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How do you respond?
 
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DH and I were just at the store, and while waiting at the deli counter we overheard the ladies behind the counter talking about baptisms for dead people!    It led to a brief conversation about Mormonism, since we told them we used to be Mormons.  They obviously had a few questions.  Anyway, the moral of the story is that towards the end one of them asked what we believe now.  I said that I was an atheist and one of the ladies immediately responded with a very condescending "God bless you."  Then she witnessed to me.  (Insert more pity and condescension here.)  And I had this moment of panic when I realized that I have no idea how to respond to this kind of stuff.  We only just escaped Utah, but now we're in the heart of Texas, and I suspect there will be moments like this now and again.  (My husband keeps getting "relgiously harassed" by his boss, despite his knowing that my husband is agnostic and okay with being that way.)  One of these days we're suppose to have dinner with the bosses family and I'm not sure I'm ready for the stuff he's been bombarding my husband with.  I'm also not nearly as adept at keeping my mouth shut as my husband is!  (Why is respect so often a one way street??)

 

So I'm wondering...  for all you more experienced postmos out there, when people witness, bear their testimonies, make condescending comments, or otherwise suggest that your way of thinking is wrong and theirs is right, how do you respond?  I'm open to all kinds of suggestions - from the polite to the hilarious.  (It wasn't until after we left the store that I realized that when she said "God bless you," I should have said, "Thank you.  She does." 

 
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There is no good response.  The really satisfying responses wreck havoc.  

 

Sometimes we hope we're planting a seed.  I think the best seeds in this respect are actions, not words.  TBMs desperately want to see bitterness, unhappiness, unrest, uncertainty, etc., in PostMos, so that just being happy and carefree is the best response.

 

In this light, your big, sincere smile and something along the lines of, "I've been where you are, so I know where you're coming from.  But you don't know where I am.  So we don't really have any way to really communicate.  Not to mention that you don't really want to know what I have learned that allowed me to get where I am."  Big, big smile.

 
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I have dealt with that allot. At first it really bugged me. I had to realize that they are honestly truly happy with the way they view life. All religions I have come across (in witnessing beyond mormons and jw's) are very harmless and sometimes do allot of good. It was a shock for sure but I realized they are really just wishing me the same happiness in their beliefs that they have and do not realize that such a thing is impossible due to different life experiences and learning. So I smile for their happiness and thank them for their kindness. It really does make me happy that they care to wish me some happiness in their own way. 
 
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Sorry double post.  Will say that whenever anyone bugs my husband he always starts to guide the conversation to his beliefs on love.  Not like romantic love but the kind of botherly love that should be at the core of all religions.  He normally gets a very good disscusion going on that topic since everyone can agree on that.  He will then tie that into tolerance, understanding, and peace.  He will point out how those are connected inseperably to love.  Since he just had everyone agreeing on love being central.....well that ruins even the best laid plans to preach.  Either the convo will lay silent or someone will pipe up the truth that they wanted him to ______(the real reason reveled for the the convo that he hijacked before it got far)  because they care.  He replies love, tolerance, seek for thar understanding and love you too.  Thats always been the end for us.
 
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Just say, "and may the Flying Spaghetti Monster bless you." LOL, at least it will get them thinking. My favorite when someone say's they'll pray for you, is to say, "and I'll think for the both of us." Mean, I know, but reserved for people who just don't know when to shut up.
 
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I just don't really respond to or acknowledge what they are saying at all, and when they get done with their long speech and it is my turn to talk again, I try to change the subject or excuse myself and leave.
 
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Since you're in Texas, I would smile and respond with, ”Oh, bless your heart for sharing that fictive inanity with me.”
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It's very unlikely anyone will ever dare testify in front of my face (the Scandinavian culture is a bit different in that sense) but I did get a letter with a conversion story from the guy who was bishop when I left. He had included his email, so I gave myself the satisfaction of telling him exaclty what I think is wrong not with just Mormonism, but Christianity in general. I added at the end that if he actually wants have a discussion on the subject, he better actually read my sources and get to know the material before making a response. I haven't gotten a reply so far.

