A psychologist friend recently told me that all prayer is self talk. He is an athiest. He says that no matter if you pray silently like most Christian religions or chanting out loud like many non-christians... it is still just self talk. If you want something bad enough you will talk yourself into figuring out a way to get it. When we get the "idea" of how to get what we want... it is then considered an answer from our God or Goddess. In his opinion when we ask a question, we already know the answer... we just don't like that answer, so when our "prayer isn't answered" it is because we didn't think of any different way out of that particular situation.
I know how I feel about his statement (we had a very long discussion about it :) ) But I would like to know what you think.