I don't understand closet atheism.
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23-04-2012, 10:42 AM
RE: I don't understand closet atheism.
Did you not listen to the podcast on this subject from The Thinking Atheist?

How could you possibly continue to hold this stance once you've listened to those stories? I suppose you could, but you'd have to pretty lacking the empathy department.

It's always easy to judge when you are in a better situation. Yes, you have family too, but you said it yourself that you don't give 2 shits about what they think. That's not the case for everyone.

I almost lost my marriage due to coming out (I have to the important people in my life, yet I am reserved about the subject unless in discourse with fellow non-believers or accepting believers like KingsChosen). I was very luckily able to argue with reason that dissolving a marriage over something we don't agree on is ridiculous. This is the type of hold religion has on people though. They would consider something like divorce because of a difference of world-view.

While I think my situation was a very tough one as I was religious even through marriage, I truly feel bad for people in worse situations. Imagine being a priest your entire life only to come to the conclusion that you're an Atheist... Imagine the prospect of your livelihood being destroyed by coming out. Imagine the loss of friends and family from it. That could be absolutely devastating.

For you to sit there and act like "It ain't no thang pimp" is quite arrogant. You are a man of reason are you not? Please apply that reason to this subject.

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23-04-2012, 10:44 AM
RE: I don't understand closet atheism.
I just can't understand America. What kind of messed up pile of rubbish of a country do you live where people are literally banished from their family's just because they believe in their BS story's?!?! I just can't get my head around that this stuff actually happens. You just don't believe in God, what's so wrong with that!?

Just wow. I really can't understand it. Thankfully I don't have to deal with that crap.
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23-04-2012, 10:47 AM
RE: I don't understand closet atheism.
(23-04-2012 10:42 AM)NoahsFarce Wrote:  Did you not listen to the podcast on this subject from The Thinking Atheist?

How could you possibly continue to hold this stance once you've listened to those stories? I suppose you could, but you'd have to pretty lacking the empathy department.

It's always easy to judge when you are in a better situation. Yes, you have family too, but you said it yourself that you don't give 2 shits about what they think. That's not the case for everyone.

I almost lost my marriage due to coming out (I have to the important people in my life, yet I am reserved about the subject unless in discourse with fellow non-believers or accepting believers like KingsChosen). I was very luckily able to argue with reason that dissolving a marriage over something we don't agree on is ridiculous. This is the type of hold religion has on people though. They would consider something like divorce because of a difference of world-view.

While I think my situation was a very tough one as I was religious even through marriage, I truly feel bad for people in worse situations. Imagine being a priest your entire life only to come to the conclusion that you're an Atheist... Imagine the prospect of your livelihood being destroyed by coming out. Imagine the loss of friends and family from it. That could be absolutely devastating.

For you to sit there and act like "It ain't no thang pimp" is quite arrogant. You are a man of reason are you not? Please apply that reason to this subject.
Well I have never listened to a podcast.

And I would happily divorce my wife and never speak to my family again if they took a hardline position against my atheism. Regardless of how good or bad the relationship was prior to them knowing it would all dissolve instantly and I would be indifferent to them. I don't need the approval or love of my family to make me feel like a human being. There are a lot of people in the world and new friends and family can be found almost anywhere.

“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it's time to pause and reflect.”

-Mark Twain
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23-04-2012, 11:54 AM
RE: I don't understand closet atheism.
I just don't think it's always as simply as ripping off a band-aid. The pain and damage it causes can linger for years. I think you need to be intelligent about your approach and decide where it's important to be open about it. In my case, I'll be honest but I don't need to go around telling everyone when it's not an issue.
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23-04-2012, 12:01 PM
RE: I don't understand closet atheism.
(23-04-2012 11:54 AM)kineo Wrote:  In my case, I'll be honest but I don't need to go around telling everyone when it's not an issue.
But that isn't 'closet' atheism. Actively keeping it a secret by acting otherwise or by lying is what I consider in the closet. And I can't imagine why anyone would oppress themselves for the sake of their family. If they hate you for being atheist or gay or pagan then they probably deserved to be hated back and in that case it shouldn't upset you to disconnect yourself from them.

