Author Topic: God in Polite Society  (Read 252 times)

Offline St Truth (OP)

God in Polite Society
« on: October 02, 2017, 11:47:39 AM »
About a month ago, one of those irritating old women came up to me in church to pat me on the head. I hate people who do that. It shows utter disrespect for the person. It's always snaggle-toothed hideous old women who do that. Anyway, she said she heard I did very well in my GCSE exam. She asked me if it was because I said my prayers. I told her no, I didn't say any prayer. She said she was sure I did. My mum who heard the conversation intervened and told the stupid old woman that I did say my prayers and she then took the woman aside to talk about other things. Later, my mum chided me. She said I should not contradict the old woman. I told her it was hypocritical to say I said my prayers when both my mum and I knew that prayers never work and when you say your prayers you are doing a soliloquy. My mum said there were things you have to say in polite society. If you hear that a church member is in trouble, you have to say that you'll keep the person in your prayers. It's not a lie because everybody knows nobody is going to pray about it. It's just courtesy.

I told her that was dumb hypocrisy. If someone is in trouble, I won't talk about dumb prayers. I'll tell him I'm sorry about what has happened and I hope it'll get better. That's so much better than to keep the person in your prayer. My mum said that was all right too. But still if an old woman goes to an altar boy in church to congratulate him on his school work, it's inappropriate to tell her that I didn't pray. I don't agree. Telling the stupid old woman that I didn't pray was the mildest thing I could have said. I should have told her that if she touched my head again, I'd rape her granddaughter.  Of course I didn't say that to my mum. We don't say such things in polite society.

It's funny how a lot of people are just cultural Christians like both my parents. But they believe in saying the right religious things out of courtesy. It's dishonest and hypocritical.

I don't know what the rest of you think but I don't think God has a place in polite society. One can be equally polite without pretending to pray. The funny thing is that witch of an old woman herself probably doesn't really believe in God. But everybody is playing the Pretend-We-Are-Religious game. I think if everyone is really honest, 90% of churchgoers will say they don't really believe in God.

Offline St Truth (OP)

Re: God in Polite Society
« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2017, 12:27:29 PM »
There are many things about God believers that irritate me. Apart from the hypocrisy I've just mentioned, they also say the stupidest things. As a churchgoing altar boy, I get to meet more Christians than most people. There are many things believers say that grate on my nerves.

The other day, I heard an old man say 'Atheism is a religion'. I'm convinced anyone who says that must have the brain of a not-too-clever bonobo. In my argument with the sock puppet Drew_2017, I brought up a lot of the tricks employed by theists. There are many tricks up the sleeves of believers and one major trick is to shift the onus of proof. William Lane Craig does this all the time. Of course Craig is a slimy dishonest old toad who would have been one mean used car salesman. When a madman says that atheism is a religion he hopes to achieve two things by dishonest means:

1. He hopes to bring down the credibility of atheism to the level of his own religion.

2. When he calls atheism a religion (ie a belief in something), he hopes to mislead his listeners into thinking that the atheist then has the onus of proof. He must prove that his belief is true. In CF, one dumb woman insisted that the burden of proof was on the atheist to prove that there is no god. When I told her you can't prove a negative just as you can't prove there is NO teacup circling planet Mars, she replied that the atheist believed in a non-god and that's positive belief.

These are examples why it's easy to despise believers; they are so incredibly dumb.

There should be a law requiring such people to wear dunce caps.

Offline aitm

Re: God in Polite Society
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2017, 12:36:57 PM »
The anger is strong in this one.
A humans desire to live is exceeded only by their willingness to die for another. Even god cannot equal this magnificent sacrifice. No god has the right to judge them.-first tenant of the Panotheust

Offline St Truth (OP)

Re: God in Polite Society
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2017, 12:48:36 PM »
The anger is strong in this one.