 

Really, if someone ever did that I'd probably laugh right at their face. The situation would be too absurd, especialy if it really was a person I've never seen before. Our of respect to a friend I'd let him or her say his opinion and then respond with telling my feelings about why my religion (or lack of it) is the truly right thing to me. I view any action like that as a permission to respond to the same extent (an eye for an eye) as long as I'm not in the role of a guest on their territory.

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i often resort to the time-honored "didn't your mother ever teach you never to discuss politics or religion"?

 

that usually works. I am not really interested in 'converting' anyone to anything. if they want my opinion, and i mean sincerely want my opinion, i might talk to them then. otherwise it's usually a futile exercise i'd rather just avoid. 

 
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My take is that you really cannot change, fix or manage other peoples thinking. Most folks are own their own time schedule of awareness and growth. This does not mean one accepts abuse, but learning how to set appropriate and firm boundaries instead of barriers. This usually means not offering unsolicited advice. It is difficult, but the best I can do, when not setting a boundary, is to not become enmeshed in other peoples "stink'n think'n."
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A lot depends on how the visit til that comes up was going. If not great I start laughing and ask 'you mean to tell me you really belive Indians are Israelites?"  Then I turn and walk off.

 

If they pursue a bit I say I really don't want to discuss religion because the Holy Ghost answered my prayers and told me Joseph Smith was a Child Molester and Adulterer.

 

That one shuts them up 99% of the time.

 

After that I refuse to talk religion as it is all downhill and nothing is gained on either side.

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"As you are, I once was. As I am, you may become." I know that in the moment I may not remember this, but I think it may hit a cord. cheese
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Thanks for all the replies. It's interesting to see everyone's different take. And I guess it seems like I'm not the only one who doesn't always think of the best response right in the moment. smile
 
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Mysticfied:
I have dealt with that allot. At first it really bugged me. I had to realize that they are honestly truly happy with the way they view life. All religions I have come across (in witnessing beyond mormons and jw's) are very harmless and sometimes do allot of good. It was a shock for sure but I realized they are really just wishing me the same happiness in their beliefs that they have and do not realize that such a thing is impossible due to different life experiences and learning. So I smile for their happiness and thank them for their kindness. It really does make me happy that they care to wish me some happiness in their own way. I will admit to not being fully open with most people. My Mother in law I love to death so I side track to stories of when I was actively Christian or just say I have accepted Jesus into my heart. That phrase "I have accepted Jesus into my heart" shuts anyone up every time. They might ask where I go to church and I say I don't and prefer to spend Sundays with just my little family to step away from our busy life and focus on whats most important - love. Never ever do they do more them recommend their church if we decided to drop in. I never ever bother to mention what current status Jesus currently holds in my heart - none of their business.

 

 I may find myself using the above in the months to come as we're moving from Illinois down to Georgia. My husband is already down there and has cautioned us about how important religion (particularly Christian) is to many -- especially his boss and some coworkers. We've been discussing ways to address this when we move -- how do we respond to people who ask about our beliefs and/or what church we attend. I think the above in green is great.

 

I've already discussed the above with our 12 year old -- tell them you've accepted Jesus (you don't have to say more than that) and that as a family we've pondered and discussed which church is right for us to attend, but we haven't found one that's a good fit yet so we spend our Sundays together as a family. Thank you for your concern, but I'm not comfortable discussing religion.

 

As soon as we move, I will be sending in our resignation. Told my 18 year old son he can do his own any time he wants now. He and the youngest were never baptized but are still on the rolls.

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It does get easier over time.  I would avoid conflict by changing the subject.  Once they finish what they have to say simply reply, "That's nice.", and continue on.  I used to get very defensive, I learned quickly that it doesn't help anything.  For me, realizing that I didn't have to explain or justify anything makes it easier.  It isn't rude to walk away.
 
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Kristi:
It does get easier over time.  I would avoid conflict by changing the subject.  Once they finish what they have to say simply reply, "That's nice.", and continue on.  I used to get very defensive, I learned quickly that it doesn't help anything.  For me, realizing that I didn't have to explain or justify anything makes it easier.  It isn't rude to walk away.

