Non-Practising Atheists

General discussions
aiseiri47
Atheist Ireland Member
Atheist Ireland Member
Posts: 177
Joined: Thu Sep 09, 2010 1:25 pm

Non-Practising Atheists

Post by aiseiri47 » Wed Feb 22, 2012 10:14 pm

I had a conversation at work today that I found rather perplexing that I thought you'd all find interesting. We were talking about religion and lack thereof, and I can't remember how precisely it came up, but my employee said something about people who call themselves atheists but aren't really because they don't "practise".

I more or less responded "what are you talking about?" :shock:

Apparently, his impression of atheism is that isn't just about not believing in god, but actively informing people that gods don't exist and providing evidence. People who do not believe in god, but don't actively promote atheism, are not really atheists! Basically, he thinks atheists are missionaries.

I told him that this was nonsense, that atheism literally means to not believe in god and that anyone who doesn't believe in god (as opposed to "not being sure" or "undecided") is really an atheist, and that most atheists are not going to go out of their way to promote atheism, but are instead simply fighting against being forced to have their lives dictated by religion.

It's worth mentioning this person is quite irreligious - he might have a bit of lapsed Catholic about him, in the sense he's got some family members who probably expect him to show up at the occasional mass -- but other than that, he seems to have no time for religion, and even found my theory that most people don't really believe in God very amusing.

Anybody else have any experience with people expressing strange perceptions of atheism?
Tulip1
Atheist Ireland Member
Atheist Ireland Member
Posts: 1529
Joined: Sat Aug 08, 2009 1:07 pm
Location: Sligo

Re: Non-Practising Atheists

Post by Tulip1 » Wed Feb 22, 2012 11:24 pm

I have had a few people who said to me (after I said I am an atheist): O no I don't believe either-way.
Pope says atheists pick & choose their morals. Correct. Today I will be frowning on child abuse & not having a problem with homosexuality.
paolovf
Atheist Ireland Member
Atheist Ireland Member
Posts: 257
Joined: Sun Apr 24, 2011 3:58 pm

Re: Non-Practising Atheists

Post by paolovf » Thu Feb 23, 2012 12:54 am

aiseiri47 wrote:Anybody else have any experience with people expressing strange perceptions of atheism?
That's mad! I've had one or two confuse atheism with satanism. But that was like ten years ago, I don't come across many like that anymore.
chemicals
Atheist Ireland Member
Atheist Ireland Member
Posts: 1018
Joined: Wed May 06, 2009 5:21 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Non-Practising Atheists

Post by chemicals » Thu Feb 23, 2012 1:27 am

paolovf wrote:That's mad! I've had one or two confuse atheism with satanism. But that was like ten years ago, I don't come across many like that anymore.
was it the Goth image that confused them :lol: :lol:
والقس هو مجنون
paolovf
Atheist Ireland Member
Atheist Ireland Member
Posts: 257
Joined: Sun Apr 24, 2011 3:58 pm

Re: Non-Practising Atheists

Post by paolovf » Thu Feb 23, 2012 2:01 pm

chemicals wrote:
paolovf wrote:That's mad! I've had one or two confuse atheism with satanism. But that was like ten years ago, I don't come across many like that anymore.
was it the Goth image that confused them :lol: :lol:
Hey! That's me in my avatar - didn't think I looked like a goth but hey, maybe goths are renowned for their love of icecream!
ptferg
Atheist Ireland Member
Atheist Ireland Member
Posts: 24
Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2012 11:42 pm
Location: Galway
Contact:

Re: Non-Practising Atheists

Post by ptferg » Fri Feb 24, 2012 4:19 pm

A work colleague once said to me, 'I don't mind if people don't believe in God but I hate Atheists'. Baffling.
http://www.humanisticus.com/ My musings about religion, Atheism, secularism, Humanism etc.
Jayhenn
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2012 5:10 am

Re: Non-Practising Atheists

Post by Jayhenn » Sat Feb 25, 2012 3:24 am

I've been accused of worshipping science now and again and that that ios what atheism is, but no, not ever been called a practising/non-practising atheist :P
Puck
Posts: 45
Joined: Wed Sep 21, 2011 9:20 pm

Re: Non-Practising Atheists

Post by Puck » Sat Feb 25, 2012 8:45 am

Never had to identify myself as an atheist, until I moved to Ireland.
Tulip1
Atheist Ireland Member
Atheist Ireland Member
Posts: 1529
Joined: Sat Aug 08, 2009 1:07 pm
Location: Sligo

Re: Non-Practising Atheists

Post by Tulip1 » Sat Feb 25, 2012 9:48 am

Puck wrote:Never had to identify myself as an atheist, until I moved to Ireland.
Same here. Religion was never an issue until I moved here. This is where I heard for the first time "I don't believe either way"
Pope says atheists pick & choose their morals. Correct. Today I will be frowning on child abuse & not having a problem with homosexuality.
Feardorcha
Atheist Ireland Member
Atheist Ireland Member
Posts: 1266
Joined: Fri May 01, 2009 4:28 pm

Re: Non-Practising Atheists

Post by Feardorcha » Sat Feb 25, 2012 11:54 am

Most bizarre comment I ever received was from an otherwise intelligent workmate who asked: "What do atheists do on Sunday mornings when they're not at Mass?"
Post Reply