We need to put together a dictionary of phrases that express our meanings without invoking god. My reason for doing this is that i don't want people to think I'm religious, so I don't want to say things like "Thank god!" or "I'll pray for you."

So I have a few, but PLEASE add your own -- maybe we can make a document or page about it. Mine are:

(Of Jewish origin) saying BCE (Before the Common Era) and CE (Common Era) instead of BC (before Christ) and AD (Anno Domini = in the year of our Lord -- he ain't MY lord, that's for sure!)

Saying "I'll keep you in my thoughts" instead of "I'll pray for you" because I won't. Even the Quaker "I'll hold you in the light" is better than promising to pray for someone. When I hear that someone is gravely ill, I say "I hope for the best possible outcome" which doesn't specify what that outcome is -- sometimes it's recovery, but sometimes, it's the deliverance of that person from their suffering.

"For goodness' sake!" instead of "For god's sake"

"By all that is in me" instead of "By god!" Because all I have to offer is what is in me and what I have to give.

"I am grateful" rather than "I am blessed" because maybe it's only the uncaring universe that I have to be grateful to, but gratitude is a very human emotion.Even "Thanks to the luck", because luck is a human, but not a deistic concept.

"Gezundheit" (which means "Health!") or just "To your health" instead of "god bless you" when someone sneezes. Or be like the Japanese and say nothing at all -- a sneeze isn't very meaningful in these modern days!

I dunno -- I may think up more, but I'd be VERY interested to see what other people come up with -- I KNOW there are a lot of fertile minds out there! :-)


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Oh, I just LOVE Firefly and still mourn its premature passing. I haven't seen Farscape but will now, on your recommendation.
what the frell are you doing, name of that fat little, green, icky guy? !!!!! i didn't catch the word "gorram" - cool word :]
The fat little green icky guy is Dominar Rygel XVI, and don't you forget it! lol!
LOL - thanks - rygel, right :]

Yeah, I've used those two as well, but not as often. Shouting "frack!" is just more satisfying to me than the other two. But I do like to mix it up sometimes and use frell (which hasn't caught on yet in my circle of aquaintances, but I'm working on it).


And yeah, I want Joss to continue Firefly in comic book form like he's done with Buffy. I don't think the Serenity movie or comic mini-series' did justice to the original show.

Fracking (hydraulic fracturing, associated with deep natural gas drilling) perhaps IS worthy of becoming an expletive!
Seriously! Check out the film Gasland if you haven't seen it! 
Oh for Pete's sake is one of my favorites.

hi guys -

just to let you know, the Pete in for pete's sake is St. Peter at the pearly gates. another religious one - LOL.


": : : : : : How did the saying "For Pete's Sake" come from?
: : : : : Biblical origins. Think of St Peter. Think of the omnipresent medieval church and think of hitting your thumb with a hammer. You can't swear, else the local priests will have you up before the Bishop and the Lord alone knows what the outcome of that will be, so you exclaim, in appropriate tone of voice, "For Saint Peter's sake" and carry on erecting the shelves. This phrase was amended to "For Pete's Sake" in later, less religiously oppressive, times."


Can always go with the Irish "For Fook's sake!"
When someone sneezes, I say, "I hope you didn't catch a bug! Is there something going around?"
Instead of saying "I've been blessed.", I say "I've been fortunate".
Instead of saying "Holy Cow!" (or other things) I say "Wholly unbelievable!"
When someone says that they'll pray for me, I say "Oh, I'm an atheist, but go ahead if you'd like." This is either a conversation starter or ender. :P

I'll often replace one religious idea with one from a nonchristian religion often to comic effect. For example, instead of "God bless you" I'll say "Kokopelli the humpbacked fertility god bless you." (If they're Christian this makes them feel strange since they seemingly just made me violate the commandment against praying to other gods, which is tantamount to them sinning and their unnecessary guilt is humor to me.). Instead of "I'll pray for you" I sometimes say something like "I'll sacrifice a child for you, that's probably what God will demand for this." This often makes people uncomfortable or at least inquisitive and I've succesfully made a common phrase awkward to the point they won't use it around me anymore...or, more likely, hang out with me anymore.


Of course the above is just for off-hand remarks. If there's been a death in the family and someone says they'll pray for me I won't say anything like that and have even been known to say "that's considerate" or "maybe buy flowers for [surviving family member] instead." Since they're only saying they'll pray because they genuinely want to help and feel powerless to do so.


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