Monday, August 11, 2014

Out praying the Arabs

We Jews have believed in praying for military victories since the time of the Bible. In days of yore, there was a certain logic to this. Our enemies were pagans, who worshiped the false, graven gods, while our prayers were directed to the One True King. 

But now? Now, our enemies also address their prayers to the One True King. What's worse, our enemies outnumber us, and they pray more frequently, and with greater fervor, too, if YouTube can be trusted.  If the videos can be believed, they don't chat during prayers, and they seem to stay perfectly focused on the words and their meaning from beginning to end. 

According to our Rabbis, we need to raise up a great sound of prayer, but the great sound of prayer raised by the Muslims drowns us out. If we believe that prayer works, i.e. if we believe prayer spurs God to action, and that they work best when they are said fervently and in great numbers. Doesn't it follow  that their prayers are more powerful?

Possible solutions

God won't answer the prayers of the Muslims because then it will seem like the Jews aren't really his special guys. So for the sake of the glory of his own name He ignores Muslims prayers when they beseech him to harm the Jews. FLAW: If God is just going to impose His own calculations on the process and ignore prayers when it suits Him what's the point of praying in the first place

God takes into account the character of the person who is offering the prayers. We don't have to worry about the power of Muslim prayers, because they're being offered by morally corrupt people. FLAW: Says who? The Muslims will be happy to explain to you why they are morally exquisite and we are morally corrupt. And even if we can agree that God will ignore the prayers of terrorist murderers, what about the billion or so Muslims who pray 5 x per day and aren't terrorist murderers? And again if you say God focuses His attention on the person doing the praying, the actual prayer itself ceases to matter. 

In reality prayers don't spur God to action. In reality, we pray to improve ourselves with the expectation that God will deal more favorably with us after we've been improved. FLAW: If so, wouldn't Muslims be improved by their prayers - especially if they say them more often and with more fervor? So we're back where we started.

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