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JOL1KEY2BOL3's Photo JOL1KEY2BOL3 Posts: 16,299
5/8/11 11:58 A

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I love this topic. I am an atheist and came from a mother and father who were atheists. I know nothing else and cannot fathom the belief in the fables from the world's great religious books.

However, extraordinarily enough, when I was very young, my parents did give me a gift or two at Christmas time, when they could afford it, but never believed in telling me any lies like there was a "Santa". I was also told, though, not to spoil it for children who were told the fable.

Everyone thought my mother was religious because of how she acted and how she helped people, but she was far from it! I think my father was more interested in challenging people's beliefs. He came from the South and knew there was anti-Semitism there, so he flaunted Jewish symbols just to show he had the freedom to do so! (He had a very interesting history, having been adopted by Gentiles, but born to a Jewish mother. Judaism was interesting to him because of that.) He also got into many discussions about his right to be an atheist! (We were threatened a few times because of it!) (Also for having black friends.)

Anyway, don't want to get into a life history, but I love music, color, and dancing, so festivals that include those are okay with me!!! I realize most come from man's need to get together and celebrate!

I don't have children, but if I did, I'm sure I would do even more!

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CASSIES's Photo CASSIES Posts: 1,376
5/6/11 3:55 P

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Hi Breathe Music,

I love your name too. That's what first attracted me to your page, and then it was love at first sight! I Do all the fun holiday stuff with my daughter. And I might occasioanlly go to church with my mother. I had my daughter baptized as part of a spiritual celebration. I am not religious, but love spiritual good feelings tha I feel intertwine through all people. My husband also loves to pray and is actually a minister of a religion called spiritualism.

My daughter just loves all culture and religion and is open to it all. She identifies as no religion in particular. We love Buddhism and I tell her that Jesus teaches us how to love. We all love to om at the end of yoga and think of all the people that my be hurt, sad or lonely.

Thank goodness she doesn't have to contend with all the guilt and angst of the catholic schools I went to ....although I do enough on my own to angst her up!

Customs, culture and holiday fun are all good...and its not being hypocritical and you are not overthinking it.

I love this board beecause we all do our own thing. Its such a positive community of like minded people.

So glad to see you around.


�The more we witness our emotional reactions and understand how they work, the easier it is to refrain.� ― Pema Ch�dr�n



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BARBARA_BOO's Photo BARBARA_BOO Posts: 9,794
5/5/11 11:05 P

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I smile and happily accept all good wishes, too. The point that was made below about "togetherness" during holidays being close to the real meaning for those days makes sense to me. Good vibes between people are much more enjoyable than arguments about belief, aren't they?



Boo, Barb, BSue, Queen Legarathien of Nargothrond

"YOU'RE NEVER TOO OLD TO PLAY!"

~Team Leader, Separation of Church and Weight
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~Team Leader, The Darker Side of SparkPeople www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i
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BILBY4's Photo BILBY4 SparkPoints: (48,096)
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5/5/11 9:33 P

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I don't celebrate Christmas or Easter, hence no cards, decorations, gatherings or presents. As I work for myself I'm usually at work on these days; I take time off when I feel like taking it. If someone says Merry Christmas I say thank you.

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THISYEARSMODEL's Photo THISYEARSMODEL Posts: 3,292
5/5/11 8:05 P

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I'm not atheist or agnostic but don't refer to myself as Christian either, because I believe in spirituality instead of religion. I do, however, celebrate the DAYS that others might refer to as the Christian religious holidays. Here's why:

1. I celebrate them as days of peace or togetherness or reflection, which is probably the real meaning they were supposed to have under religion's cast of characters.

2. The calendar now and the calendar "then" are two different animals, and religious holiday dates were adjusted to coincide with seasonal planting dates, harvest dates, celebrating the Winter Solstice, etc. (I've heard scholars say that Jesus, if he existed, was actually probably born nowhere near our December 25.) Also, Christian holiday traditions borrow heavily from Pagan holiday rituals, as well as from many religions that were older than the Christian faith.

All combined, I think that gives anyone license to celebrate any way they want to and make their own holidays out of those dates.



