Living in an atheist world

(162 Posts)
fifi669 Thu 24-Oct-13 19:21:11

Anyone else find it difficult at times? My faith is unfaltering. I just find other peoples attitudes a bit draining sometimes.

I had a woman at work taking the piss out of Christians to me so I told her I was one. She looked at me like I had two heads. (She'd obviously not noticed the crucifix).

Constant stupid questions such as do you believe in the tooth fairy too? Come about once religion is mentioned. Sigh.

Unless asked a relevant question I keep my faith to myself and don't shove it in peoples faces. I don't see why people can't do the same with their atheism.

curlew Thu 24-Oct-13 19:22:31

You must know very odd and rude people.

curlew Thu 24-Oct-13 19:25:20

The problem is that we don't live in an atheist world- we live in one where special provision is made for people of faith all the time. My children have to go to schools where RE and Christian worship is something which has to be opted out of, not into. There are 25 bishops influencing policy making in the House of Lords. People of Faith are always consulted whenever social policy is formulated.......I could go on.

fifi669 Thu 24-Oct-13 19:31:38

I was really seeking support from people with faith not more debates

hermioneweasley Thu 24-Oct-13 19:34:01

What curlew said.

The Rudeness you've experienced is unacceptable, but IMO the privileged role religion plays in society is far, far worse.

technodad Thu 24-Oct-13 20:02:17

You probably have an easier time than a Christian does in Syria, or an atheist does in the Deep South of the USA.

If having to put up with someone's ranting is all you have to deal with, you are probably one of the lucky ones. My kids get brainwashed by a religion I don't believe in, and the government pays for it!

Can we swap?

The world is not fair, and when we have a secular society, I think both of our problems will go away.

Sorry to hear you had a bad day though.

What research seems to be showing is the rise of 'spiritual but not religious' (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-24576115) so fewer people go to church, but atheism is still very much in the minority.

And yes it is rough being on the receiving end of the rudeness.

fifi669 Thu 24-Oct-13 21:12:30

I honestly wasn't looking for debate on whether I'm hard done by or whose worse off. I was teaching out to fellow Christians or people from other faiths who experience the same sort of thing and how they handle it.

technodad Thu 24-Oct-13 21:14:56

Sorry, you thread title made me think you were interested in the viewpoint of living in an atheist world.

Sorry again

Coupon Thu 24-Oct-13 21:24:28

It can be hard OP, I agree. I rarely mention to anyone in real life that I go to church, because it gets so wearing when people make assumptions as a result, or laugh, sneer or reply grumpily that they have no time for religion (I never asked them to!) There's a certain sort of outspoken atheist who seems to enjoy trying to make us feel like misfits for simply having a faith at all.

Yes there are still some Christian influences on things like faith schools and politics. But in general, secularism and atheism are by far the majority influences on our daily lives. That's why the Christian stuff stands out when it does occur.

exexpat Thu 24-Oct-13 21:34:02

I think the reason some atheists come across as outspoken is that all of us who grew up in this country had compulsory religion shoved at us all through school, so now feel able to push back a little against all the assumptions that everyone should have some kind of faith.

It is definitely not an atheist world we are living in, when all schools are obliged to have daily acts of collective worship, there are unelected bishops in the House of Lords, and everyone's taxes pay for schools which can discriminate against children on the grounds of (lack of) religion.

But that does not mean anyone should be personally rude about it - I have several evangelical Christians (and one excessively devout new Muslim convert) in my family/friendship networks, and I wouldn't dream of insulting their beliefs. Same goes for those who believe in other things I think are rubbish, like homeopathy. I smile and change the subject as much as possible.

hermioneweasley Thu 24-Oct-13 21:49:27

We live in a world dominated by religious thought and a country with a state religion, state funded religious schools, religious leaders being incouded in law making and countless other examples, so describing it as an "atheist world" is a bit like a white person living in Surrey complaining about black privilege.

Annagramma Thu 24-Oct-13 21:57:17

As a Christian (albeit married to an atheist, and raising children as agnostic/waiting until they are older to decide for them) we live in a religoous world. Religion is forced on all of us. To be our monarch, you are also the leader of the church. Religious people are within our parliamentary system (House of Lords). My children have daily worship at school and will bow their heads and pray each day too, because of the religious (well, Christian) world we live in. Our local choices of primary school are a CofE and a Hindu school. No normal, ordinary state primary. In many villages, CofE is the only choice of school. We live in a very non-atheist world.

loopydoo Thu 24-Oct-13 21:57:54

Regarding your OP, I think the person at your workplace would probably say a similar thing to someone else regarding anything they deem strange iykwim. It sounds like that's just the way they are (ignorant) rather than her specifically singling you out due to your Christianity.

I don't think people are judge about Christians as they are about Jehovah witnesses for example.

I am an atheist btw but whilst I may waffle on to dh at home about the issues of religion, I would never diss anyone else's to their face.

sonlypuppyfat Thu 24-Oct-13 22:01:24

I'm lucky most of my friends are from church and I have a good Muslim friend. I find people without any kind of faith a bit negative. People have said to me what if you are wrong? And I say well I've lost nothing but if I'm right I'm going to Glory.

sweetkitty Thu 24-Oct-13 22:07:25

I could turn your post on its head as an atheist living in a Christian world, most of my close friends are devout Christian in one form or another. I never mention my atheism as they would look at me in horror. I live with a RC DP (yes he's that devout we aren't married) and my children are being brought up RC (long story) so I go to church when I'm supposed to etc do their religious homework with them, plan their communions all the while not believing a bit of it but my DP does and it's important to him.

loopydoo Thu 24-Oct-13 22:08:24

I definitely don't feel negative....in fact I'm a complete optimist sonly.
I think people shouldn't put people into boxes.....ie:people with no religion are negative, people with faith are positive'. Etc.

You can have faith even if it isn't religious faith.

fifi669 Thu 24-Oct-13 22:08:48

coupon I quite agree. We are made to feel odd.

sonlypuppyfat Thu 24-Oct-13 22:10:17

But what do you have faith in then?

loopydoo Thu 24-Oct-13 22:12:03

I just feel at ease with my own knowledge of the world and science I guess. That isn't religious....it's a faith in human nature I think.

loopydoo Thu 24-Oct-13 22:13:17

It isn't believing in a god or gods or Jesus etc.....perhaps it's faith in fate.

trilogyofjuniper Thu 24-Oct-13 22:13:57

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flatmum Thu 24-Oct-13 22:14:37

I think atheists are actually discriminated against when it comes to schooling, or more pertinently, their small children who haven't even worked out whether tey believe in god yet or not. I think that is far worse than atheists being open about not believing in god in front of you.

sonlypuppyfat Thu 24-Oct-13 22:16:51

Jesus is an historical figure. He's written about in Roman books.

sweetkitty Thu 24-Oct-13 22:18:00

I believe religion has no place in education in modern day Britain, if you want your children brought up in a particular religion, the onus should be on you as parents to educate your child in your faith.

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