I'm still scared of public atheism.
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25-07-2014, 11:30 AM (This post was last modified: 25-07-2014 11:34 AM by Adrianime.)
I'm still scared of public atheism.
I am almost as atheist as you can get in terms of my "belief/disbelief". I'm one of the few "gnostic atheists" who feels that it is within my realm of knowledge that there is no god.
(Note, I am not saying that I can prove that, or never be disproved, just that I know there is no god, just like I know there are no magic gremlins. More or less, my stance is knowledge is imperfect and forever changing and growing...eh but anyways, that isn't what this thread is about.)

But still as I grow older my fear of displaying my atheism doesn't seem to subside. It's funny because I live in the Northwest, which is incredibly tolerant towards different religions, and "the nones." But even still in almost every situation I find a reason to not mention my atheism. (NOTE: If anybody every directly asks me, I will NOT lie. I just do not bring the information to the table on my own).

1. At work, I know my two bosses are religious (they don't mention it much, but enough to know that they are), and I don't want my stance to be even in the equation when they consider me, so I never talk about. (Although in general I think it's a bad idea to bring up religion at work anyways).

2. In my immediate family, I only talk to my little brother (I have 6 older siblings) and my mom about the fact that I'm atheist. My mom is more or less a deist ex-catholic, and my little brother says he is atheist. My other siblings occasionally talk about supernatural or god-stuff (none of us were raised with religion, but most picked "something" up after 20). I just listen to them and don't really respond. What am I scared of? I don't even know. I think they know I am atheist (it has been on my facebook for about 8 years). I feel like if I said my point of view it would change how they look at me..maybe? It just doesn't feel right.

3. My nieces and nephews occasionally spout crap that they learned at church. I try to respond with very mild comments that don't directly combat whatever they are being taught. Such as, "Well, different cultures believe different things." "Some people think..." or "Just remember, not everybody believes the same thing as you." I don't want to overstep my bounds and mess with the parents way of raising the children. I honestly don't know if my nieces and nephews know what I believe.

4. My extended family is actually fairly religious. One of my uncles is apparently fundamental Christian and writes newsletters describing the history of Jesus (he learned Greek or some crap to do it right). They pray before meals. I bow my head in silence to conform. I never bring up my belief or ask about theirs. I don't see a benefit to them knowing what I believe (although, if they are my friends on facebook and care to check they would know.) I don't know them very well, see them only a few times a year. So I say nothing.

5. Facebook. On here like I said under the "religion" part of facebook, it has always said atheist. But I never talk about atheism, advocate atheism, or criticize religion. Note that I am actually a huge anti-theist, and think religion is a terrible plague on the human race in most cases. But I don't want others to make snap judgments and feel that I am attacking them if I state my opinions. I don't want my friends to feel that I judge them just because we don't agree.

6. Similarly in my own home. I just bought a house btw. In thinking about décor, or household items I won't get anything that calls to my atheism. For instance, today I was reading Hughsie's post about "becoming a contributing member". There I read that you can become one by purchasing an item at the TTA store. My exact thought process, "Oh cool! You can actually buy something and become a contributing member. I could (possibly) get like an awesome TTA mug or something. Wait, then my friends and family would see it when they come over and it might cause controversy or they might make judgments or think I am judging them. I don't want that to become an issue between us."

I mean, I've NEVER heard my friends or immediate family (including nieces and nephews) say a single bad thing about atheism. But still, I'm scared to present my beliefs in the same way that others feel free to present theirs. I keep worrying, and I honestly can't even pinpoint why. It presents an "unknown" because I don't know how they will take it, or deal with it. I don't know if they will see me differently. It's all so silly. I'd love to talk to people about it. But I don't want people to feel attacked when I tell how I think/feel.

It's silly. I know. But I'm scared. Even in the safety of the Pacific NorthWest, the stigma of atheism has me too timid to be completely open. Part of the problem is myself, of course. I'm entirely too calculating. I don't like taking actions if I can't predict all/most possible outcomes (and the likely outcome is positive for me).

Anybody relate?

I write too much.

I prefer fantasy, but I have to live in reality.
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25-07-2014, 11:32 AM
RE: I'm still scared of public atheism.
Adrianime Ohmy
Is it really you??
Hug
Heart
Ok now I will read your post. I just needed to be so happy for a minute.

