The Pressure to Pray
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24-08-2013, 04:51 PM
The Pressure to Pray
Hey there y'all. So I've just recently been doing this atheist thing and that was over the summer when there wasn't nearly so much religious pressure. With school starting back up, I'm realizing how pressured at my school we are to be religious. There's a prayer before football games. I'm in the marching band, and all of the students before doing half-time do a prayer. It's not something you can really get out of because if someone sees you walking away they'll yell something like "Alex, come on! We're about to pray! You can't go on before you pray!" It's a really big deal and because no one knows I'm atheist, my non-participation would be considered highly suspect. Unfortunately, praying gives me an icky feeling. What's the best way for me to handle prayer? Should I just suck it up and deal with it or stand in the group not saying anything? And how can I handle religious pressures in general? For example, a friend of mine started a "band prayer group" that as her best friend I feel obligated to participate in. I get texts every single day from her with Bible quotes, and it's driving me insane. Is there anything I can do?
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24-08-2013, 04:54 PM (This post was last modified: 24-08-2013 04:58 PM by GirlyMan.)
RE: The Pressure to Pray
(24-08-2013 04:51 PM)southernbelle Wrote:  Unfortunately, praying gives me an icky feeling. What's the best way for me to handle prayer?

I pray to myself, all the time, ain't no biggie for me to do it in front of others, ain't like it's any of their business who I'm praying to.

This is not my signature.
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24-08-2013, 05:34 PM
RE: The Pressure to Pray
My thoughts are that praying is just basically talking to yourself. So if you don't want to rock the boat then politely smile, bow your head and think of whatever you want to think about.

If anybody ever asks what you have prayed about say "I would like to keep it personal" , if they try to push you for an answer don't budge or elaborate.

Unless you tell your friend you no longer wish to participate in the text prayer thingy then im afraid you will have to grin and bear it.

Patience is a virtue Wink

For no matter how much I use these symbols, to describe symptoms of my existence.
You are your own emphasis.
So I say nothing.

-Bemore.
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24-08-2013, 05:39 PM
RE: The Pressure to Pray
(24-08-2013 05:34 PM)bemore Wrote:  My thoughts are that praying is just basically talking to yourself. So if you don't want to rock the boat then politely smile, bow your head and think of whatever you want to think about.

If anybody ever asks what you have prayed about say "I would like to keep it personal" , if they try to push you for an answer don't budge or elaborate.

I just say "Bob". Tongue

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24-08-2013, 05:42 PM
RE: The Pressure to Pray
(24-08-2013 05:39 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  
(24-08-2013 05:34 PM)bemore Wrote:  My thoughts are that praying is just basically talking to yourself. So if you don't want to rock the boat then politely smile, bow your head and think of whatever you want to think about.

If anybody ever asks what you have prayed about say "I would like to keep it personal" , if they try to push you for an answer don't budge or elaborate.

I just say "Bob". Tongue

or kate....





Cool

For no matter how much I use these symbols, to describe symptoms of my existence.
You are your own emphasis.
So I say nothing.

-Bemore.
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26-08-2013, 06:35 AM
RE: The Pressure to Pray
prayer gives me the same feeling so when ever my highly religious family starts praying, i just sit there quietly and let them complete their pointless ritual so i can eat, it seems to work for me.

Also what is your best friends opinion of athiests? if she's accepting, or tolerant, you should tell her about your deconverstion. If not well... thats a forum thread by itself.

Assume nothing, Question everything
Assumptions build barriers, Questions break them down
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26-08-2013, 07:09 AM
RE: The Pressure to Pray
(24-08-2013 04:51 PM)southernbelle Wrote:  Unfortunately, praying gives me an icky feeling. What's the best way for me to handle prayer?

Icky feeling... yeah, that's a perfect description. Can't really give you any advice worth a damn but FWIW... I'd stick with the public prayers - a lot of religious types adore public devotion, they couldn't give a shit what you actually believe as long as you pretend (at least, in my experience). Public prayers are meaningless anyway, so it's not like it's a big deal to fake 'em. The stuff with your friend... up to you, but you could talk to her, try to gauge how she'd react if you told her you were not religious any more.
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30-08-2013, 08:44 PM
RE: The Pressure to Pray
(26-08-2013 06:35 AM)Relic of the Darkling Wrote:  Also what is your best friends opinion of athiests? if she's accepting, or tolerant, you should tell her about your deconverstion. If not well... thats a forum thread by itself.

All of my best friends find the idea of anyone not believing in God appalling and have said on several occasions that atheists are idiots who are going to hell and need to accept God into their lives. Some have said that atheism is the only thing they would disown their children for. I'm having to (for now) hide my atheism. Once I get to college I'm "coming out of the closet" so to speak. Right now I'm trying to find a way of getting out of prayer without arousing suspicions. One of the many annoying things about my atheism being secret is that as part of the "band prayer group" I'm getting a minimum of three Bible quotes per day sent via text.
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30-08-2013, 08:47 PM
RE: The Pressure to Pray
Are you at public school?
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30-08-2013, 09:04 PM
RE: The Pressure to Pray
(30-08-2013 08:47 PM)BrokenQuill92 Wrote:  Are you at public school?

Yes. I find it weird that the school is allowed to open every football game with a prayer, open and close graduation with one, and have youth directors from churches to come in and pass out pamphlets during lunch considering it's a public school. Then again there's also a "In God We Trust" sign in every single classroom in the state.
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