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In every faith, churches and mosques, believers meet regularly to pray for the sick. All religions across the globe seek divine healing whenever someone is sick. Many people pray for there own health or for relatives who are sick. This has led many people to attempt to use science to test the influence of prayer in healing the sick. These attempts are a waste of resources trying to verify the supernatural with science. It is baseless to try to understand the workings of God through experiments. Many people believe in the power of prayer, period. Attempting to prove through science whether it works is not even worth trying.
People trying to determine the effectiveness of prayer give a wide range of results, which leave us with more problems than solutions. It appears that some patients benefit from prayer while others report more harm. Some do not experience any change at all. Personally, I think the measurement of efficiency of prayer is morally wrong. When you pray for someone in order to determine whether prayer really works is uncouth, mechanical and not real prayer. You cannot coerce God. The Holy Ghost and not statistical interference should guide prayer. Scientifically studying Prayer should not be; prayer is beyond the realm of science (Stein, 2006).
The fact that we cannot measure most aspects of spirituality enhances the irrelevance of science trying to study it.
Mental elements such as meditation, which is an element of prayer, are immeasurable. Is praying for the sick in a church more effective than praying for them at home or in hospitals? What about praying in a mosque, synagogue, or Buddhist temple, which one causes a quicker recovery to the patient? Is the distance between the patient and the one praying of import? Is praying for someone who is inches away give the same results as praying for another in a different continent. What about the skill level of the person offering the prayer? Is the prayer of the pope more effective than the prayer of a mere believer? Answering these questions quantitatively is impossible. However, science requires facts making its analysis on spirituality to be baseless.
Though the reason may not clear, from observation it is true that the devout are healthier than those who do not pray at all. According to 1stholistic, (2009) people who attend churches, mosques or synagogues take good care of themselves. Prayer or others praying for you, the quietness one experiences when meditating can lead to lower blood pressure. This appears to slow the heart pace and reduce stress. This can be the reason why people who pray are healed faster.
Many physicians do not believe in the power of prayer. They argue that the body functions under cause effect principle. Technology, drugs, surgery has continued to ignore the power of prayer. Most physicians say that prayer cannot cause healing to the sick. They say that since the body is compost of components, conscience does not influence it in any way and prayer is irrelevant to physical condition. I strongly disagree to such views. Scientists are the cause of many problems that we have today. They believe that everything including spirituality require scrutiny in laboratories (1stholistic, 2009).
I believe that science and spirituality should complement each other. As one of the leading scientist once said, 'faith without knowledge is blind; science devoid of religion is lame'. Prayer at times is used as an alterative medicine. It complements medicine more than common remedies like acupuncture and herbs. The obstacle between science and faith is coming down. Globally, so many people believe in God. An increasing number of patience desires that apart from the treatment they receive in hospitals, doctors should include religion as part of the medicinal care. Doctors should actively discuss spiritual issues with their patience. In fact, physicians should pray for and with their patients.