what do you do? I don't recall ever praying, but I'm curious what you do when someone is sick, etc. A friend of mine is currently in the ICU. Everyone is asking for prayers for her and, of course, asking me also. I wouldn't dream of telling them I won't be praying, but what exactly is it I do? I've always told people I'll send healing thoughts, etc. I think about the person and hope that they will be okay, but I feel that what happens, will happen. I visit and do things for the family, etc. Ugh, I'm not very good with words, but am curious how you describe what you do in situations such as this.

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"I'll keep you in my thoughts." It's the only honest answer to give.
I tell people, "You're in my thoughts," or, "Thinking of you and your family during this troubling time." It feels kind of funny at first until you get used to saying it. At first I had trouble because I felt guilty that I wasn't praying for people, but I realized prayer doesn't do anything but help the person praying. I think the fact that you visit and help the family is living proof that we as atheists are just as valuable, if not more, than the religious people of our society. I'm not so great with words either. :-)

I tell them that I will sacrifice a goat to Thor.  Just kidding. 


I usually go with the "I'll keep you in my thoughts" line as well.  I feel the same way as I do when someone sneezes.  I know it is a custom to say something when someone sneezes or when someone is very ill, but I feel it is a pointless and silly.

Human beings are the most deceptive mammals to sprout off the evolutionary tree. Deception comes as natural to us as breathing. We use deception every day of our lives. To tell another person a lie that you know will bring comfort to that person is, in my opinion, the proper thing to do. There's no reason to feel guilty. Your not being a traitor to your personal view of reality. You are just a caring human being.


I don't have a goat to sacrifice to Thor, but, I have a coupla' chickens.

I say "I'm thinking about you/them" etc....and sometimes say "I'm sending my love & best wishes...."




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