I am in a subacute care facility because I have a degenerative neuromuscular disorder and have a tracheostomy. So I'm pretty much a prisoner of my own body, so to speak. Anyway, I'm sitting here minding my own business, communicating with friends via the computer and some old bitch walks in and without so much as a by your leave thrusts some Jesus crap in front of my face. I look up at her and she's got the smile like I am your grandmother aren't I wonderful. I'm going to save you. It's not like she said, excuse me, would you like this or any somesuch courtesy. So when I opened it and saw the usual claptrap. I handed it back to her and I said no thank you. She opened her mouth to give me a ration of shit and I said I don't believe, thank you very much, have a nice day. She took back her pamphlet, gave me a dirty look, said some crap about the Lord, and almost stomped out of the room.
Unbelievable. I guess the way they think, is no matter what you think, only what they think is important. I have been tempted to post a large sign on the bulletin board next to my bed. That says "before you speak to me. Read Epicurus"
anyway, to everyone out there. I hope you enjoyed your families today and that everyone be healthy, happy and prosperous.
She seemed offended because you were "giving her back her pearls." In her circular reasoning it would make no sense as to why you "would reject eternal life." Grandma had the truth, and you rejected it and her. Just yesterday I went through some of this with my step-father. I didn't have to tell him that I no longer believe. He either senses it or my oldest daughter told him. At least we have that out in the open now.
An alternative is to throw your arms up in the air, cry crocodile tears and talk to Jebus, roll around on the floor talking gibberish like Curly from the Three Stooges, and everyone will say you have the Holy Goat. Then you can believe the earth is only 6000 years old for the rest of your life and go visit the Creationist Museum.
I wonder how much of the fancy dancing that some of us go through is a product of NOT identifying ourselves as atheists from the outset. I did that back in 2010 with that first quartet of Jehovah's Witnesses who came to my door and I think it had the effect of cutting through at least some of the bullshit. I knew where they stood and they at least had some preconceived (and likely mistaken) inkling of where I stood. In the brief time of our conversation, I at least attempted to correct some of their preconceptions. In that case, though, I was dealing with strangers and not with family, and I can see where that might be a different situation. I will say this, though: while mom as yet does not know I'm an atheist, that is because the topic hasn't come up. If it does, trust me, she'll learn.
Granted, being candid about one's atheism isn't everyone's style. It IS mine, and I make no apologies about that.
I'm with you Loren. A casual acquantaince recently invited me to her church. I said 'no thanks' 'I'm an atheist,' I must say, she took it rather well. Or, she was so stunned she didn't know what to say.
The fact is, we have NOTHING to apologize for. We have a right to our opinion, the same as they do. The difference is that they have nothing of substance to back up their position, nor can they substantiate their deity in any meaningful manner. That SHOULD be an embarrassment to them, and yet it isn't, mostly because the vast majority takes their beliefs for granted or gives them a pass.
No more free passes...
It stinks to be in a position of diminished physical ability, and I hope that you have a strong recovery or at least comfortable adaptation. Dear Wife and I ran a hospice in our home for several years, and I've seen many of these well-meaning (or not) proselytizers. It's probably not likely that they'll understand the offense they may be perpetrating. They seem to think (or maybe just feel) that they are doing good for their subjects whether they are receptive or not -- maybe particularly when they are not. As nearly as I (a lifelong atheist) can tell, they seem to discount integrity of body in favor of what they imagine as integrity of non-corporeal soul. This leads them to all sort of machinations "for your own good" in their eyes. Your physical health is of little or no concern to them, and they are exited by the prospect of harvesting a wayward "soul".
They can be ignored (unless you're in a faith-based medical facility) just as manifestations of witches on Halloween are ignored as childish play. They may deposit a burning bag of dog shit on your stoop, and the appropriate response is not to stomp it out but to let it burn itself out.
Cheers for the new season!
it seems like church, religions forcing you to be subjected to their propaganda is against your civil rights. we have a right to not have other's beliefs crammed in our faces at every opportunity - especially when you're in a vulnerable situation. i'm so sorry that happened to you. the same thing happened to my friend, fellow non-theist and long-time human rights advocate Michael who was dying of liver failure and was in a nursing home. the religious nuts who push their pamphlets/donating are 'contracted' with that particular nursing home. Michael's assigned healthy advocate complained to the facility's CEO and made sure they wrote down the complaint and soon-after, the religion-advertising stopped. especially if you're paying for services, do complain and state that having religion shoved at you is violating your civil rights and causing you great anxiety and suffering and mental anguish.
Sorry I am just now getting the opportunity to see your post. Holiday times are difficult without family--I assume, because I am not there in my life. Sounds like you are very sensitive to the issue of preaching to you, especially without your permission. Why not try, if you haven't already--just for the sheer entertainment. Ask them to sit down and just talk with you. Of course, if they are as fundamental as they seem, they will be more than willing. Pose entertaining yet fundamental questions to them and see how they reason themselves circularly. I am definitely not in your same position, but why not try to enlighten the ignorant? I know it seems futile, but seeing someone in such a compromised condition still questioning their all-beloved-creator with questions they probably have internalized for years may lead to their own enlightenment about the nature of life.