Hot answers tagged

224

I am an atheist myself so I'm going to answer it as if you would say it to me: I'm an atheist, which means that heaven/hell/praying have no value (good nor bad, just void) to me. The act of praying is of no benefit to me, nor will I see it like that, despite what you think. What I can see is the gesture. It means you're thinking of me, wishing good for me, ...


125

As Martjin describes it, I'm a more "extreme" atheist, in that I probably would be offended by a Christian offering to pray for me, especially if they knew I was an atheist. So I offer this as an alternative perspective which may or may not be relevant, depending on how "extreme" of an atheist the person you're asking about is. This answer may come off as ...


112

Anyone with a basic grasp on interpersonal skills wouldn't be posting this question. This title is unequivocally rude. Just to be clear, this is not my real answer, it's the example that proves the point. You were intending to send your short message to this person, likely with no surrounding context. When you read this title, before you read the rest of ...


81

I am an atheist who recently lost 4 close family members in a very short period. Most of my friends and family are theist and specifically Christian so this scenario came up a lot and I wanted to share my perspective. General feelings on "I'll keep you in my prayers" At any time, I find this statement awkward. It feels like a little kid saying they will ...


77

Because it was something you used to do for the people who lived there before, you could use that to basically ease your way into it. Mention to him that you used to do it for the previous tenants/owners of the house, and that you really don't mind continuing to help out with it for them as well, if they want. Worst comes to worst, they decline, you continue ...


71

I have been in your position but never in such an extreme case. You must understand that he is going through a tough emotional time and he isn't really thinking how it might affect your friendship. What worked for me was: First: Set clear boundaries with your friend. Don't answer texts and calls during work hours or quality time with your family or ...


63

Anyone with basic understanding of how Y works would be able to infer that from the examples. I can’t teach you how Y works. That's pretty rude. You're basically using a polite way of saying "If you weren't incompetent, you wouldn't be asking this question", which is kinda true in your case, but that's not what you want to bring across and not helpful to ...


47

I had to face the same problem with my classmates in my university often. After 2 years I decided to be clear about it. What I did was: Do my work without telling them that I have already done it. Helped them with combined studies, with the intention of helping them learning what we missed. Sometimes telling them that they need to do it themselves because ...


47

If this comes off harshly, I apologize. I’m merely trying to state my often discussed (between friends and family) thoughts and opinions succinctly; though brevity sounds sharp. I’m a Christian, and I resent it when people offer me prayers in my times of need; especially in a public or work setting. (And even in a private setting, but especially the other ...


42

Don't talk about your prayer life in public, in general. Jesus said not to. Besides the points that some other people have made about informing him of your desire to pray for him making him uncomfortable, there's another issue, here: You identify as a Christian, so presumably you hold the words of Jesus as being the highest authority on these issues. So, I'...


27

This is a tough one and the blow back from Anne might include her cutting you out of her life. My Story A little over a decade ago I was involved in a religious cult and I completely bought into it hook, line, and sinker. For the first year I showed positive results, impressing my family, friends, and other members in my religious community with my "...


27

Don't ! Others have commented already along this line, but I feel they are pulling their punches. I'll phrase the following as friendly as I can, but without dilluting the message. I am a militant atheist in the sense of Dawkins. If your friend is feeling strongly about their atheism, this answer applies to them. If I were to go through a difficult ...


26

I'd like to offer my opinion as a seminarian. "is it rude to offer prayers to an atheist"? How would you feel if a Buddhist offered a meditation for you? Or a Zoroastrian offered help in their religious form? It's all about how your beliefs impact the other party. We as Christians believe in prayer and acknowledge its power. At the same time, if we ...


24

For starters, congratulations on committing to be healthier - it's a great gift to yourself. The dynamics between work and home are different so I'll answer them slightly differently. The bottom line is this is for your health so people suffering a modicum of repetitiveness on your part should count for less than your well being. At work Be firm and ...


