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Philippine Atheists

Philippine Atheist group

Location: Philippines
Members: 55
Latest Activity: Nov 20

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Comment by Najo on May 19, 2009 at 11:20pm
"An atheist American friend of mine that lives in the Phil -- a very big & tough guy with lots of military & martial arts training -- recently wrote to me that it is dangerous to publically announce one's atheism there. He added that he has been silent about his atheism for that reason. I wonder how many Filipinos would agree?"

I started becoming skeptical when I was about 13 yrs old, I was a Roman Catholic, and have fundies for relatives. I studied in a public high school, which was supposed to be neutral about spirituality issues, but conducted First Friday masses; Values Education (VE) subjects consisted of requiring students to memorize books of the bible and accepting Jesus in their hearts. When I was 15, my VE teacher found out about my atheism from a tattletale classmate, and I was attacked emotionally and mentally in the succeeding lectures. I was called crazy by my evangelist teacher. Though I tried to fight back by correcting his views of atheists and atheism, I eventually had to feign belief in Christianity just so I could graduate. That was the only time in my life that I had to deny being an atheist. I quit my religious organization and proceeded on writing an atheism research paper for my English subject during my senior year. We were promised that the top papers would be displayed in the library as reference materials. Unfortunately, mine never got the chance to be displayed. I believe it was due to my teacher's fear of causing uproar in the students and faculty. But I also viewed it as her act of protecting me.

The incidents above happened in a very small and religious community. Religiosity is ubiquitous in rural communities in the country.

I study in a university where freedom of choice and secularity is valued highly. I have had countless experiences where I had the need to give my opinion as a nonbeliever, I have only been mocked once. I have had atheist teachers. I've never had a fundamentalist teacher. And there's even an organization called the Atheist Circle.

People only find out I'm an atheist when I tell them. And I only tell them when I am asked about it or when there really is a need to refer to my belief system. XD

But I have been invited over and over again to attend church services. I recently attended one, about two weeks ago, and I have to say...religion hasn't changed, their techniques in playing with the psychology of the people are still the same. Religion is mind play and spirituality is a state of mind.

Erm. Anyway, there, I don't really believe that announcing your atheism here is dangerous. But, of course, there are consequences. Like being called "atheist girl" by your officemates, being asked a series of questions about where you base your morality, and being called stupid every now and then. But that's about it.

The most dangerous thing that could possibly happen to you is the never-ending knock on your door by evangelists. Once the evangelist neighbor finds out you're an atheist, expect an invitation to a bible reading session everyday.

I have never been chased off by angry Christians. :)

P.S. The conclusions is, of course, based on my experiences. I'm not really sure if it's actually dangerous in other parts of the country. XD But maybe in the southern area. *shrugs*
Comment by Dean Hovey on February 9, 2009 at 12:10am
Excellent points, Ian. :)
Comment by Bodhi on February 4, 2009 at 8:14pm
Hi everyone..am newbie here...
Comment by Ian Baltazar on February 3, 2009 at 2:11am
Secularization is not about spreading atheism. It's about discarding blind faith, dogma and superstition in the making of public policy that would improve people's lives re: economic conditions.
Comment by Annie Roark on January 27, 2009 at 12:31pm
Are there American flips here? If so, say hi.

Sadly, my tagalog has fallen off to the wayside and sometimes have trouble translating.
Comment by Dean Hovey on January 25, 2009 at 3:03am
In public and in private, try to I afford everyone the freedom to be who they are. I also expect others to afford me the same right. I'm an upfront kind of person, so I am open about my overviews with everyone I meet even if they might be offended by my fact. I see it as a good way right away to sort out those people that can accept me in the long run from those that can't. This way I rid myself early of people that might be friendly today until they learn I'm an atheist tomorrow. Being open like I am also opens dialogue by causing others to become curious about me and so seeing I'm comfortable in my skin many will ask questions about my atheism which gives me the opportunity & green light to say, "Okay, since you asked . . ." :)
Comment by maxm1973 on January 24, 2009 at 8:47pm
i am open about my atheism to close friends who are mostly moderate theists. i seldom open or talk about my atheism with people who i think will take offense by it.
Comment by Dean Hovey on January 24, 2009 at 7:59am
An atheist American friend of mine that lives in the Phil -- a very big & tough guy with lots of military & martial arts training -- recently wrote to me that it is dangerous to publically announce one's atheism there. He added that he has been silent about his atheism for that reason. I wonder how many Filipinos would agree?
Comment by Dean Hovey on January 23, 2009 at 11:48pm
Ramon, profoundly respect & like Sam Harris, but I do not agree with everything he says or writes (and quite frankly, I suspect he got some of his ideas from me). The word "atheist" is not a label. it is a state of intellectual being that merely reflects HOW a person thinks -- i.e. what they DO NOT believe. The prefix-letter "a" on the word "theist" simply means the opposite of one that believes in a god idea -- that is an "atheist" is simply a person who does not believe in the god idea. That is all. I for one am "ATHEIST" (GODLESS) & PROUD! Please join in: http://www.blogtv.com/People/FilipinoAtheists
Comment by Dean Hovey on January 23, 2009 at 12:55am
Yes, Ian, I believe you are correct . . .
 

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