Is it okay not to pray?
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12-12-2014, 02:43 AM
Is it okay not to pray?
I was always told not wanting to pray at somebody else's house who believes in god is considered rude. Or going to church (I don't do anymore but used to) And not wanting to pray is considered rude. Iv'e never felt correct praying to a god that isn't mine it feels like i'm putting on a mask and acting like i'm christian myself.
I'm even told it's rude to not close your eyes while a prayer is going on in the house, if you're there then at least! close your eyes. Iv'e never done that either, people say i'm just ignorant or rude. But i feel like it's a mask, i want people to see me for me not for who i'm not and i feel i can be respectful and kind even without bowing my head to a god i don't know exists.

(Note: As of the moment i'm agnostic)
My question: Is it okay not to do everything they ask me to like pray or close my eyes?
Is it really rude or was i just raised a strange way iv'e always wondered and had trouble comprehending that idea of respect.
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12-12-2014, 03:48 AM
RE: Is it okay not to pray?
Yes.

It's compulsory.

Big Grin

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12-12-2014, 03:56 AM
RE: Is it okay not to pray?
Well, I suppose as long as your quiet and allow them to pray, its still respectful. I tend to bow my head partly out of habit as well as respect. Some might think its rude not to bow your head or whatnot but I think the main thing is that you are quiet and don't mock them as their praying. If they notice and bring it up, I'd explain why you don't close your eyes and bow your head and how your show respect by not interrupting.

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12-12-2014, 04:01 AM
RE: Is it okay not to pray?
(12-12-2014 03:56 AM)Miss Suzanne Wrote:  Well, I suppose as long as your quiet and allow them to pray, its still respectful. I tend to bow my head partly out of habit as well as respect. Some might think its rude not to bow your head or whatnot but I think the main thing is that you are quiet and don't mock them as their praying. If they notice and bring it up, I'd explain why you don't close your eyes and bow your head and how your show respect by not interrupting.

Yeah, that's how i always am i love people so i don't mind the praying it just is a little odd it makes me uncomfortable. So i just stay silent and allow them to do their thing.
But i had a kid ask me once while the prayer was over in a very "SOUTHERN Christianity house hold" "Why aren't you praying??" i couldn't reply and i ignored it my best friend helped me out because i felt very scared. I didn't want to get the family upset by saying what i was we didn't know how they'd handle it and i don't believe it would have gone good. But my friends parents was fine it was there grams house.
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12-12-2014, 04:45 AM
RE: Is it okay not to pray?
(12-12-2014 04:01 AM)Autumnflowers Wrote:  
(12-12-2014 03:56 AM)Miss Suzanne Wrote:  Well, I suppose as long as your quiet and allow them to pray, its still respectful. I tend to bow my head partly out of habit as well as respect. Some might think its rude not to bow your head or whatnot but I think the main thing is that you are quiet and don't mock them as their praying. If they notice and bring it up, I'd explain why you don't close your eyes and bow your head and how your show respect by not interrupting.

Yeah, that's how i always am i love people so i don't mind the praying it just is a little odd it makes me uncomfortable. So i just stay silent and allow them to do their thing.
But i had a kid ask me once while the prayer was over in a very "SOUTHERN Christianity house hold" "Why aren't you praying??" i couldn't reply and i ignored it my best friend helped me out because i felt very scared. I didn't want to get the family upset by saying what i was we didn't know how they'd handle it and i don't believe it would have gone good. But my friends parents was fine it was there grams house.

That does sound pretty scary! Good though that your friend could help and that her parents understood. It's always good to have someone around to help you act and be what you want to do or be. Still can be scary but it helps to smooth things over. Like I said before, I tend to bow my head so no one notices I don't close my eyes or fold my arms so I don't have much in the way of advice of handling it alone, I'm afraid. I'm sure at one point, you might be alone when you're in a group of praying folks. I'd breath, yknow to stay calm (its easier to think if you can be calm, or, calmer), and say how you feel more comfortable with your eyes open. Sorry that I'm not that much more help Sad I'm sure someone will pop in with better advice for you, though. Thumbsup we got a whole lotta people I'm sure have been in that type of situation and can share their divine "what I do," or, "what you should do."

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16-12-2014, 08:07 AM
RE: Is it okay not to pray?
(12-12-2014 03:56 AM)Miss Suzanne Wrote:  Well, I suppose as long as your quiet and allow them to pray, its still respectful. I tend to bow my head partly out of habit as well as respect. Some might think its rude not to bow your head or whatnot but I think the main thing is that you are quiet and don't mock them as their praying. If they notice and bring it up, I'd explain why you don't close your eyes and bow your head and how your show respect by not interrupting.

I agree. I will also note that I have a tendency to eat automatically (I don't even think about it). If that happens and I notice (or someone mentions it, whichever happens first) I stop eating until the prayer is over.
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16-12-2014, 08:16 AM (This post was last modified: 16-12-2014 08:22 AM by Bows and Arrows.)
RE: Is it okay not to pray?
If you are extremely uncomfortable just think about thanking the farmer, the chef, the clerk at the grocery store, etc. They are the ones that made your meal possible.


As for kids questions, I tend to try to educate when I can, maybe " good question- in this country we each get to choose to do religion our own way. you do your thing, I"ll do mine, ok?"

it immeciately tells the kid that you are different, and that its ok, and it also (hopefully) will stop anyone with a snarky comment because they would look like an ass to do so. it also leaves the answer kind of vague so you only reveal what you are comfortable with.


"Life is a daring adventure or it is nothing"--Helen Keller
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16-12-2014, 08:17 AM
RE: Is it okay not to pray?
I don't think they should make you verbalize prayer, but if you are a guest in someone else's house, tilt your head close your eyes and scream in your own head silently and put up with it.

You don't have to live there so nothing wrong with being polite while you are there. You have plenty of other places outside someone else's home to express yourself, like here.

Poetry by Brian37(poems by an atheist) Also on Facebook as BrianJames Rational Poet and Twitter Brianrrs37
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16-12-2014, 08:25 AM
RE: Is it okay not to pray?
It's certainly a better use of your time not to.
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16-12-2014, 08:37 AM
RE: Is it okay not to pray?
I never do this... When they call me out for it I say one of a few things:

"Did you have YOUR eyes open?"

"We have two options here. Option A) I close my eyes and feel stupid for pretending to talk to an imaginary creature. Option B) I keep my eyes open, and silently observe your ritual. Sure, option B might make you feel stupid too, but only if you lack faith... And that's certainly not MY problem. Either way, I won't be forced to close my eyes in the presence of people who are potentially hearing voices in their head. If this makes you insecure, just know you didn't need to say a damn thing."
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