No, there is no anger in me. I just can't stand stupid people who say stupid things and theists are notorious for saying the stupidest things. I'm still an altar boy and I like the rituals which are very old. I just don't like the dumbness that usually goes with it.  I think the stupid old women will die soon enough and once that happens, there will be far fewer morons around.

Re: God in Polite Society
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2017, 12:53:49 PM »
Then why you go to church is beyond me.  You willingly put yourself among the people who irritate you the most.
Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent,
Is he able but not willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able or willing?
Then why call him god?

Offline St Truth (OP)

Re: God in Polite Society
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2017, 12:59:28 PM »
Then why you go to church is beyond me.  You willingly put yourself among the people who irritate you the most.

I go with my parents. It's been like this all my life.

Offline Baruch

Re: God in Polite Society
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2017, 01:19:49 PM »
Then why you go to church is beyond me.  You willingly put yourself among the people who irritate you the most.

The stereotype is a maiden spinster aunt, who pinches your cheeks when she greets you ;-)
שלום

Re: God in Polite Society
« Reply #7 on: October 02, 2017, 03:20:29 PM »
About a month ago, one of those irritating old women came up to me in church to pat me on the head. I hate people who do that. It shows utter disrespect for the person.


Yeah, it's only funny when Benny Hill does it:




Quote
It's always snaggle-toothed hideous old women who do that. Anyway, she said she heard I did very well in my GCSE exam. She asked me if it was because I said my prayers. I told her no, I didn't say any prayer. She said she was sure I did.

She had faith in your praying, huh? At least you didn't tell her you prayed to Baal, or some such!



Quote
My mum who heard the conversation intervened and told the stupid old woman that I did say my prayers and she then took the woman aside to talk about other things. Later, my mum chided me. She said I should not contradict the old woman. I told her it was hypocritical to say I said my prayers when both my mum and I knew that prayers never work and when you say your prayers you are doing a soliloquy. My mum said there were things you have to say in polite society. If you hear that a church member is in trouble, you have to say that you'll keep the person in your prayers. It's not a lie because everybody knows nobody is going to pray about it. It's just courtesy.

I told her that was dumb hypocrisy. If someone is in trouble, I won't talk about dumb prayers. I'll tell him I'm sorry about what has happened and I hope it'll get better. That's so much better than to keep the person in your prayer. My mum said that was all right too. But still if an old woman goes to an altar boy in church to congratulate him on his school work, it's inappropriate to tell her that I didn't pray. I don't agree. Telling the stupid old woman that I didn't pray was the mildest thing I could have said. I should have told her that if she touched my head again, I'd rape her granddaughter.  Of course I didn't say that to my mum. We don't say such things in polite society.

Must conform to societal expectations...must conform! What will people think if we're honest with them, instead of playing some silly head game of pretending to believe what they expect us to believe?

I said to hell with that a long time ago. I may say nothing, but I won't try to deceive just for the sake of conformity. But you, being an altar boy, must keep up the appearances the Church insists on.

Quote
It's funny how a lot of people are just cultural Christians like both my parents. But they believe in saying the right religious things out of courtesy.

That's one of the reasons that religion is still flourishing in our society. I think the vast majority of those who claim to believe in the fairy tale do not, in fact, believe at all.

Quote
I don't know what the rest of you think but I don't think God has a place in polite society. One can be equally polite without pretending to pray. The funny thing is that witch of an old woman herself probably doesn't really believe in God. But everybody is playing the Pretend-We-Are-Religious game. I think if everyone is really honest, 90% of churchgoers will say they don't really believe in God.

It'd be nice if we could get a survey in which people would honestly answer the question of their belief. I think there are a lot more atheists out there than are willing to admit it.
« Last Edit: October 02, 2017, 03:30:35 PM by Unbeliever »
God Not Found
"And God promised men that good and obedient wives would be found in all corners of the world... then He made the earth round...and laughed and laughed and laughed...."
unknown

Re: God in Polite Society
« Reply #8 on: October 02, 2017, 03:25:14 PM »
The other day, I heard an old man say 'Atheism is a religion'. I'm convinced anyone who says that must have the brain of a not-too-clever bonobo.
I bet there are no bonobos that believe in God - they're all atheists, at least of the "weak" variety. I also think bonobos are smarter than the average theist, but I have no data to back up that contention.
God Not Found
"And God promised men that good and obedient wives would be found in all corners of the world... then He made the earth round...and laughed and laughed and laughed...."
unknown

Offline Baruch

Re: God in Polite Society
« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2017, 07:03:24 PM »
Keeping Up Appearances is a British social comedy ...



