Excommunication - making your unbelief official

General discussions

Would you like to be excommunicated?

Yes, in fact, I am.
2
7%
Yes, I'll write the letter soon.
6
20%
Yes, but I won't pursue it. I'm not going to waste a second of my life dealing with the church.
6
20%
Yes, but I won't pursue it. People might find out.
0
No votes
It's a non-issue for atheists and serves no purpose.
16
53%
No, because a little agnosticism... you never know.
0
No votes
 
Total votes: 30
Martha
Posts: 1084
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 8:47 pm

Post by Martha » Fri Mar 02, 2007 9:01 pm

brianmmulligan wrote: If we make athiesm into a formal religion, should we excommunicate those who marry ouside? Wouldn't it be great if we had a hell that we could threaten them with.
I (personally) would never dream of making atheism into a formal religion. That would defeat the purpose of atheism, as atheism is all about thinking for yourself, i.e., developing your own critical-thinking skills.
FXR
Posts: 3176
Joined: Sun Feb 11, 2007 11:44 pm
Location: Dublin

Post by FXR » Fri Mar 02, 2007 9:09 pm

Martha wrote:
brianmmulligan wrote: If we make athiesm into a formal religion, should we excommunicate those who marry ouside? Wouldn't it be great if we had a hell that we could threaten them with.
I (personally) would never dream of making atheism into a formal religion. That would defeat the purpose of atheism, as atheism is all about thinking for yourself, i.e., developing your own critical-thinking skills.
True what you say thar Martha but I have at times mused along the same lines as Brian. As a strategy would it be better to start something called, for example, New Paganism.

New Pagans would be rational pro earth and always open to new ideas. Labels play such an important part, for good or ill, in the human race. I don't blame the legions who "follow" religious teaching. To bring anyone to your point of view you have to start from where they are not where you would like them to be.

Im just musing you understand lest you think I'm at this moment poking a roasted salmon and sucking my finger waiting for enlightenment!
Human communication is a very rickety rope bridge between minds. Its too narrow to allow but a few thoughts to cross at a time. Many are lost in the chasms of noise, suspicion, misinterpretation and shooting the message through dislike of the messenger.
Kevin Ronayne
Posts: 53
Joined: Fri Feb 09, 2007 5:41 pm
Location: Galway

Post by Kevin Ronayne » Fri Mar 02, 2007 10:27 pm

I'm glad to see that I'm with the majority here, voting wise. My attitude is that I cannot be bound to any agreement or promise that was made without my consent as an adult, and that furthermore involved childhood indoctrination. Ergo, there is nothing for me to leave really. It doesn't matter what the Church thinks, or what other people say: they have no hold on me.

To me, this position makes as much sense, if not more so, than an up-front 'official' rejection of whatever it was I was supposed to have subscribed to in the first place. I am with Martha and the others here, in that I don't want to give anyone the impression (however misguided) that atheism is a religion of sorts.
God has no place within these walls, just like facts have no place within
organized religion. - Superintendent Chalmers
alfonso
Atheist Ireland Member
Atheist Ireland Member
Posts: 168
Joined: Mon Jan 15, 2007 11:32 am
Location: Dublin
Contact:

Post by alfonso » Sat Mar 03, 2007 7:41 pm

On one hand I think it is a waste of time for atheists. But on the other it pisses me off to see my name included as 'catholic' or any other religion for that matter.

If they (institutional religions) gain any power from this, I do believe we should do our best to get our names off their lists.
brianmmulligan
Posts: 564
Joined: Thu Jan 04, 2007 10:54 pm
Location: Sligo

Post by brianmmulligan » Sat Mar 03, 2007 11:39 pm

Martha wrote:
brianmmulligan wrote: If we make athiesm into a formal religion, should we excommunicate those who marry ouside? Wouldn't it be great if we had a hell that we could threaten them with.
I (personally) would never dream of making atheism into a formal religion. That would defeat the purpose of atheism, as atheism is all about thinking for yourself, i.e., developing your own critical-thinking skills.
I agree with you Martha. Aethiesm is better off not to be too highly organised - I was only joking. And the most important critical thinking skill is self doubt and self criticism.
Brian
Martha
Posts: 1084
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 8:47 pm

