I'm sooo confused on what to do. My mother in-law was visiting and discussing her beliefs and was shocked that I am an atheist. I tried explaining my views and thought we were having a nice conversation. She has now accused me of verbally attacking her and most of my family has taken her side and made me an outcast. what I find strange is all I did was say what I believed. We both really got along before this and she thought a lot of me. now I am a lost soul who has no morals and should not have a family along with killing myself because I have no purpose. This is all sooo insane and I'm at a loss how to deal with this. she wont even talk to me until I accept jesus for christs sake. GOD I HATE RELIGION
Rachel, religion becomes them. Think on that -- religion becomes them. It's like a smoker who cannot quit and you see that they have leather pouches both for the cigarette pack and the lighter, and their names or initials are on these! That's a pretty strong statement for smoking, so no wonder they can't quit. Religionists look at their belief system the same way. "God said it, they believe it, and that ends it." I'm not surprised that they cannot quit, and this strong statement for their religion shows also that anyone who disagrees with them will be viewed as "attacking them." I might also add again that "being attacked" is viewed as proof that their belief system is the right one.
Loren and Rachel make the good point that religious belief is often a projection of identity, and so any criticism of religion is perceived as a personal attack. The only family members with whom I have contact (a brother, a sister, two nephews and a niece) know my views on religion, and it isn't a problem, at least as far as I know. I quit Farcebook because most of my 'friends' were old acquaintances from high school who had virtually all become right wing Christian fundamentalists (just part of the package of living in North Carolina, I guess). Just about whenever I said anything, even if I didn't intend any religious or political reference, it seemed to upset them greatly and there was no way to talk it out. Hell, I would love to help them come to terms with what I consider their delusions, but I never tried to do so except accidentally. In the end I just got tired of causing so much unintended grief, closed the account and will likely never encounter them again.
I think you and Loren Miller, have the right idea here. Like I said before I had expressed my oposing view in a averge manner and was shocked when she said I attacked her. What I find even harder to understand is her horrible view of me now. She thought very highly of me and all of a sudden her impression of a nice moral family man has gone upside down. She acually believes I'm a unmoral person all of a sudden. It really bothers me, I mean NOTHING has changed! I'm the same person. Thanks for your input people its nice to know there is like minded people out there. Hopefully my family will soon see through all this bs
Maybe she knows where atheism can lead you and she is afraid for you. You are only thinking of your point of view not hers. If you were her and you were scared for the grandson what would you do? Nothing?
If you grandmother said nothing, and she believes what she believes, she would not be a good person. She would be a non caring person. Put yourself in her shoes and you might feel better. She obviously cares about you, or she would not make a scene.
Loren and Rachel make the good point that religious belief is often a projection of identity, and so any criticism of religion is perceived as a personal attack.
This is very true. Because there is no rational defense, their only recourse is to try to stop the critique.
In the US we're not likely to have explicit 'anti blasphemy' laws, but it will be imposed through the guise of 'anti bullying'.
That would be an interesting if ultimately non-productive approach. I can't help but notice that a lot of christians want an exception in anti-bullying laws for those who claim to express "a devoutly held religious position" or some such crap. If THEY want the right to abuse gays, based on their religious position, they can stand up and take the same medicine from those of us who LACK a religion!
It's one standard for everyone, people. If you want to dish it out, be prepared to take it.
Must be over my head. What exactly are we looking at here?
I may sound cold hearted, but in order to become healthy I had to get away from my family. Beliefs and values passed from one generation to the next, and any deviation from the "norm" represents some kind of betrayal to them. My life is so much richer and more meaningful since I put up a barrier between us, and a whole lot more fun! I enjoy a good debate with people who support their side and use good debate techniques. Not so with dogmatists who use accusations, threats and dictatorial language.
Let them go; your ability to think, explore, doubt and question are more valuable than maintaining family ties with those who choose to put their hopes in an unseeable, untouchable, unreachable myth and bind themselves with fears of some gruesome life after death. It is nonsense and can be treated as such.
I've come to a point where i don't want to try to get along with anyone who personally attacks me. I cut them off (no contact), and put the ball in their court. I just don't have the mental energy these days. If i have to be near them, I will not discuss it.
Maybe she knows something you don't know.
What if there really was an after life and your grandmother cares about you and your family? Maybe she knows there is an afterlife?
Maybe she is just scared and wants people to help you because she cannot. Does your grandmother love you or not? That is the first question you should ask yourself.