It isn't just a church survival technique for those people ;-)
שלום

Re: God in Polite Society
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2017, 08:54:25 PM »

The anger is strong in this one.
No, there is no anger in me. I just can't stand stupid people who say stupid things and theists are notorious for saying the stupidest things. I'm still an altar boy and I like the rituals which are very old. I just don't like the dumbness that usually goes with it.  I think the stupid old women will die soon enough and once that happens, there will be far fewer morons around.

Dunning-Kruger too.  Why am I not surprised?
« Last Edit: October 02, 2017, 08:57:17 PM by sdelsolray »

Re: God in Polite Society
« Reply #11 on: October 02, 2017, 10:48:31 PM »
I go with my parents. It's been like this all my life.
When you turn 16 will you still have to go?
Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent,
Is he able but not willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able or willing?
Then why call him god?

Offline St Truth (OP)

Re: God in Polite Society
« Reply #12 on: October 03, 2017, 01:19:53 AM »
When you turn 16 will you still have to go?

I'm so used to going to church with my parents on Sunday. We usually go earlier so I can put on my cassock and get ready for the Eucharist. There is always a little 'ceremony' in the vestry before we go in the procession to the altar. The altar boy takes the stole to the priest on some cushion of the correct colour of the season in the church calendar. The priest takes the stole and kisses the cross at the upper end of the stole and he puts it on. The joke we always make is in an RC church, the priest usually misses the cross and kisses the altar boy. LOL. Then the altar boys get the candles which are always put into very heavy silver candlesticks and we go out through a secret door to the main entrance of the church to wait for the processional played by the organist. The crucifer goes first followed by the altar boys. The priests go last but lately I have become taller and have been appointed a thurifer. You can only be a thurifer if you have grown in height. An altar boy who is still too short can't be a thurifer because it's a fire hazard if the thurible hits the floor or if the surplice gets caught in it.

Many people don't realise the training that's required before you can be an altar boy especially when the thurible is used. See this video of thurifer training:

[/

I have been an altar boy for as long as I can remember. It won't be the same if I just don't go to church. That's why I've said it's cultural. You can't just change overnight. I don't believe in God and neither do my parents. But going to church is a different thing altogether. It's a cultural thing. Many of you seem to link going to church with a belief in God. Of course there are many who do believe in God. It's not easy to find altar boys these days. Many of the former acolytes I know have now left the church. My vicar tells me that someone no less than the Archbishop himself once remarked that I was a very faithful child of the church. They all know my stand - I don't believe but I am faithful. It's very hard to explain. You won't get it unless you understand the importance of culture.

I have been to Bali and the Balinese are people rich with ancient culture. It's based on Hinduism of course. It would be a shame if they give up their culture just because they no longer believe in the Hindu gods.

So, in answer to your question, I think I'll serve the church for as long as I can. The church always has need of acolytes and it's not as easy as most people think. You can't just get someone to turn up and be an acolyte. He has to go through elaborate training because it's easy to forget the steps and it can be disastrous. For example, holding the priest's surplice is extremely important. If you make a mistake, it can get caught in the thurible and it will immediately catch fire. I'm considered responsible enough by the church and I have swung the thurible during the procession. This is a great responsibility and a fire hazard if it's not handled properly.

