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Religion and Spirituality, Science and Philosophy Use this forum to discuss what you believe in. This is a place where everyone may share their views freely.

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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
Adam the Fish Offline
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Unhappy A Sticky Situation - February 5th 2013, 07:13 PM

Hellooooooooooooooooo!

So...up until now I've been fairly Christian; I've always had a bit of a doubt in the back of my mind, but I've left it alone and gone to church every Sunday, and got involved in all the things that you can do when you're part of a congregation.

But recently in RE (that's Religious Education...I guess they probably have that in most places?), we've been discussing arguments for and against the existence of "God".
And, having been prompted into actually thinking, I've come to the conclusion that it's highly unlikely that "God" can exist, and that every argument we've looked at has been severely flawed. So...I'm not totally sure, of course, but that makes me Agnostic...

However, I'm now in the slightly awkward position of having several church commitments that I can't really just "give up"...partly because that would be rude, and primarily because my mum is probably going to get annoyed and start lecturing me about various different things like commitment and how I shouldn't make decisions like this...but, really, I'm pretty decided - I've thought about it quite a lot over the past month or so.

Any advice on how I might try to actually be open about how I don't really follow Christianity anymore, without being stamped down almost immediately?

(PS: "sitting down and talking" will not work...I've tried it for other things and it's gone badly, to say the least!)


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Re: A Sticky Situation - February 7th 2013, 04:10 AM

Well, my case was quite easy since I only went to a Chinese church school every saturday. And my mom never asks me religious stuff.

One thing though, is to not stay closet. You can be vague, or not mention it, but I would never lie if someone asks me what my religion is... it just feels oppressive and no one should deny your beliefs anyways.

Also, I still continue to go that church. I still did those hand movements during our mandatory dance. (I'm the oldest.) I might not have passion but I guess I wouldn't disrespect them by not doing it.

Also, I have an atheist acquaintance who goes to bible study with his Christian girlfriend every week.

If it's something you have to do, I think you should look for other aspects of why your going.

idk. Might need the religious talk one day also. I haven't experienced that either.

Good luck.


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Re: A Sticky Situation - February 7th 2013, 04:34 PM

Well, to start with just don't say you ARE a Christian, like don't be saying the stuff that Christians do (praise be to god, god is so good to me, I love the lord just to name a few of the things my Christian friends have said). It can be difficult to say you don't feel like you belong in a community in which you don't even believe in what brings them together. But you can start by just not making new commitments to it and not claiming/doing thats that would suggest you believe in god.
There might be an appropriate time for you to stop going to these church commitments. So just stick in there until there is an appropriate time for you to stop going.
The only way you CAN tell your mom is by talking to her about it. How else are you going to do it--by writing a letter? Unless your an unbelievable poet to rival Shakespeare that's not going to work. It might not go down well, especially if your mom is very devout, I have met many a Christians who can't fathom how I could possibly be ok with there not being a God, it's even harder to explain how I don't think it bothers me if I die and that's just the end of it, I become worm food. But if this is something you feel she needs to know about then you aren't being left with much of a choice. That being said, it might be better for you to just follow your own religious beliefs, it's not like it's all that uncommon for kids to just omit details when dealing with parents of the uptight variation... Please note that I said OMIT details, I do not believe blatantly lying to her is a good policy (it's a bad one in my opinion) but you might just be better off going to church on Sundays to appease your mother.
You could always try a conversation along the lines of "look mom, I have been having some serious doubts about the existence of god, I don't think I want to be quite as involved in the church any more because I feel like I should resolve these doubts before I try to be an influence on others because I think it is important for [people in what ever it is you do] to be committed to the church and with my doubts I don't feel like I can do that right now. I am still willing to go to church on Sundays with you and maybe my faith in God will be reinvigorated, but meanwhile this is how I feel. I don't want you to be upset or tell me I am making a bad decision because this is just how I feel." By calling it "serious doubts" it is less likely to upset her than wording it like "I simply don't believe there is a god. Because it's true, you just seriously doubt there is a god but who can ever be 100% sure, so if you say it like this it might make your mom think there is still a chance that you will be "saved" and thus less likely to completely lose it (now I am of the persuasion where if I can't be positive there is a god I am not going to believe it... I am not going to believe in a god just because I am afraid I won't get into heaven in the off chance there is in fact a god, I think trying to scare people into believing in something that is supposedly good is ridiculous but that is a whole other conversation not for not), this is also why I think you should agree with minimal participation (Sunday mass) because then she won't be so upset thinking you are giving it up entirely because part of her anger (guessed anger?) would be in that she may be truly afraid for your soul (being, person, self, atman, choose a word for whatever makes you you). This way you express your concerns but still offer some participation, and then if down the line you don't want to go at all then you can break that to her but she wont' have to be so torn up about the total detachment you're creating
hope that helps




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Re: A Sticky Situation - February 18th 2013, 12:41 AM

That is a slightly awkward situation...Your choice, I guess.
But you have to have faith in God. It's not like science where you can calculate if He exists or not. It's faith.