 

 I absolutely agree Kristi.  I used to be so bitter about the 40 wasted years of my life that I wanted to "hit them hard" with some sort of shocking statement.  However, as time has passed and I've learned to accept the fact that no matter what I say, I'm not going to change anybody's mind about their beliefs, I'm more passive and just try to change the subject.  It's not worth the headache unless they ask me sincerely about reasons I left.  Smile and move on....

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The old adage about not discussing politics or religion among friends is always the best policy.  This really hold true for those that have very strong feelings about their politics or their religion.  To me its simply no way to win friends and influence people.  Avoid avoid avoid.

 

 
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This is why I stay in the closet with respect to atheism. I live in the Deep South as well. Atheists are more hated than just about anyone, with the possible exception of Wiccans. 

 

Semi-interesting anecdote: 

A few years ago, some coworkers from the home office in San Antonio were in my fair city for some business meetings. I went to dinner with three other women from San Antonio. Two were Catholic, and the woman from Wisconsin and I were atheist. (Midwestern girls = atheists. Southern girls = Christians. Coincidence? Probably not, one is Spanish and the other Mexican.) Anyway, I don't talk about religion with coworkers because there are a lot of mormons in and around San Antonio and I never know when I'm going to bump into one, so I keep my shit to myself. 

 

Anyway, the Wisconsin lady starts talking about how she's a confirmed atheist (raised Catholic, IIRC) and was wishing that more atheists would come out of the closet and talk about it because we're mostly fine, upstanding, moral, responsible, productive citizens who happen to not believe in fairy tales. Her little rant gave me the courage to back her up conversationally, so I managed to squeak in a "me too" kind of comment before the deluge of Christian brainwashing took over the conversation. One of the women has two teenagers who are on the autism spectrum. She started talking about how her faith in god has helped her get through all the trials and difficulties inherent in raising two autistic children. By herself. Her husband left her when their second son was diagnosed because it was just too much for him. So she was stuck with these two special needs kids as a single mom and what else was she gonna do, but the very best she could for them. What mother would turn her back on her children, regardless of religion? (The atheist mom had a pair of twins and the other woman, like me, had no children, although she was freshly married at the time and now has two kids.) Anyway, the Catholic mom of special needs kids turned a pleasant business dinner into an uncomfortable witnessing opportunity. 

 

I still don't understand what these people are trying to accomplish with that. One person says they are an atheist and another starts witnessing. Surely, she realized she wasn't going to convince anyone or change their minds, right? Was she looking for validation that we still thought she was an intelligent, discerning person even though she believes in magical fairy tales? I dunno. But it was so super awkward, I decided then and there that I would never discuss religion with a coworker ever again, even in a social situation like that one was. The South is bad enough without inviting that shit into my life. I've had neighbors and even random strangers try to recruit me to go to their church. Last year, I was accosted while walking the dog. Some random dude just walked up to us and starts telling me how much I would like his church. Last weekend, my neighbor informed me that it was "about time I start going to church with them" on Sundays. I've been this guy's neighbor for nearly 15 years; there is no reason to start recruiting me now. I figure he's really old and I will probably outlive him, so I won't have this evangelical neighbor forever. I like his wife though; she seems embarassed when he pulls that crap on me.

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Dogzilla Joy:

This is why I stay in the closet with respect to atheism. I live in the Deep South as well. Atheists are more hated than just about anyone, with the possible exception of Wiccans. 

 

Semi-interesting anecdote: 

A few years ago, some coworkers from the home office in San Antonio were in my fair city for some business meetings. I went to dinner with three other women from San Antonio. Two were Catholic, and the woman from Wisconsin and I were atheist. (Midwestern girls = atheists. Southern girls = Christians. Coincidence? Probably not, one is Spanish and the other Mexican.) Anyway, I don't talk about religion with coworkers because there are a lot of mormons in and around San Antonio and I never know when I'm going to bump into one, so I keep my shit to myself. 