Post by Martha » Sun Mar 04, 2007 12:07 am

brianmmulligan wrote:
..the most important critical thinking skill is self doubt and self criticism.
Of course it is. That's the only way we learn any worthwhile lessons, about our own Self and others :)
eamonnm79
Posts: 248
Joined: Tue Feb 06, 2007 6:20 pm

Post by eamonnm79 » Sun Mar 04, 2007 5:33 pm

I agree with haymoon. Writing such a letter could have dire consiquences for me or my family. My cousin lives in longford. his wife is an atheist and did not get any of her children baptised. They have three kids under 5. I got an invitation to the christening of the three children in the post the other day. They are being forced into it because the kids will not be let into the local school.
I have also been asked by my best friend to be his best man in november. He knows I am an athiest. In fact he told me he stoped believing ages ago after many conversations with me and reading opinions from the web. His girlfriend however is a practising catholic and even drags him along at times. Women always get what they want on their wedding day. they do the majority of the planing and the day being "perfect" means alot more to them than the guy usually.
I am honoured to be asked and am happy to do it. I find that in life it is important to pick your battles.
excomunicating myself would be couragous truthfull thing to do but the consiquences are too high a price to pay.
I applaud anyone who has the guts/ personal circumstances to do it.
tony
Posts: 186
Joined: Thu Jan 04, 2007 11:58 pm

Post by tony » Sun Mar 04, 2007 9:33 pm

divil_a_bit wrote:
tony wrote: 1. How did you renounce your faith?
I met me parish priest and asked him what I needed to do. He had to ask his boss how to do it. It turns out all I needed to was write a letter to the diocesan secretary. I wrote a very "watered down" version of the letter here:
http://www.atheistfoundation.org.au/excommunication.htm
[/b]
What happened after you sent the letter? Did you have any trouble and what exactly did they do? The pointers given for writing the letter on the above link are way over the top but you said you watered yours down. Would just asking them to take your name off the list work or will they insist on getting reasons?
Martha
Posts: 1084
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 8:47 pm

Post by Martha » Sun Mar 04, 2007 11:15 pm

eamonnm79 wrote:They are being forced into it because the kids will not be let into the local school.
Forced by who? It is illegal for the school authorities or the State to prevent children from attending their local school on the grounds of religious beliefs, or none - because the school is primarily a State school funded by the taxpayers money, so the Church has no legal right to impose this restriction.

eamonnm wrote:I applaud anyone who has the guts/ personal circumstances to do it.
Always be true to yourself. If you don't, you'll pay the price for it in the end. I know, from personal experience, that it can indeed be very tricky to take a stand and defend your beliefs and personal values, but believe me, its well worth it at the end of the day. You'll get over the initial hurt etc., and be pleased to discover than you can actually breathe normally (as it were). Why waste your precious life creeping around others? Its not like you're going to lose any respect or love :roll:
bipedalhumanoid
Posts: 2675
Joined: Fri Feb 09, 2007 1:55 pm

Re: Good idea!

Post by bipedalhumanoid » Tue Mar 20, 2007 12:41 pm

FXR wrote:
Martha wrote:
FXR wrote:
However writing to the god squad smacks of asking their permission not to be included.
Precisely. So why reinforce their notions of grandeur. And whatever about all your other imaginative suggestions for demonstrating one's non allegiance, surely the BEST way is just to ignore the bastards - like they don't exist! I think the word is called BOYCOTT? No members, no club :P
But the problem is Martha ignoring them is not enough. Unless you register you exclusion somewhere you're counted along with all the people who half believe or the legions who only turn up for births deaths and marriges but otherwise think bishops are dipsticks.
I agree with you. The catholic church hugely inflate their reported membership numbers by using baptism numbers. This gives them undue power. Excommunication is rarely granted to anyone who requests it though. It is something that is largely reserved for famous people.

A better use of time might be to campaign to stop non-practicing catholics from ticking the 'catholic' box on the census. Some people tick that box purely because they were baptised into the church even if they don't believe in that stuff. People need to realise the consequences of ticking that box.
Post Reply