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Old 09-25-2007, 01:44 PM   #161
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You don't object, I suppose, to the day off you undoubtedly receive on the 25th of December, or that the New York Stock Exchange is closed on Good Friday -- the Muslims and Jews are probably wondering when on earth will the entire workforce be given a holiday at your company for Yom Kippur or the begining of Rammadan. And the Wiccan wants to know why isn't Earth Day a national holiday. And your office birthday parties are really annoying to the Jehovah Witnesses in your office -- why don't you just do away with them? Yeah, I know you'll all say these are part of our culture and the religious meaning is secondary, like Thanksgiving; yada yada yada!
is there a difference between what is right and what is accepted?

that most all of the u.s.a. gets a day off for mass for christ only makes the practice accepted; it doesn't make it right. now that i'm retired, i would argue that accepted practice is wrong. the stores are closed and for two days prior, the supermarket is a mess. if anything, now it seems just an inconvenience. though one thing i love of xmas morning is that it is the only day of the year i can safely bike on federal highway. not that there's anything particularly scenic about the ride but it is a nice annual change of pace. i have no idea what you are all doing then but you're not trying to run me down, so i'm happy.

just because a cultural event is accepted, does that make it right? public lynchings were at one time accepted, but were they ever right?

how interesting that you can take something which might be accepted, but which might not be right, and use that as argument against something which might be right but not accepted.
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Old 09-25-2007, 02:03 PM   #162
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I remember a few years ago when working in Texas. It was Good Friday and a group of workmates were discussing plans for "Sunday". I remember walking into the room during the discussion and a manager asked me what special plans I had for Sunday.

Me: Heck, I don't know yet. What is special about Sunday
He: It is a religious holiday!!
Me: Oh yeah, I guess I forgot... Has something to do with the Christian faith, right?
Them: Stunned silence
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Old 09-25-2007, 02:04 PM   #163
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is there a difference between what is right and what is accepted?

that most all of the u.s.a. gets a day off for mass for christ only makes the practice accepted; it doesn't make it right. now that i'm retired, i would argue that accepted practice is wrong. the stores are closed and for two days prior, the supermarket is a mess. if anything, now it seems just an inconvenience. though one thing i love of xmas morning is that it is the only day of the year i can safely bike on federal highway. not that there's anything particularly scenic about the ride but it is a nice annual change of pace. i have no idea what you are all doing then but you're not trying to run me down, so i'm happy.

just because a cultural event is accepted, does that make it right? public lynchings were at one time accepted, but were they ever right?

how interesting that you can take something which might be accepted, but which might not be right, and use that as argument against something which might be right but not accepted.
I would respond to your post but I'm afraid in zeal to respond I might over-step the bounds of discourse and engage in condescending or ad homenim banter. I freely admit that I have characterized some views or examples in this thread as "silly" or "intolerant" and have frequently taken an unwarranted dig against people -- I apologize for that -- it was childish and I know better.

I won't post anymore here because, quite frankly, I don't feel the last moderator who weighed in this thread has moderated the course of the thread, even-handedly. That's my feeling. In fact, this is my last post from this Forum.
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Old 09-25-2007, 02:38 PM   #164
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That's a funny accomodation; it's actually no accomdation -- and if you can't figure that one out, so help you God. And regarding the intolerance issue, if you can't figure that one out too, I'm afraid it's pointless to debate; it's been spelled out so many times already. Maybe I'll spell it out again below.

You just don't get it again; a nondemoninational prayer, which does not profess any particular faith -- except the belief in something greater than ourselves -- is only upsetting to an Atheist. So, the Atheist should not be forced to participate in the group prayer -- it's against his religion but should his right to be left alone trump everyone else's. If you ask Bosco, his answer is yes. If you believe that Bosco's view trumps everyone else's, then it seems to me that you're pretty much intolerant of the views of others. It's his way or the highway, isn't it? If the group forced him to participate in the group prayer, then the group would be intolerant of his views. Is that very difficult to understand.
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You seem to intentionally ignore that it is fundamental right not to have anyone impose their religious beliefs on others. It seems to me that an open prayer at work is an imposition of the beliefs of the majority onto a minority. I am sure that you also know that this country doesn't have a majority rule and that minorities rights are protected n ot only tolerated. In this case Atheists are clearly a minority that deserve to be protected as other minority groups do.

I would be very bothered by an open prayer at work. Would I say something? No - Of course; since it migh (only might) mean my career their would be in jeopardy. Since the boss is insensitive to this aspect makes you think that the job would also be in jeopardy doesn't it?

