True story: Last weekend, I was showing my dad a couple of the articles about the ChicagoCor Atheist Billboard.
His reaction was, “Do you realize your name is now associated with atheism?!”
My family knows about this website and my activism, but they don’t read it and we rarely talk about it.
I can’t imagine trying to keep everything I do a secret from them, though, because it takes up so much of my life outside of work.
Jeremy runs a blog called Le Café Witteveen and has kept his atheism relatively under wraps from his family. Some of them know about his lack of religious beliefs, but they certainly don’t talk about it.
But that’s probably going to change. Jeremy just found out that family members have been lurking on his site for months now, reading it without his knowledge, aware of his beliefs without him ever having come out to them.
But maybe that’s a good thing. He’s out now. He can be completely open and honest when talking about faith without needing to hide it from anyone:
… So the conundrum is how to keep this a place of expressing, without self editing, how I view the world and keep the idea in tact that I “love the sinner and hate the sin” per se.
I loathe “hate sin love sinner” It’s a ruthless lie in church vernacular. The main sins this statement addresses are sexual sins, namely homosexuality. You never hear someone say, “Hate the lies love the liar” or “hate the work done on sabbath but love the worker”. It’s hands-down the most insincere level of dishonest judgement that a person of any background can make.
How do I make this statement pertain to me. Do I say, “I love the religious person but hate the religion they follow”? Because that’s intolerant and haughty (but it’s a certainly true feeling, eek).
Is there really no way to pursue the topics I might like to pursue without making people feel ehrm … poopy?
I’m sure he’ll find a way to do it respectfully. You can criticize their beliefs even without directly criticizing them.
And maybe reading about his experience will encourage other hidden or anonymous bloggers to come out to their loved ones.