I have had quite a visitation from those who consider themselves atheists or skeptics in a previous forum on Christianity meant for Christians.
Those of you who are non-religious, atheistic, skeptics, agnostics and all else that the world may call you, I would like you to share with us how you have been an encouragement, source of comfort and hope to others; vice versa how others like you have encouraged, given you comfort and hope.
(WARNING: No cussing, dissing or being impolite; that is not encouraging, comforting nor does it give hope - lets try and see if we can progress for over 5 posts without that. I will really appreciate it)
Well while I may not have done as much as I might like in my years, I have many more to come in which my achievements can grow. To me, helping others has always been a big thing, especially those close to me, if they aren't happy, then I struggle to be, so I always do my best to talk through things with them and do what I can to make them feel good. Aside from this, I give to charities of all kinds where and whenever possible, my main donations are to the Red Cross, to which my family and I raise several hundred pounds every year by collecting all our change, and converting it, with a little extra on top. What I do is small, but I'd like to do more, when I get the oppurtunities I shall. My Uncle might be able to fix me up some volunteer work in Ethiopia, building schools and teaching English, so that may become something I do. Thank you for the question!
Great work, I am impressed. I like the fact that you like to talk things through with those you love or are close to, I am kind of like that. Thank you so much for sharing. May God bless the work you do and give you more strength and resources to be what you desire so much to be, a helper and lover of people.
Don't you think it is a little condescending to say ""May god bless the work you do"?
This is an atheist - who does not need "strength" given to them by god. Are you planning on invalidating everyone?
I spent ten years working as a massage therapist - mostly on chronic pain patients and only ever asked them to pay if they could afford it. And many of them could not. But I do not feel the need to crow about it like you guys.
I did not need an irrational belief in an invisible super being to do this. There was no invisible super being involved. Please do not bring that into the work I did for 10 years. Please do not invalidate that by bringing your invisible super being in as responsible.
It was just me. Thank you for keeping your beliefs to yourself.
When you are in a forum of Christians, believers, per se, you are allowed to express yourself the way you feel. There is nothing condescending in expressing myself in terms of wishing someone God's blessing. Courtesy is what we call it and I will not pass it by just because you want me to. Sorry.
And thanks for sharing, I am glad to hear about the wonderful things you did in the ten years being a massage therapist for people with pain, you made a difference. I thank God for your openness and I do not know if it is in humbleness you are asking us not to talk about it. I love you my brother, thanks for taking part.
Hi donnaisabella. I left it on my post because I was tired and I believe you mean well, but you have just done to Mark what he did not want to be done. I ask only this, if atheists post their deeds and you wish to comment positively by all means do so, but out of respect please do not 'thank god' for them and 'bless' them automatically. While some will not mind, others find it devalues them and makes what they do seem a requirement in Christian eyes rather than a choice. This is just a suggestion, it is not snide or rude, it is simply a polite request on behalf of others
Thanks for the suggestion, I know that you are not being rude. I know you mean well. And I will not stop praising or giving glory to God just because some people feel that the mention of Him devalues them. I have not taken offense against anyone's expressions no matter how insulting they sounded, it is not an insult to bless and thank God. I am sorry, I will not stop it because I am speaking to rational beings who know what I mean. They are way too intelligent to feel insulted by the very mention of a being they feel does not exist.
See? This is the problem with your ridiculous belief system. because you think you are talking to god - you do not need to respect other people's wishes.
You do not love me. If you loved me - you would respect my wishes.
Thank you for reminding me why I despise your religion.
If we did to everyone what they asked to be done to them, that would not be love. I still love you, very much and I mean. Nothing by the way will change that. Even death on the cross did not change Christ's attitude of love towards us. I will love you still. I love you.
Meaningless garbage. You unable to respect my wishes. This is the problem with your ridiculous belief system. Love? LOLOLOLOLOLO
For six years I worked with homeless Veterans. Being a former Marine, I was recruited by the state to help with the problem of the defenders of our country living on the street. I even went as far as Washington, DC to advocate for more dollars to go toward the issue.
