Coming out as an atheist
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05-01-2014, 07:52 AM
RE: Coming out as an atheist
(04-01-2014 07:18 PM)Chrisinfp Wrote:  Has anyone done this on a social media site? I'd like to post a quote or meme type thing that is not seen as confrontational. Any suggestions? Thanks

I recently changed my religious status on Facebook to Atheist. I don't post much pro atheist stuff on there, save for the occasional joke, like the "drinking Atheist" fish that was on FB a while back.

I keep it fairly quiet and don't confront. I do, however, respond to pages like The Blaze and The Willard Preacher when they get out of hand.

Why are you still reading this line when it is obviously my signature line?
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05-01-2014, 08:21 AM
RE: Coming out as an atheist
I dont participate in social media outside of religious forums and commenting on yahoo news stories occasionally. My wife is on facebook, and I caution her on posting pro atheist things because as she finishes up her degree this spring, she will be seeking employment, and I know they google candidates these days, and even though they cant legally discriminate against her for being an atheist, nothing is stopping a human resource person from going, "oh, atheist huh" delete, next....

Everyone in her family and mine know we are Atheist. Well let me take that back, everyone in her family. I avoid the subject like the plague in my family as my parents are religious, one a minister, the other completely immersed in the delusion. I have never actually said to my parents, I am an atheist, they just know I don't believe.

At work (military officer) I am very careful because we are not allowed to talk about religion, but I did bring my coffee cup my wife got me for xmas to work...it simply is a white ceramic mug that says GOOD WITHOUT GOD on it...and I have a christopher hitchens neutral signature on my emails there....about the most I can push the envelop there. I also proudly wear my Good Without God, We Love Atheism tshirt on certain outings, and boy the looks I get...although I did have a few people come up and shake my hand and say nice tshirt Thumbsup

Isn't it sad in 2013, we still have to becareful about what we do and say?

"Belief is so often the death of reason" - Qyburn, Game of Thrones

"The Christian community continues to exist because the conclusions of the critical study of the Bible are largely withheld from them." -Hans Conzelmann (1915-1989)
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05-01-2014, 09:35 AM
RE: Coming out as an atheist
I posted this on my FB page a couple of years ago:

In case you were in any doubt:
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Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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05-01-2014, 10:20 AM
RE: Coming out as an atheist
I have never came out and stated "I am an atheist" anywhere but the internet. If I recall correctly, it was incredibly easy for me to come out of the broom closet to my mom but I still can't speak with her about this. But I think my friends, family, fellow students, and coworkers heavily suspect it considering the things I talk about. (I think the religious affiliation on my facebook page says "it's complicated!" Lol.)

I imagine the best way to go about it without seeming combative or dickish would be to make a post along the lines of "After careful thought and consideration, I have come to the conclusion that I am an atheist. If anybody has any questions or comments about this please speak now or forever hold your peace!" Then you might get a healthy dialogue going. (Might.)

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05-01-2014, 10:39 AM
RE: Coming out as an atheist
If I may, I'd like to share a few thoughts. I'm not an atheist, but I was for the first twenty years of my life. I never would have identified myself that way back then, though. I explained my position with things like "I don't believe in God," or "I'm not religious," or things like that. I never felt like I was a part of a movement or a community, I just viewed the universe the way I viewed it. I found that I wasn't confronted about my worldview all that much, but I did have friends who were more convicted about identifying with that particular -ism. They tended to be more confrontational about it, which obviously catalyzed negative reactions from some and produced more social pressure and resulted in more concern on their part for the way their worldviews were treated. I never understood what drove them to put themselves in those kinds of situations, but part of my outlook has always been that others are free to think the way they want to think. I still sympathize in a lot of ways with atheism and the related social and academic issues, but I don't identify with a lot of the dogmatism and vehemence that I see these days.

Sorry if that sounds dismissive or flippant, but the thread made me reflect on how I acted when I held to an atheist worldview, and I thought I'd share. Take that for what it's worth.

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05-01-2014, 10:51 AM (This post was last modified: 05-01-2014 10:58 AM by goodwithoutgod.)
RE: Coming out as an atheist
(05-01-2014 10:39 AM)maklelan Wrote:  If I may, I'd like to share a few thoughts. I'm not an atheist, but I was for the first twenty years of my life. I never would have identified myself that way back then, though. I explained my position with things like "I don't believe in God," or "I'm not religious," or things like that. I never felt like I was a part of a movement or a community, I just viewed the universe the way I viewed it. I found that I wasn't confronted about my worldview all that much, but I did have friends who were more convicted about identifying with that particular -ism. They tended to be more confrontational about it, which obviously catalyzed negative reactions from some and produced more social pressure and resulted in more concern on their part for the way their worldviews were treated. I never understood what drove them to put themselves in those kinds of situations, but part of my outlook has always been that others are free to think the way they want to think. I still sympathize in a lot of ways with atheism and the related social and academic issues, but I don't identify with a lot of the dogmatism and vehemence that I see these days.

