I'm 60 something and a quilter. Also a former math teacher with a lot of other things that I enjoy. I belong to some online quilting groups that I enjoy as they give me information that I can't obtain anywhere else. HOWEVER, on one of my favorite groups someone has a tagline that reads "Life's biggest decision is what you do with Jesus." And now someone has replied " I love your line 'Life’s biggest decision is what you do with Jesus.' How true."
I see where this is going, having tried to join quilting groups where everyone asks me "what church do you belong to?". I'm ready to explode! I love this group but I wonder if I should:
a. Have a tagline of my own (suggestions?)
b. Just write that I wish we could be members of a wonderful quilting group such as this and leave religion at the door? I'm afraid that if I make this request I will be rejected and then will have to join as a new member keeping my real identity a secret.
What do you think I should do? I'm afraid of making the wrong decision and having to leave the group but on the other hand, I need to grow a pair (as they say) :) and tale a stand!
Please let me know what you think as I can't seem to decide.
Move to Florida. They have a stand your ground law there that allows you to spray a perfume-drenched woman or after shave soaked man with artificial skunk scent.
Seriously, I don't see you changing anyone's behavior in an online quilting group. Quilting and church, in most people's minds, just seem to go together, and Christian privilege is so ingrained in many people that they are utterly unaware that it is inappropriate, sort of like Paula Deen using the n-word. Chances are that the moderator shares their view, anyway.
Just ignore it. Don't take the bait. Be a good group member, get accepted by the group, and later, when the time is right, you can tell them you're an atheist--though devil worshiper is probably a safer choice. Eventually, they might come to see you as the friendly neighborhood atheist, as my colleagues and students have come to see me (I think).
Maybe that's the best suggestion for me on the site for the moment. Just be the person I am and later "come out" as an atheist once I'm a long time user of the site. (Have only been on that site about 5-6 months.)
I did make an online friend in another state and after about 4 years of corresponding, let her know that I am an atheist. I wasn't sure how she'd react but it seems to make no difference. She's a believer but not any type of fanatic so that helps.
So except for the moderator, who doesn't know why I objected to there being religious discussions, just that I didn't think it appropriate for the site, no one knows how I feel and I guess I'll leave it that way for now. Thank you.
Michael- the problem is that there's an expectation that she shares these beliefs. If she offers a dissenting opinion, the moderator will either not post it (most likely) or the others will gang up on this devil-sent heathen and banish her.
I would suggest she gently ask some questions- say, play the part of the curious outsider who appears to have the potential to be converted (they LOVE that). Tread lightly, maybe say you're not a Christian because you've got too many unanswered questions.
Ask questions carefully designed to appear benign, yet force them to argue with each other over what the bible "really" means. Or what a "true Christian" is. Say you heard that Jesus is the prince of peace, yet he came with a sword. And is he upholding the OT or throwing it out? As they tear into each other over religion, ask if the moderator can ban all this dangerous religious talk.
That would be my tactic. I've yet to meet two christians who agree about their religion....when they start to examine it, anyway.
That sounds like a perfect plan Christine. :)
Christine, I just love this idea and may try it on another site but not here as I'm trying to keep the group's focus on quilting/sewing, not on JC. My post asking that the religious references be stopped has yet to appear so either the moderator hasn't decided what to do or he's decided to not post my "offering". On the other hand, there have been no posts since then that mention religion so just maybe he's stopped their postings too.
I sure hope so.
Maybe I should sign up again at my quilting site under a pseudonym and object again if there are more references. I really didn't intend to spend time or energy on this but now am beginning to feel it's really time to take more of a stand on some other sites as well.
That's good! One of my husband's sisters is very in your face born again and drives a Mercedes. We joke about finding a WWJD? bumper sticker and putting it on for her. While I think you should be able to buy any car you want and can afford, it doesn't seem like that would be JC's choice.
What Would a Freethinker Do?
To me, that's a more dangerous question. Jesus never owned a car -- or a camel or an ass. But a freethinker has to decide when a purchase is for function and when it's for show. Do I need a bigger house for the family, or should I be giving more? Is a Mercedes for safety or flash? Questions like those carry us into perilous waters. This isn't the site for that discussion, but maybe I should introduce it. Or, since it's your question, you might want to.
Jerry, good point and feel free to introduce it. The Mercedes in question was one of those little sports cars so....
I LOVE your idea, Christine. Have them start a holy war with each other, over who loves them some Jesus the most! Hahahahahahahahahahah!!!!!!!!!!!
*I would respond to a religious statement with some question, I don't know what, but directly aimed at it.
*Why do you think that?
*Do you really believe that?
*What do you mean by ...?
*What is your evidence?
*So you mean ...?
*Does this make sense to you?
*Have you thought of ...?
*That bible quote contradicts another claim (I can never remember biblical books and versus, so not useful to me).
Peter Boghossian says honesty and humility.
Boghossian's Chapter 5 gives good examples of the Socratic method:
Stages using Socratic method:
1. Wonder: Someone (subject) wonders something
2. Hypothesis: Speculative responses to a question posed in stage 1.
3. Elenchus (Q & A): A logical refutation; call the subject's hypothesis into question and show that it is false.
4. Accept or Revise Hypothesis: The subject accepts or rejects the new hypothesis; a new hypothesi is given if the new hypothesis is rejected, repeat cycle.
5. Act Accordingly: Subject will act upon inquiry, or not. "If the arguments that emerge from the elenchus cannot refute the hypothesis, then the hypothesis stands. It’s vital to reiterate that if the hypothesis stands this does not mean one has found eternal truth. This simply means the hypothesis is accepted as provisionally true."
~ Boghossian, Peter (2013-10-26). A Manual for Creating Atheists (p. 101). Pitchstone Publishing. Kindle Edition.