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Swing with me forever, we can count up every flower, we can weather every storm.
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25-07-2014, 11:44 AM
RE: I'm still scared of public atheism.
(25-07-2014 11:32 AM)LostandInsecure Wrote:  Adrianime Ohmy
Is it really you??
Hug
Heart
Ok now I will read your post. I just needed to be so happy for a minute.
Hey! Hug Yup, it's me. I feel I can probably come on here a bit without getting addicted, so I'm checking in for a little while at least.

I prefer fantasy, but I have to live in reality.
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25-07-2014, 11:47 AM
RE: I'm still scared of public atheism.
I can relate for sure, but I don't see why it's such a bad thing. Being atheist doesn't define you as a person. I don't tell people about the things I don't believe because it makes more sense to tell people about the things I do believe. My family knows that I am a bad Christian. Not being a Christian just isn't a thing for them. You're just a good Christian or a bad one. Those are the options. Some of my family don't even know that I'm not a good Christian and I don't think I'll tell them as long as they don't ask. Outside of that I guess people from TTA and AF are pretty much the only people I talk to.
I don't think you should be scared. Just be okay with the fact that everyone doesn't need to know anyways. Hug

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Swing with me forever, we can count up every flower, we can weather every storm.
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25-07-2014, 11:55 AM
RE: I'm still scared of public atheism.
(25-07-2014 11:30 AM)Adrianime Wrote:  I am almost as atheist as you can get in terms of my "belief/disbelief". I'm one of the few "gnostic atheists" who feels that it is within my realm of knowledge that there is no god.
(Note, I am not saying that I can prove that, or never be disproved, just that I know there is no god, just like I know there are no magic gremlins. More or less, my stance is knowledge is imperfect and forever changing and growing...eh but anyways, that isn't what this thread is about.)

But still as I grow older my fear of displaying my atheism doesn't seem to subside. It's funny because I live in the Northwest, which is incredibly tolerant towards different religions, and "the nones." But even still in almost every situation I find a reason to not mention my atheism. (NOTE: If anybody every directly asks me, I will NOT lie. I just do not bring the information to the table on my own).

1. At work, I know my two bosses are religious (they don't mention it much, but enough to know that they are), and I don't want my stance to be even in the equation when they consider me, so I never talk about. (Although in general I think it's a bad idea to bring up religion at work anyways).

2. In my immediate family, I only talk to my little brother (I have 6 older siblings) and my mom about the fact that I'm atheist. My mom is more or less a deist ex-catholic, and my little brother says he is atheist. My other siblings occasionally talk about supernatural or god-stuff (none of us were raised with religion, but most picked "something" up after 20). I just listen to them and don't really respond. What am I scared of? I don't even know. I think they know I am atheist (it has been on my facebook for about 8 years). I feel like if I said my point of view it would change how they look at me..maybe? It just doesn't feel right.

3. My nieces and nephews occasionally spout crap that they learned at church. I try to respond with very mild comments that don't directly combat whatever they are being taught. Such as, "Well, different cultures believe different things." "Some people think..." or "Just remember, not everybody believes the same thing as you." I don't want to overstep my bounds and mess with the parents way of raising the children. I honestly don't know if my nieces and nephews know what I believe.

4. My extended family is actually fairly religious. One of my uncles is apparently fundamental Christian and writes newsletters describing the history of Jesus (he learned Greek or some crap to do it right). They pray before meals. I bow my head in silence to conform. I never bring up my belief or ask about theirs. I don't see a benefit to them knowing what I believe (although, if they are my friends on facebook and care to check they would know.) I don't know them very well, see them only a few times a year. So I say nothing.

5. Facebook. On here like I said under the "religion" part of facebook, it has always said atheist. But I never talk about atheism, advocate atheism, or criticize religion. Note that I am actually a huge anti-theist, and think religion is a terrible plague on the human race in most cases. But I don't want others to make snap judgments and feel that I am attacking them if I state my opinions. I don't want my friends to feel that I judge them just because we don't agree.

6. Similarly in my own home. I just bought a house btw. In thinking about décor, or household items I won't get anything that calls to my atheism. For instance, today I was reading Hughsie's post about "becoming a contributing member". There I read that you can become one by purchasing an item at the TTA store. My exact thought process, "Oh cool! You can actually buy something and become a contributing member. I could (possibly) get like an awesome TTA mug or something. Wait, then my friends and family would see it when they come over and it might cause controversy or they might make judgments or think I am judging them. I don't want that to become an issue between us."

