A simple selfless act. A prayer for another. I remember it like it was yesterday. My cat had gotten cancer. He withered away to bones. He stopped eating and just slept, while writhing in pain. I believed that my prayers would be answered. I did not wish to save my cat, as this would be a selfish act to ask to keep anyone alive. I only prayed that the cat would not suffer. The cat did suffer. The cat suffered for a long time. We tried everything to try to get him better but in the end he died a horrible, painful death. Years later, with no thoughts of religion, prayers or god in my mind, I knew there was no saving my family dog. My dog suffered from lyme disease, a thyroid condition, cancer, and severe arthritis. He beat the odds. He outlived all of these ailments. One day the dog began coughing and wheezing. We thought perhaps it was a doggy allergy or something. The problem got more persistant. He suddenly got a look of fear and desperation in his eyes. I picked him up and we left for the animal hospital. I knew there was no need to pray to god. God does not respond to selfless acts. Prayers for others go unanswered. The dog suffered. On the way to the hospital Sam died in my arms. His entire life was spent suffering just like the cat. Why? Why does evil exist in the world? There is a simple anwser. There is no god. Oh, is that a harsh statement? Consider this argument before you judge me. The bible says that god must have these three characteristics in order to exist: omniscient (all knowing/seeing), omnipotent (all powerful) and omnibenevolent (all loving). If god is of these three characteristics how can there be evil in the world? Sure, man is born with free will. That means that man can choose to commit evil but that does not explain natural evil. Why do people have to live with painful deformities and diseases or die in fires, earthquakes, or tornados? There is no valid reason for this. Furthermore, if god is omniscient then this would mean god would know the choices that individuals would make before they actually did so. Meaning that god could forsee who would be destined to heaven or who would be destined to hell. For god to allow this to happen would mean that god could not be omnibenevolent. God could not possibly be all loving if he knew that some individuals would be destined to eternal damnation and hell. There should be no exceptions. Why should I make a decision that god knows about, prior to me making it, and then be punished by god for it? This would mean that we are not given free will because all of our decisions are predetermined by god. I am not trying to sway anyone from having a belief but I am saying that sometimes we should open our eyes and ask questions. If god existed, it would be easy for him to stop many of he unnecessary evils in the world, such as cicle cell anemia, Parkinsons disease, or the use of child soldiers in africa. I would never pray to keep someone alive because that is selfish but I thought asking for a lack of suffering would be fair. I guess when you are talking to a made up being in the heavens a fair response is nothing at all.