I just happened to look out the window yesterday when I saw a strange vehicle pull into my driveway. In an instant, I knew who it was. Yep, you guessed it. Jehova Witnesses. They saw me, so I was stuck.

I greeted them at the back door, standing outside--a man about my age and a teenager. I decided to have some fun by telling them outright that they were wasting their time. "I'm an atheist". I pointed out all my window stickers advocating atheism. I could see the shock in their faces.

"Why?", the kid asked. I gave him the standard "reason over superstition and faith" answer. More questions. "Beauty of the earth?" Ans: evolution. "Have you read the Bible?"  Ans: I don't believe in fairy tales (plus a few more digs).

This went on for a bit longer when I finally said that I didn't have to defend myself. The older man twice said "You sure don't look like an atheist." I asked him what an atheist looks like. He didn't have an answer. I think I was the first non-believer he ever ran across, and it shook him up.

I almost wish I had more time to "argue", but I was getting cold. I wanted to ask the kid if he flunked biology since he apparently hadn't learned anything. Was god in his textbook explaining how life works?

Anyway, I got my jollies.

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Comment by James Kz on January 11, 2013 at 1:09am

I used to get such visitations from all sorts of churches in Oklahoma. I just made a point of wearing my pentacle openly at all times.

Who says there is no such thing as a magickal talisman? It sure repels missionaries.

Here in Nebraska the religious folk in the village know we are atheists and don't try; the only missionary that came by changed her mind when she saw the bumper stickers on our old car and made a 180 for the house across the street (she was a JW according to what my neighbour said later).

Comment by Earther on January 10, 2013 at 6:11pm

I have not had a visit like that in probably twenty years.  I count myself fortunate for that.  At this point in my life I think it may be wise to say to them if they arrive that I do not discuss my personal beliefs with strangers and I do not care to hear your personal beliefs at this time.

Comment by Future on January 10, 2013 at 8:11am

You might enjoy this limerick that I wrote a while ago:

 

One day I was sweeping the floor,

When a knock came along at my door.

I put down my broom,

And went to the front room,

To see who’s interrupting my chore.

 

This kid asked what I think of creation.

I said “Creation of what?”, with frustration.

He said “Of the Earth.”

I chuckled with mirth,

And asked “Who created God?”, with elation.

 

He looked at the pamphlets he brought.

Not finding the answer he sought,

He said “That’s a great question,

Thanks for the suggestion,

I’ll come back here soon after I’m taught.”

 

The boy went to his wise mom and dad,

To ask this great question he had.

They said “That question’s absurd.”

He couldn’t believe what he'd heard,

Soon he's be a much smarter lad.

 

With time the boy learned God's a tool,

For controlling the non-thinking fools,

He was created by man,

Before critical thinking began,

And his adherents are stubborn as mules.

 

Years later this boy had returned,

His schooling had long past adjourned.

His free thinking was clear,

We laughed over a beer,

And he thanked me for starting what he'd learned.

Comment by Loren Miller on January 10, 2013 at 8:02am

Welcome to the club.  I've gotten three such visitations since we moved here, and like you, I let them know they were dealing with an atheist from the get-go.  Based on your description, the conversation you had didn't go much different from mine.

Be advised, though - they will very likely be back.  I fully expect Visit Number Four once the snow melts here.  I don't know as I particularly dread it or look forward to it.  It will be more an opportunity to reinforce to them the fact that there is another point of view out there, one that doesn't need a deity, and at least one person among many others who is willing to stand for that point of view and not blink.

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