Sorry if that sounds dismissive or flippant, but the thread made me reflect on how I acted when I held to an atheist worldview, and I thought I'd share. Take that for what it's worth.

I came about it from the exact opposite angle. I went from christian, to spiritualist, to agnostic to atheist, the more I learned the less I believed. I have spent my life learning, I have much to learn yet, as we all do. I freely admit my biggest challenge these days is to neutrally review new information without bias, it is a struggle. Especially after 28 years of research. In my humble opinion, the problem isnt even religion per se, the true problem is faith...because when you ask people why they believe, the answers are surprising...I try to use that as the stepping stone to assist them in slowly learning more about themselves, why they believe, what belief is, opening up the myth for them so that they can do an internal analysis, and hopefully gain the courage to learn more, and believe less. Again, I dont know the answers, I just know that faith, especially for me, is a failed epistemology.

For many years I was of the "I don't believe, live and let live, why would I care what someone else believes" type of outlook. But I feel that religion slithers its way into politics and shapes the laws of this land which affect everyone, it uses fear to brainwash people, and even more despicably, children into believing absolute BS. It is evil to the core, and the ultimate pyramid scheme..money goes up, nothing of value comes down. it preys on the sick, the gullible, the ignorant, the elderly and the uneducated. Its supporters financially and politically use their organized power to block stem cell research that could lead to the curing of deadly diseases, to block a woman's right to abort, to teach creationism in public schools, etc etc..

This is the reason why as an educated intelligent human being it is my moral responsibility to fight the corrosive creep of religion where ever I find it. To look the other way is to imply by inaction that it is ok, and religion is anything but ok. The moderate religious followers who go to church, seek out fellowship, civil community outreach and support of the homeless and poor are great factors of religion, but we don't need religion to have those in society. There are secular organizations that do the same thing...like foundation beyond belief. Just my opinion of course. But this is why i have been self jarred into more assertive action versus religion.

I truly believe, that Ego is a driving force for religion, think about it....assuming a god existed, it really is very anthropocentric and a show of hubris to think that an all powerful god created man so man could worship and praise god. In fact, this really points to a human insecurity. Humanity's existence may well be pointless and random, with bacteria being god's chosen organisms of interest, but most humans wouldn't be comfortable with that. Even more bluntly, the concept of a god wouldn't exist if humans didn't exist, so god is an anthropocentric creation of humans (conveniently made in our image).

To put it another way, humanity is most likely a cosmic blip representing a tiny fraction of what we observe of the current universe in terms of the numbers of objects, the numbers of living beings ("all god's creatures"), and even existence, depending on what you believe to be the age of the universe. That a putative architect of this universe would be cognizant of our particular situations and desire to listen to our woes, is ego indeed. But I digress Drooling

"Belief is so often the death of reason" - Qyburn, Game of Thrones

"The Christian community continues to exist because the conclusions of the critical study of the Bible are largely withheld from them." -Hans Conzelmann (1915-1989)
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05-01-2014, 11:00 AM
RE: Coming out as an atheist
(05-01-2014 10:51 AM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  But I feel that religion slithers its way into politics and shapes the laws of this land which affect everyone, it uses fear to brainwash people, and even more despicably, children into believing absolute BS. It is evil to the core, and the ultimate pyramid scheme..money goes up, nothing of value comes down. it preys on the sick, the gullible, the ignorant, the elderly and the uneducated. Its supporters financially and politically use their organized power to block stem cell research that could lead to the curing of deadly diseases, to block a woman's right to abort, to teach creationism in public schools, etc etc..

I agree that it certainly can and does do that, but I also think that's more a function of the power structures inherent in the kinds of organizational and conceptual patterns common to organized religion, and those structures can be found in many different kinds of institutions. Leveraging eternal salvation certainly creates a firmer grip, but I don't view the problems as grounded in religion or faith in and of itself.

(05-01-2014 10:51 AM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  This is the reason why as an educated intelligent human being it is my moral responsibility to fight the corrosive creep of religion where ever I find it.

I do the same, although I would call it certain instantiations or practices of religion rather than religion generically.

(05-01-2014 10:51 AM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  To look the other way is to imply by inaction that it is ok, and religion is anything but ok. The moderate religious followers who go to church, seek out fellowship, civil community outreach and support of the homeless and poor are great factors of religion, but we don't need religion to have those in society.

Actually psychologists suggest religion is often one of the most efficient mediums for those social practices.

(05-01-2014 10:51 AM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  There are secular organizations that do the same thing...like foundation beyond belief. Just my opinion of course. But this is why i have been self jarred into more assertive action versus religion.

Fair enough. Far be it from me to attempt to invalidate or marginalize the experiences of anyone else.

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05-01-2014, 11:23 AM
RE: Coming out as an atheist
(05-01-2014 10:39 AM)maklelan Wrote:  I still sympathize in a lot of ways with atheism and the related social and academic issues, but I don't identify with a lot of the dogmatism and vehemence that I see these days.

LOL: "atheist dogma/tism". Laughat As fucking if.

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