So we all know people use religion as a crutch, everyone needs something to help keep them upright in life at some point or another..... But when things are really bad for you - say the person you love is dying.... Would you ever find yourself, an atheist, down on your knees praying for them to get better?

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"I'm beginning to believe, June, that your inquiry involves something more than simple curiosity." 

I'm sorry if I don't understand what you mean. I'm only here because I am curious, doing my best to understand where you are coming from. But I have been told by a number of teachers and employers that I ask too many questions, so I can't be completely surprised that it would bother someone. Maybe I posted in the wrong forum, but I really wanted to understand some other peoples opinions and viewpoints. So I'm sorry if my questions bothered you, really, I just ask them so I can understand and fit it all together. 

"Earlier, I said that the vast majority of members here were raised originally under some form of religion"

Sorry, I didn't scope out the demographics, because I thought it didn't matter, unless this forum is like AA. 

"Because it was about honor - by accepting the challenge, I also accepted the terms of that challenge, and that was to be honest."

I was more asking if you now know that the conditioning is false are you really that likely to fall back into it? 

"RE: "Is the punishment for following the direction just that persons apparent misery?"

I'm not clear as to what you mean by this question."

I meant, is the only problem with with following the compulsion, in this case to go back to class, that you trapped yourself? And hardly trapped at that if you believe for a fact that the idea in the first place was a lie...

"RE: "Does saying "I'm so hungry I could eat a horse" mean you have to go find a horse...."

I really can't address that, as I've never used that expression."

Maybe you never used that expression, but I was referring to hyperbole, things that people say but that aren't taken literal. Or maybe you meant that because a person called out in their moment of need that this was a deeper situation and therefore showed how you truly believed or um... misbelieved? I hope I am not misunderstanding :)

"RE: "I said "thank God", so I must now believe in god?"

No, but using the term just reinforced the image of that particular monkey in your mind."

I just don't think it would necessarily mean a person has lost ground. Isn't the important part that you know the truth? Without the truth I could see this as a concern, but not with it. Most things in life can be two steps forward one step  back. We screw up, we make mistakes, but that doesn't mean we suddenly lose ourselves again. That's what I'm wondering though, why is self-reliance so important? 

Thanks for your patience, but if you are "fed-up" then I'll just continue to look for answers in a way that won't disturb you. :) I appreciate the feedback.

 

Surprise, June! I found a picture of us!

"I'm beginning to believe, June, that your inquiry involves something more than simple curiosity." 

I'm sorry if I don't understand what you mean.

I think you do - I mean I believe you have an agenda. I'm not sure what it is yet, but you seem to be determined to herd me in a specific direction.

"Earlier, I said that the vast majority of members here were raised originally under some form of religion"

Sorry, I didn't scope out the demographics, because I thought it didn't matter, unless this forum is like AA.

I have no idea what you mean by that - what is AA, and what is its relevance, and to what demographics are you referring?

"Because it was about honor - by accepting the challenge, I also accepted the terms of that challenge, and that was to be honest."

I was more asking if you now know that the conditioning is false are you really that likely to fall back into it?

If you've quit smoking, because you know it's bad for your health, or quit drinking because you know you're an alcoholic, a cigarette for the smoker or a drink for the alcoholic could very well cause them to "fall back into it," so, yeah.

"RE: "Is the punishment for following the direction just that persons apparent misery?"

I'm not clear as to what you mean by this question."

I meant, is the only problem with with following the compulsion, in this case to go back to class, that you trapped yourself? And hardly trapped at that if you believe for a fact that the idea in the first place was a lie...

Now I'm even more confused than I was originally - I don't see that I "trapped myself," nor do I see "that the Idea in the first place was a lie" - the instructor put forth a straightforward proposition, no lie there, I tried to succeed and was not able to do so, no trap there. Further, I wasn't "compelled" to go back to class - for some reason, you're putting words into my mouth - I chose to honor my commitment.

"RE: "Does saying "I'm so hungry I could eat a horse" mean you have to go find a horse...."

I really can't address that, as I've never used that expression."

Maybe you never used that expression, but I was referring to hyperbole, things that people say but that aren't taken literal. Or maybe you meant that because a person called out in their moment of need that this was a deeper situation and therefore showed how you truly believed or um... misbelieved? I hope I am not misunderstanding :)

Apparently one of us is, because that last paragraph wasn't clear to me at all, but then I rarely use hyperbole, preferring instead to simply say what I mean. Possibly you should try that --

"RE: "I said "thank God", so I must now believe in god?"

No, but using the term just reinforced the image of that particular monkey in your mind."

I just don't think it would necessarily mean a person has lost ground. Isn't the important part that you know the truth? Without the truth I could see this as a concern, but not with it.

So, extrapolated, you're saying it's OK for an alcoholic to just have that one more drink, as long as he knows the truth, that he is in fact an alcoholic - yeah, I can see how THAT truth would set him free --

The great jazz trumpeter, Louis Armstrong, was once asked, "What is jazz?" his answer was, "Man, if you don't know, you never will!" You asked, "why is self-reliance so important?" - all I can say is, "Man, if you don't know, you never will!"

And word to the wise - this is TA, and unless you run crosswise of Moderator Dan, you're free to do as you like, but I'm just not sure how much credence I would give to anyone advising you to "walk away." As far as I'm concerned, you're certainly free to do and say as you please.

I'm sorry that you feel that we are fighting, like I said, I'm used to people being put off by my many questions. I don't herd people, I have respect for them. If it seems I'm unsatisfied with your answers it is merely because I always ask more questions. It is part of me. It is not a design to insult/stir up people. 

