Asking atheists to pray? There may be some reason behind this madness.

The “Atheist Prayer Experiment” seeks to at least informally see if God will answer the prayers of atheists who take the time to be sincere. While it’s never a sound practice to force the actions of the Almighty into the strictures of the laboratory, it could yield interesting results, especially if the participants are serious and not flippant.

This fascinating, though not totally scientific, experiment is being carried out in the UK by Oxford Philosopher, Tim Mawson. It’s based on Mawson’s paper, published a few years ago, called “Praying To Stop Being An Atheist,” seeking to show that “it is in the interests of those atheists who don’t think it’s absolutely impossible that there’s a God to investigate the issue of whether or not he exists by ‘the experimental method’.”

The experiment is running starting yesterday, September 17, and running until October 26, and asks participating atheists to pray a simple general prayer that if there is a God that He/She/It would reveal himself to the atheist supplicant. Mawson is asking participants to take two to three minutes per day for the duration of the experiment to pray.

The results will be revealed and discussed in a future episode of the “Unbelievable” program on Premier Christian Radio in the UK, and on the “Unbelievable?” podcast (of which I am a subscriber).

If you are an atheist yourself, or know one, who might want to participate, please read about it here. There may yet be time to sign on if you are so inclined.