What's best response to a person who says "I'm still praying for you."

I've got several friends that are very Religious (yes, with a capital R). Even though they know that I'm an atheist, they want to prevent me from going to a place I don't believe in by praying for me in hopes that I will see the light.  I usually tell them to use their time on someone who cares but they still insist on saving my soul.  I eventually end up just ignoring them, but has anyone given a witty or profound response?

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Comment by John Revay on July 11, 2013 at 7:20am


I'd appreciate it if you didn't think about me before you went to sleep. Kinda creepy.

I love it; goes nicely with Bart's comments. I'll try to roll the two together.

Comment by John Revay on July 11, 2013 at 7:18am

ROFL! I will send this to my demented friend. At a minimum, he will be insulted and may decide to screw it, let that jerk go to hell!

Comment by Loren Miller on July 10, 2013 at 6:13am

Well, I suppose it's time to drag this old gem out:

Comment by John Revay on July 9, 2013 at 10:46am

I want to thank everyone for their comments, especially Grinning Cat's on DuckDuckGo to search the site, and Pat's "enjoy talking to yourself." My friend is very concerned that I'll wind up in hell and I've told him that considering the sinning that I know he's done, I'll probably see him there and will save him a hot rock. His response is typically "But if you sincerely ask Jesus for forgiveness, you can still go to heaven." And mine is usually "So if Adolph begged for forgiveness before he killed himself, is he there?" And then the fight begins! :)

Comment by Grinning Cat on July 8, 2013 at 11:38am

Loren, thanks for pointing out the other threads about "I'll pray for you":

  • Condescending conversation - includes a video of comedian Hannibal Buress's stinging retort: "...You're gonna pray for me? So basically you're gonna sit at home and do nothing? ... don't pray for me, make me a sandwich or something.... 'We'll keep you in our thoughts.' With the other bullshit in your head? No! Keep me out of your thoughts because I hear some of the stuff you talk about...."
  • Having Surgery - how to reply... - if you need to be cautious and nonconfrontational, good replies are "Thank you" or "Thank you for your thoughts". Many other suggestions with various degrees of forcefulness.

So I won't feel bad about continuing the tangent:

The Google custom search box in the old site layout was useless to me, as it seemed to search the whole web.

On search engines such as DuckDuckGo* and Google, you can add the keyword site:atheistnexus.org to a search to restrict it to a site.

Firefox has "quicksearch" bookmarks, and lets you create new ones -- so I can type into the address bar using a keyword: an make me a sandwich

Here's the bookmark that enables this:
Name: Atheist Nexus search
Location: https://duckduckgo.com/?q=site:atheistnexus.org+%s
Keyword: an

The name is just for display. The keyword is the "command" to type into the address bar. The location contains %s which gets substituted with your search, everything you type after the keyword.

* I'm now recommending DuckDuckGo as a search engine to use first, since their privacy policy is clean and simple: they don't store information about you. They're walking the walk on "don't be evil" better than Google. See more at donttrack.us.

Comment by Idaho Spud on July 8, 2013 at 10:50am

No witty or profound response, but I would let them know they are very annoying.  I would probably say I don't care what you do as long as you don't annoy me with your stupidity.

I'm sure my strong Mormon family members pray for me all the time and put my name in the temple to be prayed for, but they don't tell me and so I don't get annoyed with them. 

They probably don't bug me because when I told them I was atheist, I made it extremely clear that I knew there were no gods and that if they bugged me about it, I would avoid them.

Comment by Pat on July 8, 2013 at 9:11am

Not to de-rail the thread, but I tend to agree with Loren about the re-vamping of this site. I'm not a fan of the "new and improved" A|N site layout. And, the elimination of the site wide Google utility is definitely a negative. Looking up previous topics, and even things I've previously posted, have now become a pain in the....

As to your topic John, my general response is "Enjoy talking to yourself." Although, one time, I did tell a devout woman, who said that to me, that if she was going to pray, please do it old school. Get a pile of rocks and wood, slit a goat's throat, and the burn the carcass.  If the smoke went up, good for her. If it went sideways, my personal opinion was that she was f*%&ed!

Comment by Loren Miller on July 8, 2013 at 8:30am

Don't worry about it, John.  Discussions like this crop up all over the place, and the whole "pray for me/you/him/her/it" routine is older than the hills and it don't smell as good.  Time was when we had a site-wide Google utility here, but a recent upgrade wiped that out.  I'm going to lobby for it to be replaced, though.

Meantime, if I can help with anything else, give a shout, okay?

Comment by John Revay on July 8, 2013 at 7:47am

My apologies Loren for bringing up something that THIS group has been down the road before. I clearly should have gone through all the blog posts to find out that the answer to my question was already here. Maybe you could pray for me to do better next time.

Comment by Michael Penn on July 8, 2013 at 6:55am

When I told my lifelong religious friend about my stepson finally dying of throat cancer from smoking, my friend replied, "Smoking! He might wake up in a place where he doesn't want to be!" My reply was asking how he was going to wake up? He's dead!

This same friend often asks me where my soul is going to go when I die. I tell him let's not even go there. I say that "I don't have a soul. I am a soul."

It's doubtful that my religious friend has figured out that I am atheist today. His ignorant questions just keep going on and on.



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