CNN Reports: Christians Should Keep Their Thoughts and Prayers to Themselves

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CNN stated on Monday that that “some atheists would pay money” to avoid having prayers sent their way so maybe Christians should stay silent on their ‘thoughts and prayers’. The network was citing a recent study that found not everyone wants thoughts and prayers. The study found that non-religious people were willing to pay about $1.66 to a priest and $3.54 to a Christian stranger to avoid a prayer. Yes, your heard that correct!

One atheist in the study stated that being told “I’ll pray for you” with the claim it was a compliment “invokes the same feeling as equating sexually lewd comments with compliments.”

Others included “I’ll pray for you” in lists of micro-aggressions, suggesting that this expression can “communicate hostile, derogatory, or negative slights and insults toward people.”

The study was based on the opinions of some 400 residents in North Carolina following the damage from the 2018 Hurricane Florence.

The study was published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

“The idea came from the mere observation of how frequently these gestures are used … and yet how controversial they seem to be, as shown by the heated debate in the US about the value of thoughts and prayers in the wake of disasters,” said Linda Thunström, an economist at the University of Wyoming who co-authored the study. “As a result, we wanted to find out how people actually value these frequently used gestures.”

Sending them in the wake of disasters is “controversial,” said Thunström

CNN explains, Not everybody wants thoughts and prayers after a disaster, according to a study of hurricane survivors:

Since there is no monetary value attached to thoughts or prayers, the researchers assessed their value by looking at their willingness to pay (WTP), which measures the monetary value of the perceived costs and benefits. The researchers developed an experiment to elicit the WTP from religious and nonreligious participants for thoughts and prayers.

The subjects were paid a fee to compensate them for their time and an additional $5 to be used in the experiment. They were then asked how much money they were willing to give in exchange for prayers from a priest or Christian stranger, or thoughts from both nonreligious and religious strangers.

The Christians in the experiment valued a prayer from a Christian stranger, on average, at $4.36. A prayer from a priest was even higher with an average of $7.17. It should be noted that some Christians negatively valued thoughts from nonreligious strangers.

Atheists and agnostics, however, took things in a completely different direction.
Nonreligious people were willing to pay about $1.66 to avoid a prayer from a priest and more than double that price at $3.54 to avoid one from a Christian stranger.

You would expect that an atheist or an agnostic would be indifferent to people praying for them. If you don’t believe it, what are you worried about?

“But that is not what we find — atheists and agnostics are averse to prayers,” Thunström said, and are willing to pay money in order “not to get a prayer from a Christian stranger.”

“Hence, it is important to think about who the target person is when sending thoughts and prayers in the wake of hardship,” she said.

Insanity at its finest!

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