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elbanditoroso's avatar

Is 'luck' compatible with religion?

Asked by elbanditoroso (33135points) 2 months ago
13 responses
“Great Question” (1points)

According to the OED dictionary, luck is “success or failure apparently brought by chance rather than through one’s own actions”.

Webster says :


a: a force that brings good fortune or adversity
Luck was a big factor in the outcome.
b: the events or circumstances that operate for or against an individual
The loser muttered something about bad luck.

: favoring chance
also : SUCCESS
had great luck growing orchids

Religion (particularly the more conservative Christian and Jewish sects) teach that any and all actions are God’s will, and that we, as humans, (a) have no ability to question God’s will, and (b) must accept what ever that will may be.

So, is wishing someone “Good luck” a sentiment incompatible with religion? How can luck have any effect on the predetermined will of god?

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RedDeerGuy1's avatar

Miracles are the religious equivalent of luck. Predestination. Also is the religious equivalent to fate.

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

Sorry I think the term is providence. I am not sure, but predestination might work too.

Zaku's avatar

There are many different religions.

JLeslie's avatar

I thought in Jewish superstition we aren’t supposed to wish good luck, because we might jinx it (hence the expression kinahora). I guess that isn’t officially part of Judaism, but just cultural.

If God controls everything then there is no luck. If God controls everything and has a plan for us, why do we need to pray? Christians seem to ask for things from God in prayer (Christians can correct me if I’m wrong) Jews pray to change themselves, to create their own destiny and they are praying for mankind. I think of Judaism as more an acknowledgment of all people are part of the fabric of society so Jews are focused on how we act brings reactions, rather than God inserting luck into our lives. Maybe? So we create our own luck.

I can’t speak for the Christians, but I assume they similar to Jews believe luck is the meeting of preparedness and opportunity. I guess it is a matter of did God create the opportunity or not? Christians I guess are more likely to credit God than random luck.

chyna's avatar

The apostles Paul and James were beheaded. Jesus died on the cross. It would seem that being religious doesn’t bring you good luck. At least back then.

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

@chyna Maybe not good luck, but rather bad luck?

LostInParadise's avatar

To God there is no such thing as luck, because he knows everything that is going to happen, He has the option of interfering and altering what will happen.

janbb's avatar

Concepts of G-d vary from religion to religion and even within religions. Making any sort of blanket statement seems foolish in the extreme. Even Pope Francis said, “You pray for the hungry, then you go out and feed them. That’s how prayer works.”

Pandora's avatar

I can only speak for myself but I think its like asking what came first the chicken or the egg. Is destiny an actual thing. Are our lives fated to be a certain way? Does got intervene when necessary or every time? So why are some favored in luck and others not. I believe some people are lucky or blessed but some that appear to be blessed or lucky may not be so. My point is I think luck depends on perception.

I may see someone rich as being lucky and they may feel truly lonely and isolated and feel spiritly and emotionally empty.
Yet when I was growing up we were very poor and I had bad health but I never felt poor. I felt love and secure in my home. I felt to be the luckiest or most blessed person having the dad I had. I thought God must love me to give me such wonderful parents and fun siblings. Even when we fought I couldn’t imagine life without them. I never felt poor or unlucky.Some pitied me for being sickly and at times I pitied myself and I’m sure some thought I was unlucky. But with time I realized I was lucky to survive what I did. These are things I could not control. So they could easily be called destiny, luck, or unlucky.
I don’t think God created us with a destiny since we have free choice but I believe he sets us on the right path to glory. Its up to us to decide if we take it.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Religions couldn’t survive without it. That and superstitions.

KNOWITALL's avatar

Sure! My ‘luck’ is not great, like scratch-off’s, casino’s, etc..but when I pray for something important to me, it almost always ends up happening. To me it’s two seperate thing’s.

ragingloli's avatar

Sure. All you need to do is redefine “luck” as “divine providence”, and you are set.

kritiper's avatar

Luck is something that happens. Religion does not.

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