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06-10-2013, 09:12 PM
How would you respond to this?
My very religious neighbor knows that I'm an atheist, we've maintained a friendly relationship anyway. She has, in the past, put a lot of effort into trying to get me to go to her church. I've responded bluntly that I'm not interested in any religion and don't want to go to her church. Her most recent thing has been to invite me to do volunteer work with her church and insinuate that if I were really a good person I would 'get over myself' and just go, because the church is doing this good thing and why should I be opposed to participating. I almost feel like thats true, why should I stubbornly refuse to participate in a good thing...but I just want nothing to do with church or religious people. How would you feel about this and what would you say?
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06-10-2013, 09:14 PM
RE: How would you respond to this?
You can do good things without it being church sponsored. Sounds like she is trying every way she can to get you to church.

There are plenty of secular ways to help, she is being pushy and not respecting your boundaries. Don't let guilt guide you.

I'm not anti-social. I'm pro-solitude. Sleepy
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06-10-2013, 09:20 PM
RE: How would you respond to this?
(06-10-2013 09:12 PM)FICKLEish Wrote:  My very religious neighbor knows that I'm an atheist, we've maintained a friendly relationship anyway. She has, in the past, put a lot of effort into trying to get me to go to her church. I've responded bluntly that I'm not interested in any religion and don't want to go to her church. Her most recent thing has been to invite me to do volunteer work with her church and insinuate that if I were really a good person I would 'get over myself' and just go, because the church is doing this good thing and why should I be opposed to participating. I almost feel like thats true, why should I stubbornly refuse to participate in a good thing...but I just want nothing to do with church or religious people. How would you feel about this and what would you say?

She is being blatantly manipulative. I would politely decline and try to drop the subject. If she continues I would probably stop with the politely part.

(31-07-2014 04:37 PM)Luminon Wrote:  America is full of guns, but they're useless, because nobody has the courage to shoot an IRS agent in self-defense
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06-10-2013, 09:22 PM
RE: How would you respond to this?
(06-10-2013 09:12 PM)FICKLEish Wrote:  My very religious neighbor knows that I'm an atheist, we've maintained a friendly relationship anyway. She has, in the past, put a lot of effort into trying to get me to go to her church. I've responded bluntly that I'm not interested in any religion and don't want to go to her church. Her most recent thing has been to invite me to do volunteer work with her church and insinuate that if I were really a good person I would 'get over myself' and just go, because the church is doing this good thing and why should I be opposed to participating. I almost feel like thats true, why should I stubbornly refuse to participate in a good thing...but I just want nothing to do with church or religious people. How would you feel about this and what would you say?

She is correct that many churches do indeed perform acts of charity but religiosity is not a prerequisite for charitable work. The ideal response is to find a secular charity and volunteer with them and then tell her that you are busy with that. The problem is that there is a dearth of secular charity organisations. This suggests that although religiosity is not required for charity it does appear to motivate it at least more so than a commitment to secular humanism does.

If there is no local secular charity to volunteer for then you could donate money to one of the secular charities and tell her that you did so when she next invites you.
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06-10-2013, 10:03 PM
RE: How would you respond to this?
(06-10-2013 09:22 PM)Chippy Wrote:  This suggests that although religiosity is not required for charity it does appear to motivate it at least more so than a commitment to secular humanism does.

Or there are simply far more theists because being a secular humanist isn't as socially acceptable in large parts of the country. That, and they aren't easily found because they don't congregate around churches...

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07-10-2013, 12:09 AM
RE: How would you respond to this?
(06-10-2013 09:12 PM)FICKLEish Wrote:  My very religious neighbor knows that I'm an atheist, we've maintained a friendly relationship anyway. She has, in the past, put a lot of effort into trying to get me to go to her church. I've responded bluntly that I'm not interested in any religion and don't want to go to her church. Her most recent thing has been to invite me to do volunteer work with her church and insinuate that if I were really a good person I would 'get over myself' and just go, because the church is doing this good thing and why should I be opposed to participating. I almost feel like thats true, why should I stubbornly refuse to participate in a good thing...but I just want nothing to do with church or religious people. How would you feel about this and what would you say?

Just tell her you want nothing to do with church or religious people.
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07-10-2013, 01:20 AM
RE: How would you respond to this?
My first two ideas (which I deleted before posting) would only promote engagement, and you're obviously seeking not to be engaged. If she presses, just tell her, "No means no." Then ask her to clarify for you the line between inviting and harassing.

PS: Holey Carp, Heywood posted something I agree with.
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07-10-2013, 01:49 AM
RE: How would you respond to this?
(07-10-2013 01:20 AM)Reltzik Wrote:  PS: Holey Carp, Heywood posted something I agree with.

That's because great minds think alike.

Would expect her to want to be around a bunch of atheists?

He can sugar coat it a little bit and throw it back in her face.

"Sorry.....please don't take this the wrong way but I really don't want to be around a bunch of religious people....I would feel uncomfortable....I mean if it was the reverse would you really want to be around a bunch of atheists?"
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07-10-2013, 06:44 AM
RE: How would you respond to this?
Tell her "I'm glad your church is making amends toward all the evil crap it's done over the years. I find that very commendable. I do charitable work in my own way, on my own time with those whom I enjoy spending my time and effort with. I am a good person who enjoys the company of other good people. If a group of pedofiles went out to do some charity work, would you want to spend time in their company all day long listening to their stories" ?

Insanity - doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results
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07-10-2013, 06:58 AM
RE: How would you respond to this?
(07-10-2013 01:20 AM)Reltzik Wrote:  My first two ideas (which I deleted before posting) would only promote engagement, and you're obviously seeking not to be engaged. If she presses, just tell her, "No means no." Then ask her to clarify for you the line between inviting and harassing.

PS: Holey Carp, Heywood posted something I agree with.

Was it you who suggested earlier to go, but wear a T-shirt with an atheist logo?
I thought that was a good idea.

Or one could tell her: "I am not comfortable to participate in the charity because I am not religious and participating could be construed as me endorsing religion. But
I gladly will help out if I can wear my favorite atheist T-shirt."
I am just curious how she would respond to that.
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