Now to make it short and sweet, I didn't really talk about my atheism with my family because all of them claim to be really into church! Well I was asked two weeks ago, by my step dad, did I want to go to church! I told him that I didn't do church, and I told him the reasons why I didn't do church or religion! The question that I didn't think about asking him until after I left was " how long do you have to go to church to find the answer you are looking for?" He is 55 and I'm pretty sure that he was into since he was young! Do you think that is a legitimate question to ask? 

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It sure might make up for an eventful conversation ;)
Sure, it's a legitimate question. Just don't expect a thoughtful answer.

I drove by a Catholic church yesterday upon whose sign was written the following.

"Prayer doesn't need proof, it needs practice."

Religion is all about repetition and not results.
@ Tom I like the quote! 
" how long do you have to go to church to find the answer you are looking for?" He is 55 and I'm pretty sure that he was into since he was young! Do you think that is a legitimate question to ask?

If you are an American, maybe not. The "Black Church" has always confused me, why would a group of people hold on to the religion of their oppressors? How colonial is that? A few of my black friends explained it to me.

The black church is much more than a religious institution, it's oldest, and perhaps only, institution built by and for blacks living in a society that is hostile to them. It's their refuge,the refuge that has defined and shaped their identity for 100s of years.

You are growing up in the post civil-rights era, your dad lived thought it, and thus has a very different perspective....I don't understand older people very well either, but I understand that.

Meaning that your dad may very well have found what he was looking for, and it may or may not be a spiritual answer, as times have changed, those things may not be as relevant in your life than they are in his, only you can answer that.
I mean when I told him the reasons why I didn't go he didn't despise me but he had that puzzled look on his face! If I didn't live four hours away I would have went into more dialogue with him! But I had to make a pretty long drive plus he was on his way to church! I think he should have just gave up on it right after I told him why I didn't do church anymore! He continued to press me! I didn't want to be an asshole about it but that seemed like the only way to get my point across
@ Alex Catgirl, that is what I am trying to figure out! Not just him but everyone else that has been going to church for 20-30+ years! Do you graduate once you get your answer? It seems like it just keeps on going! I told him that I feel that religion is man made because god has the attributes of a spoiled ass 5 year old! With that being said, if you believe so deeply in your convictions, when do you actually obtain the answer you are seeking? I just feel if he fires off at me, I can speak my mind! At the same time, these are folks that I am really close to!
@ Alex Catgirl, that is what I am trying to figure out! Not just him but everyone else that has been going to church for 20-30+ years! Do you graduate once you get your answer? It seems like it just keeps on going! I told him that I feel that religion is man made because god has the attributes of a spoiled ass 5 year old! With that being said, if you believe so deeply in your convictions, when do you actually obtain the answer you are seeking? I just feel if he fires off at me, I can speak my mind! At the same time, these are folks that I am really close to!
why would a group of people hold on to the religion of their oppressors? How colonial is that?

Exactly.

Same situation holds true in my country which was colonized by Spain for 333 years. They continue to believe the present skydaddy yet fail to see they had local gods then before the Conquistadors arrived.

Like rubbing salt to an open wound, they further fail to see that their oppressors carried with them a built-in coping mechanism machine for the natives to run and turn to for comfort while the rape and pillaging goes on.
A local baptist church near me had up that prayer sign! I thought it was so funny! If you practice basketball everyday, no matter how bad you where, you would still be better than when you started out. But you can pray and practice praying until you're blue in the face and fall over and your prayers still won't be answered and all you'll be better at is turning blue in the face and falling over.

To answer your question, it is an excellent question which is probably why you won't get an answer.
I guess the biggest problem I have is that my baby sister is still living there and she is going through the same thing I went through! She is only 15 and I am 27, but I know she has doubts because I am the one she comes to when she has questions! My parents didn't know I was atheist until my step dad asked me that! The first thing he said when I gave him my argument was " well I am not a bible thumper but I still have faith"! Of course I asked him about some of those verses that they overlook! But I guess I am just starting to be more outspoken now that I am on my own! As for my sister, I guess she will just have to either speak up or just deal with it! But I was trying to get my step dad realize that his religious preference is not for everyone and maybe he should just keep it to himself
@ The Nerd that's basically where I was trying to get him to realize! I wasn't trying to beat around the bush or anything! I only been atheist for about 3+ years now and I still haven't even told my mom! I am not afraid, I guess I don't want any confrontation! Me and my mom is really close and we never talk about religion! But I am gonna tell her straight up since I told my dad! I dunno how she is gonna take it! That's the only thing that I am afraid of
you'll probably get something like , it's the connection with god we look for.
religious people wanna *practice* religion..practice being the key word. gives them a sense of rightousness being a man of god. its been very hard for me to look past that when dealing with people who follow religion ( i come from a muslim background) but lately what im trying to do is to see the similarities as apposed to our differences. and when the time comes to debate im sure ill do fine by keeping it simple and to the point. u should still ask him though..give him something to think about for a day . or at worst ..a story to tell fellow believers at church!

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