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A question for atheists


Charlie
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Reading these threads about children leaving the faith has me wondering, do you get proselytized by family or friends who are religious believers? I have one sibling (born again Christian) who tries to convince another (non believer) to just let go of her worries and accept Jesus into her heart. This is given in the context of sharing problems like a severely stressful marriage, older teen / young adult children, etc. It's completely unwanted and constantly, politely rejected. It doesn't happen often, but it is regular. My mom is starting to say really subtle things that in another context I might consider trying to put me on a guilt trip to reconsider, but that's not really like her and I think it's general stress with health, mortality issues, and things like this. But it got me wondering of others face this kind of thing regularly or not so regularly.

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No.

My parents are VERY outspoken atheists, so we'll never get grief from them. DH's parents are religious but don't talk about it much. I think they know they won't get anywhere with us. ;). It's a non subject with them, like politics. We just leave the room.

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Just to clarify, since this is likely in response to my thread; my son is actively seeking answers, which is why I'm seeking out information to share with him. He talks to me openly about it. I am not just pushing it down his throat.

 

I know, and love, plenty of atheists/agnostics in real life, and would never push my beliefs on them. If we have discussions, I share how I came to my beliefs and am willing to listen to them share as well.

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My in-laws do a little, but not much. My parents lost their faith over the years, so no issues there. A friend once gave one of my kids a book with a religious theme (as well as a few non-religious presents). The school bus driver/classroom aide of my then-4yo son once commented to me that she knew she could lose her job over it, but that God compelled her to tell me that if we kept living in sin our lives would never improve (I'm still not sure what sin she was talking about - I'm thinking she maybe thought we were lesbians?). Oh, and the guy who officiated our wedding used the word 'god' even though he'd agreed not to - that wasn't cool, but w/e. He didn't say which god (though I of course know which one he meant), so I can pretend we're married under Zeus, or the Flying Spaghetti Monster, or whomever suits my whim.

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No, but that's because we haven't told the ILs. We're holding off on that until the kids are older to protect them from the emotional manipulation that will accompany the proselytizing. I know that all of that will come regardless of when they find out, but at least this way the kids have positive memories of their grandparents from when they were kids. My niece did say some things to dd1 last time they visited, but it was more from an assumption that dd1 believed just like she did. Dd1 handled it by just sidestepping the issue and handled herself really well.

 

My mom has said some stuff I'm not too thrilled with to my kids when they went camping with her this past summer, but it wasn't proselytizing and it definitely lacked the emotional manipulation the ILs would engage in. All three of my kids handled it really well. I left it up to them as to whether or not they wanted me to tell Grandma to knock it off and they didn't want me to so we're letting it lie for now. I was really impressed with they way the dealt with it, though.

 

I've never encountered outright proselytization with the exception of some elderly folks who go door to door in the neighborhood and some Mormons. Mostly I treat them like door to door salesmen and so they're not too bad.

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Just to clarify, since this is likely in response to my thread; my son is actively seeking answers, which is why I'm seeking out information to share with him. He talks to me openly about it. I am not just pushing it down his throat.

 

I know, and love, plenty of atheists/agnostics in real life, and would never push my beliefs on them. If we have discussions, I share how I came to my beliefs and am willing to listen to them share as well.

 

I think that's very nice of you to help him out on his terms and not yours. It just got me to thinking. The book suggestions would never work for me for a variety of reasons (which I imagine you don't want on your thread, lol), but the questions got me to thinking - do other atheists have people in their lives who are trying to "help" without being asked? To me, there's an important difference.

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No, but neither of us have family members who are very religious. The few who do attend church treat it the way it was when dh and I were growing up - as a private matter between them and their god. 

 

I don't have many religious friends either. Most are atheist or agnostic. My Christian friends are very liberal and don't push their beliefs on anyone. They just live their lives according to their faith. Jews don't proselytize, so my Jewish friends certainly don't push anything on me. And most of them are more cultural Jews than religious Jews anyway. And my one Quaker friend also treats it as a private matter. She'll gladly give you information but only if you ask.