I mean, I've NEVER heard my friends or immediate family (including nieces and nephews) say a single bad thing about atheism. But still, I'm scared to present my beliefs in the same way that others feel free to present theirs. I keep worrying, and I honestly can't even pinpoint why. It presents an "unknown" because I don't know how they will take it, or deal with it. I don't know if they will see me differently. It's all so silly. I'd love to talk to people about it. But I don't want people to feel attacked when I tell how I think/feel.

It's silly. I know. But I'm scared. Even in the safety of the Pacific NorthWest, the stigma of atheism has me too timid to be completely open. Part of the problem is myself, of course. I'm entirely too calculating. I don't like taking actions if I can't predict all/most possible outcomes (and the likely outcome is positive for me).

Anybody relate?

I write too much.

I don't bring it up much either. I feel people out discreetly, and if they are very religious, they are not for me anyway. If they are passively religious, I can live with that. I may probe a little more then - or not.

There is really only one person with whom I talk about it. The guy who helped me landscape my garden. We share a love of nature and we are both atheist and it makes for good conversations.

I don't really see it as very important, atheism is just one of many things that define me. I do avoid the very religious though - too much crazy.

[Image: dobie.png]Science is the process we've designed to be responsible for generating our best guess as to what the fuck is going on. Girly Man
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25-07-2014, 12:00 PM
RE: I'm still scared of public atheism.
Haha, "Good Christian or bad Christian"

I'm mostly okay with people not needing to know. But still I feel a barrier. Even with good friends. It's never been something I've talked about with friends. It's a lot easier with new acquaintances rather than people I've known for years or my entire life.

I would love to talk to friends about it especially. But, honestly I feel like if I was them I would be scared to talk to others about my faith because I would know it was such a weak position (in terms of reason to hold that position). I admire a couple friends on facebook who make obviously atheist posts and such and engage in open disagreement with friends and family.

I've always been the type to avoid conflict though. Ugh.

I prefer fantasy, but I have to live in reality.
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25-07-2014, 12:02 PM
RE: I'm still scared of public atheism.
(25-07-2014 11:30 AM)Adrianime Wrote:  I am almost as atheist as you can get in terms of my "belief/disbelief". I'm one of the few "gnostic atheists" who feels that it is within my realm of knowledge that there is no god.
(Note, I am not saying that I can prove that, or never be disproved, just that I know there is no god, just like I know there are no magic gremlins. More or less, my stance is knowledge is imperfect and forever changing and growing...eh but anyways, that isn't what this thread is about.)

But still as I grow older my fear of displaying my atheism doesn't seem to subside. It's funny because I live in the Northwest, which is incredibly tolerant towards different religions, and "the nones." But even still in almost every situation I find a reason to not mention my atheism. (NOTE: If anybody every directly asks me, I will NOT lie. I just do not bring the information to the table on my own).

1. At work, I know my two bosses are religious (they don't mention it much, but enough to know that they are), and I don't want my stance to be even in the equation when they consider me, so I never talk about. (Although in general I think it's a bad idea to bring up religion at work anyways).

2. In my immediate family, I only talk to my little brother (I have 6 older siblings) and my mom about the fact that I'm atheist. My mom is more or less a deist ex-catholic, and my little brother says he is atheist. My other siblings occasionally talk about supernatural or god-stuff (none of us were raised with religion, but most picked "something" up after 20). I just listen to them and don't really respond. What am I scared of? I don't even know. I think they know I am atheist (it has been on my facebook for about 8 years). I feel like if I said my point of view it would change how they look at me..maybe? It just doesn't feel right.

3. My nieces and nephews occasionally spout crap that they learned at church. I try to respond with very mild comments that don't directly combat whatever they are being taught. Such as, "Well, different cultures believe different things." "Some people think..." or "Just remember, not everybody believes the same thing as you." I don't want to overstep my bounds and mess with the parents way of raising the children. I honestly don't know if my nieces and nephews know what I believe.

4. My extended family is actually fairly religious. One of my uncles is apparently fundamental Christian and writes newsletters describing the history of Jesus (he learned Greek or some crap to do it right). They pray before meals. I bow my head in silence to conform. I never bring up my belief or ask about theirs. I don't see a benefit to them knowing what I believe (although, if they are my friends on facebook and care to check they would know.) I don't know them very well, see them only a few times a year. So I say nothing.

