Question...
Post Reply
 
Thread Rating:
  • 0 Votes - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
29-12-2010, 02:15 AM
 
Question...
I am a former Catholic and one side of my family is very Catholic. Part of me is nostalgic for the memories of gatherings at Christmas, my First Communion, and other religious celebrations. Catholics can put on a show.

Meanwhile, I have my newfound atheism and my beliefs that the Church is destructive to the world and religion is something we need to overcome come smack-dab in conflict with my desire to volunteer at homeless shelters, participate in family functions, etc. It seems there's no solace from believing in God and I don't want to ruffle feathers. But at the same time, I am not going to say I believe something that I don't. I try to avoid the subject but then there's no expression of what I believe. I still need that.

I wish I didn't have to deal with this but I am starting to feel like a closet atheist, an apologist, and a hypocrite. Does anyone else have this conflict? Any tips on resolving it?
Quote this message in a reply
29-12-2010, 02:31 AM
RE: Question...
I live near a small town and my school is located in that town, people have a very small understanding of what an atheist is, and just believe the vicious rumors of their (often baptist) churches about non-christians.

My advice, be polite, but sharp. Somebody is talking to you and brings up something about prayer or God kindly tell them that you do not believe in that sort of thing. If they start becoming hostile and ask the silly apologist questions we all grow tired of, try to develop a short retort to end the conversation quickly, or take the time and try to get them thinking. Always try to maintain the politeness though (I'm a mild mannered man, but I find idiocy infuriating). Basically though, don't give ground on your beliefs, you believe that the Church is destructive (and you have good reason to), since you believe this based on facts, you have no reason to feel defensive, you have the real world on your side, they have fantasy land on theirs.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
29-12-2010, 03:33 AM
RE: Question...
It's not easy to be in your position , I can appreciate that.
Participate in all activities you want from family celebrations to volunteering in nursing homes.
I don't think people will turn you away.If you're uncomfortable discussing belief , avoid the topic. If you do get asked a question just be honest.
And with regret I must inform you that feathers will be ruffled.I experienced this first hand with friends who held a more theocratic view point.However agnostic friends were accepting of my new ideas.
You'll feel off for a while until you get your social bearings back;happened to me with my de-conversion. Have patience, and you'll feel at ease soon.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
29-12-2010, 03:43 AM
RE: Question...
Gaglamesh, you just ticked my pet peeve xD Unless you actually mean your friends were litterally "without knowledge". (agnostic is a statement of knowledge, not belief. However you can use it to describe a belief, like agnostic theist, or agnostic atheist.)
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
29-12-2010, 03:52 AM
RE: Question...
Uhm...they were open minded let's say.They lived in religious environments and rejected theism for all its flaws.
True about the definition , I use it to describe people who hold a possibility of a god without assigning attributes to said god.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
29-12-2010, 02:35 PM
RE: Question...
Best to live with the truth, maybe you should ask them this, would you rather have me pretend to believe in god or let me have my own beliefs that god do not exist to me.

And if they start getting abusive, you always have the police.


And, if they are religious too, they you run to canada, make a new life there. (just kidding about this part)

"don't jump to conclusions until your 99%"

"dreams are the best source of creativity" me
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
29-12-2010, 02:55 PM
RE: Question...
That is usually what people refer to when they say agnostic, however that is not the correct usage of the term (call me OCD if you must). You would be label these as either agnostic theists (somebody who believe in a deity of sorts, but does not really define them) or an agnostic atheist (basically somebody who couldn't give two shits about religion, I call them the "Idgaf atheists" because there is no intelligence behind their atheism.).
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
29-12-2010, 09:33 PM
RE: Question...
(29-12-2010 02:15 AM)d.James Wrote:  religion is something we need to overcome come smack-dab in conflict with my desire to volunteer at homeless shelters, participate in family functions, etc.

Why does religion even need to enter into these activities? Can you not do volunteer work, or socialize with your family, without there being religion involved?

I guess I'm a little confused as to where you're coming from, because it seems to me like these things could be mutually exclusive.

I live in an area that is overrun with Evangelicals, so I understand your discomfort. I've lived here two years and have so far avoided any discussion about my religious beliefs. It is possible. How you feel is your business, and if you're not comfortable discussing it, that's all you should have to say.

My reason for being is to serve as a cat cushion. That is good enough for me. Wink
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
30-12-2010, 12:14 AM
 
RE: Question...
(29-12-2010 09:33 PM)trillium13 Wrote:  
(29-12-2010 02:15 AM)d.James Wrote:  religion is something we need to overcome come smack-dab in conflict with my desire to volunteer at homeless shelters, participate in family functions, etc.

Why does religion even need to enter into these activities? Can you not do volunteer work, or socialize with your family, without there being religion involved?

In my area, the Metro Detroit area, most shelters are run by churches or religious organizations. In the case of Grace Centers for Hope, you have to attend a religious ceremony on Wednesdays and Sundays to have a bed.

In my time of volunteering at MCREST--Macomb County Rotating Shelter Team--and it was a short time, I was asked about my religion. I was asked about what church I attended by fellow volunteers. They prayed before the meal with all the other volunteers. It was held in a church; it's a rotating shelter where a church takes a week a year in Macomb County and they provide for the residents. I knew this going in, but I didn't want to discuss it. I just wanted to do my task.

As for my family, we have lots of children running around. Christmas celebrations are of a religious nature. There's more baby Jesuses than Santas. It's a big event, and it was when I was younger.

[quote='trillium13' pid='15104' dateline='1293680031'I live in an area that is overrun with Evangelicals, so I understand your discomfort. I've lived here two years and have so far avoided any discussion about my religious beliefs. It is possible. How you feel is your business, and if you're not comfortable discussing it, that's all you should have to say.
[/quote]

I've been pressed when I've used that line. My family knows that I atheist and I get a dirty look every once in awhile. But with strangers not wanting to talk about it is a chance to bring a wayward sheep back to the fold.
Quote this message in a reply
30-12-2010, 09:09 AM
RE: Question...
Politely tell them that you respect their believes and tell them you ask nothing in return but theirs.

Observer

Agnostic atheist
Secular humanist
Emotional rationalist
Disclaimer: Don’t mix the personal opinion above with the absolute and objective truth. Remember to think for yourself. Thank you.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
Post Reply
Forum Jump: