(Closed) For the atheists out there.

posted 8 years ago in Secular
Post # 17
Member
1160 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

Holy culture shock. I can count on one hand the number of people I know who actually GO to church…atheist or not…nobody here gives a darn.

Post # 18
Member
1456 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: January 2015

I go to a Catholic school (my choice, I know) but even still they don’t force religion on us. Even the mandatory religion classes were more about studying the bible rather than being tested on our beliefs.

 

I wanted to add this though:

Post # 19
Member
1577 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

I just finished reading Richard Dawkin’s “Evolution, the Greatest Show on Earth”, it’s interesting he is mentioned in the article.  

Dawkins has some scary facts about the damage fundamentalist beleifs are having on western culture.

Post # 20
Member
1773 posts
Buzzing bee

@GoldfishPie:  I LOVE that. =D

 

 

I only skimmed the article, but it’s super strange to me! I live somewhere pretty darned liberal. I only have a few friends who identify themselves as religious or as affiliated with a religion in any way.

I don’t see a lot of religion/no religion hate though. 

Actually, I know a lot of people who identify themselves as ‘spiritual’. That or athiest/agnostic seems to be the norm.

 

I’ll admit, I am a little defensive about religion/no religion/whatever. I once had some kid introduce himself to me like “Hey, I’m Dave. I just moved here so I don’t have a lot of friends! I like music and I’m Catholic.”
I was all “Uhh, hi.”
He was like “Do you go to church?”

“Nah.” was my response.

“How do you know what is right and wrong in life?!”

Then I gave him a 30 second response about how morals aren’t religion-exclusive.

We didn’t talk much after that.

 

That’s most of my interaction with that sort of thing. 

Post # 21
Member
2232 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

Like a few of the PPs I live in a really liberal area so I would think and hope that this kind of judgement doesn’t happen. Unfortunately I would say that it still does just maybe not as much as it does in these small towns. 

I personally don’t feel comfortable telling anyone that I’m an atheist unless I think that they are open to that or that they may have similar views. FI’s family and friends are all Catholic and I don’t mean little c Catholic. It’s a very different experience for me to have grace before meals, going to church every weekend (them, not us) and a lot of other things centered around the church.

I am pretty sure by now that they all know that I don’t believe what they believe but I am not about to be up front about it unless they ask. In the the past they have asked how we celebrate Easter or Christmas at my house and I explain the Christian Orthodox traditions, but I give no indication that I do that, or that I attend church or believe in it. They just haven’t caught on I guess? 

I think it’s really sad that people treat each other this way. 

Post # 22
Member
681 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

I really really don’t want this to seem ignorant or insensitive, I just am curious so please don’t be offended…  For those bees who believe this life we live is “it”, (sometimes I still wonder, though I believe in God it’s hard not to have through thoughts from time to time and then be terrified lol) if it is your plan to have children, will you also tell them that this life is it and then once we die we are just gone?  Kids ask crazy things sometimes and I assume the whole going to Heaven answer (or anywhere for that matter)isn’t an option, I just can’t imagine talking to even a pre-teen about that topic since it can be scary even for adults….   Again, I know it probably seems really ignorant and please let me emphasize as much as I can via text I do not mean to be I just am genuinely wondering the answer…

Post # 23
Member
1359 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

@Ms.Sugarsnap:  Yep. It’s just a fact of life. I don’t think it will be a hard conversation to have. People die, that’s just what happens. Not particularly pleasant to explain, but then neither is rape, hate, bigotry, war, etc. You just do your best to explain the world in a way that is truthful but not traumatic.

Post # 24
Member
1577 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

@moonadea:  well said.

I was raised by a agnostic/atheist parents; and the questions that I asked about death as a small child were softened with the reassurance that our memories of those who die persist after they are gone.

Post # 25
Member
1456 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: January 2015

@Ms.Sugarsnap:  As far as I know (please correct me if need be!) the Jewish religion doesn’t really have a clear concept of the afterlife as well. And it’s defnintely not an offenseive question!