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Hubby's brother and wife does that all the time. His wife's relatives does that too. We are just tone deaf to that.

A friend did that for a short while but when she went abit overboard, her husband who is the same faith stopped her. She is just exuberant about everything so it is not so much religion but her general way of speaking.

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We have no super religious people in our family so has never been an issue.

 

On my inlaws side, they are of a specific religion for the most part, one that is actually on my side too, but his side doesn't so much as try to get us to join but rather uses it as an insult against us. Like we are beneath them for not being that religion. It is rather extreme too, like telling us our marriage isn't valid because it was not in their church and our children are b@stards because they are from people who were not married-and using that word. BUT, in reality, I know their behavior is not related to religion but rather to their own hate.

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I am at best agnostic.  I don't know what I believe.  And given my location deep in bible territory, I get two types on conversations:
On my Catholic heritage - recoil and I'm sure holy water sprinkled at me

On my non-evangelical status - certainty that if I just let Jesus into my heart, all will be well.

 

To share my true beliefs with those around me who are not part of the "secret sisterhood" lol is to ask for quite a bit more religious conversion techniques than I am comfortable with.  See, with Catholicism I am pronounced too misguided to change to the True calling of Jesus.  Being bible literate, but non-evangelical means that I will get there on my own time.  A lack of belief gives the opportunity to change me.  Took me a year to figure that one out.

 

I am very glad that our next move is taking us out of this area and into a Catholic-heavy, liberal community.  Here has really hurt my soul in how people are treated when faced with a difference of belief.

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My mom is incessant with trying to convince me "not to continue my march to HELL." It's ridiculous. She has mental illness issues, so I try to be kind about it, but it's so frustrating to try to have a basic conversation with her.

 

DH's family is also religious. MIL is very live-and-let-live, but my SIL is always trying to get my sons to *say* "I believe in Jesus" so that they will be saved. The boys are nice about it, and DH has chatted with her about it, but...it's pretty annoying.

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This thread also makes me curious, and I hate to start yet another s/o thread, but I can if needed, whether atheists would be open to children growing up and choosing to seek out a faith to follow.

 

It's not like I'd shun them, but I like the bumper sticker that says "militant agnostic - I don't know, and you don't either". So, technically, I'm an agnostic, but given the fundamental impossibility to know for sure, atheism is the most sensible option. I know that that runs completely counter to Pascal's Wager, but Pascal's Wager only makes sense if it's between atheism and one religion. There are zillions of religions and potential gods, including the possibility of gods nobody is aware of. So, it makes more sense to not waste time and energy on any of them, rather than to gamble that one or more of them are real, and care enough to hurt you if you happen to not believe in them. Plus, I like Occam's Razor - don't come up with some complicated explanation if a simpler one suffices (adding a god/gods only makes explaining reality more complicated, as then you'd have to explain how the god(s) came to exist as well). So, yeah, I'd be seriously disappointed if my kids chose to seek out some faith.

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This thread also makes me curious, and I hate to start yet another s/o thread, but I can if needed, whether atheists would be open to children growing up and choosing to seek out a faith to follow.

 

Yes, I would. Every person has to chose his or her own faith. I grew up Christian; my mother and grandmother were Christian, my father an atheist (but I did not realize this until I was grown up). I married an atheist. I later grew away from Christianity for a number of reasons.

People questioning and seeking is part of life. I would not have a problem if my children chose a religion - only if they became intolerant and bigotted in the process.

Edited by regentrude
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This thread also makes me curious, and I hate to start yet another s/o thread, but I can if needed, whether atheists would be open to children growing up and choosing to seek out a faith to follow.

 

I didn't see this question before.

 

In our house faith is treated as a personal journey.  There's no one who can walk it for you, though there are plenty of guides along the way.  I wouldn't care what my children end up believing.  I only care that they're happy and respectful of all beliefs.

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Some still do, but it's a long time that they've all known that I don't believe in their god and for the most part everyone avoids the topic as best they can.  My dad's family is very religious (Pentecostals)  and I know it's hard for them but they know if they push it I will tell them exactly what I think.... so no one has really pushed it in quite a few years.  I did have a friend/boss who kept trying to convert me to Buddhism, talked about it a lot and gave me some books.  To me Buddhism is as woo-woo as Christianity and if he were to have been a better friend or not my boss then I would have been less subtle about my feelings on the unsolicited  info.  As it was I just did the whole "huh, interesting" thing.

