Est. May 2008

21 September, 2012

Praying To A Higher Power

Anne Rice, recent returnee to Catholicism and even more recent abandoner of same, claims in a recent video that she prays to a ‘Higher Power”:
"I believe that there is a Higher Power, but what that Higher Power is, I do not know," Rice says in her Sept. 18 video. "Is it a personal higher power with emotions that cares about us personally? I hope so. But do I know that that's what's out there? No I don't. Do I pray to this Higher Power? Yes, I pray every day. I pray at morning, I pray at night, I pray all during the day."
As a Christian, I find myself wanting to ask her, ‘Why?’

Prayer is direct communication with God, right?  And if one is involved in direct communication with someone else, one kind of expects the other to at least be hearing them, if not actively listening.  We hope the other cares enough to respond to our words, particularly if we’re asking for their help on something; in like manner, if we are asking for assistance, we hope that the one we’re asking cares enough to help us out.

Now, if you don’t believe there’s a personal, caring God, why in the world would you waste your time trying to communicate directly with Him (Her/It/Whatever) through prayer?  That’s like talking to a brick wall.  Well, actually, it’s more like praying to a phone-pole-mounted electrical transformer box: it’s ‘higher’ than you are (usually five times higher than you are, maybe more) and it’s definitely more powerful than you are (just grab the wires coming out of it to find that out).  But you’d no more pray to a brick wall or that transformer box simply because you already know it’s not going to respond to you.

That’s why these people who say they don’t believe in God, but believe in a ‘Higher Power’, are actually admitting they don’t want to believe in God: God – the real God – demands too much; a ‘Higher Power’ doesn’t make demands.  It’s an idol in the line of those described by Isaiah: made by human hands, conforming to human desires.

There is one thing in the article that I find myself agreeing with: Ms Rice’s statement that one doesn’t choose to be religious.  Religion is part and parcel of who we are – it’s our gods which differ – and everybody worships something, be it the God of the Bible, the ‘Higher Power’, some other ‘official’ god (Allah, Vishnu, Buddha, and so on), or the gods of money, power, self-determination, or political-correctness.

As to praying to any god other than God, well, don’t be too surprised if your ‘god’ doesn’t answer you.

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