There is a BIG difference between individual prayer (clearly protected) and a communal organized open prayer at work (crearly prohibited). The former doesn' t trump the right of anybody; the latter trumps the right of atheists, freethinkers, and non-christians. The atheist's right not to be imposed religious beliefs and doesn't trump the rights of others as you incorrectly state.

By the same token the removal of " In God We Trust" on coins doesn't trump the right of the theists. The addition of "In God We Don't Trust" would be though. Can you imagine how offensive it would be to most theists?

How offensive the boss would have been if he would profess out loud that he is not a believer? If a bunch of atheist would tell during the prayer that they are not believer?

In conclusion don't you think that open organized prayers are best left in the places of worship or other places where everyone has the same beliefs? Not at work, not at school, not in government, not in sport. And No it doesn't prevent anyone to pray whenever they wish!!!!
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Old 09-25-2007, 02:53 PM   #165
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It has a compulsory element when you are expected (from a job perspective) to be at a meeting and are presented with the unwelcomed scenario.
I often feel the unwelcomed scenario tends to be the actual topic of the meeting itself - much more so than any version of a "prayer"

Gathering us all together to listen to someone tell us things that do not necessarily pertain to us is very offensive to me! Wasting my tax dollars, and my time!
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Old 09-25-2007, 03:10 PM   #166
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No Rich, it's your view that it's compulsory. You and others have read far too much into the original scenario. You infer that if you walk out the lunch when the CEO says grace that you're career is doomed at the company -- now where is that found in the post. Very polemical, isn't it? So you say it's compulsory. I'm not ignoring your arguments -- I just don't agree with them.
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Old 09-25-2007, 03:10 PM   #167
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I would respond to your post but I'm afraid in zeal to respond I might over-step the bounds of discourse and engage in condescending or ad homenim banter. I freely admit that I have characterized some views or examples in this thread as "silly" or "intolerant" and have frequently taken an unwarranted dig against people -- I apologize for that -- it was childish and I know better.

I won't post anymore here because, quite frankly, I don't feel the last moderator who weighed in this thread has moderated the course of the thread, even-handedly. That's my feeling. In fact, this is my last post from this Forum.
I don't see you post as attacking me personally... but I do find it funny that saying a prayer is 'tolerant', but not saying a prayer is 'intolerant'...

And I still don't know if you had answered the specific question of if the boss had said a grace to the devil would that be 'tolerant'?

We will always disagree on this, but I think the law is more on my side than yours if it ever went to a trial..

Sorry to see you go... but it is your decision.
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Old 09-25-2007, 03:13 PM   #168
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Was he suggesting that you should also be crucified, drop dead, and pray for resurrection?!?
Doubt it, but that's even funnier.
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Old 09-25-2007, 03:16 PM   #169
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Sorry. I still don't get what the problem for an atheist to hear a prayer would be. I never have understood this.

As I have said several times in this thread, I'm not a Christian. But I live among many folks that are, and am present on many occasions where a meal is blessed. I go to funerals in churches - people pray there. I go to weddings in churches - people pray there. Was I imposed on, religiously?

Do some of you avoid these occasions like vampires avoid daylight? And if you don't, how is being present when someone blesses a meal intolerable when sitting through a church wedding is not? I'm having trouble with that.

People have been praying around me all my life - yet I've never felt harmed, intimidated or threatened by this. It's just never occured to me to become indignant, or to attempt to bring a social/religious occasion to a halt and insist that everyone has to be like me.

What have I missed in nearly 60 year of un-enlightenment? I always pictured atheists as sort of more resiliant than this namby-pamby stuff. Instead, the image I get now is of the Dorothy's Wicked Witch: "I'm meeellllttting. I'mmmmm meeeeeeelllllltiing."

Oops sorry. I guess little Billy got a dab of prayer on ya there, Hotshot. Here... wipe it off with this. Well damn! Your old arm just pulled right off.
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Old 09-25-2007, 03:20 PM   #170
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Sorry. I still don't get what the problem for an atheist to hear a prayer would be. I never have understood this.
Its not the "hearing," its the implication that you must participate and go along with someone else's religious beliefs unless you want to imperil your career.
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Old 09-25-2007, 03:20 PM   #171
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I won't post anymore here because, quite frankly, I don't feel the last moderator who weighed in this thread has moderated the course of the thread, even-handedly.
We'll ask the CEO to say a prayer for him at the next company meeting...
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Old 09-25-2007, 03:35 PM   #172
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Sorry. I still don't get what the problem for an atheist to hear a prayer would be. I never have understood this.