While doing this job, I met many caring and giving people who asked me to help in other areas of homelessness. I now spend my free time volunteering at soup kitchens and pantries. And on holidays I help hand out meals to the homeless and less fortunate. I have met with all my state representatives and the governor, asking them to join me in getting as many people off the street as possible.
I have no inclination to thank God for my progress, but I do thank all the wonderful hard working people who make things possible.
Thank you for taking time to stop by and share. I am touched, truly I am. As a Christian you all do not know what this means to me now and how it will impact me in years to come. I thank God for you though. Be blessed and may God send you more resources. And it is not intended to be an insult when I say may He give you an opportunity to know Him too as I suppose He knows you.
Yes, us poor unfortunate outcasts the world has shunned. Of course, it hasn't been easy living in the world Christians have created for us these past many centuries, their beliefs and superstitions having pervaded and molded our societies into what they are today, having dashed to pieces any chance of mankind to have allowed the use of reason and rationale during most of its reign. If we had, Galileo Galilei might very well been the first human to step on the surface of Mars.
But hey, thanks all the same for taking notice of the little people, or whatever the world may call us.
I did not know that you were capable of being sentimental too. On the contrary, I do not look down on you. On the contrary, I feel like the moment I told you I was a Christian you were ready to fight me, why? I do not think lowly of people just because they identify themselves in a certain way. At the same time, it would be wrong for me to hide what I believe to be a blessing in my life just because others think negatively of it. I love my God, I love you and I intend to keep it that way. I want to know you, I want to interact with you and nothing is going to change that. I love you Q. You must be about the most loved man in these forums and I mean it.
I think you'll find that the majority of athiests are exceptionally generous people in terms of their time, resources and emotional support, but they won't generally shout it from the rooftops. For instance my husband is an athiest (and hold your breath.....a communist). He will always be the first to offer help to anyone and everyone in what ways he can, from giving them money, fixing their car, unblocking their pipes etc etc...
He doesn't broadcast it - he doesn't need to. His athiest friends are like this too. People don't need religion to be good people.
Thanks for sharing Susanna, we do not need to broadcast our good works on the rooftops, at the same time there is difference in broadcasting our good works and sharing our faith. You have to understand that as Christians, we need to share our faith, or else how will people hear about a God they do not know about if we do not tell them? That is a responsibility I have as a Christians, but it is not imposed on anybody nor is it meant to cause fights. I tell you, you listen. If you do not accept it, you are still my friend, I love you. I live my faith and we live right alongside one another. As Christians, we are not supposed to feel condemned so no amount of condemnation should actually bring us into any condemnation.
People do not need religion to do good, no they do not, that is why when you have a real and living relationship with God, you cease to be religious. I am not a religious person, not by the standards of the world's definition of religion. I am so sold out to God Susanna, I live and exist for Him. He is alive in me. I do not know how I can put it to you. It liberates me. If we do not understand things, they are foolishness to us, what I have is foolishness to you that is why I need not debate with anyone about it. It is like trying to prove to people that I am real, I am human, I exist. You see me already!
Thanks for sharing.
I don't believe the disclaimer was necessary...
Mark Knowles, a disbeliever, a smart well informed, intelligent person... who is a source of inspiration for me. A person that draws my interest and forces me to see things clearer. Mark Knowles is also a big pain in the neck, but I love him anyway. I see God in Mark, as much as that statement will offend Mark it is true for me. Mark and his dis-belief has strengthened my faith. Thank You Mark.
So - even though you know it will offend me - you say it anyway.
You will see god in anything - including me - because you have a desperate need to justify your ridiculous beliefs and invalidate everyone else. Pity you are unable to see that this will inevitably cause conflict and hatred - just like jesus wanted I guess.
Well done. How many fights have you started in the name of god?
Thanks for sharing Mike. Mark Knowles, who is Mark Knowles, I found myself thinking about him this afternoon off the internet. I need to get to know him better. You see God in Mark Knowles, how beautiful is that. Why would Mark be offended by that, I wonder?
by living a good life and treating others the way i want to be treated: with respect, compassion, and kindness. and for my loved ones, with all the above and with love.
