Hello fellow atheists. I am writing to ask for some help. My parents aren't real religious but anytime we have talks about supernatural events my mom claims there 'has' to be more out there. She then inevitably references how there was a study where people prayed for bacteria growth and that it grew faster than the bacteria with no prayer. I ask for her source of the information and she said she thought Oprah had mentioned it.
Of course I have found Christian sites like (http://1stholistic.com/prayer/hol_prayer_proof.htmr) that reinforce my Mom's stance.
"Even more outrageous experiments in distance healing involve nonhuman subjects. In a survey of 131 controlled experiments on spiritual healing, it was found that prayed-for rye grass grew taller; prayed-for yeast resisted the toxic effects of cyanide; prayed-for test-tube bacteria grew faster. "I adore these experiments," says Larry Dossey, M.D., perhaps the world's most vocal expert on prayer and medicine. "Because they don't involve humans, you can run them with fanatical precision and you can run them hundreds of times. It's the best evidence of all that prayer can change the world. And it operates as strongly on the other side of the Earth as it does at the bedside."
How would you go about refuting these 'experiments'?