5. Facebook. On here like I said under the "religion" part of facebook, it has always said atheist. But I never talk about atheism, advocate atheism, or criticize religion. Note that I am actually a huge anti-theist, and think religion is a terrible plague on the human race in most cases. But I don't want others to make snap judgments and feel that I am attacking them if I state my opinions. I don't want my friends to feel that I judge them just because we don't agree.

6. Similarly in my own home. I just bought a house btw. In thinking about décor, or household items I won't get anything that calls to my atheism. For instance, today I was reading Hughsie's post about "becoming a contributing member". There I read that you can become one by purchasing an item at the TTA store. My exact thought process, "Oh cool! You can actually buy something and become a contributing member. I could (possibly) get like an awesome TTA mug or something. Wait, then my friends and family would see it when they come over and it might cause controversy or they might make judgments or think I am judging them. I don't want that to become an issue between us."

I mean, I've NEVER heard my friends or immediate family (including nieces and nephews) say a single bad thing about atheism. But still, I'm scared to present my beliefs in the same way that others feel free to present theirs. I keep worrying, and I honestly can't even pinpoint why. It presents an "unknown" because I don't know how they will take it, or deal with it. I don't know if they will see me differently. It's all so silly. I'd love to talk to people about it. But I don't want people to feel attacked when I tell how I think/feel.

It's silly. I know. But I'm scared. Even in the safety of the Pacific NorthWest, the stigma of atheism has me too timid to be completely open. Part of the problem is myself, of course. I'm entirely too calculating. I don't like taking actions if I can't predict all/most possible outcomes (and the likely outcome is positive for me).

Anybody relate?

I write too much.


Me!

Just so you know you can also make a donation to become a contributing member, which was what I did.


But as if to knock me down, reality came around
And without so much as a mere touch, cut me into little pieces

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25-07-2014, 12:04 PM
RE: I'm still scared of public atheism.
Try coming out as gay AND atheistic. .... Talk about scary.

When I want your opinion I'll read your entrails.
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25-07-2014, 12:15 PM
RE: I'm still scared of public atheism.
(25-07-2014 11:55 AM)Dom Wrote:  I don't bring it up much either. I feel people out discreetly, and if they are very religious, they are not for me anyway. If they are passively religious, I can live with that. I may probe a little more then - or not.

There is really only one person with whom I talk about it. The guy who helped me landscape my garden. We share a love of nature and we are both atheist and it makes for good conversations.

I don't really see it as very important, atheism is just one of many things that define me. I do avoid the very religious though - too much crazy.
I guess what bugs me isn't that we don't talk about it. It's that I'm scared to talk about it. Like you, I also don't have crazy religious people as part of my day to day life anyways. I wonder if my friends feel similar about their beliefs. They have never talked to me about their Christianity/Catholicism. And they all know I am atheist for certain.

(25-07-2014 12:02 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  Me!

Just so you know you can also make a donation to become a contributing member, which was what I did.
Is your husband (or baby daddy) religious? Your sons? I forgot.

I prefer fantasy, but I have to live in reality.
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25-07-2014, 12:30 PM
RE: I'm still scared of public atheism.
(25-07-2014 12:15 PM)Adrianime Wrote:  
(25-07-2014 11:55 AM)Dom Wrote:  I don't bring it up much either. I feel people out discreetly, and if they are very religious, they are not for me anyway. If they are passively religious, I can live with that. I may probe a little more then - or not.

There is really only one person with whom I talk about it. The guy who helped me landscape my garden. We share a love of nature and we are both atheist and it makes for good conversations.

I don't really see it as very important, atheism is just one of many things that define me. I do avoid the very religious though - too much crazy.
I guess what bugs me isn't that we don't talk about it. It's that I'm scared to talk about it. Like you, I also don't have crazy religious people as part of my day to day life anyways. I wonder if my friends feel similar about their beliefs. They have never talked to me about their Christianity/Catholicism. And they all know I am atheist for certain.

(25-07-2014 12:02 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  Me!

Just so you know you can also make a donation to become a contributing member, which was what I did.
Is your husband (or baby daddy) religious? Your sons? I forgot.

Husband recently returned to his roman catholic crap...he's on and off...

Kids are pretty clueless (which bothers him but not enough to do anything or force them to go to church). Our extended families were all deeply religious. I've been cut off from my extended family (parents/grandparents have all passed away); save for the occasional book being sent, anonymously to my home.


But as if to knock me down, reality came around
And without so much as a mere touch, cut me into little pieces

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