Smart people believe weird things because they are skilled at defending beliefs they arrived at for non-smart reasons.
Remember always that we are pattern-seeking primates who are especially adept at finding patterns with emotional meaning.
The concept of God is generated by a brain designed by evolution to find design in nature (a very recursive idea).
Science is a set of methods designed to describe and interpret observed or inferred phenomenon, past or present, and aimed at building a testable body of knowledge open to rejection or confirmation.
Scientific prayer makes God a celestial lab rat, leading to bad science and worse religion.
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