 

I did grow up in a very restrictive/conservative church atmosphere.  There are rules and you can not deviate from them, but I never went through the "questioning, or soul searching" some teens and young adults do I just knew I didn't believe it and that living under those rules was not for me.  So for those who are actually questioning, unsolicited literature and such might help them but for someone like me, it would never have swayed me. I mean why would I care about the opinion of someone (author) I don't know?  Self help books of any kind tend to get binned here.

 

Strangers on the other hand can be real PITA about it and if cornered or if they start in my kids I can get real honest with them, that tends to end the conversation quick enough.

Edited by foxbridgeacademy
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This thread also makes me curious, and I hate to start yet another s/o thread, but I can if needed, whether atheists would be open to children growing up and choosing to seek out a faith to follow.

 

No, at least not in my in laws case.  They are atheists and my DH is a Christian and the pressure is from them to us, not vice versa.  They were heart broken when DH decided to become a Christian.  They have belittled him, tried to talk the kids into rejecting christianity, etc.

Edited by Attolia
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Reading these threads about children leaving the faith has me wondering, do you get proselytized by family or friends who are religious believers? I have one sibling (born again Christian) who tries to convince another (non believer) to just let go of her worries and accept Jesus into her heart. This is given in the context of sharing problems like a severely stressful marriage, older teen / young adult children, etc. It's completely unwanted and constantly, politely rejected. It doesn't happen often, but it is regular. My mom is starting to say really subtle things that in another context I might consider trying to put me on a guilt trip to reconsider, but that's not really like her and I think it's general stress with health, mortality issues, and things like this. But it got me wondering of others face this kind of thing regularly or not so regularly.

 

No, not really. But DH and I are convinced that the vast majority of our friends and family who claim to be Christians are really only cultural Christians. None seem to have really deep beliefs or to have thought critically or at any length about their beliefs.

 

 

This thread also makes me curious, and I hate to start yet another s/o thread, but I can if needed, whether atheists would be open to children growing up and choosing to seek out a faith to follow.

 

No. I was born and raised a Christian, was baptized in two denominations and was a pretty solid believer until my late 30's. I know that there's a great deal of comfort and a strong feeling of community that can come with believing. And sometimes I really do miss that aspect of belief. I'd be happy if my kids had that. But like Regentrude said, I'd definitely have a problem with intolerance or bigotry. Or hypocrisy. 

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We're all atheists, so no, I don't get that. All my friends are either atheists, Jews (including several Jewish converts, none of whom know each other), Pagan, or highly-atheist-friendly Christians and Muslims.

 

Just to clarify, since this is likely in response to my thread; my son is actively seeking answers, which is why I'm seeking out information to share with him. He talks to me openly about it. I am not just pushing it down his throat.

 

Well, I'm glad to hear that, though I didn't think you were actively pushing Christian propaganda on him despite his protests :)

 

I will suggest that he'll do better if he reads material from a wide range of views, not just Christians. Otherwise, from what I've seen from friends who have started out Christian and undergone a crisis of faith (some of whom lost or changed religion and some of whom didn't), those doubts will be more likely to stay behind and keep affecting him, because he'll never know if he was convinced or if he just fell prey to confirmation bias. The best way to test the truth of something is to look at contradictory examples.

 

This thread also makes me curious, and I hate to start yet another s/o thread, but I can if needed, whether atheists would be open to children growing up and choosing to seek out a faith to follow.

 

I feel that if your religion comforts you and helps you be a better person, then it's a good thing. If my girls converted to Christianity or Islam or Hinduism or Santeria or whatever, and this made them happy, then I'd be happy for them.

 

I'd be less thrilled if their new religion caused them to do things I considered wrong or very bad manners, of course, including unsolicited preaching at the unconverted - but I would certainly expect that when they were either young in age or new converts that we'd get a bunch of misdirected zeal. Everybody moves past that stage.

