Behar: Prayer 'Takes the Place of Thinking'

Oh, Joy of little faith.

On the June 22 episode of "The View," co-host Joy Behar criticized prayer, saying it "takes the place of logical thinking, then I think that's dangerous."

Behar's attack on prayer came as she defended comedian Janeane Garofalo, who during a June 16 appearance on Behar's Headline News show called prayer "anti-intellectual" in criticizing President Obama's reference to prayer during his speech about the Gulf oil spill. Behar said Garofalo should have said prayer was "un-intellectual," not "anti-intellectual."

"Faith is something that you feel," Behar said. "Thinking is something that you do with your brain. It's different."

Behar's criticism of prayer riled co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck, who challenged the attack.

BEHAR: When prayer takes the place of logical thinking, then I think it's dangerous.

            HASSELBECK: Prayer's not illogical.

            BEHAR: No. But it takes the place of thinking.

HASSELBECK: No it doesn't. That's a complete bigoted statement to say that when I'm praying, I'm not thinking.

            BEHAR: How dare you say that to me! Excuse me!

After Behar clarified her statement by saying that intellectual people can pray, she called for people to pray preemptively for regulation.

Behar has a history of criticizing prayer. Behar never challenged Garofalo when she ridiculed people who pray on her own show; she only clarified the statement almost a week after the interview. Last April during a discussion with Phil Donahue on "The Joy Behar Show," she made an outlandish comparison of President Bush's prayers to God with a terrorist's prayers to Allah.

Behar has also claimed that prayer hinders medical and scientific advances, calling it a "distraction."