Author Topic: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer. (Minor Update - Post 51)  (Read 38087 times)

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ItsyBitsy

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My response is to say something to the effect of "Thankyou, however, we prefer to keep our faith privately"  99 times out 100 this response works. 

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blue2000

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This. This so much.

Boyfriend is Christian and has expressed that if his grandmother (who is rather sick and in the care of his aunt) really wanted him to be baptized he wouldn't have a problem with it, and I asked if I would be welcome to attend that event. Unsure of how the church would feel about me attending, and he assured me that he would make sure I was there if I wanted to be.

I would always want to be part of something important like that to him and his family. I can enjoy the company of others, and offer my support even if that's something I don't practice or believe for myself. I've come to realize that an assumption has developed (even among other atheists) that because I don't believe in god it means I must hate religion and those who follow it, because of this generalization someone who may not know me might assume right off the bat I would have some ill will towards them and will immediately go into the defense.

I really want to know who decided to throw around these rumors and assumptions :/ because I am really tired of people going right into the comment of "Oh you hate Christians?" when they find out I am atheist. It's like a never ending 'blond joke' that I can't get a word in edgewise. Really it can become incredibly tiring..

I've run into a few atheists online who really are like this. They publicly and vociferously trash any mention of religion or beliefs that aren't their own. It is almost like they can't settle for having a different opinion than someone else. They have to be the most anti-religious person EVAH. With bells on! (but not church bells, because that would just be wrong ;)).

Maybe we could get the never-ending 'atheist blonde' jokers together with the never-ending 'religious blonde' jokers and watch their brains overload. ::)
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GlassHalfFull

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Re: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer.
« Reply #62 on: May 05, 2012, 01:02:54 PM »
The next time she says "No Pressure," reply with something along the lines of "'No Pressure'?  Every time you bring it up, you say 'no pressure' when you are, in fact, pressuring me to join your church.  I will not be joining your church now or at any time in the future.  Please do not mention it again."

That was my thought. The "no pressure" line is really an opening, because you can then say, "Well, when you repeatedly bring it up, it feels very much like pressure to me, and I would appreciate it if we do not have to speak of it any further."

Yep to these thoughts.

She's pressuring alright.

"You keep using that phrase. I do not think it means what you think it means."

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Bottlecaps

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Re: When the "God Squad" won't take no for an answer.
« Reply #63 on: May 09, 2012, 12:51:45 PM »
"I do appreciate your invitations to church events, and I understand you'd like to see me there, but to be honest, that's not my chosen path.  I do hope you understand and respect my choice, as I do yours, because... "   (your friendship means a lot to me/I think you're a lovely person/whatever bit you want to use here etc.)  "...and I'd rather you not keep inviting me. Thanks!"  Then beandip if need be after that.

This. :) This is pretty much the response I give people when I receive repeated, pressured invites to their church or worship gatherings. I'm agnostic. I don't always come out and tell people that I'm agnostic, but I explain that their chosen path is not mine and let them know that I value their friendship regardless of their belief system (or lack thereof), and I'd really appreciate it if they could value my friendship regardless of my beliefs (or, once again, lack thereof) in return. Always say it with a big smile, but make sure to make it clear that you'd appreciate it if you didn't receive any more invitations.
"Some of the most wonderful people are the ones who don't fit into boxes." -Tori Amos


shutterbug

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I'm a Buddhist atheist, so I've been in similar situations before.  I would simply reply, "No, thanks."  If she continues to pressure you, say, "I have different spiritual beliefs.  No, thank you."  If she continues to press it and bean-dipping doesn't help, flat out ignore her and walk away if necessary.  And don't worry about appearing rude -- she's the rude one for continually pressuring you when you have made your preferences crystal clear!

lurkerwisp

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This. This so much.

Boyfriend is Christian and has expressed that if his grandmother (who is rather sick and in the care of his aunt) really wanted him to be baptized he wouldn't have a problem with it, and I asked if I would be welcome to attend that event. Unsure of how the church would feel about me attending, and he assured me that he would make sure I was there if I wanted to be.

I would always want to be part of something important like that to him and his family. I can enjoy the company of others, and offer my support even if that's something I don't practice or believe for myself. I've come to realize that an assumption has developed (even among other atheists) that because I don't believe in god it means I must hate religion and those who follow it, because of this generalization someone who may not know me might assume right off the bat I would have some ill will towards them and will immediately go into the defense.

I really want to know who decided to throw around these rumors and assumptions :/ because I am really tired of people going right into the comment of "Oh you hate Christians?" when they find out I am atheist. It's like a never ending 'blond joke' that I can't get a word in edgewise. Really it can become incredibly tiring..

I've run into a few atheists online who really are like this. They publicly and vociferously trash any mention of religion or beliefs that aren't their own. It is almost like they can't settle for having a different opinion than someone else. They have to be the most anti-religious person EVAH. With bells on! (but not church bells, because that would just be wrong ;)).

Maybe we could get the never-ending 'atheist blonde' jokers together with the never-ending 'religious blonde' jokers and watch their brains overload. ::)

DH's college roommate and for a while best friend was like that.  Every single chance he got he'd spew really hateful things about how religious people are stupid and every person of every faith in existence was completely wrong and how teaching religion to children ought to be considered child abuse.  DH and I are both religious people, and these repeated statements were very hurtful to us both.