As I have said several times in this thread, I'm not a Christian. But I live among many folks that are, and am present on many occasions where a meal is blessed. I go to funerals in churches - people pray there. I go to weddings in churches - people pray there. Was I imposed on, religiously?

Do some of you avoid these occasions like vampires avoid daylight? And if you don't, how is being present when someone blesses a meal intolerable when sitting through a church wedding is not? I'm having trouble with that.
I'm with you, Joss: I recently attended a bar mitzvah. The blessing of the bread was charming and gave me a sense of reverence for others' rituals. I enjoy my Muslim friends, and was honored to sit with one at a coffee shop on the first day of Ramaden and had guess what, a cuppa joe.

Hope no one brings up the Pledge of Allegence and combines the two bugaboos, religion and politics.
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Old 09-25-2007, 03:35 PM   #173
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Its not the "hearing," its the implication that you must participate and go along with someone else's religious beliefs unless you want to imperil your career.
Thanks Joe.

Brewer, I suppose I'll just be grateful that I've not experienced a career situation where being civil and decent to people was outweighed by "implications". Sorry about the rest of you. Better luck in your next lives.
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Old 09-25-2007, 03:39 PM   #174
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Sorry. I still don't get what the problem for an atheist to hear a prayer would be. I never have understood this.
You have to accept the beliefs of others at face value.
You don't need to understand it to accept it. If they tell you they are bothered by it, trust them. They are!
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Old 09-25-2007, 03:51 PM   #175
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But I live among many folks that are, and am present on many occasions where a meal is blessed. I go to funerals in churches - people pray there. I go to weddings in churches - people pray there. Was I imposed on, religiously?
Come on there. I am sure you understand the difference between praying at a denominational religious service and imposing a prayer during a secular activity such as a sports event, a school class or a work meeting.

In the former case you are a willfull participant (or observer) and you knew what you where getting into. In the latter case you have been attracted to a religious event under a false pretense, sort-of.
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Old 09-25-2007, 03:57 PM   #176
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I would respond to your post but I'm afraid in zeal to respond I might over-step the bounds of discourse and engage in condescending or ad homenim banter. I freely admit that I have characterized some views or examples in this thread as "silly" or "intolerant" and have frequently taken an unwarranted dig against people -- I apologize for that -- it was childish and I know better.

I won't post anymore here because, quite frankly, I don't feel the last moderator who weighed in this thread has moderated the course of the thread, even-handedly. That's my feeling. In fact, this is my last post from this Forum.
ChrisC,
I think you are getting a sense or "taste" of what is wrong with the "blessing of the food"
May the blessing of the Invisible Pink Unicorn be upon you.
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Old 09-25-2007, 04:00 PM   #177
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Amen! Godspeed! Oops, figures of speech.
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Old 09-25-2007, 04:31 PM   #178
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"You have to accept the beliefs of others at face value. You don't need to understand it to accept it. If they tell you they are bothered by it, trust them. They are!"

No. Actually... I don't. To do so would be to accept any ugly proposition foisted off as "beliefs". How about Klan lynchings? How about numerous genocides? Then there were those wonderful folks that brought us the Inquisition and now Jihad. "Beliefs", every one. Sorry. No.

"Come on there. I am sure you understand the difference between praying at a denominational religious service and imposing a prayer during a secular activity such as a sports event, a school class or a work meeting... In the former case you are a willfull participant (or observer) and you knew what you where getting into. In the latter case you have been attracted to a religious event under a false pretense, sort-of."

I think you're leaning awful hard on that "sort-of". Maybe I have an unfair advantage over you in that I've read through this thread from the start. An employee asking for a blessing of a company meal has to stretch a hell of a long ways to qualify as a "religious event under false pretenses".... even "sort of".

And like I said way, way back about page 11:

"I live in the South but am not of the Christian persuasion. I work (supervise) a local government department, 15 of us all together. We are much of a family and have a potluck lunch about quarterly. We've been doing this for 10-15 years. We have a blessing of the food and each time we do it. Sometimes we give thanks for having safely survived another hurricane season. The work we do is often hazardous, so sometimes we give thanks that no one got hurt since the last time."

And we'd laugh our asses off to have these occasions described as "religious".