 

Anyway, the Wisconsin lady starts talking about how she's a confirmed atheist (raised Catholic, IIRC) and was wishing that more atheists would come out of the closet and talk about it because we're mostly fine, upstanding, moral, responsible, productive citizens who happen to not believe in fairy tales. Her little rant gave me the courage to back her up conversationally, so I managed to squeak in a "me too" kind of comment before the deluge of Christian brainwashing took over the conversation. One of the women has two teenagers who are on the autism spectrum. She started talking about how her faith in god has helped her get through all the trials and difficulties inherent in raising two autistic children. By herself. Her husband left her when their second son was diagnosed because it was just too much for him. So she was stuck with these two special needs kids as a single mom and what else was she gonna do, but the very best she could for them. What mother would turn her back on her children, regardless of religion? (The atheist mom had a pair of twins and the other woman, like me, had no children, although she was freshly married at the time and now has two kids.) Anyway, the Catholic mom of special needs kids turned a pleasant business dinner into an uncomfortable witnessing opportunity. 

 

I still don't understand what these people are trying to accomplish with that. One person says they are an atheist and another starts witnessing. Surely, she realized she wasn't going to convince anyone or change their minds, right? Was she looking for validation that we still thought she was an intelligent, discerning person even though she believes in magical fairy tales? I dunno. But it was so super awkward, I decided then and there that I would never discuss religion with a coworker ever again, even in a social situation like that one was. The South is bad enough without inviting that shit into my life. I've had neighbors and even random strangers try to recruit me to go to their church. Last year, I was accosted while walking the dog. Some random dude just walked up to us and starts telling me how much I would like his church. Last weekend, my neighbor informed me that it was "about time I start going to church with them" on Sundays. I've been this guy's neighbor for nearly 15 years; there is no reason to start recruiting me now. I figure he's really old and I will probably outlive him, so I won't have this evangelical neighbor forever. I like his wife though; she seems embarassed when he pulls that crap on me.

 

Just say "Oh, thank you, <neighbor>, but your church meets right when I'm teaching class at stripper school."  While he has that suffocating guppy look on his face, offer his wife a free lesson.  Even older people should exercise.

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Rmyth:

The old adage about not discussing politics or religion among friends is always the best policy.  This really hold true for those that have very strong feelings about their politics or their religion.  To me its simply no way to win friends and influence people.  Avoid avoid avoid. 

If I can't have a civil discussion about religion or politics around my friends and family, I need new friends and family, since those are typically the most interesting topics of conversation.

 

And where do you draw the line between religion and philosophy? How about Science? 

Cosmology, the discovery of the God Particle, is that off limits too? 

 

Well, I guess there's always the weather, and cats, we can talk about.  

 

Being alone, is not the worst possible outcome.

The worst possible outcome is being around those who make you feel all alone. 

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Dogzilla Joy:

This is why I stay in the closet with respect to atheism. I live in the Deep South as well. Atheists are more hated than just about anyone, with the possible exception of Wiccans. 

 

Semi-interesting anecdote: 

A few years ago, some coworkers from the home office in San Antonio were in my fair city for some business meetings. I went to dinner with three other women from San Antonio. Two were Catholic, and the woman from Wisconsin and I were atheist. (Midwestern girls = atheists. Southern girls = Christians. Coincidence? Probably not, one is Spanish and the other Mexican.) Anyway, I don't talk about religion with coworkers because there are a lot of mormons in and around San Antonio and I never know when I'm going to bump into one, so I keep my shit to myself. 

 

Anyway, the Wisconsin lady starts talking about how she's a confirmed atheist (raised Catholic, IIRC) and was wishing that more atheists would come out of the closet and talk about it because we're mostly fine, upstanding, moral, responsible, productive citizens who happen to not believe in fairy tales. Her little rant gave me the courage to back her up conversationally, so I managed to squeak in a "me too" kind of comment before the deluge of Christian brainwashing took over the conversation. One of the women has two teenagers who are on the autism spectrum. She started talking about how her faith in god has helped her get through all the trials and difficulties inherent in raising two autistic children. By herself. Her husband left her when their second son was diagnosed because it was just too much for him. So she was stuck with these two special needs kids as a single mom and what else was she gonna do, but the very best she could for them. What mother would turn her back on her children, regardless of religion? (The atheist mom had a pair of twins and the other woman, like me, had no children, although she was freshly married at the time and now has two kids.) Anyway, the Catholic mom of special needs kids turned a pleasant business dinner into an uncomfortable witnessing opportunity. 

