Comment by _7654_ on April 9, 2012 at 11:07pm

I see, so prayer does not follow the curvature of the earth...hmm very interesting...

Comment by Jim Scotti on April 9, 2012 at 11:09pm

They forgot the prayers by folks standing on their heads....  Not that that changes the number of prayers wasted, that would be all of them anyway, regardless of direction of prayer.

Comment by TheMostAthy on April 9, 2012 at 11:09pm
Even if they were aiming towards Mecca, given a (mostly) spherical Earth, they're also raising their asses towards Mecca.
Comment by ZachsMind on April 9, 2012 at 11:13pm

all those billions of prayers over thousands of years surely they couldn't have been wasted. So science must be wrong. The earth must be flat. This is how believers look at things like this. Anything that contradicts what they've already been told to be true, but have an acceptable (but not necessarily rational) explanation. Perhaps prayers are affected by gravity. That they travel faster than light to god but obey the law of gravity so they curve around the Earth until they reach Mecca at which point they shoot straight up into the heavens into god's face, bypassing that pesky outer space stuff entirely. 

There was a time it was believed god hung out in the clouds, until after mankind started flying over clouds and realized angels don't hang up there. Just the occasional bird. When I was a kid the man in the clouds thing was still very prevalent, but we had just landed on the moon. Nowadays i don't hear many people talk about god being up in the clouds very much. Presumably that was metaphorical. An allegory. Perhaps god has his own planet in another solar system and prayers travel to him over subspace frequencies. Maybe the subspace transceiver relay is located over at Mecca somewhere, but no one knows exactly where. 

If you're actually IN Mecca, which direction must you face? That must be confusing for people. You'd think, so many ppl travel there every year, i'm sure someone knows the answer to that one. 

Comment by TheMostAthy on April 9, 2012 at 11:17pm

For those IN Mecca, they pray towards the Kaaba.

Comment by SteveInCO on April 10, 2012 at 3:00am

It's worse than that

Muslims in the US argue over whether to pray facing northeast (following the great circle curve) or southeast (since mecca is south and east of here)

Whichever sect is wrong will have to repeat all of the prayers it has done.

Comment by Diane on April 10, 2012 at 6:41am

I wonder if any scientists out there have attempted to discover the scientific nature of prayers.  Do they have mass, for instance?  How quickly do they travel?  Are they affected by space-time curvature or gravity?  Can they travel through the Earth and if so, could the be detected at CERN?

How long does a prayer last?  Does it have a half-life or does it just blink out of existence after some predetermined time?  If one prays for Schroedinger's cat, will it be any more or less alive?

Inquiring minds want to know!

Comment by Rma on April 10, 2012 at 9:30am

It's preposterous. I've always thought about it in great detail. Where the "hell" are you supposed to face when you are in.. say.. outer space? Well they say "Just face God's face" [Trans from Quran]. Wow thanks god, now I know where to face!

Comment by Unseen on April 10, 2012 at 9:58am

I'm a Muslim on the exact opposite side of the earth, and it's prayer time. I guess it doesn't matter which direction I face, right?

Comment by Unseen on April 10, 2012 at 10:04am

And where do they face when they are right there in Mecca?

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