How do you respond to: "Are you against religion?", "Are you against Christmas?"

I was asked by an Xtian if I decorated for Christmas.

When I answered "NO" - I got the questions I have heard before.

"Are you against Religion? Are you against Christmas."

(Religion is bad - so yes I am against religion)

Any of you here get these same questions? 

How do you handle them?

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Sometimes I say something like "I don't understand the question. I love peace a lot so if "against" means am I ready to fight about something, then I'd say I'm not against religion. If 'against' means do I resist being oppressed by someone else's ideas, then I would have to say 'yes,I am against religion'. Which sene of the word did you mean?" I know:  that's a lot of words but sometimes it buys me release from the whole lot of words they were gonna say, trying to convert me to some way of thinking.

Good point Alex - thank you.

From a Secular Perspective : http://www.secularism.org.uk/blog/2011/12/we-wish-you-a-merry--and-... - Basically sod off, ill do it my way, you do it yours.

Oh man, their bit on OCC is chilling!  I can't even imagine most churches agreeing to that knowingly.

http://www.secularism.org.uk/blog/2012/10/enticing-children-to-evan...

i always respond that i am not a practicing pagan, so the trappings of Yule such as a decorated evergreen, holly, etc. are inappropriate, as are the Saturnalia practices of gift exchange and mistletoe, although i do find the observation of winter solstice to be interesting as axial tilt and earth's elliptical orbit are good teaching moments for my kids...

Yes, Xmas, Yuletide are all based on superstition, superstition is based on magic, so I'm anti-superstition!

Superstition is putting magic before knowledge, religions are all based on superstition, I always put knowledge before magic, so I'm anti-superstition and thus anti-religion.

Axial tilt is the reason for the season.

If I were anti-Christmas or anti-religion, I would be throwing water across my sidewalks (which approach the church) to turn them into ice rinks, rather than shovel them.

But gift giving? I have no trouble with gift giving, nor sending holiday cards. I like giving gifts; my family has a tradition of giving "Thursday gifts" or "Wednesday gifts" or any other day in the calendar, just for the heck of it.

(In the matter of holiday cards, our town is so isolated that the tradition of sending cards is a good way to keep up with those we care about, and there are plenty enough secular cards.)

Xmas prejudice is toughest when it comes from family and friends. 

What started out as a group of people with email making jokes of my wife and I posing with Santa in a photo degenerated into this conversation.

Coach:

Do atheist celebrate christmas? I'm not Jewish, so I don't celebrate Hanukkah

Me:
Christmas actually predated Christianity by about 2,000 years. - (I provide proof)

Coach:

I must of touched a nerve

Wow, so much knowledge for someone who does not believe.
Call it something else, because Christmas, is Christ Mass and is a Christian holiday,
according to all dictionaries.

Me:

You didn't hit a nerve ?????.  I just like a good debate. Joyce and Kevin are devout Christians.

Here is something interesting:

Researchers from the independent Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life phoned more than 3,400 Americans and asked them 32 questions about the Bible, Christianity and other world religions,
famous religious figures and the constitutional principles governing religion in public life.
On average, people who took the survey answered half the questions incorrectly, and many flubbed even questions about their own faith.


Those who scored the highest were atheists and agnostics, as well as two religious minorities: Jews and Mormons.

The results were the same even after the researchers controlled for factors like >age and racial differences.

Coach:

Not interested in your rubbish. (He then went on to denigrate my liberal political choices and imply I did not have common sense.

End Result

The good thing was two people jumped in and spoke up for tolerance.  One was upset by Coach's comments and one thought maybe Coach was just trying to get a rise out of me.   

The comments did bother me a bit because it wasn't a civil conversation.

Agreed Russell - I do have to put up wiht Xmas prejudice from family and friends - and that is tough.

Thanks for writing about what you went through with the prejudice from others.

I am glad you didn't let Coach get a rise out of you. Often, that is what their plan is.

Christmas (and the tree) have nothing to do with religion in my mind. How could it possibly be the birthday of Jesus? Where does it say to celibrate this "birthday" that gets inserted into Santa and toys for kids, etc? By the time I get through with people that ask me about "Christmas at my house" I tell them that they might as well add the Easter Bunny too. Then they tell me that I should at least have a tree to "celibrate the season." What season are they talking about? What do they really mean? The religious ones tell me that "the wise men brought gifts" and the others try to out-do each other in making their homes look like lighted runways for aircraft. I simply tell them all that I don't need that. I'm not a kid anymore.

Dennis, I like that answer: "I'm not a kid anymore."  Even though I'm still young at heart in many ways.

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