Is it possible for a Christian and an atheist to be good friends?
Is it possible to have an honest, open friiendship whose beliefs about God are different from your own? What about evolution?
I'm an atheist who was raised in a christian family and was an active missionary for years. When I started studying theology, apologetics and hebrew and greek, I realized I could no longer justify my belief in something that had no proof. To this day, however, I have many many close christian friends. When we talk about religion, we disagree. We talk, sometimes for hours. We debate, we argue, we laugh. In the end, we're just people. It's no different than being friends with a Muslim or a Jew or a Hindu or Pagan. Ultimately, religion does not define my friendships. People do.
Wow! Were you an atheist while you were an active missionary?
Diane - no. I was in the field from 12-14. I started to become a skeptic while at Bible college. I didn't come out as an atheist until the last year or so.
JMc, what was the tipping point for you?
When I started to realize that all you needed to know christianity was a morally bankrupt system was the concept of eternal hell - and that no god would willingly send people there for being who they are. And learning the bible.
Sure. I'm Episcopal, and I have friends who are Unitarian, atheist, and agnostic. We talk openly about ideas all the time.
Evolution isn't a religious issue to me. There is no conflict between it and faith unless one makes the irrational assumption that either materialism or creationism must be the exclusive explanation for the existence of humanity, both of which I consider ideological extremism.
I was married to a Mormon for a while, so friends are no problem.
I'm from North Dakota, so basically all of my friends minus a few are religious. It really is only an issue when one side or the other because way too zealous about their beliefs. Sure there are heated debates sometimes, but that's the difference between friends/family and strangers, we get over it and move on.
I certainly think so, as long as both are respectful of each other. I have many friends of different faiths, and that's what makes a friend - enjoying all aspects of what makes that person them.
Yes, even mortal enemies can be friends. You may disagree with, fight against, kill the supporters of....but you can still be friends with someone because that's a fundamental human need and far outweighs any imposed religious rule, catechism, principle, condition.
I believe Jesus Christ had a similar message - he called it love, based on forgiveness. To me this is the same basic idea. No matter what your upbringing, belief system, vocation, situation, friendship is always possible. Didn't he have a prostitute as a follower? Look no further than that.
Well I'm atheist and married my best friend, a Christian. It is very possible, however it requires having a lot of respect for each other.
i have good friends that are christians. my brother is one also . we just keep religion out of the topics we talk about.
Sure it is possible because friendship is based on more that our belief system. My husband has several friends who are not believers. He is who is he, a retired Lutheran pastor and he does not hide anything. They often talk about things but their time is also spent on other hobbies, hunting, shooting, hiking - guy stuff.
And he is always willing to answer questions or discuss faith issues and they often approach him with questions...but he is not overbearing about it. They simply know that it is a major part of who he is.
Yes, it is definitely possible. That is of course, if each remains respectful of their differences.
I say yes. Particularly if neither one of them knows or cares how the other classifies themselves. When we strip ourselves of those labels, we become more alike than we are different.
Yes it is. We should not be defined by our religion (or lack thereof). Personalities can match in several other ways and fields outside of religion. Religion might be a boundary that you both agree to not cross over into because of your differences
Of course, spiritually mature and evolved people can look beyond religious boundaries and respect each other's religious/ethical construct whatever that may be. People who disrespect others because of differing spiritual/ethical beliefs are spiritually immature and unevolved. Such people need to become aware and grow up and live in the real world. ALL is ONE according to God.
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