May I point out to you, as others have tried, that it is impolite to follow an atheist's post with blessings and praise of god.
You state in your opening post "No... dissing or being impolite" yet you are the one who is dissing and being impolite. You asked for positive stories from people, then you followed them with disrespectful comments.
Do you really think that atheists are irrational and stupid?
I'm not finding any "comfort and hope" in a forum where the OP invites people to share encouragement, and then takes shots at them.
God bless you and thanks for passing through. I have had very positive input from different people. I should be grateful to God for that. It would be impossible to please everybody and that is where we have to choose to be who we are. Being on this forum does not stop me being a Christian just like you being on a Christian forum does not stop you being who you are. I did not say I had become an atheist, I love people regardless of their beliefs and hang ups.
Thanks for your contribution, I love you all the same and that makes me wanna exist alongside you. God bless you because we all need those blessings.
Why does ones belief in God or lack of belief in God have to be a precursor to giving encouragement, comfort and hope to others? I personally have been to hells borders and given comfort and hope. I was a combat medic in the Iraq war on the front lines. I have helped to feed the hungry, have given people a place to stay when they lost their home, every time someone is broken down or stuck on the side of the road my spouse and I will always try to help. I have been comforted by a hug, a good meal, a place to stay, encouraged by someone running beside me or pushing me forward with words and actions and literally raised by 'These' people. Belief in a God does not make one incapable of encouragement, comfort and hope.
I think that praising ourselves of our personal achievements to other's comfort, etc, is base and disgusting.
I'm not going to tell what I've done to that respect.
I'd rather people think of me as a selfish B°°ch.
I can't care less.
I'm an Atheist.
I think what you're asking for( telling to share such things ) is just purely Christian attitude.
So I pass.
This is a lot harsher than what I would have written LOL, but basically I agree with you. Like you, I don't see why I should have to justify myself in any way. As long as I'm not harming anyone else or leeching off them in any way, I really think I should live life as I choose without having to say what I'm doing for others.
You are welcome and I think that too is great attitude. Be blessed.
My guess is that the distribution of good works amongst atheists is pretty much the same as a group drawn from a religious community. We all take care of our friends, family, and acquaintances, show consideration and generosity, behave morally and fairly, empathise and sympathise, and do what we can to help others. We also counter discrimination and prejudice, challenge irrational beliefs which often inhibit responsible thinking, and encourage people to develop their own powers of reasoning. These are all good works.
It always feels rather insulting to see religious people making the assumption that without religious belief, people wouldn't do these things. I regard those values as secular values and it pains me often to see so many religious people failing to live up to these secular standards.
Most atheists just behave ethically and responsibly without making any fuss about it, without drawing any attention to it, and without regarding it as being particularly noteworthy, which probably contributes to the impression that they don't do these things.
Generosity, charity, compassion, sympathy, and a willingness to help are secular values that are found widely amongst atheists, at least in my experience.
You said that better than I ever could, so my response to this thread is "I'm with BobLloyd"....
It is not my general belief that just because people do not acknowledge God in their lives then they are not capable of any good. We all learn by interacting and mixing with one another. If it were not for some people I have met on here, I would be thinking those who claim to be atheists are the most biased people on earth. They claim to be rational individuals who use reason to get on with their lives. But, how is it that when they come across Christians all reasoning seems to dissipate and they descend to the lowest depths to make any Christian feel their hatred. Who practices hatred here? I love you guys whatever it is you would like to call yourselves. I just see fellow humanbeings with whom it is a pleasure for me to share my faith and to listen to them. Give me a chance already!
Thank you for sharing.
I agree. Atheists believe the "here and now" is all we have, and so are motivated to make the best of the world they live in, which includes helping others. Some religious people seem to be doing good to store up brownie points with God, rather than truly for the sake of their fellow man.
Yep, they need to frisk us for a god first.
So it is also a belief for you isn't it?
