Sacramento California Free Thought Website
To treat others as you would like to be treated

Code of Conduct for Believers!

Yes, it is a small world, so get over yourselves and join humanity

A local newspaper ran an interesting article entitled "It's a small world - learn the cultural landscape." This article talked about how "People of good will often worry they might unwittingly offend or make people of other faiths uncomfortable." and offered suggestions such as:

    When Muslims are coming for dinner, don't serve pork or food cooked in alcohol
  • Catholics can no longer eat meat on Friday
  • Never extend your hand to a Buddhist - let them do it first
  • Don't send greeting cards (Easter, Xmas, Birthday) to Christian Scientists
  • Hindus want people to remove shoes before entering their house
  • Jehovah's Witnesses don't celebrate birthdays, Mother's/Father's day, Valentine's Day, Halloween, Xmas or Easter
  • Don't extend your hand to an orthodox Jew of the opposite sex etc...
Of course they didn't mention atheist or humanist culture. Soooooo.....

We've decided to create a list of helpful do's and dont's of our own to clear up any misconceptions other religious faiths have about us!

  • Instead of saying grace before dinner thank the host and hostess for doing such a good job
  • Always extend your hand when greeting an atheist
  • Don't offer statements about Atheists in Foxholes, or tell us the one about being all dressed up with no where to go, unless of course you want to spend the next 4 hours in deep philosophical discussion
  • Always send an atheist a present, for Xmas, Mother's Day, Fathers day, Labor day, groundhog day, birthday, saturday...national map reading day...
Here are some additions from the Online members:
    If you survive some horrific disaster, please think before telling a reporter that you survived because "It was God's will," or "you knew you were going to survive because God has special work for you yet to do, " or "you lived because you prayed for aid or knew that God couldn't let your spouse be a widow(er) or your kids orphans." This isn't so much insulting to athiests specifically as it is insulting to all the loved ones of those who didn't survive horrific disasters who may well have had things yet to do and who may or may not also have been praying for aid and who probably didn't want their spouse and kids to be left widow(ers) and orphans etc. etc. And surely some non religious people survive horrific disasters? Why don't reporters ever interview them?
    I'd say, just act the same around Atheists as around Christians. It is a very rare Atheist who will be offended by your wearing a cross or talking about church. We understand that that's what you believe, and as long as you're not preaching to us, it's okay to talk about religious stuff (e.g. mention your preacher or your church).
  • Hipkins
    [] If you find out that someone is an atheist, do not apologize to them for it. That is just as rude, inappropriate, and wrong as it would be if an atheist apologized to a religious person for being religious. Additionally, do not say you'll pray for us because we are atheists. That to is rude. No matter how right you think you are, remember the other person believes the same about themselves, and understand that they are more likely to respect your beliefs than you are of theirs. Now who is nicer and has better morals?
  • Heather Keiser:
    [] I'm an atheist and I don't like it when people say I believe in God when I mistakenly use his name. I was brought up in a christian home and I have not gotten out of all of my christian habbits yet. i.e. saying "God bless you" when someone sneezes. Many young american atheists that I have met have the same lapses, it in no way means that I beleive in god or any other supernatural being.
  • Rose-Vinson:
    [] Disbelief in god also means disbelief in satan. (hint hint)
    Just because we don't have that belief in god, satan, heaven, hell, etc. does not mean that we are bad people. We do have morals, oftentimes moreso than "Christians" and "Catholics" (really, no offense)
  • Jimmy Cafferty:
    After failing to convert and atheist, when you finally give up in frustration don't tell us you'll pray for doesn't mean anything to us and it sure won't do any good.
  • From Kirsten Starcher:
    If an atheist sneezes, say "Gesundheit" instead of "God bless you"
  • From Jeff Lucas:
    I have trained my wife, my three daughters and myself to say, "Excuse me." when we sneeze. If you burp in public, don't you excuse yourself? Sneezing should be no different.
  • From Greg Erwin:
    There is a serious side and a humorous side to this. On the serious side, I personally am sick of people using the words "godless" and "atheist" as synonyms for immoral. The thing that set me off in this regard was a comment on a justice-related list about "godless" people bent on vengeful prison practices, when it is obvious that most of the people dancing in the streets during executions are happy Christians.
  • From Kay D.:
    When talking to an atheist or humanist, don't say inane things like "I'm blessed", "it's a blessing", "god bless you", "god works in mysterious ways", "if it's god's will", "praise the lord", "thank god", "you're going to hell", etc. When being interviewed by a television reporter after a disaster, don't say "it's god's will" or "thank god" or "it's a miracle".
    Don't wear instruments of torture (crosses) when speaking to an atheist or humanist.
    When at an atheist or humanist's funeral, don't say things like "Now (s)he's with god", or "now (s)he's in a better place", or "it was his/her time to go".
    Don't expect hymns, prayers, psalms, or organ music at atheist weddings or funerals.
    When speaking with an atheist or humanist, don't constantly talk about your pastor, priest, mission, church activities, etc., as it may be offensive.
  • From Carrie Nichols:
    Stop the urge to pray for us, we really don't feel the need for you to do this
    Don't send an Atheist a Christian Music CD for Xmas! It will definitely collect dust.
    If you as a Christian want to give a sermon, expect a sermon!
    Stop thinking that if you can get an Atheist into a church service that they will suddenly "see the light", they won't.
  • Ron Moore (American Atheist)
    1. Don't invite a person to church if you know they are an Atheist.
    2. Atheist are people too, treat us like one.
    3. Don't tell an Atheist that they need to ask god for forgiveness.{this will piss them off)
  • Igor star-child Toronto:
    1. To bless you we ruddily answer f*** you.
    2. Do not congratulate us with religious cards.
    3. Guys in cheap black suits do not approach the guy reading "origin of Species" in subway in order to preach about Jesus.
    4. Don't think you are better than us.
    5. We don't celebrate Christmas, or any other jimigy.
    6. most important don't cam to my door every month because it is annoying, it makes you look stupid, and you are just setting yourself up for being made fun of.

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