I post a lot of things about being atheist on Facebook; I realize this.  I live in the South immersing me right in the center of all religious perversions.  I have people delete me almost daily because of the things I post.  None of this ever really bothered me because I live a moral, ethical life and if someone didn't want to be digital friends with me because of my beliefs; so be it.  


It was different this time because it was one of my real life friends.  Someone that knows me, and knows how good of a person I try to be.  Cannot be friends with me because of my beliefs.  I'm generally a very insensitive person most of the time, but this hurt my heart. 

I'm becoming more and more of a militant atheist, and it's hard for me to even hear things about Christianity without getting heated in my head.  I need to move. 

Views: 1176

Comment by SteveInCO on May 2, 2013 at 11:20pm

There is nothing in Christendom that justifies shunning a friend for their belief, or lack thereof.  True Christians would say that the behavior of your former friend is sinful and shameful.

You know Robert you are doing something here that really irritates a lot of atheists. Why are you coming here to explain to us that it's not Christian behavior?  Shouldn't you be explaining it to them?  You see, as near as we can tell this IS Christian behavior, it's engaged in by Christians and there are plenty of juicy quotes that can be mined out of the bible to support this sort of intolerance.  Every Christian mines quotes out of the bible to justify their own prejudices.

I address this sort of thing (in a more extreme form. applied to threats of violence against atheist activists) here:

http://letreasonreign.wordpress.com/2012/04/24/open-letter-to-chris...

Comment by Gallup's Mirror on May 3, 2013 at 12:32am

It always saddens me when people are ignorant of their own faith.

Faith requires ignorance, willful or genuine, which is sad indeed. But to say these people are ignorant of what they themselves believe? That's not sad, Robert. That's absurd.

I apologize for the behavior of some of my Christian brethren, @Elizabeth. There is nothing in Christendom that justifies shunning a friend for their belief, or lack thereof.

Yet such shunning, mistrust, and hatred of atheists is a hallmark of Christendom and all religion. That your Christian brethren persist out of ignorance or hypocrisy makes no difference to an atheist. Why would it possibly? Elizabeth still has to live with your feeble and childish superstitions all around her. Every day of her life, she still has to deal with the petty barbs tossed her way for not believing in your magical Kool-Aid Man in the sky.

Christendom is crammed with haters, Robert. They're everywhere. So kindly stop posting this nonsense that shameful behavior has nothing to do with Christendom. I assure you that for virtually every one of us in this forum: shameful behavior IS Christendom.

True Christians would say that the behavior of your former friend is sinful and shameful.

Just as No True Scotsman would put sugar on his porridge.

It can be hard living in an area where the cultural majority holds different beliefs than we do as individuals, no matter who we are. I know it was hard for me in the past. Some people who face that challenge, like the young Chechens in Boston, respond by becoming more militant about their beliefs.

This was a real kicker, Robert. How does one militantly disbelieve in God? Or militantly disbelieve in leprechauns? Or astrology? Or phrenology? When you're done explaining that, do explain how a 'more militant' disbelief in God possibly compares with the terror attacks in Boston, which were motivated by militant religious belief.

I'd gently suggest that is not a good answer. Better to seek out friends who live their values and are accepting of yours, and try not to be too judgmental of the ignorance or shamefulness of the rest.

It seems to me that Elizabeth's former Christian friends were living their values. Moreover it sounds like Elizabeth has already made up her own mind on what to do: use discretion in seeking new friends and in this be discriminating against the shameful and the ignorant.  And recognize these qualities are everything an atheist should expect in a Christian.

Comment by kOrsan on May 3, 2013 at 1:08am

It was different this time because it was one of my real life friends.  Someone that knows me, and knows how good of a person I try to be.  Cannot be friends with me because of my beliefs.  I'm generally a very insensitive person most of the time, but this hurt my heart.

I don't get you people. Having someone delete you from their friends because of some atheist post you made is like having a free asshole-exposure ticket. It's like them saying "OK I admit I'm a fucking cunt, I'll just remove myself from your life, sorry!" Be glad. You got rid of excess.

Comment by K. Naughton on May 3, 2013 at 2:22am

I have had the same problem recently. It amazes me how christian friends expect me to respect their beliefs and their religion, yet do not tolerate me for not being like minded.

I have found myself these last few months becoming more militant anti-theist than I have any other time in my life. Seeing christian friends thank their god for everything, it makes my stomach turn :(

Comment by Sagacious Hawk on May 3, 2013 at 3:51am

Elizabeth, one of the things I've learned so far is that a diversity of opinion tends to be a good thing. When we lose that diversity, we end up in smaller circles that reinforce our opinions because nothing new is ever brought to them. Unfortunately, that means keeping around those who have terrible or stupid opinions at times. Case in point: there are a set of twins who I was friends with back in high school when I was religious. They have become super orthodox over the years. One of them today on Facebook, proposed that the suicide rate was higher now than in the past because the Catholic church moved away from the Latin mass and therefore should return to it. Dumb, I know, but in hi sown way, he gives me an understanding of a completely different type of thinking, which is something I find useful.

But if I was to excise this individual from my life simply because I didn't agree with him, then would I be any better than someone who does the same simply because I said something that favored atheism?

Comment by Yahweh on May 3, 2013 at 4:36am

I think "friend" is the wrong word here. 

Comment by Unseen on May 3, 2013 at 9:55am

I would have thought it her Christian duty to proselytize you, not shun you. Maybe you should call her a bad Christian.

Comment by Unseen on May 3, 2013 at 9:55am

I would have thought it her Christian duty to proselytize you, not shun you. Maybe you should call her a bad Christian.

Comment by Suzanne Olson-Hyde on May 3, 2013 at 10:37am
@Elizabeth - I know it's hard. I didn't drop friends because they were christian, but of their hypocrisy.

Preach one thing and do another. As Reg said, they talk the talk, but don't walk the walk.

Professor Robert - Why do some christians behave so appallingly. Here in Australia, we are having a trial, where 4 brothers from the one catholic school have been jailed for pedophilia, and that is just the tip of the iceberg. This one school spent one million dollars on the headmaster keeping him out of jail for pedophilia, Do you think these people really believe in Jesus and God?
And what do you think about the term 'Accident of History".

The school chaplain had 67 complaints against him. And this absolutely baffles me, that it can go on for so long, and they still profess to believe in Jesus, and pray to god, and giving mass and communion, whilst abusing and raping boys. How can this be, in your opinion.

http://news.smh.com.au/breaking-news-national/vic-pedophile-cluster...
Comment by Logicallunatic on May 3, 2013 at 12:52pm

Until ignorant people understand that atheism is solely a lack of belief in deities, there is not much hope.   

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