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Old November 20 2012, 05:57 AM   #1
EmoBorg
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The Agnostic Prayer

I am an agnostic. I came from a strongly religious background. While other kids had posters of sport stars, musicians and actors on their bedroom walls, My parents only allowed for religious imagery and verses on the wall of my bedroom. That is how religiously i was raised.

Many Agnostic and Atheist did come from religious background just like me and have left that all behind.

I remember praying when i was young and i was wondering what could be a good agnostic prayer. We agnostic still believe in a higher force but reject organized religion. After searching for a long time, I came across the Poem if by Rudyard Kipling.

The poem gives me strength now. If the agnostic and atheist folks got any poems, could you please post it here.

If by Rudyard Kipling

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;


If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:


If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;


If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:


If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breathe a word about your loss;


If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’


If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much;


If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!

Last edited by EmoBorg; November 20 2012 at 06:34 AM.
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Old November 20 2012, 06:00 AM   #2
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Re: The Agonstic Prayer

I don't need an agnostic prayer.
I'm an agnostic.
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Old November 20 2012, 06:11 AM   #3
Jolly Old Krampus
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Re: The Agonstic Prayer

My favorite Serenity Prayer parody:

"Grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
the Courage to change the things I cannot accept, and
the Wisdom to hide the bodies of those people I had to kill today because they pissed me off.

And also, help me to be careful of the toes I step on today
as they be connected to the ass that I may have to kiss tomorrow.

Help me to always give 100% at work
12% on Monday.
23% on Tuesday.
40% on Wednesday.
20% on Thursday.
5% on Friday.
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Old November 20 2012, 06:29 AM   #4
EmoBorg
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Re: The Agonstic Prayer

J. Allen wrote: View Post
I don't need an agnostic prayer.
I'm an agnostic.
I understand that completely but you have to remember that many agnostic and atheist come from religious background and one of the charges leveled at us by the religious is that we lack in moral values.

We have to show that religion was a first attempt at morality but later secular philosophy can do it much better. Many in the developed world are agnostic, atheist and freethinkers and our numbers are growing based on the census taken every decade.

Secular Humanism is the future. But we do need to show that we do have a moral center as well.
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Old November 20 2012, 06:39 AM   #5
EmoBorg
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Re: The Agonstic Prayer

Crap i spelled Agnostic wrongly in the thread's title.. Can it be corrected?

Last edited by EmoBorg; November 20 2012 at 08:28 AM.
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Old November 20 2012, 06:47 AM   #6
Miss Chicken
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Re: The Agonstic Prayer

Matt Dillahunty makes some interesting points about atheistic morality in this video (at about the 3.50 mark)


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Old November 20 2012, 07:01 AM   #7
teacake
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Re: The Agonstic Prayer

EmoBorg wrote: View Post
Crap i spelled Agnostic wrongly. Can it be corrected?
Agonstic.. sounds like some fail teflon.
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Old November 20 2012, 07:04 AM   #8
Santa Claus
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Re: The Agonstic Prayer

EmoBorg wrote: View Post
J. Allen wrote: View Post
I don't need an agnostic prayer.
I'm an agnostic.
I understand that completely but you have to remember that many agnostic and atheist come from religious background and one of the charges leveled at us by the religious is that we lack in moral values.

We have to show that religion was a first attempt at morality but later secular philosophy can do it much better. Many in the developed world are agnostic, atheist and freethinkers and our numbers are growing based on the census taken every decade.

Secular Humanism is the future. But we do need to show that we do have a moral center as well.
5 years ago I was an Evangelical Christian minister. I get the whole idea, but I don't need a prayer. I don't think agnostics need prayers. What good does it serve?
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Old November 20 2012, 08:18 AM   #9
EmoBorg
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Re: The Agnostic Prayer

I love Dennis Hopper rendition of the poem If.

1:32


I like this modern take of If as well.

2:21


Thanks for correcting the title.

Last edited by EmoBorg; November 20 2012 at 08:29 AM.
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Old November 20 2012, 08:24 AM   #10
sojourner
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Re: The Agnostic Prayer

I don't pray, but in high stress situations I have been praised for my sense of calm. Mainly because in my mind I take a moment to go through The Litany should I feel the need.

I must not fear.
Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
I will face my fear.
I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.
Where the fear has gone there will be nothing.
Only I will remain

It actually works really well.
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Old November 20 2012, 08:40 AM   #11
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Re: The Agnostic Prayer

I understand how Agnostics feel the "need" to have a prayer of their own, even if they have no idea who or what they're praying to. My rituals serve that purpose for me. They're sort of like a prayer, but they have more energy work; herbs, incense; and candles.
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Old November 20 2012, 11:04 AM   #12
RJDonner&Blitzen
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Re: The Agnostic Prayer

It wouldn't be a prayer, because a prayer is a message to a supernatural being, but people are inspired by poems, songs, quotes, affirmations and the like. This is pretty universal Human behavior.
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Old November 20 2012, 04:12 PM   #13
Gaith
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Re: The Agnostic Prayer

Here's a quote from the King James Bible (Philippians 4:8) that EmoBorg may enjoy, as it was also a favorite of the Hitchmeister's:


Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.


Then there's one of my personal favorite mantras, being simply: Practice compassion.
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Old November 20 2012, 05:38 PM   #14
thestrangequark
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Re: The Agonstic Prayer

J. Allen wrote: View Post
EmoBorg wrote: View Post
J. Allen wrote: View Post
I don't need an agnostic prayer.
I'm an agnostic.
I understand that completely but you have to remember that many agnostic and atheist come from religious background and one of the charges leveled at us by the religious is that we lack in moral values.

We have to show that religion was a first attempt at morality but later secular philosophy can do it much better. Many in the developed world are agnostic, atheist and freethinkers and our numbers are growing based on the census taken every decade.

Secular Humanism is the future. But we do need to show that we do have a moral center as well.
5 years ago I was an Evangelical Christian minister. I get the whole idea, but I don't need a prayer. I don't think agnostics need prayers. What good does it serve?
I guess the distinction is whether you are a religious agnostic, like Emoborg or an agnostic atheist, like you, J (at least, that's what you seem to be, correct me if I'm wrong!). For a religious agnostic, admittedly, a philosophy I have trouble understanding, I suppose there could be some worth in prayer. I don't really think praying necessarily displays any kind of moral center, though, and if you're praying just to show you have a moral center, well, isn't that worse?
Matthew 6:5-6:6 wrote:
And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men.
But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen.
I would advise the OP that if he wants to show that he has moral center, to live kindly, honestly, and productively. Religion is not necessary for morality, and neither is prayer. "Two hands working can do more than a thousand clasped in prayer."
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Old November 20 2012, 05:47 PM   #15
slackbladder
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Re: The Agonstic Prayer

Gryffindorian wrote: View Post
My favorite Serenity Prayer parody:

"Grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
the Courage to change the things I cannot accept, and
the Wisdom to hide the bodies of those people I had to kill today because they pissed me off.

And also, help me to be careful of the toes I step on today
as they be connected to the ass that I may have to kiss tomorrow.

Help me to always give 100% at work
12% on Monday.
23% on Tuesday.
40% on Wednesday.
20% on Thursday.
5% on Friday.
the ol' pyramid week. i like it.
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