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Atheists Among US

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Just another blog rant of mine concerning atheists and their treatment of society. Does anyone else, irreligious or otherwise, get the impression of secular people being ostracized or discriminated against in some way? Most people have been pretty kind and accepting of me, but I've endured a lot of social pressure to keep my belief to myself.

Growing Pains

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As an atheist living in a very Southern Baptist and Catholic area, I feel ostracized quite often. There are not many atheists around here (or non-Christians in general) and so, when someone is found out to be a non-believer or any kind, I'm not sure people know how to react. Many people I know have been at least mildly accepting of my beliefs. Even though they disagree with them, they keep it to themselves when around me and it works vice versa. They don't push theirs on me as I don't push mine on them. I have dealt with discrimination a lot, though. Normally, I keep it to myself. I don't exactly introduce myself as "Hi, call me Ben or (insert birth name here), I'm an atheist!" because I don't expect them to introduce themselves as "Hi, I'm (name), I'm Catholic/Baptist/etc!" However, in a very religious area, it seems religion is just assumed. I live here, so they conclude I must be Baptist or Catholic. The first time (other than throughout middle and high school) I dealt with discrimination because of my beliefs was in my continuing education class. The teacher of all people told a joke at the expense of atheists. A joke I can't even recall now, but I had definitely heard it and having had a rather off week (it was during one of my "down" moments), I stood up and stormed out of the classroom. She apologized but I think that was more to save her butt than anything, really, because if I really wanted to I probably could have complained about it. On FB (this is part of the reason I don't use it much), I've noticed that my religious friends (who are VERY religious, mind you, I won't lump all religious people into this category, though!) are always posting about their beliefs. On their walls (which is fine, it's their wall) and other peoples walls (regardless of the other persons religion) and these same people get offended when someone like me posts about theirs. (My mother who is more agnostic than she would let people believe, posted something about doubting God's existence and she had ten people attack it, saying if she truly believed she wouldn't say that and many other things. It got heated. Someone said something about God saving lives, not doctors and at this point, I jumped in and said that the doctors did the saving and that he should tell that to the doctor that worked hard to save his life. Everyone attacked me at once.) What I find ironic is that a lot of these same people are the people that accuse people like myself of persecuting them. Me? I'm indifferent. Believe what you want to believe and I'll continue to believe as I choose. There are many religious people like that, too. The difference is, they outnumber the atheists, the agnostics, etc. So, it seems as if there isn't at times. I think, however, that a lot of it depends on location. Living here, for a LONG time, I said I was agnostic simply because I felt it was safer than saying I'm an atheist.

Your blog is very well written. Wingrove was dead on when he said that we probably do know atheists and simply do not know who they are. Everyone in my class knew one but did not know until that offensive joke was told in passing. I, frankly, don't see why people still judge someone so strongly based on their belief system. You'd think in this century, we'd be evolved beyond that. However, expecting that would be pulling at straws. If it isn't religion, it's something else.

I typed way more than I intended to. I apologize for that.


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One thing popped up when i read your blog, although it's a small thing, it often pops up when it comes to how the irreligious define themselves. Agnostic/gnostic refers to knowledge and atheist/theist refers to belief. Its a distinction that allows me to say I'm an agnostic atheist, in that I don't believe (atheism) in the existence of a god(s) but I don't claim to know(agnosticism) for certain that there is no god(s). To say your agnostic only tells me that you don't know for certain there is no god(s) but tells me nothing of whether you believe in a god or not.

Anyways I think atheism or lack of belief or whatever you label it as has come a long way in my life time. I live in a country and city where saying i don't believe in god isn't a big deal, which i suppose years ago it would have been unheard of and shocking, but times have progressed, and attitudes have changed and for that i'm lucky. I have friends that are religious, but we rarely if ever talk about religion or beliefs and I respect their right to believe whatever they want to believe in. They respect mine. I feel sorry when i hear that not the case for others.

hmm after re-reading your blog i think i may have miss read it nonetheless I'll leave my post uncharged but only say atheism and agnosticism often get misused, although you didn't use agnostic as a term to define yourself, others do and they often misused both atheist and agnostic when defining their views.
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I read a funny epitaph belonging to an atheist:

"Here lies an atheist,
all dressed up
and no place to go"

good for you, I would have killed myself since 12 if I was an atheist,
I envy you.


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I'm agnostic. I used to be a christian. When I was growing up, I believed the earth was 6000 years old and that dinosaurs walked with man and things like that. In my late teens and early 20's I grew out of it. Probably around 2009 I could finally say "F*** god!" without any shame or guilt. I don't claim to know whether there's a god or no god, but I'm not afraid to say that anymore!

My parents had a lot to do with it. I didn't have much choice. They're still fundamentalist. Sometimes I wonder how someone can be that old and still think backwards things like earht being 6000 years old. But I love them so much I don't care. Makes my heart bleed.

Most of the time in my life, other christians have not forced themselves on me. So I have no need to inform them of my lack of faith. I don't have to tell them about my confidence in the scientific method as a means to understand the world.

HOWEVER, I do take it personally when the president recognizes a god while doing a speech and acts as though he represents our country. Or when somebody in government mentions god or mentions the bible in any kind of way that implies it's distinctly american. I take that personally because I think separation of church and state is important and I do not recognize any kind of god or holy book as being anything more than fantasy.

I don't understand why atheists feel the need to preach so much. They're so angry.

Me, I think education level and living in a free society are far more important than the religion someone has.

We will solve the muslim/ME problem over time, as they become educated and civil. Islam is just a religion. People who only see religion miss all of hte things in the background. Behind Islam there're hurting people. I want them to succeed.

So again, keep your god to yourself. And no religion represents the United States of America. People do, though!
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I'm an atheist and completely comfortable with it. I 100% do not believe in anything but evolution and the fact that life exists here purely because the conditions are right. I have no fear of denouncing religion and will not find religion on my death bed. I have no problem with people that are religious provided they don't try and push it on me.


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You should come to britain, religion seems pretty non existent here (Manchester) and the ones who claim to be religious are only religious when it suits them, in fact the only religious people i know are the elderly and the crazy guys who walk around bolton town centre with a cardboard sign saying we're all going to hell.

Religion seems like a nice idea but it causes too much conflict because the majority of them can't accept that others believe in something different and the discrimination against homosexuals is digusting. It's ironic that they are taught to love everything yet they (from my perspective) are the worst haters on the planet.

hopefully at this rate religion will be exticnt with the next 500 years, which means one step closer to the unification of humanity.
Idk what I am, I don't believe in God though, not as depicted in the bible. At this point in my life I can honestly say that all I believe in is the human need for something to believe in. I just haven't found my something yet.
I can say, I don't like the "social cristians" you see a shit ton of here in America. You know, the ones that feel the need to point out everyone's sins, constantly tell everyone they come in contact with why they are going to hell, and don't talk at all if they're not preaching at you, but then won't admit to their own sins. Those people just piss me off and I have an aunt and uncle like that whom I will likely never speak to again. They felt the "godly" need to tell me that my child is a bastard and therefor destined to go to hell because of my sin lol.
I don't care what other's believe, be it God, Allah, whatever, to each his own, just don't try to force it on me and we're all good. Talk about it all you want, but don't use it as an excuse to talk down to me as though I am a lesser being for not sharing those beliefs.
You know though, some of the most horrific wars in the history of the world were caused by one religion trying to eradicate another.


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It's interesting to meet a lot of Christians who identitf as such but are functionally and doctrinally anti-clerical, deistic, and highly critical of their coreligionists.
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