Like the OP, we were extremely tired of his trying to convert us.  Unlike the OP, no amount of politeness worked in our favor at all.  Eventually we had to just tell him what was wrong in the most simple terms available.  When we explained that he was being very hurtful to us, he ignored our requests for him to stop.  He tried to claim that poking fun at someone's faith isn't insulting.  (On what planet, I ask.)  We had to block all connections with him, online and off, for it to sink in that maybe we really meant it when we said that he had been cruel.  Though I don't actually think he understood that much, since he later stole his girlfriend's email password to send more insulting messages, this time claiming we're committing horrible censorship for not listening to him speak his mind.  :c

Some people just don't comprehend when the statements they make are hurtful to others.  They're not going to understand unless told directly and without any room to mentally maneuver out of seeing their own actions as unkind.  If they're convinced completely of how right they are, on whatever the topic may be, no amount of explaining will change their mind or let them see the cruelty of their own actions.

OP, I'm not suggesting that you have a heart-to-heart with this person over how they're hurting you with their pressure.  Just know that it's totally okay to just zone on out and ignore any discussion of religion.  You don't have to engage a person who is completely set in their belief on that topic.  :)

Danika

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... he later stole his girlfriend's email password to send more insulting messages...

What I don't understand about people who think like this, no matter what they're trying to convince you of, is why they think that will work. How would insulting someone and being a huge boundary stomper convince them to come to your way of thinking?

jedikaiti

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... he later stole his girlfriend's email password to send more insulting messages...

What I don't understand about people who think like this, no matter what they're trying to convince you of, is why they think that will work. How would insulting someone and being a huge boundary stomper convince them to come to your way of thinking?

Not to mention possibly trashing his rel@tionship with his GF - if my guy stole ANY of my passwords, for any reason, they'd be changed immediately, and so would my relationship status!
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Piratelvr1121

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I have to say I haven't met any atheists who are quite so adamant about the superiority of their lack of faith over having faith of any kind, and I'm glad! Oy!

DH believes, but he doesn't like going to church because he just doesn't like organized religion.  He'll go with me sometimes, like this weekend he's going with me because a church about a 1/2 hour from us is doing a "Kirkin' of the Tartans" ceremony and with both of us having Celtic heritage, it didn't take much to twist his arm about that one. :)

Anyway, I did know an atheist in high school, as he was on the Cross Country team with me.  One day on the way home from a meet we got to talking about religion and he said he thought that having faith in a higher power was naive and childish, like believing in Santa Claus.

Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

hobish

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I have to say I haven't met any atheists who are quite so adamant about the superiority of their lack of faith over having faith of any kind, and I'm glad! Oy!

DH believes, but he doesn't like going to church because he just doesn't like organized religion.  He'll go with me sometimes, like this weekend he's going with me because a church about a 1/2 hour from us is doing a "Kirkin' of the Tartans" ceremony and with both of us having Celtic heritage, it didn't take much to twist his arm about that one. :)

Anyway, I did know an atheist in high school, as he was on the Cross Country team with me.  One day on the way home from a meet we got to talking about religion and he said he thought that having faith in a higher power was naive and childish, like believing in Santa Claus.

 ;D I think he stole that from a comedian. I wish i could remember/Google properly who it was, but i beileve the line went, "After Santa Clause and the Easter Bunny, Jesus Christ didn't have much chance."
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Mental Magpie

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I have to say I haven't met any atheists who are quite so adamant about the superiority of their lack of faith over having faith of any kind, and I'm glad! Oy!

DH believes, but he doesn't like going to church because he just doesn't like organized religion.  He'll go with me sometimes, like this weekend he's going with me because a church about a 1/2 hour from us is doing a "Kirkin' of the Tartans" ceremony and with both of us having Celtic heritage, it didn't take much to twist his arm about that one. :)

Anyway, I did know an atheist in high school, as he was on the Cross Country team with me.  One day on the way home from a meet we got to talking about religion and he said he thought that having faith in a higher power was naive and childish, like believing in Santa Claus.

Guh, being an atheist myself, I have met far too many...but I've also met far too many believers who think they're superior to me because of their faith.  Point being, they are on both sides and all of them are just as annoying as each other.
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Piratelvr1121

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Yeah, unfortunately there's always going to be some folks in any sort of group who will give the whole group a bad reputation, causing people to say "Wow you're not bad for a ____" when they meet the decent ones who actually make up the majority of whatever group it is.

I get really annoyed when I'm already part of a religion but just not the same denomination as someone else and they take it upon themselves to tell me I'm doing it wrong because I'm not part of their denomination, then proceed to tell me what's wrong with my church.  ::)  Usually these are just acquaintances anyway so I have no problem limiting contact with these people or eliminating it all together.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

Sharnita

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http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2012/08/27/atheist-group-removes-billboards-targeting-presidential-candidates-religious-faith/


There was recently an article about an atheist group that had billboards up mocking the religious beliefs of both leading political candidates.  It was pretty smug and disdainful, not to mention that people who embrace those beliefs would find them grossly misleading. 

Piratelvr1121

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Is it just me or do those billboards smack of bitterness?  It's like someone was raised in a very strict, fire and brimstone kind of environment where a fearsome God was portrayed and the person who wrote those billboards probably seemed to think it was either that way or atheism, without realizing that there were other options, and that not even two churches of the same denomination are going to be exactly alike.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

Sharnita

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Is it just me or do those billboards smack of bitterness?  It's like someone was raised in a very strict, fire and brimstone kind of environment where a fearsome God was portrayed and the person who wrote those billboards probably seemed to think it was either that way or atheism, without realizing that there were other options, and that not even two churches of the same denomination are going to be exactly alike.

I think they come off as dismissive of the actual theology of the beliefs of those candidates and their religious denominations.  I don't think the group felt any obligation to represent them accurately or fully because the organization has no respect for religion in general - or at least the people who chose those billboards do not.
« Last Edit: August 29, 2012, 08:34:05 AM by Sharnita »