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This thread also makes me curious, and I hate to start yet another s/o thread, but I can if needed, whether atheists would be open to children growing up and choosing to seek out a faith to follow.

 

Open, as in I won't disown them, of course.

Open, as in I won't hound them, yes.

Open, as in I'll be happy about it, not for a second.

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So, technically, I'm an agnostic, but given the fundamental impossibility to know for sure, atheism is the most sensible option. I know that that runs completely counter to Pascal's Wager, but Pascal's Wager only makes sense if it's between atheism and one religion. There are zillions of religions and potential gods, including the possibility of gods nobody is aware of.

 

What gets me is that Blaise Pascal is literally the man who invented the roulette wheel. You'd think he'd have a better understanding of probability. (That link is to Friendly Atheist. Their comments section is completely unmoderated. I would just play the roulette and ignore the comments entirely.)

 

Plus, I don't know about you, but I can't force myself to believe something I don't believe, and what if whoever is in charge of the afterlife deplores self-serving hypocrisy?

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This thread also makes me curious, and I hate to start yet another s/o thread, but I can if needed, whether atheists would be open to children growing up and choosing to seek out a faith to follow.

Absolutely. I would only be concerned if the faith led to his rejecting us or our basic values of tolerance.

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I will do everything in my power when my kids are younger to shield them from the emotional manipulation and scare tactics that I feel come with the sorts of proselytization tactics aimed at children.

 

Aside from that, when they're adults? Kind of their show then. I would be disappointed if they became a proselytizing evangelical because I think that's rude and insensitive. I would be disappointed if they were intolerant or bigoted, but tbh, I'd be disappointed if they were that way regardless of where they fell on the issue of the existence of gods.

 

There are plenty of religious people who I share similar values and ethics with. That kind of religious belief would not bother me.

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I'd say that in my community it's basically considered bad form to push or even discuss religion. I have one friend whose sister really wants her to go (Catholic) church more but that's all I can think of. We have a very polyglot community and very little proselytizing. Our Cub Scout troop is based at a Buddhist temple which apparently counts Jews and Catholics as part of the faith community, LOL. None of our family members are involved in any organized religions. We celebrate a secular American Santa Claus Christmas.

I think I would be fine with it if our kids got religion. I expect I would be surprised but not shocked since I understand the value of a "church family" even if I have a hard time with the actual belief systems.

 

Edited by kubiac
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My mom is incessant with trying to convince me "not to continue my march to HELL." It's ridiculous. She has mental illness issues, so I try to be kind about it, but it's so frustrating to try to have a basic conversation with her.

 

DH's family is also religious. MIL is very live-and-let-live, but my SIL is always trying to get my sons to *say* "I believe in Jesus" so that they will be saved. The boys are nice about it, and DH has chatted with her about it, but...it's pretty annoying.

 

That's all she needs for her conscience to be clear? Have you ever asked her about this? Like, what if they said a conversion phrase from any other religion? Is belief a component to salvation, and things like this? 

 

I've never known anyone like this, so my imagination is going wild, lol!

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Open, as in I won't disown them, of course.

Open, as in I won't hound them, yes.

Open, as in I'll be happy about it, not for a second.

 

This. I would prefer he not (and I really don't see it happening) but if he did it would be his decision. I would also hope he didn't choose a belief system that marginalizes others or is bigoted in any way.

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This thread also makes me curious, and I hate to start yet another s/o thread, but I can if needed, whether atheists would be open to children growing up and choosing to seek out a faith to follow.

 

Sure I would be open to my children seeking out faith as adults.  But, then again, I am also open to my children seeking out faith as children.  

 

We talk openly about religion and we have plenty of children's books about various faiths.  We are very close to my parents who grew up Christian but turned away from religion as teenagers, my aunt who is a Presbyterian minister, my in-laws who are semi-practicing Catholics, my grandfather who is a Baptist and my grandmother who has many New Age beliefs.  