Edited by: THISYEARSMODEL at: 5/5/2011 (20:08)
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LMB-ESQ's Photo LMB-ESQ Posts: 12,197
5/5/11 6:22 P

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It still bugs me when people say "I'll pray for you" but I know they mean well, so I try to not to show irritation. Unless of course, they get in my face about it, then I show plenty of irritation.

I don't "do" religious holidays. I don't think I've decorated my house for any holiday, religious or otherwise in at least 15 years. If somebody else does a holiday and wants me to come, I will. Otherwise I usually overlook it.

We gave up gift exchanges ages ago. The bigger the family got, the harder it became to shop, and of course, there was the money. Holidays are now just an excuse to get together and eat, which is fine.

Love that Santa picture!!

***** Laurie in Northeast Ohio *****

Fortunate are you if you love a dog, for that dog will surely love you.

Fly Free my friend.... for only in true freedom can we find our true selves

Treat stressful situations like a dog... If you can't eat it or play with it, just pee on it and walk away!

Neat Link: The Rules for Being Human rules4humans.com/


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BARBARA_BOO's Photo BARBARA_BOO Posts: 9,794
5/5/11 5:44 P

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Yes, to everything that our beloved MUIRGENAGAIN has said!

Our major focus is on weight loss and maintenance issues. However, there is no subject off limits here. We are not against religious beliefs. We are for tolerance, whether someone has a specific belief system or not.

We just don't pray for you if you make a mistake. Instead, we support and applaud you for your efforts. We are here for the love!
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Smooches!

My family is all grown up, and they have requested that we not exchange Christmas gifts because of budget issues (it had become a hassle and people were spending money they couldn't afford to spend). My husband is a Baha'i and I am an atheist. Our 3 daughters have agnostic leanings. There is mutual respect among everyone in the immediate family.

My family in the South thinks I'm a heath-urn and that he's in a "cult". They still love us and, no doubt, pray for us to come to our senses.
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Boo, Barb, BSue, Queen Legarathien of Nargothrond

"YOU'RE NEVER TOO OLD TO PLAY!"

~Team Leader, Separation of Church and Weight
www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i
ndividual.asp?gid=2072

~Team Leader, The Darker Side of SparkPeople www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i
ndividual.asp?gid=89


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SWIFTSEATURTLE's Photo SWIFTSEATURTLE Posts: 3,328
5/5/11 1:07 P

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Scroll down to the Santa Claus half way down the page. I have this pic. in my computer but this is the only link I could find for it. I don't know anything about this blog and haven't read it so. . . . The picture is how I really feel about all the holidays.

www.tinyurl.com/44wau64 javascript:void(0)

SWIFTSEATURTLE's Photo SWIFTSEATURTLE Posts: 3,328
5/5/11 12:46 P

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I love your username!

About your post - yes to all of it. I carried on the non-religious parts, and something of the religious - felt hypocritical about it, but overall do not regret it. Love discussing this subject. That's one thing this team is for!

I can Sparkmail the long story - attempting to post it would be too, too long.

Lots of these Christian traditions have roots in paganism!

Edited by: SWIFTSEATURTLE at: 5/5/2011 (12:48)
BREATHEMUSIC's Photo BREATHEMUSIC Posts: 39
5/5/11 12:04 P

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Just wondering, for those of you who are atheist or agnostic or whatever.... do you still observe any of the various holidays? what about with your kids if you have any?

It's one of those things that I've thought about what would I do if/when I have kids and my own family. I mean, I grew up in a religious household. I still go home for christmas and easter and visit and do gifts and baskets and all that. I'll even attend church on occasion with my mom if she invites me for a special occasion.

While I don't want to push a religion on any kids I may have and they can choose to believe what they want, I can't help but have fond memories of the christmas tree, and waking up early to do gifts and a big family breakfast. My mom used to hide our easter baskets and leave a plastic egg with a clue in it, which would lead to another clue, and another clue, till we got to the basket. I really do love all of the non-religious practices that our society has added on to religious observances. But at the same time, it almost seems hypocritical. Maybe I'm over thinking it. Guess I just thought it might be an interesting topic of discussion. (or am I missing the point of this group and we're just not supposed to talk about anything that involves religion here? If so, my bad, sorry!)

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