23

This is a tricky situation. Your nephew found out not because she told him, but because he overheard some strangers' conversation and went online checking. I don't think something good could possibly come out of "hey, I found out online that you're doing porn - are you okay?" I have a friend who was an escort for a few years. Although he started doing this ...


22

Realize that you are also saying no for their own sake. To me, it seems that you are not at all unwilling to help. You will definitely help them if they face an actual difficulty. What you are trying to avoid is being exploited. Letting them exploit you is not going to earn you any thanks and not going to teach them anything useful for life. You can ...


21

Another atheist here. As other answers have already discussed, different atheists will feel differently about this kind of thing. I won't rehash what those answers have said, but I do want to add: the content of the prayer is very important. Some years back, I was going through a rough time in my life - deaths in the family and other unpleasant stuff. One ...


19

After two "no thanks" (probably even after one) I would stop smiling and say honestly, this is something I can do without help and enjoy doing. By insisting on helping you're making me feel weak and incompetent and I don't like that. Please stop. Or possibly "making me feel that you see me as weak and incompetent" It's not rude, but it's blunt. To make ...


17

First of all, I'm a strong atheist myself, But even I, who is strongly against theism, I definitely wouldn't be offended if anyone declared that he prayed for me. Even if I think that it's a waste of time, it's obvious that the only thing that this person means is that they care for me and want to help me to get better. If it was about a person in mortal ...


15

In my experience "holding space" is essentially a rebranding of empathetic response. It's something most people do naturally under the right circumstances, but it may require more effort for some people in some circumstances. Have you ever sat with someone who was dying? Not the going to die someday, or eventually, but someone who was going to die in the ...


14

Gary Chapman wrote in The Five Love Languages about how to express compassion. Specifically, he talks about the different ways in which people express compassion. It's important to understand that how you show compassion and how others receive compassion can be different, and these differences can result in missed messages. In a close, intimate ...


13

But any more questions than that feels forced. This is the key point! It feels forced to you... and that’s what it often is. We feel compelled to return a favor after someone has helped us. We don’t necessarily want friendship, but instead a method for paying back a debt. So to answer your question: How do I maintain/develop my relation with an ...


12

This isn't your place to do. The last thing she wants to hear from her own partner is that she is unhealthy and needs to diet. It sounds like, from what you write, that her issue is mostly with her self-image, and by throwing out "suggestions" well meaning as they might be, you're only compounding that issue. You say: I did try to give her some advice ...


12

Firstly I'd ask yourself - are you willing to edit it for him? After all: You think they have a worthwhile message You are more than capable as you have multiple degrees You care enough about their reputation to want to intervene. Whether you are willing to edit it or not, you could begin by saying: I think you have a really worthwhile message in your ...


12

I'm deaf, and American sign language is my first language. I've worked on my English extensively thanks to my mom. This made it so my English is noticeably better than much of my deaf peers. I often got asked to review papers from my deaf peers (whose English wasn't good) during college, and I encountered the same situation as you - not having the time or ...


10

I was raised to offer to help, so I've probably been seen this way from time to time... My grandmother was the type of woman who would smack her grandsons for not holding the door for a lady. That said, she was also a very independent woman who didn't take any crap from people. One of her lines was: If I wanted your help, I would have asked. Add a sneer ...


10

I do have some experience with Anorexia nervosa and will try to provide some help, although request caution with everything a stranger on the Internet writes. There are two main problems you are facing: You don't know what problem she has. You are "only" an old friend who didn't have contact with her for a very long time. Possibility 1: No Eating Disorder ...


10

You are smart. Now, you need to act smarter. Apart from the answers given here which state that you mention that have not yet completed your work, you can be a little more diplomatic. For e.g., X comes for help. X : Hey, I need your help in this presentation. I would like to borrow yours and make changes. You : Hi. I have not yet completed mine. This one ...


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