 

My kids are surrounded by adults who are willing to explain their own beliefs while also stressing the importance of accepting others' beliefs.  In that same spirit, I will fully accept my children's beliefs even if they differ from my own...though I will certainly be disappointed if those beliefs lead my children to bigotry or intolerance.

 

Wendy

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This thread also makes me curious, and I hate to start yet another s/o thread, but I can if needed, whether atheists would be open to children growing up and choosing to seek out a faith to follow.

 

Well, it would depend, but the short answer is that I would have concerns and I would act on them accordingly.

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This thread also makes me curious, and I hate to start yet another s/o thread, but I can if needed, whether atheists would be open to children growing up and choosing to seek out a faith to follow.

 

 

Like, Luuknam, I'd be disappointed if he got into some religion (wouldn't matter which one), but that wouldn't change my love and support for him.  People go through phases in life.  I would hope the religious bandwagon would be just a minor hiccup in his intellectual development.  I would respect his choice and ask he respect ours and we'd probably not discuss his religion (nor we discuss our atheism). 

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This thread also makes me curious, and I hate to start yet another s/o thread, but I can if needed, whether atheists would be open to children growing up and choosing to seek out a faith to follow.

I'm probably more agnostic, but would be fine with my son seeking out a faith to follow. As others have stated though, I would be very disappointed if he chose one that comes with intolerance, bigotry, or hypocrisy. Edited to add that I would be very, very concerned if my son chose to follow a faith or denomination that taught that their way was the only true way to know and follow God, rather than one of many paths to God.

 

Because my husband's grandparents were very conservative, fundamentalist, evangelical Christians, he used to have a fear that if we raised our son with no religion, he would be more susceptible to such a message, because he viewed their religion as almost akin to a cult. I didn't agree with him, but we did belong to a Methodist church for many years, and became very involved with their community service projects. We continued that involvement even after we stopped attending services and Sunday school.

Edited by Frances
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Reading these threads about children leaving the faith has me wondering, do you get proselytized by family or friends who are religious believers? I have one sibling (born again Christian) who tries to convince another (non believer) to just let go of her worries and accept Jesus into her heart. This is given in the context of sharing problems like a severely stressful marriage, older teen / young adult children, etc. It's completely unwanted and constantly, politely rejected. It doesn't happen often, but it is regular. My mom is starting to say really subtle things that in another context I might consider trying to put me on a guilt trip to reconsider, but that's not really like her and I think it's general stress with health, mortality issues, and things like this. But it got me wondering of others face this kind of thing regularly or not so regularly.

 

 

Yes.  After my dh's mother passed away, his dad remarried a very religious woman who went to unseemly depths to try to convert our son.  She even took him to church behind our backs on two occasions when we had asked them to babysit.  We didn't know about it until the second time, and only then because there was a new priest (with whom I was becoming friends) and he told me he had refused to baptise our son when FIL's wife had asked.  That was the last time we ever left ds in their care.  Ever.  She continued to proselytise through the years, insisting ds had to be baptised and all the other rituals that go along with her faith.  FIL passed away last winter, so at least we don't have to deal with her any more, but it's a small area, so she's not entirely inescapable. 

 

Beyond that, the only other people who try to snag our souls for Jesus are random door-to-door proselytisers or the occasional street preacher type.  Those are easy to ignore, though, and don't have the same personal offensiveness as when a family member (step or otherwise) tries to get at you. 

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Open, as in I won't disown them, of course.

Open, as in I won't hound them, yes.

Open, as in I'll be happy about it, not for a second.

That's the way our family handles it with our atheist and agnostic member. We pray for them vehemently and will engage them in topics of worldview and religion if they bring it up, but nothing beyond that. What good would it do? As long as they don't make rude comments or insist we pretend we are not religious in family life and activities, bringing it up just seems unnecessarily provocative.

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No, but I don't have regular contact with most of my family.

 

I have one aunt who talks religion with my older kid.  He loves arguing religion with her.  He doesn't really get upset about it though because I think he starts it.  Maybe he is just curious about the stuff she says.  I don't have regular contact with her though so I don't have to deal with that.  Nobody else in my family would say anything.

