omnipotent prick who gets off on hearing his victims plead.

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Well - both the Noah and the Jesus incidents seem to indicate that this god does not really stick to his plans. Which would be a good thing if the new plans were an improvement.
Let's face it, that guy sucks as project manager. Let's fire him.
I'll call a meeting. You bring the doughnuts.


Let's bring Bill Lumbergh to do the deed!!
Your problem is that you're using logic. Now cut that out. ;)
I have the very same blooming problem!
Why pray if this god has already decided?
What's the point?
Why bother to change anything at all? Why bother to be good people? Wars, crime, starvation, disease, natural disasters – ALL GOD'S PLAN!
not sure, but I think the point of praying is to help the person come to some sort of acceptance of gods will?? maybe like meditating?
I dunno...
One of the very things that got my rationalist wheels spinning back when I was Xian.

I like George Carlin's solution: pray to Danny DeVito. He gets shit done.
I thought it was Joe Pesci..but i could be wrong...
Yes, it is Pesci. Danny DeVito would just lie to try to get what you want...and probably fail. lol
The problem is that the idea of free will contradicts an omnipotent god who has already set everything up!

You can try to explain to them through determinism though ;) Which really is just a long string of cause and effect starting when that person became a theist and decided to believe in god, it was also bound to happen that this person would pray in return when disaster happened.

I wonder what the theist would say about that (probably that it goes against free will lol). But you have no free will if god controls everything! Doh.
We better go ask a priest.

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