 

I still don't understand what these people are trying to accomplish with that. One person says they are an atheist and another starts witnessing. Surely, she realized she wasn't going to convince anyone or change their minds, right? Was she looking for validation that we still thought she was an intelligent, discerning person even though she believes in magical fairy tales? I dunno. But it was so super awkward, I decided then and there that I would never discuss religion with a coworker ever again, even in a social situation like that one was. The South is bad enough without inviting that shit into my life. I've had neighbors and even random strangers try to recruit me to go to their church. Last year, I was accosted while walking the dog. Some random dude just walked up to us and starts telling me how much I would like his church. Last weekend, my neighbor informed me that it was "about time I start going to church with them" on Sundays. I've been this guy's neighbor for nearly 15 years; there is no reason to start recruiting me now. I figure he's really old and I will probably outlive him, so I won't have this evangelical neighbor forever. I like his wife though; she seems embarassed when he pulls that crap on me.

As a boy, my Mom use to rail against even the mention of the word atheist.  I think she believed that atheist equaled ‘anti-God’ or ‘anti-Christ’.  To her, an atheist not only didn't believe in God(s), but was actively trying to take away her right to believe and worship any God. (e.g., Atheist are suing to take away our right as believers to pray in school.)

 

As a believer, she couldn't fathom how a person lacked belief.  Thus, in her mind, an atheist (ANTI-theist) must be under the power of Satan, Lucifer or the Devil.  I wonder if witnessing or testifying is a knee-jerk attempt to save an atheist’s soul from the clutches of Satan.  Or witnessing may be used by the believer to protect her or him from the satanic evil emanating from the atheist. 

 

Unsolicited religious testifying annoys and baffles me.  I just don’t get it.

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Kori:
Rmyth:

The old adage about not discussing politics or religion among friends is always the best policy.  This really hold true for those that have very strong feelings about their politics or their religion.  To me its simply no way to win friends and influence people.  Avoid avoid avoid. 

If I can't have a civil discussion about religion or politics around my friends and family, I need new friends and family, since those are typically the most interesting topics of conversation.

 

And where do you draw the line between religion and philosophy? How about Science? 

Cosmology, the discovery of the God Particle, is that off limits too? 

 

Well, I guess there's always the weather, and cats, we can talk about.  

 

Being alone, is not the worst possible outcome.

The worst possible outcome is being around those who make you feel all alone. 

 

 I get that.  My only trouble is empathy and open mindedness.  It just seems to me that when one is fervent in their belief system about politics or religion they tend to lack any open mindedness for one thing and also they tend to lack the empathy that, perhaps, their fervent beliefs are personal and might really make someone with such opposite fervent beliefs mad.  

 

Having a civil discussion is the key.  I agree you should be able to have a civil discussion.  The best is when it can remain civil and both parties can be tolerent of the others belief system and agree to disagree without being so disagreeable.  Its just a matter of respect in civil dialogue to me.  I'm thinking the more fervent the belief, the more respectful civil dialogue takes a back seat to any reasonable discussion.  

 

I don't know, perhaps its one of the true principles I hang onto.  I really do try to love and respect others even if their belief system is very fervent and all screwed up.  I think their can be common ground that doesn't have to include politics or religion.  I think many people can discuss science and philosophy without having to bring up their religion or their politics.  Unless, of course, their belief is so fervent that the only way they will share anything with you is if they think you need to believe the same way they do.  Many Christians are not that fervent.  For the most part our experiences (and the reason we are all here) is because TBM's are usually very fervent. 

 

 
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Dogzilla Joy:

...Anyway, the Wisconsin lady starts talking about how she's a confirmed atheist (raised Catholic, IIRC) and was wishing that more atheists would come out of the closet and talk about it because we're mostly fine, upstanding, moral, responsible, productive citizens who happen to not believe in fairy tales. ...

This is pretty much how I feel, and why I don't want to feel like I have to hide it away like a dirty secret.  Of course, how I feel could change if I get harassed a lot by people spouting their religiosity at me.  I guess time will tell.

