…By Neemo

Someone once said to me; we should be meeting up in church. So I responded, I don’t really go to church. And you should have seen the look of horror that crossed their face. So they ask me why? And I respond I am not a Christian. And at that they almost collapse. Coz they know I am not a Muslim (apparently the lack of a Hijab or an Arabic sounding name disqualifies you from that). They immediately assumed I am an atheist and don’t believe in God. In fact, that’s exactly what they said with a sneer, “So you are an atheist!” (And what’s wrong with being an atheist? I will discuss that in a later post)

 It was not the shock that disturbed me. It was the look I was given. The look said I was of a lesser value. Less of a person. Less moral because I do not go to Church. My integrity was called into question. I know that there is a relationship between morality and religion. But as we have seen from the thinking of terrorists, morals can be twisted in the name of religion.  From that conversation I understood why atheists in the UK have felt a need to form an association(s). I guess they felt they needed support. I found it particularly funny when they responded to some Christian posters/adverts that were appearing on buses. The Christian posters went something like “God is coming soon so now is your chance.” And the atheists countered, “There is no God so stop worrying about it.” Atheists founding an organization with people that adhere to a particular belief. Hmmm.  Kinda sounds ironic don’t it? But now I see their point. Given it is Europe that is a lot less religious than anywhere in the world, I think they felt that they needed some support system or structure. To meet with like-minded people. Because if they were getting the same response I was getting (and I am not even an atheist) then I don’t blame them.

I have never felt anything other than appreciated, loved and supported by all of you. Whatever my beliefs.

Then I thought what a joy it is to have the friends that I do. We appreciate each other’s beliefs and encourage learning and interaction without belittling anyone. I have never felt anything other than appreciated, loved and supported by all of you. Whatever my beliefs. Why can’t the world be more like us?

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