“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it's time to pause and reflect.”

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23-04-2012, 12:11 PM
RE: I don't understand closet atheism.
(23-04-2012 12:01 PM)germanyt Wrote:  
(23-04-2012 11:54 AM)kineo Wrote:  In my case, I'll be honest but I don't need to go around telling everyone when it's not an issue.
But that isn't 'closet' atheism. Actively keeping it a secret by acting otherwise or by lying is what I consider in the closet. And I can't imagine why anyone would oppress themselves for the sake of their family. If they hate you for being atheist or gay or pagan then they probably deserved to be hated back and in that case it shouldn't upset you to disconnect yourself from them.

I see what you mean- I misunderstood. My apologies.

In the case of lying, there are some who have to lie just to hold on to a job or a career. There are some who don't want to ruin the lives of their children or spouse. I can understand being willing to call off a marriage if the other person is unwilling to accept you for you- but that WILL have an impact on your children (if you've had children). I can appreciate someone who wants to be tactful about opening that box. Others might be comfortable in their marriage the way it is, or they truly love their spouse and know it's going to be difficult for them to deal with and hesitate to put them through that trial.

I understand your reasoning, and for the most part I agree. But I still think they need to be tactful about it, even as they make their stand.
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23-04-2012, 12:23 PM
RE: I don't understand closet atheism.
I've held my gay friends hand on his near death bed for being openly gay and kids have been bullied and beaten in my area for having atheist parents. Beloved pets go missing, vandalism and I've been dying to share a story here on TTA forum but it may be a little too personal for the public web. Closet anybodies have their reasons. Trust me, people want nothing but freedom for who they are but it is not as easy as disowning a few people in their lives.
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23-04-2012, 12:26 PM
RE: I don't understand closet atheism.
(23-04-2012 09:57 AM)germanyt Wrote:  Just tell everyone already. Wouldn't you want to know if the people you love would hate you for not believing in god? I would and likely wouldn't be upset if they chose to not associate with me anymore. Family or not. Same thing if you're gay.
I lost the vast majority of my friends and I sort of wish I never came out on the job site, because now I can hardly ever get a job and I am the first one on the layoff list no matter how hard I work and how dependable I can be. How can you expect people to treat you nice when they believe you will be burning in hell for all eternity? As far as they are concerned you are wothless scum, child rapist, satanic mass murdering...blah blah blah...we've all heard it before.

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23-04-2012, 12:30 PM
RE: I don't understand closet atheism.
(23-04-2012 09:57 AM)germanyt Wrote:  Just tell everyone already. Wouldn't you want to know if the people you love would hate you for not believing in god? I would and likely wouldn't be upset if they chose to not associate with me anymore. Family or not. Same thing if you're gay.
This is great in theory but it does take a lot of courage to do in practice when you could be potentially fired, divorced, and shunned by the community that you live in for doing this. Feel free to ask atheists living in the US bible belt for more information on this.

I would recommend that if you want to come out as an atheist, that you find a community of atheists that you feel comfortable with and can support you if times get hard. Having atheists come out alone is extremely difficult and an easy target for dirty tricks like those listed above.

"IN THRUST WE TRUST"

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23-04-2012, 12:42 PM
RE: I don't understand closet atheism.
(23-04-2012 12:30 PM)Carlo_The_Bugsmasher_Driver Wrote:  
(23-04-2012 09:57 AM)germanyt Wrote:  Just tell everyone already. Wouldn't you want to know if the people you love would hate you for not believing in god? I would and likely wouldn't be upset if they chose to not associate with me anymore. Family or not. Same thing if you're gay.
This is great in theory but it does take a lot of courage to do in practice when you could be potentially fired, divorced, and shunned by the community that you live in for doing this. Feel free to ask atheists living in the US bible belt for more information on this.

I would recommend that if you want to come out as an atheist, that you find a community of atheists that you feel comfortable with and can support you if times get hard. Having atheists come out alone is extremely difficult and an easy target for dirty tricks like those listed above.

Not that I disagree at all with what you're saying, but I wanted to point out that germanyt IS an atheist living in the Bible Belt- for what it's worth. Smile
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