respect for/relating to religious believers
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17-06-2013, 06:39 AM
RE: respect for/relating to religious believers
Hey, thanks for the replies. Such interesting perspectives. I find it so much easier to deal with those who are really outspoken about their faith, because there's this set of actions I can point to to justify my discomfort. With the quieter believers, I can't put my finger on it, I just feel this sense of disappointment. Not sure how I train myself to become less judgmental, but it's definitely my problem, not theirs.
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17-06-2013, 08:21 AM
RE: respect for/relating to religious believers
(17-06-2013 06:39 AM)princess.flapjack Wrote:  Hey, thanks for the replies. Such interesting perspectives. I find it so much easier to deal with those who are really outspoken about their faith, because there's this set of actions I can point to to justify my discomfort. With the quieter believers, I can't put my finger on it, I just feel this sense of disappointment. Not sure how I train myself to become less judgmental, but it's definitely my problem, not theirs.

Good question, terrific replies.

I have the same struggle but as long as they aren't in my face about it I'll give them room to figure or not figure it out on their own.
It seems to me infinitely better, come to think of it, to let them listen to my point of view than to avoid them. Give them pause, maybe start them down the road to de-conversion. Yes

“I am quite sure now that often, very often, in matters concerning religion and politics a man’s reasoning powers are not above the monkey’s.”~Mark Twain
“Ocean: A body of water occupying about two-thirds of a world made for man - who has no gills.”~ Ambrose Bierce
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14-08-2013, 09:30 PM
RE: respect for/relating to religious believers
I can certainly get where you're coming from. I know a lot of highly intelligent people who when I find out they are very religious, I get slightly disappointed. This might be partially due to the fact that I'm a secret atheist so I want to find someone like me, but I think it's more than that. Religion has begun to make me uncomfortable, but I've come to realize that in order for others to respect you for your beliefs, you should respect theirs. Obviously the only disrespect I have for religion is in my head because everyone I know believes I'm Christian, but I try and respect people for their beliefs. I've started feeling more sad than anything else. I have a friend, for example, that wishes to become a Catholic priest. I respect him for this because anyone who has that kind of commitment for anything is certainly deserving of respect, but I feel more sad for him than anything else because I feel that he is wasting his life. I don't know if that was actually helpful or not, but that's just my thoughts on the matter.
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14-08-2013, 10:50 PM
RE: respect for/relating to religious believers
I view it this way:

Atheists are often immediately judged by religious. What you are doing is the same thing. You are judging others based on one aspect of their life.

“We are all connected; To each other, biologically. To the earth, chemically. To the rest of the universe atomically.”

-Neil deGrasse Tyson
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15-08-2013, 07:30 AM
RE: respect for/relating to religious believers
I'm with NoahsFarce on this.

Most of the people in my life are theists. I refuse to look down on them for belief. I do not agree with them but as long as their actions are decent then I have no issue with it. One of my closest friends is a born again xian.

When belief informs actions to the point where abuse, neglect, agenda psuhing on others and violence occur then I have an issue and my demeanor changes.

Would I prefer everyone base their views on reality? Yes. Can I absolutely prove to them their god does not exist? No.

" Generally speaking, the errors in religion are dangerous; those in philosophy only ridiculous."
David Hume
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15-08-2013, 08:53 AM
RE: respect for/relating to religious believers
I dont look down to all theists,only the ones that keep spouting "you're going to hell" even after i asked them not to say it,and the ones who deny evolution and the age of the earth without research,even if i present them with facts and links.

I don't really like going outside.
It's too damn "peopley" out there....
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15-08-2013, 08:56 AM
RE: respect for/relating to religious believers
(14-08-2013 09:30 PM)southernbelle Wrote:  I can certainly get where you're coming from. I know a lot of highly intelligent people who when I find out they are very religious, I get slightly disappointed. This might be partially due to the fact that I'm a secret atheist so I want to find someone like me, but I think it's more than that. Religion has begun to make me uncomfortable, but I've come to realize that in order for others to respect you for your beliefs, you should respect theirs. Obviously the only disrespect I have for religion is in my head because everyone I know believes I'm Christian, but I try and respect people for their beliefs. I've started feeling more sad than anything else. I have a friend, for example, that wishes to become a Catholic priest. I respect him for this because anyone who has that kind of commitment for anything is certainly deserving of respect, but I feel more sad for him than anything else because I feel that he is wasting his life. I don't know if that was actually helpful or not, but that's just my thoughts on the matter.