 

 

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My mom nags me pretty regularly about how I'm worshipping Satan (you know, because I'm a Buddhist/Pagan) and how sad it is that dd will go to hell because of me and how her and my stepdad are going to tell her all about Jesus and hell the first chance they get.

 

Thankfully, dd is well versed in various religious mythologies and is firmly agnostic. The first time my mom tries to actually proselytize to dd, boy is she going to be surprised when she gets a furious half an hour lecture on equality and social justice. Homeschooling ftw. ;)

 

As for dd converting to a religion, I've always told her that her beliefs are part of her own path. You can't really choose what you believe anyway, so it's not like me being pissy about it would magically make her stop believing in whatever.

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Like others, if our kids embrace a religion, I can be okay with it. Unless it leads to bigotry, intolerance, or even a calculated indifference groups of people. I would be sad if it were the type of "our way is the only way religion." And if it meant shunning or distancing themselves from our family - I'd be heartbroken.

 

My FOO has a lot of evangelical members, I've lived that. DH's family is catholic. They tend to be more live and let live. No one proselytizes anymore, thank goodness. Like I said upthread, strangers are more of an issue. Though I very rarely out myself. Outing myself means limiting our homeschool opportunities, and would possibly hurt a neighbor relationship. I witnessed their reaction to learning of someone else's atheism. Yikes. I do find it hard to square my very real fear of their reaction to hearing about our lack of faith with their claims of being persecuted. I don't follow how they can be the majority and feel persecuted. But that's a different bunny trail. Suffice it to say, I do not feel safe for many to know that we don't believe. And with good reason.

 

My sister is Orthodox Jewish - we can actually have a conversation about religion.

 

But, yes, I'm okay with my kids soul searching or trying religion. I certainly searched for something, especially as a young adult. I just want my kids to stay the good, kind, caring people that they are, and if they gravitated to a faith that taught them to be intolerant and bigoted, or to think there is only one way to find peace - I would feel I failed them.

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I appreciate all of you answering that question. I didn't want to disrupt the thread.

 

FWIW, I don't particularly identify with any religion. I am a Christian in that I believe there is a God, and that Jesus died for my sins. My goal with that knowledge is to live the most Christ-like life I can, and try to behave toward others as Jesus would.

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I appreciate all of you answering that question. I didn't want to disrupt the thread.

 

FWIW, I don't particularly identify with any religion. I am a Christian in that I believe there is a God, and that Jesus died for my sins. My goal with that knowledge is to live the most Christ-like life I can, and try to behave toward others as Jesus would.

 

I don't mean this to be snarky so if I don't use the right words, don't take it that way....... It sounds to me like you identify as with the Christian religion but not with a specific denomination.

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I appreciate all of you answering that question. I didn't want to disrupt the thread.

 

FWIW, I don't particularly identify with any religion. I am a Christian in that I believe there is a God, and that Jesus died for my sins. My goal with that knowledge is to live the most Christ-like life I can, and try to behave toward others as Jesus would.

 

I don't mind. Sometimes tangential discussions are more interesting than the original idea itself. ;-)

 

Edited to ask - if you don't mind - if your child decided that he really doesn't believe after all, how would you feel about that? What would you do?

Edited by Charlie
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This thread also makes me curious, and I hate to start yet another s/o thread, but I can if needed, whether atheists would be open to children growing up and choosing to seek out a faith to follow.

 

It depends what the faith is. If it requires ugly attitudes, I'd rather not hear about them. If it requires ugly behaviours, I'd have quite a bit to say. Generally speaking, I don't care if people find gods in cereal boxes if it helps them get through life.

 

I'm not picking, just gently teasing, but how have you been reading this forum so long without knowing the answers you'll get to this question?

 

 

To the OP, I don't have anyone proselytising at me. Dd nods and smiles and lets her church-going relatives believe their efforts are having the desired effect. I told her to be polite at church, and as to the rest, well, she didn't need me to tell her how the game is played.

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This thread also makes me curious, and I hate to start yet another s/o thread, but I can if needed, whether atheists would be open to children growing up and choosing to seek out a faith to follow.