Nope. I reckon it's them scary "implications" that's terrifing folks. Glad we ain't never had none.
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Old 09-25-2007, 04:50 PM   #179
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I would respond to your post but I'm afraid in zeal to respond I might over-step the bounds of discourse and engage in condescending or ad homenim banter. I freely admit that I have characterized some views or examples in this thread as "silly" or "intolerant" and have frequently taken an unwarranted dig against people -- I apologize for that -- it was childish and I know better.

I won't post anymore here because, quite frankly, I don't feel the last moderator who weighed in this thread has moderated the course of the thread, even-handedly. That's my feeling. In fact, this is my last post from this Forum.
something i said?

as far as i could follow, a moderator possibly became dismissive to counter your condescension. i wouldn't take it personally; i'd just consider it motivated by a sense of nuclear parity. nothing a little diplomacy wouldn't work out.

apologies are always better received as sincere when taking or building a stand rather than tossed like a grenade on the run. so i am sorry if anything that i said caused you to flee. i meant none of my critique personally. it happens that my good sense of gestalt makes up for my lack of i.q. and so if i happen upon an object that doesn't quite fit the pattern, i'm probably going to highlight it. it amuses me, but then, i'm easily amused.

for example, and not picking on you, it just so happens there the example lies:

Quote:
And your office birthday parties are really annoying to the Jehovah Witnesses in your office -- why don't you just do away with them?
is there not a difference between religious & non-religious ceremony. name me one person who does not agree that silent prayer is prayer. now how many can you name who would identify a birthday party as an offensive religious act. so while no one means to offend a jehovah witness by blowing out a birthday candle and certainly minorities require protection, can you not see the difference between blowing on a birthday candle and praying over a candle or bread on the table?

one of the wonderful things i've found in this forum is precisely how people here attack ideas, be they mine or anyone's. it takes courage to explore your own ideas, to flush them out into the open, to subject them to the scrutiny of your peers. they will get their teeth in it and rip it to shreads when there is just one loose thread showing. and when they are done, you will have a vessel that either holds water or at least one that you can no longer poke a lot of holes into. but you only get this when people are willing to challenge your ideas. and you only take away the benefit when you are willing to stick around and take it.
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Old 09-25-2007, 05:02 PM   #180
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"You have to accept the beliefs of others at face value. You don't need to understand it to accept it. If they tell you they are bothered by it, trust them. They are!"

No. Actually... I don't. To do so would be to accept any ugly proposition foisted off as "beliefs". How about Klan lynchings? How about numerous genocides? Then there were those wonderful folks that brought us the Inquisition and now Jihad. "Beliefs", every one. Sorry. No.

"Come on there. I am sure you understand the difference between praying at a denominational religious service and imposing a prayer during a secular activity such as a sports event, a school class or a work meeting... In the former case you are a willfull participant (or observer) and you knew what you where getting into. In the latter case you have been attracted to a religious event under a false pretense, sort-of."

I think you're leaning awful hard on that "sort-of". Maybe I have an unfair advantage over you in that I've read through this thread from the start. An employee asking for a blessing of a company meal has to stretch a hell of a long ways to qualify as a "religious event under false pretenses".... even "sort of".

And like I said way, way back about page 11:

"I live in the South but am not of the Christian persuasion. I work (supervise) a local government department, 15 of us all together. We are much of a family and have a potluck lunch about quarterly. We've been doing this for 10-15 years. We have a blessing of the food and each time we do it. Sometimes we give thanks for having safely survived another hurricane season. The work we do is often hazardous, so sometimes we give thanks that no one got hurt since the last time."

And we'd laugh our asses off to have these occasions described as "religious".

Nope. I reckon it's them scary "implications" that's terrifing folks. Glad we ain't never had none.
Joss
I understand your point of view.

What we are talking about here is beliefs not actions. I am sticking to the fact that we have to accept the beliefs of others. Understanding would be a first step toward agreeing. What else are you going to do? Put Jews and Nazis in the same room together up until they understand each other? Put blacks and KKK together? Since you can't do that we have to accept to coexist with people with don't understand. Even repulsive opinions are protected but NOT actions (such as lynching etc). Remember ACLU lawyers protected the right of Neo-nazis to parade in Jewish Skokie IL.

IMHO the CEO should have refused the blessing on the grounds that this was a diverse crowds not necessarily evangelical. Of course I don't know how large the crowd was but if large: How many Jews, Moslems, Confucians, Atheists, Shintos, you-name-it were in the crowd?

Am I wrong or the South_East is changing and it far less monolithic than it used to be and the evangelical christians will need to adapt to more diversity?
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