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Success and failure stories - relgious differences

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This topic has weighed on my mind quite a bit the last few months. I am an athiest, but I am respectful of people's desire to have religious beliefs and how it benefits their own lives. I have never challenged religious people of any persuasion to come to my own viewpoint, because I have respect for their own viewpoints, and I do not interfere in their activities. In any case, it is impossible for me to disprove the theory that God might exist - it is just that as a minimal athiest, I have made the decision to reject the notion that a God exists on the basis of all the teachings and evidence that has been presented to me. Religion was never a subject I took lightly. Like many people of my generation, I dutifully went to Sunday school for 10 years as a child, partook in Divinity classes and school religious services. I was brought up in the Christian ways. Around 18 years of age, I began to question faith and it took me until my mid thirties to finally become comfortable with my viewpoint on the subject. I have been comfortable with this viewpoint ever since, especially when I realise I was heavily schooled in Christianity (i.e, I could not claim ignorance), plus the fact it took me more than twenty years after being confirmed to instead become a minimal athiest (i.e my decision was long thought out).


I was basically told by a friend who I had fallen in love with that my lack of religious beliefs was a deal breaker to her. My friend was not even what I would call more radical in her religious beliefs. She was infact brought up essentially with the same religion I was (Anglican). I look to my parent's successful marriage, which lasted until Dad's passing. Dad was a devout, practicing Christian, whereas Mum was (and remains) an agnostic. Dad never forced Mum to participate in his religious activities, in fact in later years she never even went to Church on occasions such as Easter or Christmas. This did not seem to effect the marriage.


So I would just like to hear some other stories where religious differences culminated in stories of both success and failure please. This experience has made me so wary that I feel I have to put religion right at the top of the list in deciding whether I should attempt to pursue a relationship with someone in the future. I guess I have trouble understanding why it is such a deal breaker for her. She acknowledges that every Christian she knows is actually less Christian-like in their behaviour than I am. She says I act like the model Christian in every way, except my lack of belief in a God. She says I am far more caring than any Christian she knows. The whole thing has been so heart-breaking for me.

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She's confused you and I don't think religion is the real reason she doesn't want to date you. She's just not into you and doesn't want to hurt your feelings so she made up an excuse. Don't buy it. You're just a friend to her. Cut her off and spend your time looking for someone who's interested in you for real.


People do what they want to do, even when it conflicts with their morals or what's logiclly good for them.

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I am an agnostic, but was raised as a Catholic. My mother was Catholic, my father an Anglican, although non-practicing.


It is hard for you, but sometimes people just have to be with someone who shares their beliefs or because they are thinking ahead to the potential difficulty in raising children or because they are worried their own faith may be eroded over time.


I would not say that you have to find someone who shares your beliefs or you hers but someone who will not let different beliefs affect the relationship.

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Thanks DN, another very well thought out reply. Perhaps I should have told her that if we had children, I would in fact like to have them raised with Christian teachings, but we never got that far sadly.


I think everyone has a right to a religious upbringing, since if they reject it later on, they still had the opportunity to learn about it and make their own minds up. They would not have gotten that chance if they were not brought up that way. So even though I am an athiest, I would very much insist my children be brought up Anglican, Presbyterian or similar. And it would not concern me if they remained Christian, Agnostic or Athiest, so long as they were comfortable with their decision.


I think your point is very salient about the concern her faith may erode, but I think it also might be that she feels I will "end up in the wrong place" after my death too. I guess I can empathise with that point as well.

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