Hey people, why this huge urge to compare? When I asked, I did not say how do your compare against such and such a group, I simply wanted to know and interact with another group of interesting people that know they too have a lot to offer. When the Christians were responding to the query on faith and works none who said 'well, this is how we do compared to unbelievers or we are better than atheists in this respect.' No, they did not.
Honestly, you are making me feel like there is such a press on you from Christians even when they have not said anything to you. It is as if just their existence even if they said nothing to you is painful! In the end it will be easy to know who are truly hating. Let off. Just be yourselves and I will really appreciate that. Or is it too hard?
delivered bread, volunteer at a drug rehab, donated to red cross and save the children, bought food for homeless people I pass by, got out of bed at 3am to find someone a safe place to stay for the night, gave away a sleeping bag, treat people with respect and offer advice if I have some appropriate, keep my advice to myself if it is not wanted or could be harmful.
And you have given the lonely ladies at hubpages something to look at!
Thanks for sharing Bovine, you sound like a very polite person. Nice to meet you and thanks for bringing some warmth here. May God bless you. My courtesy.
I am going to excuse myself from the charade that this thread has become but I will say this much. I am not a particularly polite person, not always. I give respect where respect is due but if I am treated with disrespect I will give it right back. I am not a Christian though I have friends whom are religious. I don't know what your particular beliefs are and I don't really care. I am not offended by you expressing your blessings but I can see why others might be. When I have been down and out, the last thing I wanted was a token gesture. I go out and help people because I know what it is like to suffer. I have lived rough. I do think if you are really a caring person you would not taunt like you are here in this thread. Maybe you don't see it that way. Just my thoughts. I am not an athiest, just not a believer. I once considered athiesm a fruitless venture but although it is not a system I subscribe to, I have no qualms with the political tenents of athiesm. As an opposition to religion, I agree with athiest attitude. I just choose not to have faith in history.
Thanks for having participated Bovine. I respect your view. As you go remember, this is not a token gesture. I give no token gestures, I think you can tell from the fact that I am not changing what is good to bad just because people think so.
I believe we should get back to the topic and it was about offering encouragement, comfort and hope. If God bless you and thank God are insults, what is not?
Do you want a comprehensive list? If so, I must apologise because I cannot afford that sort of time.
Re: token gestures, I was not making a direct reference to you. It is a shame you cannot see that.
My bad then. Thanks all the same. Be blessed as you go. I love you.
Now you are getting on my nerves.
You do not love me. You wouldn't know how.
Oh, thanks for the correction. I see what you meant as a token gesture. I am sorry I read it differently. You meant to say when you do what you do it is sincere, you do it because you understand. That, my dear Bovine, should be the heart of what we do, not just to be seen by men, but because we care. Thanks for sharing and I am truly sorry I misread you. Forgive me.
volunteer speaker at a detox centre. commencing work very soon as an outreach worker for at risk youth.
BOVINE why it is darker down.....very dark,,,,,
Great, keep the great heart. May God richly bless you.
You can't beat them Mark, they are all ready beat. Floggin a dead horse.
I wonder how believers would feel if they were told " may Satan bless you" or "Satan loves you too"? Would they just accept it as polite and friendly?
Has satan got anything to do with your life and the way you do things? As a believer, if Satan could bless, I would not be offended, truly a blessing from anyone would bless me. It is a blessing for all I know!
According to some believers, Satan is the cause of evil in this world. I personally do not believe there is such a being. If Satan blessed you it would mean you have done something to please him, such as you have accomplished with this thread.
You do not have to please me for me to bless you. Blessing is the opposite of cursing and I know you are aware of that. Did you tell me how you have been an encouragement, given comfort or brought hope to others or them to you? That is the purpose of this forum.
God bless you.
Why is it impolite to mention blessings or whatever in a salutation ?
I suppose you claim to be an atheist.
Would I be impolite if I said "bless you" after you have sneezed ?
It's also cultural, you know.
Have you never exclaimed : "Oh my!" ?
That was your assumption, man.
Sister Isabella never said that.
She spoke with moderation, even if some resented it as if they were excluded from the realm of good will people.
