Are you open about being an atheist or are you in the closet?

I am semi in the closet. I do have to admit that I am not comfortable discussing my views with just anyone. I am the type that wants everyone to like me (such a fault I have!) and I am nervous someone will think I am a bad person. Even when I find someone who is passionate about science, I still try not to venture down that avenue. So lucky to have you guys!

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While I agree that the major religions practiced in places like America, Australia, or the U.K. have a great effect and influence on people's lives in ways that significantly inhibit their freedom, for me it hasn't taken away to the deeper mysteries of religion. I mean, I get the whole Greta Christina-esque rant, why some atheists choose to be "active atheists" or "non-theists," so on and so forth... You mentioned that we have to figure out a way to "get along," I don't think taking the anti-theist position is the way to go, even if it's veiled through secularism or some other euphemistic synonym that people use for atheism, it still carries connotations of contentiousness. Just as Satan in Christianity represents a pure evil where no good could ever come about, a kind of "eternal enemy," and how do you resolve that?

 

All the Greta-esque fury and wrath aside, I still think agnosticism holds as a very conservative and skeptical position. You mentioned comparative religion. I've been studying comparative religion for about 4 years now, and you know, when you actually take the time to study eastern religion, low and behold, you find a religion completely compatible with things like evolution, The Big Bang, M-Theory, etc.

 

I used to hold the position of empirical agnosticism, but then when I came across the work of certain philosophers such as Alan Watts and Terence McKenna, I came to find a whole new perspective that sheds light on a lot of the confusion that people encounter in many of the major religions around the word, including Christianity, Buddhism, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Taoism, etc. 

You opined that yahweh, God, Allah, and any other "mystical character" are all creations from the human imagination and served a purpose that no longer needs such tales. Well, if I may offer an entirely different take on this opinion of yours where God is not thought up, conjured, or imagined, but rather interpreted through a kind of afflatus. I'll link you to a thread I've recently introduced this idea to, just search "Perennial Philosophy."

 

Btw, it's just something to consider! I'm not trying to sell you on this point of view, I'd simply like for you to consider it.

 

http://www.atheistnexus.org/forum/topics/how-much-proof-is-enough?c...

Me too.  On Facebook I say I'm a Secular Humanist (not atheist).  Make 'em look it up; they'll get the drift!
I'm an open Atheist except for one relative of mine who is 90 years old, I don't really know what his views are, but I wouldn't discuss my disbelief with him. I try not to brag about it, but if anyone asks, sure, I'll let them know what I know to be true. I have a decent good grasp on Astrophysics, Biology and Physical Anthropology (Human Evolution) so when anyone wants to argue that "there's just so much we don't understand, blah blah blah, there must be a higher power, blah blah" I can reply with certainty that my claims represent reality.
The ask and tell policy.  Yes, that's my way as well.  I live in France and have a lot of company when it comes to non-theists here, so I never hide my non-belief.  I post atheist related articles or videos on my Facebook page (I especially like Sam Harris' material).  I haven't been asked if I'm an atheist, but I did answer in the negative the question:  Do you believe in god?

In places like South Africa especially in the black communities when you come out of the closet and say you are a full blown Atheist they start deserting you and telling each other that you are satanic and got possessed by forces of the dark.. Worse part, I only listen to heavymetal rock and have posters of Slayer and Black Sabbath on my bedroom wall.. And yeah, after going through that process of being named Luciferian, I decided its better if I keep my thoughts a secret..

Before I let my religious fam know my views I had the worst visions of what it would be like. I let it eat at me for 10 yrs. I finally hit rock bottom during my divorce and told everyone.  I went to church every sun before. When I told my preacher he asked me if I thought he was full of crap lol. I told him the only reason he is a Christian is because he was born in America where it is dominant. If he was born in china he would likely be Buddhist. But I told him I still loved him and I don't have any malice towards him. It was hard. BUT once it was over with it was a huge weight off my chest and I realized that it wasn't even close to the hardest thing I've been through. You'll find the strength.
I'm pretty much out of the closet with friends and family.  However, I googled my name and found my Atheist Nexus website page.  That freaked me out, so I changed to just using my first name.  When you fill out the Profile page, it asks for your Full Name, so I had just given it without a thought.  I guess I'm not so far out of the closet that I want just anyone looking me up to find out.
Me too! 
You have to go to My Settings, and click on My Page, and change your name in the website address, also.  Then when someone clicks on your name from Google, they get Page Not Found.
I am not fully open about being an Atheist.  I try to avoid religious and political topics as much as possible.  I try to avoid conflict.
Are you ever in a situation where you can't hold back and you say something?  I can  think of two conversations earlier this year where as soon as the words rolled off my tongue I regretted it.  Oops :-)

Well I have to make sure I restrain myself sometimes -- isn't always easy to do.

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