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Pray for Science

10:50 AM -- Saturday's edition of The New York Times, an august organ not normally known for its April Fool's Day japery, carried a story on scientists with too much time on their hands (having solved all other problems) studying what doesn't pertain to science and discovering... well, approximately nothing really:

    Prayers offered by strangers had no effect on the recovery of people who were undergoing heart surgery, a large and long-awaited study has found...

    Because it is the most scientifically rigorous investigation of whether prayer can heal illness, the study, begun almost a decade ago and involving more than 1,800 patients, has for years been the subject of speculation...

    At least 10 studies of the effects of prayer have been carried out in the last six years, with mixed results...

    "One conclusion from this is that the role of awareness of prayer should be studied further," said Dr. Charles Bethea, a cardiologist at Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City and a co-author of the study...
Indeed.

    The study cost $2.4 million, and most of the money came from the John Templeton Foundation, which supports research into spirituality. The government has spent more than $2.3 million on prayer research since 2000.
Yeah. Two million just doesn't buy you much anymore.

— Larry, Attack Monkey, Light Reading

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