I can tell by your sarcasm that you aren't really thrilled about me, so actually, because I can take hints, I will listen to your unspoken cry to have me quit asking things. 

"And word to the wise - this is TA, and unless you run crosswise of Moderator Dan, you're free to do as you like, but I'm just not sure how much credence I would give to anyone advising you to "walk away." As far as I'm concerned, you're certainly free to do and say as you please."

I have read the forum guidelines, I'm not hear to preach, but to learn. I have enough respect for you that if asked to leave I would. But your veiled threats about the moderator seem to point to that fact that you think I am up to something. I'm sorry you feel that way. I'm not putting words in your mouth, I just like to know the height, and width, and depth of something. Thanks for answering as much as you could. 

June, there were no "veiled threats" - some fellow TA members and I ran afoul of Moderator Dan last week, and it was my intention, originally, to say you could do as you pleased, then I realized that that not entirely true, so I qualified it. What possible reason would I have to threaten you? This is a discussion forum and we are discussing, to the best of our ability, considering all of the misunderstandings. I'm just aware that you were warned not to be bullied by me and to "walk away," and I was merely cautioning you not to pay attention to anything other than your own inclination.

I have never threatened anyone on this board (or anywhere else, for that matter), "veiled" or otherwise. In fact, I have frequently commented, and HOPED moderators heard, that I wish the prohibition against proselytizing were lifted, so we could get some REAL discussions going, otherwise it soon becomes just a mutual admiration society "I'm an atheist!" "Me too!" Ho Hum.

Interestingly, your speech patterns and phraseology remind me a great deal of another girl who posted here, an Ana Silva - I don't suppose you know her by any chance --?

As for, "answering as much as you could," I answered as much as was comprehensible.

@June - tell you what started me on the road to Athiesm - it was the hypocrasy involved in the catholic church which I went to every Sunday, then catechism classes, where we were not allowed to read the old testament.

So, of course, I did. That is what thinking people do, always question, not just soak up 'anything like a sponge', without questioning.

I could not, for the life of me, figure out how anybody could follow a violent, vengueful, god, while still supposed to be following Jesus, whose empathy went to the poor, whilst these priests were living in the lap of luxury. Study the old testament, my dear, analyse the Garden of Eden, which is where I said  What the!!!! Noah's Ark. What the!!!!I 

As an Atheist, I really get tired of xians not reading their own bible, or of the cults putting thier own particular version and spin, and changing god and jesus into loving beings, and then proceed to commit the most heinous crimes. Jesus followed all of god's rules and law, he is just as guilty, if you believe the bible. Then, as part of your educaton, read about how and where the myths of judaism came, then the myths of xianity, and when the lovley allah came along, with his pedophile mohommad - all from the same area, all copied and adapted to their particular dogma. And people believe it. Atheists simply have questioned everything, did a lot of research, and Voila - Atheism is born. If some form of talking/praying to someone in the ether is good for you, if you need it, that is OK.

Relying on something to take care of your problem, that is where it comes unstuck. You need to talk to a god or whatever, who is already omnipotent, and knows what is happening to you, but you have to remind them or what? But it already knows - so what is the point, it just wants you to beg? - what a loving thought, heh. I feel sorry for the people who believes a god will intervene, save someone who is dying, who is close. A child, I just could not imagine, but I still wouldn't pray. What if that child dies, did god not think it important for that child not to die, did he not hear the prayer, wouldn't that make one feel worse.  You just keep on praying.

Thanks for sharing your story Suzanne, but I believe I might have started to look for answers in the wrong part of the forum. Obviously, prayer, especially prayer at a time of great need and with feelings of helplessness would be a subject riddled with many feelings, some very strong. Granted I did not think of that when I joined in. I appreciate your kindness and honesty. 

June, it's not you.  Please check your e-mail notifications....

RE: "Please check your e-mail notifications...."

Let me save you the trouble, June - the message says, "Don't let him bully you, June; I should walk away if I were you."

I believe I referenced it earlier.

All I'm asking June, and I'm certainly not trying to "bully" you, as some might suggest, but rather, like you, "trying to understand," is, when you mention, "prayer, especially prayer at a time of great need," to whom or what would you pray, that could change anything and what would you expect it to change?

Your bio indicates you're an atheist, which means you are without a belief in a supernatural being, be it Yahweh or the Great Flying Spaghetti Monster, what would praying change? And how, and why?

@ archaeopteryx -

"I sense that you really are, we get theists on this board all of the time, and I, for one, welcome them, as belonging to a mutual admiration society, for me, is no fun. I like divergent opinions."

It doesn't seem that way.

"Your bio indicates you're an atheist..."

It in fact does not, I never claimed to be one. It does indicate that I am here out of curiosity. 

"Yahweh or the Great Flying Spaghetti Monster, what would praying change? And how, and why?" 

My point wasn't that a super natural event would occur, just that a silent prayer wouldn't actually hurt anything, as you've asserted, there would be no one to hear it. No harm.

Thank you for answering my questions, I don't know who Ana Silva is, but I am assuming she put a bad taste in your mouth. I'm not really interested in hearing your answer anymore. Thank you all the same. Good luck to you. 

RE:

"Your bio indicates you're an atheist..."

It in fact does not, I never claimed to be one. It does indicate that I am here out of curiosity.

You're correct in the sense that your bio response is as ambiguous as some of your questions:

"The religion you left
Was never a part of one
"Why you left your religion.
Atheism.... I left it, found something better for me."

RE: "No harm" - reinforcement is the harm, as I said often - you asked what's the harm, I answered with my opinion, which you were free to consider or reject, but if you ask questions to which you expect only an answer you will like, this board will likely lead to disappointment.

Good luck in your quest, whatever it may be --

.

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