So you find yourself invited to dinner at, say, your in-laws, who are traditional Catholics, and Pop-in -Law says, "Joe, why don't you say grace".

Or imagine you are participating in a county commissioners meeting, and they, as often happens here in Georgia where I live, call for an invocation, open to all regardless of faith, so you step up to the mike and give one.  What do you say?

Now you don't want to come off as a jerk, but rather you want to impress upon the people present that we atheists can be loving, caring, respectful and deep thinkers.  What would you say in your "prayer"?

Go on, add the funny ones, the digs, the in-your-face replies, I enjoy those too, but I am looking for good, somewhat poetic examples of what would win the hearts and minds of those who have been taught all their lives that atheists are evil god-haters hell bent on destroying decent society.

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Actually, I wrote one on the spot ages ago on this site. Someone in a thread posted that people who are into scifi/fantasy are just like the religious; believing literally in that scifi/fantasy and unable to deal with reality. To which I spontaneously (and quite proud of myself as I'm never that spontaneous with a snappy comeback) wrote:

Our SciFi, who art in Imagination,
Hallowed be thy fantasy.
Thy lasers come,
Thy space babes be done,
On Endor as it is in the Gamma Quadrant.
Give us this day our daily cyborgs.
And forgive us our genetic experiments
As we forgive those who experiment with genetics against us.
Lead us not into bad narrative
And deliver us from dull.
For thine is the fire, and the loud explosion, in the vacuum of space
Suspended in disbelief,


Explain to them that like many of us, Scifi is your religion. If they have a problem with that, ask someone else to say effin' grace.
An invocation: Let us remind ourselves that we have gathered here to do our work together. Let us remind ourselves that our work must be done honestly and fairly or it will be for nought. Let us promise to each other our best intentions and our unwavering commitment to the success of this project. Let us remind ourselves that this is but one waystation on our journey together; we may need to continue in the future so let us be mindful that we are creating our history that will color our future collaborations. Let us remind ourselves that our work together may last longer, and be more important, than this project. So, let us now begin our task today with the goals of immediate and future successes.
I like two of Bart Simpson's prayers:
Dear God: we bought all this stuff, so thanks for nothing.

Dear Jesus, you're so fine you blow my mind, hey Jesus! Hey Jesus!

I *heart* Bart Simpson!




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