I hope you regain your faith again, because you're missing out on a lot.
I've seen miracles.
I've heard God.
I've felt God's love.
I know He's there. I know He's real.
But I can't prove anything that people wouldn't shrug off, labeled as a coincidence.

Please thoroughly search this. A decision like this can't be taken lightly. Your soul is on the line Adam. The devil's on one end and God's on the other...
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Re: A Sticky Situation - February 18th 2013, 05:40 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Collies R Us View Post
That is a slightly awkward situation...Your choice, I guess.
But you have to have faith in God. It's not like science where you can calculate if He exists or not. It's faith.

I hope you regain your faith again, because you're missing out on a lot.
I've seen miracles.
I've heard God.
I've felt God's love.
I know He's there. I know He's real.
But I can't prove anything that people wouldn't shrug off, labeled as a coincidence.

Please thoroughly search this. A decision like this can't be taken lightly. Your soul is on the line Adam. The devil's on one end and God's on the other...
-Collies R Us
Nice to see you dictate what we HAVE to believe. Faith however, shows you nothing other than that one is willing to believe in something without basis and against observable and measurable elements of reality.
No, science cannot calculate whether God exists or not (a ridiculous premise from the get-go). That still does not excuse believing something on a whim. Why does faith qualify your God for existence and not Zeus?
It's nice you've seen those things. It's also nice that many people of numerous other religions have seen miracles and "felt" the actions of their deity upon them and have claimed to have knowledge of their own deity as well.
So please, I urge you to refrain from fear-mongering. If you truly believe that non-belief itself damns you to perdition in spite of significant doing of good, I find your guiding moral code in this debate to be quite at odds with your own conceptions of "good" itself. The kind of suggestion you've made has placed heavy essence upon a punishment if one does not believe in something or accept it. The fact you find obscuring rational thought upon an afterlife using emotive appeal and imposing foreboding concepts upon the person to bind them to a particular doctrine speaks volumes as to your willingness to allow them to think independently of a presupposed deity so as to properly contemplate the likelihood of its existence.


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Re: A Sticky Situation - February 18th 2013, 06:39 AM

Anyone want a head? I found it rolling over here.

Thanks, guys, for your help and opinions (but - please, opinions; let's not try to prove or disprove any specific beliefs or whether religion is or isn't...Debates forum, anyone? )


Quote:
Religion and Spirituality, Science and Philosophy Use this forum to discuss what you believe in. This is a place for everyone to be able to share their views freely.


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Re: A Sticky Situation - February 18th 2013, 08:48 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rachael98 View Post
Anyone want a head? I found it rolling over here.

Thanks, guys, for your help and opinions (but - please, opinions; let's not try to prove or disprove any specific beliefs or whether religion is or isn't...Debates forum, anyone? )
I expressed my opinion. Freely.


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Re: A Sticky Situation - February 18th 2013, 02:08 PM

Like Rachael pointed out this is a forum for people to be able to discuss their beliefs freely without people telling them that they're damned or that their choice to leave their religion basically makes you the Queen Bee of the Evil Clan. I respect your opinion and you have a right to have one. But I feel that your opinion in this case is more harmful than it is good. It's a very negative and closed minded opinion that condemns people like myself and Rachael and millions of others for not adhering to an organized religion like Christianity. She wasn't asking you to prove why she shouldn't leave Christianity. I understand that maybe the idea of someone not believing in a God and/or leaving the church might be something that's abhorrent to you, but it's not what she was asking about and I'm sorry that you can't be a bit more open minded towards other peoples beliefs.




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Re: A Sticky Situation - February 21st 2013, 09:05 PM

Dear Mr. Self Destruct,
I apologize for my unclear words. I wasn't try to scare anyone into believing. I don't roll like that...
And I was not saying she absolutely HAD to have faith, I was just trying to say, well, I'm not sure now, but I wasn't trying to say what you took it as.
- Collies R Us


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Re: A Sticky Situation - February 22nd 2013, 11:30 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Collies R Us View Post
Dear Mr. Self Destruct,
I apologize for my unclear words. I wasn't try to scare anyone into believing. I don't roll like that...
And I was not saying she absolutely HAD to have faith, I was just trying to say, well, I'm not sure now, but I wasn't trying to say what you took it as.
- Collies R Us
"But you have to have faith in God."
Seems pretty straightforward phrasing to me.


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