 

Kori - I absolutely agree with you.  We should be able to discuss things like this with people and keep it civil.  When that miracle happens, it's actually a lot of fun, and quite intellectually stimulating.  Too bad it's rare.

 

Aleut -  I'll offer my (ignorant) opinion about where unsolicited religious testifying comes from.  I think religion frequently breeds ego, at least religious ego.  And I think sometimes people just can't help showing off how much better they are, because they've accepted Christ, or they're more enlightened, or whatever.  I think it's them stroking their own egos, reminding themselves that they're better than the godless heathens.  I don't think that's the case for everyone, of course, but I think it's pretty common.

 

 
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When even I have something like this, I just raise up my thumb, give a "Whatever-you-say" smile, and just say, "Cool story, bro." Seriously. They usually drop it after that.
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mostlymolly:
Dogzilla Joy:

...Anyway, the Wisconsin lady starts talking about how she's a confirmed atheist (raised Catholic, IIRC) and was wishing that more atheists would come out of the closet and talk about it because we're mostly fine, upstanding, moral, responsible, productive citizens who happen to not believe in fairy tales. ...

This is pretty much how I feel, and why I don't want to feel like I have to hide it away like a dirty secret.  Of course, how I feel could change if I get harassed a lot by people spouting their religiosity at me.  I guess time will tell.

 

Kori - I absolutely agree with you.  We should be able to discuss things like this with people and keep it civil.  When that miracle happens, it's actually a lot of fun, and quite intellectually stimulating.  Too bad it's rare.

 

Aleut -  I'll offer my (ignorant) opinion about where unsolicited religious testifying comes from.  I think religion frequently breeds ego, at least religious ego.  And I think sometimes people just can't help showing off how much better they are, because they've accepted Christ, or they're more enlightened, or whatever.  I think it's them stroking their own egos, reminding themselves that they're better than the godless heathens.  I don't think that's the case for everyone, of course, but I think it's pretty common.

 

I agree.  I know I used to stand and bear my testimony in F&T meeting because it was expected, because of the praise I would get from my parents and friends and because I wanted to demonstrate how good a mormon I was.  My testimony was for other mormons.  Testifying to non-mormons actually frightened me.  I didn't want to be preachy or look foolish to non-members.

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“I’m having the best day of my life, and I owe it all to not going to Church!”—Homer Simpson, The Simpsons

“I don’t object to the concept of a deity, but I’m baffled by the notion of one that takes attendance.”—Amy Farrah Fowler, The Big Bang Theory

“For the record, I do have genitals. They’re functional and aesthetically pleasing.”—Sheldon Cooper, The Big Bang Theory

All comments, statements, opinions, suggestions, and information expressed, or quotes cited, represent the exclusive viewpoint of Aleut at that point in time and are NOT meant to compel or represent agreement by the reader. Aleut will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use.

 
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How is it that you became involved in this conversation that was happening behind you in line at the deli counter about baptisms for the dead?

 

I find that often times I am the one that gets myself involved in these conversations.  It's very random indeed that someone else starts one out of the blue.  And, if they do, it's always my choice to just say uh huh?  Is that right? 

 

I've been volunteering for the past 4 months with 2 LDS men.  I only know they are LDS because I can see their garments.  They haven't said a word about it and neither have I. 

 

That's how I'm handling it these days.

 

 

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I don’t want to ruin the ending for you ...... but it’s all going to be okay.

 
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MishMagnet:

How is it that you became involved in this conversation that was happening behind you in line at the deli counter about baptisms for the dead?

 

I find that often times I am the one that gets myself involved in these conversations.  It's very random indeed that someone else starts one out of the blue.  And, if they do, it's always my choice to just say uh huh?  Is that right? 

 

I've been volunteering for the past 4 months with 2 LDS men.  I only know they are LDS because I can see their garments.  They haven't said a word about it and neither have I. 

 

That's how I'm handling it these days. 