In fact, thinking about the afterlife was one of the reasons I was “drawn” to atheism (well, more pulled away from Catholicism). When I was younger, learning about hell/heaven/purgatory in catholic school TERRIFIED me. I swear, I would have nightmares about going to hell, and watching me and my family burn because I lied to my mom, or didn’t do something I was told to do. I was 8. I lived in extreme guilt and panic thinking about the afterlife. When I had first penance, it felt a little better, but for years I would go to confession all the time, any time I could because I was so incredibly terrified of what would happen if I accidentally died and I had done something wrong. That good old catholic guilt, right?! Lol.

By the time I was 12 or so I started thinking more about religion, life, and the Catholic church. I decided I was agnostic, but soon I really turned to atheism. It was so freeing knowing that the life we lead here is the only life we have, and in many ways I lived a better life after I changed, because I was free of the worry and guilt of the great “afterlife.” We and only we are accountable for our actions and thoughts. I don’t have to pray for strength, guidance, wisdom, or love; I have all of that inside of me right now.

I think if my child asked me about death and what happens when people or animals die, I would tell them they’re free from suffering, hardship, pain, sickness, and sadness. They do not live on this earth any longer, but we keep them in our memories forever.

Post # 26
Member
899 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

@Ms.Sugarsnap: There was a thread about this a little bit ago that adressed that very question:

http://boards.weddingbee.com/topic/atheistagnostic-bees-children-038-religion-what%E2%80%99s-your-plan

 

For me, I plan to tell our kids the same thing that moonadea mentioned. We will say that when people die, they are no longer here, but their memories live on in our hearts. We will proabably expose our kids to the idea of heaven (and other religious afterlife theories) but encourage them to think critically. If the idea of heaven comforts them, I would be happy to let them believe that. In our house it would be similar to belief in Santa or the Easter Bunny. (I hope no one takes offense to that, it’s just my PERSONAL belief.)

Post # 27
Member
176 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

@GoldfishPie:  I’m so sorry to hear about your experience growing up with fear of hell and doing wrong things! The whole reason Jesus came to earth was to free us from that kind of guilt. The price has been paid for you if you want it to be. There’s nothing you could do to make God hate you, because when he looks at you he sees perfection. Sorry to thread jack when I’m not an atheist… I totally understand and respect your point of view but just wanted to mention that there is also freedom from guilt for believers. Living in fear like you described was not God’s intention, IMO. People have made it that way. When it comes to children I think it’s important to explain your beliefs but encourage them to make their own decision as they grow up. Cos at the end of the day, how sure can you (or anyone) be that you are teaching them the truth?

Post # 28
Bee
1433 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2012 - Historic Lougheed House

@GoldfishPie:  Yeah Jews don’t really have a concept of the afterlife.  One of the main tenants of Judaism is tikkum olam (repair of the world) which is stressed because this is the only world we have, and theres nothing else out there.  

Orthodox Jews believe there will be a heaven when the Messiah comes, but since Reform Jews don’t believe in a physical Messiah, they don’t really believe in heaven either.  

The lack of an afterlife is something really respectable about Judaism, IMO.  

Post # 29
Member
1315 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

I just finished that article and I have to say its one of the saddest things I’ve read in a while. “Religious” people nearly ruined this country, and it looks like they’re all set to do it over there too. So sad. I’d pretty much call myself agnostic as I am generally inclined towards the concepts of a Creator and some form of existence after bodily death, while Darling Husband doesn’t believe any of it, but is bothered by the Atheist tag because of the implication of dogmatic disbelief that is sometimes seen to go along with it. 

That said, I’ve always felt that when stripped back to its bare bones, Christianity has a lot to commend it- the forgiveness, compassion and pacifistic nature. It’s such a shame that the people who push Christianity so viciously have no clue what it actually is- would Jesus, if he did exist as described, really countenance the banishment of family members for their beliefs?? Can’t see it, myself. 

So very sad that you’re free to be any religion you like, but don’t dare try to be none.

Post # 30
Member
176 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

@aunt pol:  Well said 🙂

Post # 31
Member
73 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

I actually read this article a little while back and was greatly saddened that people must be in hiding just to get by in the world.  I was glad, however, that I live on the coast.  However, I must agree with previous posts that it is a shame that not everyone is able to let others believe what they will – atheist, theist, or otherwise.

My motto has always been to “live and let live” and let’s hope someday more people could be of this mindset – atheist, theist, or otherwise.

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