Geezle is a Christian in the sense that he self identifies as one. He hasn't given it any profound thought though. I just let it be. If he wants to join the youth group or go to confirmation classes, he can do that once Trinqueta is old enough to go along and keep an eye on him because the only place he's ever been physically bullied was at CCE. I don't trust that the second graders who did that during First Communion prep are now totally mature teens and I know the adult volunteers are clueless about classroom management.

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I don't mind. Sometimes tangential discussions are more interesting than the original idea itself. ;-)

 

Edited to ask - if you don't mind - if your child decided that he really doesn't believe after all, how would you feel about that? What would you do?

Well obviously I would be disappointed that he chose a different path, but he's my son and I love him. I'd listen to his thoughts and beliefs, and ultimately it would become a subject we likely wouldn't discuss. I'd be fine as long as he didn't try to make me feel my beliefs were wrong. I think that kind of thing can come from either side.

 

Let's face it; atheists would probably like to convince Christians of their belief (or lack thereof) just as much as Christians would like to convince atheists that there is a God. I believe when one feels very strongly about a matter, they'd like others, especially those they care about, to agree.

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Let's face it; atheists would probably like to convince Christians of their belief (or lack thereof) just as much as Christians would like to convince atheists that there is a God. I believe when one feels very strongly about a matter, they'd like others, especially those they care about, to agree.

 

No really, I wouldn't.  It's not my business what you believe.  Believe what you like so long as you treat people decently.  I'm an atheist not a campaigning anti-theist.

 

This thread has more information:

 

http://forums.welltrainedmind.com/topic/475016-ask-an-atheist/

Edited by Laura Corin
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I don't mean this to be snarky so if I don't use the right words, don't take it that way....... It sounds to me like you identify as with the Christian religion but not with a specific denomination.

Absolutely. No offense taken. I guess when I think of religion I tend to think of organized religions (which I guess is technically denominations). I consider Christianity to be the overall belief system, and not really a religion per se, but I guess I'm wrong in that.

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It depends what the faith is. If it requires ugly attitudes, I'd rather not hear about them. If it requires ugly behaviours, I'd have quite a bit to say. Generally speaking, I don't care if people find gods in cereal boxes if it helps them get through life.

 

I'm not picking, just gently teasing, but how have you been reading this forum so long without knowing the answers you'll get to this question?

 

 

To the OP, I don't have anyone proselytising at me. Dd nods and smiles and lets her church-going relatives believe their efforts are having the desired effect. I told her to be polite at church, and as to the rest, well, she didn't need me to tell her how the game is played.

Honestly, I don't always read these types of threads. I really didn't know what to think about it. I was genuinely curious as someone coming from the other side of the situation.

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Let's face it; atheists would probably like to convince Christians of their belief (or lack thereof) just as much as Christians would like to convince atheists that there is a God. I believe when one feels very strongly about a matter, they'd like others, especially those they care about, to agree.

 

Not necessarily. 

 

I lived for 10 years with a believer, and we had no issues of conflicting spirituality in that time.

I'm also not the only atheist who has directed a friend towards religion because that's where they needed to be.

 

 

I read a model of spiritual perspective, I guess, a few years ago. You're assuming atheists and Christians must be on the same level, which they may not be.

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I'm also not the only atheist who has directed a friend towards religion because that's where they needed to be.

 

 

Yes: someone close to me is moving towards formal religion.  I've attended services with them and I support them in their quest, because I think it might help them.

Edited by Laura Corin
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No really, I wouldn't. It's not my business what you believe. Believe what you like so long as you treat people decently. I'm an atheist not a campaigning anti-theist.

 

This thread has more information:

 

http://forums.welltrainedmind.com/topic/475016-ask-an-atheist/

Well that makes sense. That's the type of Christian I am. I'm not an in-your-face type of person, and have never really been the type of person to outwardly display or preach. I don't really even like to pray out loud in front of people, and I'm very comfortable with prayer. My faith is pretty private to me. That's not to say I'm not willing to say I'm a Christian or discuss what I believe in the right circumstance, but I'm not likely going to be the one to bring it up.

 

Thank you for that link. I'll definitely read it later when I get back home.

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