U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Religion and Spirituality > Atheism and Agnosticism
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 05-20-2011, 02:12 AM
 
4,454 posts, read 5,752,128 times
Reputation: 2186

Advertisements

Any atheist here that are from an very religious community such as an town or country or even if your family are? If so what are the experiences in it? Are you open to your beliefs there?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 05-20-2011, 04:09 AM
 
Location: Log "cabin" west of Bangor
5,678 posts, read 6,785,251 times
Reputation: 10279
Quote:
Originally Posted by other99 View Post
Any atheist here that are from an very religious community such as an town or country or even if your family are? If so what are the experiences in it? Are you open to your beliefs there?
Huh?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-20-2011, 08:12 AM
 
Location: Logan Township, Minnesota
15,511 posts, read 13,308,309 times
Reputation: 7407
I suspect it would be very similar to being a Muslim in a nearly 100% Christian region. My wife and myself are the only 2 Muslims in a nearly 200 mile radius. I would say that we have had no problems or issues with 99.9% of the people. However, the 3 or 4 people we have had problems with have been quite violent. But I do recognize those fanatics do not represent all Christians.

For the most part I have had very pleasant dialogue with our neighbors. Have had help when needed and have not been subjected to any "preaching" etc.

We get more static over my wife being Native American, than over our religious beliefs. Seems that some feel a Native American has no right to live even just a few feet off the Rez.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-20-2011, 08:50 AM
 
Location: Emerald Coast, FL
5,323 posts, read 8,377,599 times
Reputation: 8669
I became an atheist at an early age, even though I was in Catholic schools through high school. I wasn't reluctant to make my thoughts clear, either. What resulted were many thoughtful discussions, often in class. I was never harassed or ostracized or treated condescendingly, and likewise I was respectful of classmates and teachers. Ever since, I haven't had any problems with the religious folk, even here in the conservative, often Baptist south. I do tend to avoid the more rabid proponents of religion, as they sometimes don't practice the ideals of Christianity which they so militantly espouse, preferring to wallow in hate and violence. Most, however, are wonderful people, and many are friends.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-20-2011, 09:10 AM
 
2,319 posts, read 4,098,685 times
Reputation: 2076
Well, my short response is "thank Zeus we're leaving Tennessee!" It's only a problem around very vocal, zealous folks. Being an atheist is about the worst thing you can be around these people. They understand believing in a deity, even if it's "the wrong one", but they don't understand how anyone could think there is no driving force in the universe. No energy, no spirit, no karma, no nothing. Blows their minds. If we're not flat out attacked for our lack of faith, people dismiss our ideas (any - not just those related to religion) as garbage. Of course, this only applies to those who KNOW we don't believe. We usually aren't open about it because of the highly negative ways we've been treated. If we have to see someone everyday (neighbor, co-worker, etc.), we've found it best to keep our religious and political views private.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-20-2011, 01:23 PM
 
8,468 posts, read 13,663,262 times
Reputation: 7538
As an atheist, I don't go around broadcasting it or wearing a sign on my head. But what I've found is that you have to be careful about reinforcing any stereotypes they may have about atheists. For example, a lot of people think atheist are all angry and want to do away with Christianity altogether. I have problems with organized religion, but I tend to hold back because I know that once I get on that topic, I risk coming across as the stereotypical atheist who hates religion. While I may not agree with theists, I respect their right to believe in whatever they wish, no matter how silly I think it is. Like politics, you have to assess whether you're around the kind of people who'll tolerate hearing what you have to say.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-20-2011, 01:31 PM
 
48,516 posts, read 84,032,619 times
Reputation: 18050
Its just like a liberal or conservtive living in a area where they are politcally incorect for the culture.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-20-2011, 01:39 PM
 
Location: Sinking in the Great Salt Lake
13,143 posts, read 19,220,001 times
Reputation: 14007
It sucks being anything but a very religious person in a very religious area. Somebody, anybody... Help?

Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-20-2011, 05:47 PM
 
Location: Columbus, Ohio
1,709 posts, read 2,655,874 times
Reputation: 1195
Living in Mississippi, people have expressed shock and/or anger just from me saying that I'm not religious. None of my family knows that I'm atheist (I had an argument with my grandmother a few years ago because I said that I didn't believe Christianity was true, but that was it) and they won't know until I leave.

Last edited by Nivalis; 05-20-2011 at 06:58 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-21-2011, 12:45 PM
 
289 posts, read 269,571 times
Reputation: 199
I've written previously about my experiences living in Southern Idaho, but I'll rehash briefly for the sake of the thread:

The city we lived in is roughly 50% LDS, and our neighborhood even higher than that (I'd wager 80% or more). The "culture" of the city is rather hostile to non-LDS folk. It is very difficult to do anything on a Sunday (or even Saturday evening/night) because a huge swath of the town just shuts down. The vast majority of activities in town are tied into the church in some/significant fashion. My wife's coworkers apparently looked at her like she was some kind of space alien when she told them that she wasn't a Christian, and she works for the federal government.... So that should give you an idea right there as to the type of community we're talking about.

Regarding our neighborhood specifically, it is a very awkward moment when you meet your neighbors for the first time and the first words (and I mean this literally) out of their mouth (after their names) is "What ward do you belong to?" (ie Which LDS Church do you belong to?). [Note the unstated assumption being made there....] And while our neighbors tended to be cordial, at least, it seemed pretty obvious to us that they went out of their way to avoid us. This is especially true where our son was involved, as there were multiple kids about his age (in the 2-4 age range) in the area, who would all magically end up back in their houses right after seeing us coming outside to play. And no, I don't think that that was a coincidence or my imagination.

Of course, there's also the roughly once-a-month "visits" from ostensibly well-intentioned young men wanting to discuss their faith with us, but never willing to let me discuss my views with them. The incredible rudeness and arrogance involved in returning over and over when we repeatedly ask them not to is very difficult to overlook. Also, there was one particular pair who went out of their way to mock/insult a religious figure from a different religion (Buddha, in this case), which I found both completely improper and highly ironic.

So yes, it was difficult for us while we were there. As a matter of opinion, I believe that we and other non-LDS people were (and are) made to feel like outsiders on purpose, for obvious reasons. I have no doubt that they would deny this, however, and as I've said before - maybe our neighbors were just jerks. But the level of institutionalization of LDS belief in this particular community made life for a non-believer necessarily difficult.

Fortunately, we have recently moved to a new state, and our current situation is very much improved. 3 years in Southern Idaho was more than enough as far as we are concerned.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Religion and Spirituality > Atheism and Agnosticism
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top