I'd suggest respecting people's right to have beliefs, instead.

There is no reason for you to respect someone's ridiculous beliefs.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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15-08-2013, 09:10 AM (This post was last modified: 15-08-2013 09:56 AM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: respect for/relating to religious believers
I never even try to argue about religion with people , in person. The whole subject is not really amenable to short" discussions. It's very complicated. Yesterday, here on TTA, I learned that a significant percentage of those who self-identify themselves as "Christian", also report they do not "believe in God", (in Canada). Now how does THAT make any sense ? What I suspect it means they really just "believe in being *nice*". I suspect the tren is towards some sort of "universalism", even though ir's rather unspecific and not defined.

My great aunt was a nun-educator-college/university president. Her friends and community members, (from a VERY liberal Catholic order of women religious) are not about "preaching" and converting. They have been basically just part of our family ever since I can remember .. a whole "extra set" of grannies, and aunts. Some are political radicals, ("nuns on the bus" types), some have arrest/jail records from their "activist" days, some are rather "saintly", some not at all. Some very humorous. Not once, has even one, ever said anything to me about religion or Jebus. They are busy with their health-care ministries, teaching reading to immigrants, getting disadvantaged populations into jobs that don't require endless years of expensive education, etc., ect., etc. If they weren't nuns, they would all be doing this sort of thing independently, I have no doubt. So no, I have great respect for people that DO good things. If they understand things, and think differently about the universe differently than I do, I could care less. The (charitable) WORK getting done is the important thing. I could care less what motivates them. Now that they are getting older, things are changing, and it's us that are taking care of them, more and more. I see how important we are, and always were to them, since they don't have families of their own. So I make my little brother come with me to visit them. I would hope I respect good people, not by what and how they chose to think about and talk
abut religion. I also have another friend who is the abbot of a well known American monastery. We meet once a year, as I drive through, in the Summer. He does try to "turn" me to Jebus, but he is a good guy, (underneath all that religious crap), and I just deflect the conversation, and treat him like a "crazy uncle". I would hope I can look further, than surface religious labels.

However, I do get though, that people whose exposure to religion was not this "benign", and was far more "stridently" evangelical/fundamentalistic, react viscerally and assertively and angrily to anything having to do with religion. And I don't blame them. I just never had to put up with that crap, personally. The other half of my family is sort of "high church" Episcopalian. They're about as "benign" ("wishy-washy") as you can get, on the religion spectrum. I actually liked going to church there, (good music, occasionally). The Cathedral Dean from San Diego once said, "the only thing we ALL agree on here, in this congregation, is that *church is at 10:30*" (!). That's pretty benign, and "universalist". Those people don't bother me at all.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein
Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music - Friedrich Nietzsche
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15-08-2013, 10:28 AM
RE: respect for/relating to religious believers
I will continue to be respectful of anyone who disagrees with me up until a certain point. If they express a belief that infringes on the freedom of other people, I will respectfully disagree and require them to show, in secular terms, why their belief about what their God allows should trump the freedom of anyone who does not share that belief. In this, I do not challenge the people, but the positions they espouse.

Once they start threatening me with hell, the gloves are off. I consider the threat of hell to be the height of arrogance, and I will treat it accordingly.

Once they start the ad hominem attacks, no matter how politely phrased, the gloves are off. "We both know what the Bible says about you [backsliders, former believers who reject the faith]." The Bible is exceedingly impolite (to say the least) in its condemnation of those who once held its precepts and subsequently reject them. As far as I'm concerned, when you invoke what the Bible says about me, no matter how politely you phrase it, you invite "retaliation."

As I've stated before, sometimes politeness in the face of rudeness is civility, and sometimes it is pure cowardice.
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