Anyway, everything went back on its rails after the intelligent post from Bob Loyd.
I'm making these comments because I think I've read this thread correctly from the beginning and I like things to be fair.
If I'm not correct, I humbly beg for your pardon.
The Lord be with you.
To the first: it is impolite in this forum. The first post asks people to be polite and not "dis". A few people here have tried to explain that in the context of this thread, these blessings are rude and to some, insulting. The OP responded by arguing that it is not an insult to bless and thank god.
When a person explains that something is insulting, the polite thing would be to simply stop saying it. Denying that it is an insult is impolite.
To the second: when I read "I will not stop it because I am speaking to rational beings who know what I mean. They are way too intelligent to feel insulted", what is it that I am supposed to assume?
This thread is asking non-believers directly for their stories. Folks here have politely explained that to a non-believer, these statements are insulting. If this topic did not have the word atheist in it, I would not be trying to help explain this.
I also like things to be fair.
Thank you my brother Zimpano. Thank you very much, I truly appreciate that. Be blessed.
Though I can't really figure the motivation for this thread, I'm so glad for it! I just wrote an article today on everyday heroes because I'm sick of kids hearing so much blame and negativity for being human. This fits right into what I have been thinking of and looking for for the past week again.
Took me a while but now I think a possible reason for this is to bless and offer prayers for people to annoy them like when atheists comment about how God is imaginary and psychotic and believers are stupid when believers are trying to discuss something. I really didn't get it at first and yes, i may be wrong.
Still, though people don't normally want to brag about their good works, i'm thrilled to see it; gives me ideas and it gives me examples to share with my sons. It doesn't have to be bragging, it doesn't have to be about proving atheists are people too, it can be to share how you've found ways to make a difference in the lives of people who need you.
TMinut, your assumption is not right. We hardly have enough time in this life to be slinging mud at one another. You would need to go all the way back to the forum on faith and works. May be you will get an idea. At the same time, I love you my dear and I see no reason for me to start fighting you before I even know you. I am here for the right reasons and I know that some will misread it but that should not matter. God bless you.
Okay, sorry for the wrong assumption, it was just a guess. One of the atheists before joined in every religious discussion and said he/she felt justified to ridicule belief in God to spread the word that God is a delusion (that's a complete paraphrase). I thought you were making a point that that's just rude, not useful.
Still, I like the thread other than the defensiveness, I never equated humanitarian works solely with Christianity anyway since I didn't know about Christianity as a kid. That's when I first heard about charity, helping the poor, etc., so it's never been an argument for me. I'm enjoying reading about people helping others just because we're all human.
Love or Do Unto Others As You Would Have Them Do Unto you. Mark they must LOVE to be treated with dis-respect because that is how they treat others who have differing views and experiences.
Atheist feed the hungry without expectation of reward....clothe the naked without expectation of reward....visit the sick and imprisoned without expectation of reward.
That pretty much makes Atheists...volunteers and religionists....employees working towards the big bonus in the sky.
I'm not an Atheist but I deeply admire ANYONE who reaches out to help another...especially with no strings attached.
I believe you have summarized the very reason I wanted to know about faith and works from Christians; and followed this up with my colleagues on here.
Whether we are Christians or not, it is wrong to want to help, encourage, comfort or give hope in order to earn points. Just like we cannot deceive ourselves when we do that, God above all cannot be deceived into giving us points for selfish reasons.
The heart of true compassion is born from a sincere desire to make a difference in the lives of others. There are yet those who will do what they do because it makes them feel good. I ask still, what is the real motive of our doing what we do. It is the heart of my research.
I am not impressed just by the mere things or muchness of what is done as I would like to know why it is done. That should be my next quest. I have had to resist the urge to ask, "why do you do what you do?" I need just to know what people are doing.I have probably given away the major reason of my research but it does not matter so much now because some people have made it clear why they do what they do. Next time we can talk about why we do what we do.
Please understand, I am still very much being blessed by the contributions as they come. It is a huge eye opener just to hear from people what they are doing even before I know why they are doing it.
Thanks for passing by. I appreciate that very much.
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