Is praying just as important as working?

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I think they are both important in their own right.  We might say that praying is more important from a religious standpoint, but this doesn't mean that we don't work.  I may think that putting gas in my car is more important than checking the air in the tires; this doesn't  mean that I don't check the tires.  If I didn't, the car would cease to function.  The same could be said for praying and working.  While I may feel that praying is more important, I cannot cease working altogether to pray. 

I look at it this way.  God gave me a brain and he wants me to use it.  I can honor him with my work but I do have to work.  When I pray and I trust God to provide, this doesn't mean that I don't do anything myself.  I trust that God will help me and lead me in the right direction but I don't sit on my sofa and wait for my needs to be met.  I go out and I work and I trust that God will lead me to the right work.

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I would recommend working if I had to choose.  If an atheist tomorrow invents a cure for cancer, I would be very happy that he worked rather than prayed if one had to choose between the two. I am very grateful to all the people who have worked hard over the years to help us achieve some of the breakthroughs (especially in medicine) that have been achieved. Many of those people, of course, were motivated to work hard because of their religious beliefs.

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I think that this is a fairly loaded question and one in which complexities arise.  It seems to me that regardless of religious faith or form of worship, the question's binary opposition would be, to some extent, challenged.  I don't think that religious worship forces a choice between prayer and working.  If done with an open heart towards the divine, both can be seen as forms of worship.  To a great extent, I think that religious figures would argue that both are extensions of one's worship.  When we pray, we seek to form a connection with the divine.  When we work, we are doing what, for reasons that we might not fully comprehend, the divine has in store for us.  I don't see this as a fundamental choice.  Yet, I think that both are needed for healthy forms of worship, regardless of denomination.  The idea of being productive in any setting and being able to contribute something is part of what many religious faiths teach their followers.  At the same time, there has to be some notion of worship in terms of forming the realm of communication with the divine, as to what prayer offers.  In this, both are seen as important in the life of the worshipper of the divine.

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