When you attend church, you see everything fall in place neatly. There is never a hitch. The crucifer doesn't drop the processional cross on a parishioner's head. The altar boys don't burn themselves with the candles and when the thurible is passed round, there is never a careless slip. Most people don't understand that all this is only made possible because there are many rehearsals.  Acolytes all need training. For someone like me who has been an altar boy all his life, it would be a great loss to the church if I just stop going to church. And there are many boys who are like that. After training, they suddenly stop going to church. Naturally, the church can't rely on such boys.

A lot depends on my own personal sense of responsibility. I think I will continue to serve the church for as long as I live.
« Last Edit: October 03, 2017, 04:19:46 AM by St Truth »

Offline Baruch

Re: God in Polite Society
« Reply #13 on: October 03, 2017, 07:00:04 AM »
Before television and movies ... Church liturgy was the only show in town.  Professional theatrics = liturgy.
שלום

Re: God in Polite Society
« Reply #14 on: October 03, 2017, 11:16:27 AM »
I'm so used to going to church with my parents on Sunday. We usually go earlier so I can put on my cassock and get ready for the Eucharist. There is always a little 'ceremony' in the vestry before we go in the procession to the altar. The altar boy takes the stole to the priest on some cushion of the correct colour of the season in the church calendar. The priest takes the stole and kisses the cross at the upper end of the stole and he puts it on. The joke we always make is in an RC church, the priest usually misses the cross and kisses the altar boy. LOL. Then the altar boys get the candles which are always put into very heavy silver candlesticks and we go out through a secret door to the main entrance of the church to wait for the processional played by the organist. The crucifer goes first followed by the altar boys. The priests go last but lately I have become taller and have been appointed a thurifer. You can only be a thurifer if you have grown in height. An altar boy who is still too short can't be a thurifer because it's a fire hazard if the thurible hits the floor or if the surplice gets caught in it.

Many people don't realise the training that's required before you can be an altar boy especially when the thurible is used. See this video of thurifer training:

[/

I have been an altar boy for as long as I can remember. It won't be the same if I just don't go to church. That's why I've said it's cultural. You can't just change overnight. I don't believe in God and neither do my parents. But going to church is a different thing altogether. It's a cultural thing. Many of you seem to link going to church with a belief in God. Of course there are many who do believe in God. It's not easy to find altar boys these days. Many of the former acolytes I know have now left the church. My vicar tells me that someone no less than the Archbishop himself once remarked that I was a very faithful child of the church. They all know my stand - I don't believe but I am faithful. It's very hard to explain. You won't get it unless you understand the importance of culture.

I have been to Bali and the Balinese are people rich with ancient culture. It's based on Hinduism of course. It would be a shame if they give up their culture just because they no longer believe in the Hindu gods.

So, in answer to your question, I think I'll serve the church for as long as I can. The church always has need of acolytes and it's not as easy as most people think. You can't just get someone to turn up and be an acolyte. He has to go through elaborate training because it's easy to forget the steps and it can be disastrous. For example, holding the priest's surplice is extremely important. If you make a mistake, it can get caught in the thurible and it will immediately catch fire. I'm considered responsible enough by the church and I have swung the thurible during the procession. This is a great responsibility and a fire hazard if it's not handled properly.

When you attend church, you see everything fall in place neatly. There is never a hitch. The crucifer doesn't drop the processional cross on a parishioner's head. The altar boys don't burn themselves with the candles and when the thurible is passed round, there is never a careless slip. Most people don't understand that all this is only made possible because there are many rehearsals.  Acolytes all need training. For someone like me who has been an altar boy all his life, it would be a great loss to the church if I just stop going to church. And there are many boys who are like that. After training, they suddenly stop going to church. Naturally, the church can't rely on such boys.

A lot depends on my own personal sense of responsibility. I think I will continue to serve the church for as long as I live.

Sounds like any other force of habit. IMO, going to church is just a waste of time and money. Church is a business made for scamming people out of their money and controlling people. Christian culture can survive the same way Greek/Roman cultures have: through art. But they won't get another penny out of me.
"Birds born in a cage think flying is an illness." - Alejandro Jodorowsky