Where I work, my boss (the business owner), and I are both Atheists... but he comes from a background heavily rooted in Christianity. He used to work for a huge Christian bookseller, so has a lot of connections with Christian organizations and businesses. But he has since came to the way of reason... and now is stuck in a strange place, he is both gay and a business owner... but none of our Christian clients know this. He strongly believes that if ANY of them were to discover that he is either gay or an Atheist that these companies and/or organizations would promptly pull their business away from us. I find this idea disgusting.

We have to tip-toe around the subject of religion when around or talking to them... we have alter our behavior just to maintain an air of divinity... and it isn't right. When I approach these situations, I look at it like this... do I like Christianity? No. Would I be willing to work with a Christian to achieve a business goal? Absolutely. So why then is it that the reverse is so-often not to be had? I lose sleep over things like this... Xtians are SUPPOSED to be accepting, loving, forgiving and the like... but more often than not they are exclusive, spiteful, condescending and self-righteous.

So what is it then that we should do to allieviate this gobbledegook? Form Atheist/Non-theist business coalitions much as these Xtian coalitions do? Then we can exclude the overtly religious businesses and the like and only do business with whom we want? I think not. We must simply continue to endure this exclusivity and the intolerance that we're shown... because I feel that as soon as we begin to sink away into our own little rabbit hole, the rest of the world look at us more as a cult... than as a group of rational, reasonable, and accessible group of individuals.

Anyone have anymore thoughts on this subject?

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Replies to This Discussion

A good business relationship seems to make people more tolerant of differences. He might have to see a few customers leave but in the end he'll be happier if he is himself.

I own a pretty successful business, some of our customers are radical Christians, some radical atheists. All of our customers wouldn't go anywhere else because we are the best at our jobs.

Additionally, I am a firm believer that people will treat you like a deviant if you act like one. If you don't act like what you are doing is wrong, by hiding it, people won't think there is anything wrong with it (in general.)

As and atheists business group, I think it is unnecessary but might be fun to meet with other people experiencing the same issues. We could have secret emails and handshakes.
I wouldn't go so far as to say that we'd lose ALL of our Christian client base, but I know for a fact that we would lose at least three clients. Although I do agree with your assessment that he'll probably be happier not hiding his lack of belief.

Atheist business groups could be interesting, that's for sure... but as we both seem to agree we couldn't let it get to the point that we are being exclusive. I firmly believe that inclusion and familiarity tend to break down the walls that are built up between us as people.

An example of this is my mother... growing up she was a devout Methodist and she never forced me to go to church with her, but she certainly made it apparent that she wished that I would. I would oblige her often times... but this lead to my general disenchantment with the religiosity and tenets of Christianity on the whole.

I eventually became a pagan... which she was apprehensive about, but not intolerant toward. Eventually she got used to it and even at one point bought a pentacle for me. Over time and through discourse between her and I... she decided to attend Unitarian church over specifically denominational Christian churches. Much more recently, a few years after I had settled on my lack of belief... I "came out" as an Atheist to her. She was slightly more apprehensive about this idea than she was regarding my pagan beliefs... but again, she surprised me... and has come around to no longer resent this part of my modus operandi.

Ultimately, I feel as though a combination of my honesty and her love of her child made her realize that I am the same person that I have always been... and no matter what faith or belief (within reasonable parameters of course) I should happen to harbor would change that. So I can now say that my mother and I openly discuss religion and faith... and politics... and I think we are both the better for it.
The whole issue really makes me wonder

>Atheist business groups could be interesting

I just cant help flicking through my mind the need to be registered as an approved contractor for governments in some places
We might need a sticker to wack on to products that highlights they contain no warped imaginary godstuff as ingredients lol
QA could stand for Quality Atheist
Hehehehe. That's comedy!

Buy our product! Now with 50% less divinity!

I'd buy that for a dollar. ;o)
You could make up some great slogans
eg god doesnt buy this product only because god doesnt exist>>

warning* this product may contain traces of eternal damnation>>
I'm thinking some kind of really fine bourbon or scotch...

Or maybe on packages of condoms you'd put the warning label:

[[ WARNING: *This product may induce Eternal Damnation, use with caution! ]]
I'm planning on making beer and calling "Heathen Beer" with the tag line "you are what you drink."

Wait....corporate atheists...better be safe:

[copyright 2008 Heathen Beer by LoLo. All rights reserved] ;) Hehe...
Hahaha! I'd drink Heathen Beer in a heart beat! So what kind of beer would it be? Lager? Pilsner? Weissbier? Ale? Pale Ale? Maybe there could be many different types of Heathen Beer! ;o)

[[ Heathen Beer: 100% Dogma Free - Since 2008! ]]
I'd want it to be a stout: "Dark and bitter for militant atheists." Maybe the next kind would be a pale ale: "Clean, crisp and clear for ethical atheists."

Once I get enough money from selling beer, I'll have to start my own vineyard. Then a coffee shop... Oh the possibilities. I just need clever names and euphemisms for atheism. Hehe..
There is much shunning http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shunning within religion .I personally think this is one of the worst points of religions , it tends to teach judgement and moves away from what many of us might agree the world needs alot more of . Tolerance of our fellow humans.

Its a very real problem that Forsakens boss might worry over , and not always without good reason .

These religious shunnings can become so passionate that they can move into psychological torture http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychology_of_torture

Not only might certain customers decide to refuse to do business anymore , should they find out the business owners hidden personalitys . In some cases this can be pushed even further by certain religious folk by threats towards other people they deal with .Kind of like if you are going to continue to support this guy we will remove our business dealings with you also .

And so the control of religion continues to do the work it was always designed to do .Bring about control by force .

Some times there might be a period of goodwill and acceptance shown towards the person .Sometimes it may last other times as soon as it is seen that there is no hope of change ,then shunning and excomunication takes the place of this tolerance .

It can be quite amazing to see how a person/s supposedly having endless amounts of true love , can all of a sudden oze so much hate
Why even bother , I think that religious believes ,convictions or sexual preferences have nothing to do,with doing business .It as personal as having a birthmark on what ever part of your body and you are not forced to show that either. You don't want to sink into rabbit holes ,step over them . It shouldn't be your problem unless you make it your problem. But if you want to make a statement than maybe you have to suffer the consequence.Do you need to spread the word of non-believing or of sexual equality to your costumers.
For me it is difficult to apprehend maybe, because I live in The Netherlands .
I think you may not have all the info needed to make an informed decision on this subject, specifically... the fact that these religious people continually ask us what church we attend... what "Good Christian Books" we've read lately... why we're not married and making babies... the questions just come all too often and all too directly. It is hard to skirt these subjects with them at times, because they directly come at us with them... almost like they are testing us. It makes for a lot of awkward situations and agonizing phone calls.




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