Recently, about two weeks ago, I was at work and we had an incident with some customers. ( I work at a computer repair shop in a pretty bad neighborhood) Some men brought in stolen lap tops to have passwords removed.. they brought in 4 in one week... so i began to connect the dots and I told my boss.  Long story short, the police decided to set these guys up and then arrest them in our shop.... guns were drawn and my life was at risk for only a brief moment... but in that moment i thought.. "God, please help me!" since i became an atheist i have done this several times and i hate it. I think that all those years of being a christian left behind some residue... does anyone else do this or anything like this? It also got me thinking that when i was a christian, i would have thanked god for saving my life... haha I hate that i was ever like that... even if i was just a mislead kid.

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Comment by Walter Maki on April 13, 2011 at 6:18pm
Since I'm a recent de-convert I am guilty of moments of those residual side effects. Especially when I get really agitated I will slip out with a "goddammit" in my speech then feel like an idiot afterwards.
Comment by Wesley on April 13, 2011 at 6:25pm

It happens to me too sometimes.  Its only natural that when the chips are down and there's no one around to call out to...  To call out for help anyway!  If a hungry lion had me and my family cornered..I'd appeal to every god, superhero, etc that I could think of....while I did everything in MY power to protect my loved ones.


I still pray for people....  I don't appeal to a creator but I do have that same desire that somehow their needs are met, or their pain is lessoned, or they get better when they are sick.


I send out a mental appeal that people make the right decisions, that war comes to an end, that peace comes about.


I do the best I can to help people but I can only do so much.  I cannot stop my heart from desiring to be able to do more.



Comment by Heather Spoonheim on April 13, 2011 at 7:42pm
I'm ok in the really tight spots, but I still 'pray' to things that might be burning in the oven buy running to the oven saying, "Please don't be burned, please don't be burned."  I guess sometimes I also call out, "Ahhh, give me a break!"  I'm assuming that sort of remark is directed at fate or a god-concept or something.  Anyway, it's been a long time since my deconversion but even if I did find myself reverted to 'god help me' I wouldn't think much of it - childhood brainwashing is awfully powerful.
Comment by Benjamin Fisher on April 13, 2011 at 9:40pm

I'm going on 20 years post deconversion and the worst vestigial remnant was fear of Hell. It's only really subsided over the last five years thanks mostly to conscious examination of just how irrational and ridiculous the concept of an everlasting physical punishment (hellfire) actually is.


What I'm saying is that if you can jettison the major psychological effects of youthful religiosity then you shouldn't sweat the small stuff, like the occasional knee-jerk reference to a deity.  

Comment by Silenus on April 13, 2011 at 9:50pm
No, but I was never really a theist so that is probably why.
Comment by Brandon Cure on April 14, 2011 at 12:07am
happens to me every once in a while too. I just chalk it up to it being drilled in my head for so long. Although I am finding it happening less and less
Comment by Doug Reardon on April 14, 2011 at 2:12am

There is a special area in the brain dedicated to "emotional" language such as cursing, and I would assume asking for "Mommie" or the ultimate helper "god".  These are simply words, when I say "Oh, momma!" I'm not really appealing to my mother, it's just an expression of the emotional impact of an event.  

The unexamined life may not be worth living, according to Freud, but the over examined life can be a pain in the ...

Comment by Ralph Day on April 14, 2011 at 6:51am

It's a reflex for most of us. 

Try this:  tell someone to say SOAP 5 times fast, then ask them what a cow drinks?  They will usually say SOAP.  At least the kids on the bus do this successfully.

Comment by Amber Cantrell on April 14, 2011 at 10:15am
I say things like god damn it and I also add god in other cuss words, why? its fun to irritate people who then shout, "DO not use the lords name in vain," and then i go "muwhaahahahahahaha" But no saying that, is just like a reflex. Like When I was in jujitsu, we trained our bodies how to fall and do other things, and even years after I quite, my body still knows those things, Like if I fall, I instinctually do what I was taught when I was 13 in my jujitsu class.


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