It was the ladies working behind the counter.  DH just overheard them while they were getting our order, saying something about baptizing dead people and he laughed and said, "You're talking about Mormons, aren't you?"  It went from there, with him eventually telling them we used to be Mormon, so we knew just how crazy the beliefs were.  It was friendly, entertaining conversation for a few minutes at the expense of Mormon beliefs.  I don't mind admitting that I used to be Mormon anymore than I mind admitting that I'm an atheist (for now, anyway).  But I did realize that I have no idea how to respond to spontaneous witnessing. 

 

 
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Woody:

Just say "Oh, thank you, <neighbor>, but your church meets right when I'm teaching class at stripper school."  While he has that suffocating guppy look on his face, offer his wife a free lesson.  Even older people should exercise.

 

 That's so funny you should say that. First, note that both of these people are in their 80s. And yes, I'd love to get hold of Granny in my class. LOL. I have had some Grannies and A) they love it and B) they do surprisingly well, despite the lack of upper body strength. 

 

Anyway, these people talk to me every time I'm outside and they are super nice. I wouldn't want to freak him out like that -- I've gotta live next door to these people! The wife noticed a couple years ago that I was dropping weight like it was going out of style and she asked what I'd been doing. My g-rated answer when people ask was to tell her that I take dance classes. She was all "OOO, I used to dance all the time; we took classes for years. That's a really good workout!" :: snerk :: You have no idea, ma'am. So every now and then she asks how my dance classes are going. She's never asked what kind of dance and I've never volunteered the information. 

 

Reminds me of that exchange between the stripper and the First Lady in Independence Day.

 

FL: So, what do you do? 

 

Stripper: I'm a dancer. 

 

FL: Ballet? 

 

Stripper: Uh, exotic. 

 

FL: Oh.

 

LOLz. I just don't do that last line of clarification. Let 'em assume jazz, modern, tap, ballet, whatever. Same thing really, just less clothing. 

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Formerly known as “Dogzilla.”

 
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Aleut:
mostlymolly:

Aleut -  I'll offer my (ignorant) opinion about where unsolicited religious testifying comes from.  I think religion frequently breeds ego, at least religious ego.  And I think sometimes people just can't help showing off how much better they are, because they've accepted Christ, or they're more enlightened, or whatever.  I think it's them stroking their own egos, reminding themselves that they're better than the godless heathens.  I don't think that's the case for everyone, of course, but I think it's pretty common.

I agree.  I know I used to stand and bear my testimony in F&T meeting because it was expected, because of the praise I would get from my parents and friends and because I wanted to demonstrate how good a mormon I was.  My testimony was for other mormons.  Testifying to non-mormons actually frightened me.  I didn't want to be preachy or look foolish to non-members.

You hit the nail on the head Molly.

 

Any "Faith" that makes exclusive claims is a very primative form of group think, tribalism, "us vs. them" mentality, acheived by surrenduring your individual identity (personal narrative, aka Ego) to a larger, group identity, meta narrative, our version of God is superior to theirs, we're saved, you're damned, we're better than you, therefore, I'm better than you.

 

Mormonism, having been founded by a con man with a fatal case of over inflated ego, attaching your self to Joseph's Myth, is attaching your ego to an already overinflated super sized ego, that just keeps getting more and more overinflated as time passes by. 

 

Which is why I think it's absolutely effing hillarious that the most successful Broadway Play in decades has been a parody of Joseph's Myth and it's only going to get worse for Joseph's Myth. The time is right for parodying this batshit crazy religion and I'm glad to see people capitolizing on it, like Trey Parker and Matt Stone.

 

Too bad it wasn't ExMo's getting rich off of the batshit crazy religious cult we were born into, that'd be rich justice. 

 

Maybe ExMo's are just waaaay too psychologically damaged to be funny about their religion, but that Dude Raptor Jesus, who did the slide show at the ExMo conference is about the most hillarious dude Ive ever seen. He should seriously quit his day job and take his slide show on stage with him. Dude would kill it.

 

THis guy Bengt Washburn is a pretty funny ExMo comedian too.

My son is a pretty funny ExMo comdian in NYC doing stand up and improv at Upright Citizen's Brigade.  

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“Not sure about a higher power but I definitely believe in re-sizing my images to not be so freaking wide.” Dark Chocolate

 
       
 


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