collapse

Important Announcement

Changing the Guard at The Cauldron

Sunflower is the new Host of The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum
Please read this thread for more information.

* "Unable to verify referring url. Please go back and try again" Problem Logging In?

If you get an "Unable to verify referring url. Please go back and try again" error when you try to log in, you need to be sure you are accessing the board with a url that starts with "https://ecauldron.com".  If it starts with https://www.ecauldron.com" (or "http://www.ecauldron.com") you will get this error because "www.ecauldron.com" is not technically the same website as "ecauldron.com". Moving to the more secure "https" means it is more picky about such things.

Author Topic: Who wants to know?  (Read 1386 times)

carillion

  • Sr. Master Member
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jul 2014
  • Posts: 664
  • Total likes: 1
    • View Profile
Who wants to know?
« on: July 28, 2014, 04:14:37 pm »
I have a question that kept occurring to me as I read around the forum past and present. In a number of threads people talk about discussing, or the problems of discussing, their belief systems to others.
Except for when I was in one country that was basically a theocracy and I couldn't 'blend', I have never been asked about my beliefs. Canadian are often reticent at the best of times to make such a personal inquiry, but I've lived in other countries and it never came up in those places either.
So who is asking about people's personal beliefs? It's kind of rude, isn't it? ( I mean in general -obviously on a forum like this it could come up). And why would anyone feel the need to discuss it unless , for example, they were contemplating marriage to someone from a strict religious family. But I would see that as the exception rather than the rule? How is it anyone's business what you believe in?

Jenett

  • Senior Staff
  • *
  • Join Date: Jun 2011
  • Location: Boston, MA
  • Posts: 3098
  • Country: us
  • Total likes: 649
    • View Profile
    • Seeking: First steps on a path
  • Religion: Initiatory religious witchcraft
  • Preferred Pronouns: she/her
Re: Who wants to know?
« Reply #1 on: July 28, 2014, 04:57:32 pm »
Quote from: carillion;154183

So who is asking about people's personal beliefs? It's kind of rude, isn't it? ( I mean in general -obviously on a forum like this it could come up). And why would anyone feel the need to discuss it unless , for example, they were contemplating marriage to someone from a strict religious family. But I would see that as the exception rather than the rule? How is it anyone's business what you believe in?

 
This is a thing that's heavily cultural - it's much more common some places than others. (I grew up in New England, where asking much about it is considered rude in most social groups unless you make a deliberate opening.)

However, there are other places in the US (and other places in other countries) where asking what church you go to is one of the opening questions on meeting someone new, a way to figure out what they're interested in, whether you want to invite them to something next week, what you talk about.

(Much as in geek culture, asking what fandoms someone's interested in is an early opening question, or how in some cultures, you ask who someone's family are. Different cultures have different ways to sort through people, is what I'm saying here.)

In many places, including a lot of rural places, churches are also one of the key anchors for community activity and events, so knowing where someone goes to church is a much bigger social cue for a lot of other things.
Seek Knowledge, Find Wisdom: Research help on esoteric and eclectic topics (consulting and other services)

Seeking: first steps on a Pagan path (advice for seekers and people new to Paganism)

Sage

  • Adept Member
  • ********
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Posts: 2186
  • Total likes: 4
    • View Profile
    • http://sageandstarshine.wordpress.com
Re: Who wants to know?
« Reply #2 on: July 28, 2014, 04:59:48 pm »
Quote from: Jenett;154189
However, there are other places in the US (and other places in other countries) where asking what church you go to is one of the opening questions on meeting someone new, a way to figure out what they're interested in, whether you want to invite them to something next week, what you talk about.

 
-nods- I live in a very conservative, very Christian part of the United States. It's assumed not only am I and my family Christian but that I want to engage in Christ talk on a regular basis. It's part of how folks socialize around here. It's acceptable small talk conversation much like the weather.
Maker, though the darkness comes upon me,
I shall embrace the light. I shall weather the storm.
I shall endure.
What you have created, no one can tear asunder.

-Canticle of Trials 1:10

Sage and Starshine (my spiritual blog): last updated 2/25.
Friday Otherfaith Blogging: last updated 2/27
Join the Emboatening Crew over on Kiva! Emboatening the boatless since Opet 2013.

carillion

  • Sr. Master Member
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jul 2014
  • Posts: 664
  • Total likes: 1
    • View Profile
Re: Who wants to know?
« Reply #3 on: July 28, 2014, 05:55:20 pm »
Quote from: Sage;154190
-nods- I live in a very conservative, very Christian part of the United States. It's assumed not only am I and my family Christian but that I want to engage in Christ talk on a regular basis. It's part of how folks socialize around here. It's acceptable small talk conversation much like the weather.

Thanks for the answers both of you. I've lived in seriously remote rural communities up here and never had it happen. So yes, heavily cultural then. I was raised by the social commandment that one should never discuss religion, politics or money and I think that was probably the general societal social taboo given my experience. I've traveled quite a bit in the U.S. and it never came up but then I was only a visitor. I did hear people talk openly about Jesus and such but I would just smile and nod and remove myself from the situation.
 If I hadn't had the experience of living in a theocracy I would have a complete fail in comprehension that people could take such social liberties.
But I understand now why it would be tricky if one took an alternate path in such places.
« Last Edit: July 28, 2014, 05:56:27 pm by carillion »

BrighidsAura

  • Journeyman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jun 2014
  • Posts: 120
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Who wants to know?
« Reply #4 on: July 28, 2014, 06:35:58 pm »
Quote from: carillion;154200
Thanks for the answers both of you. I've lived in seriously remote rural communities up here and never had it happen. So yes, heavily cultural then. I was raised by the social commandment that one should never discuss religion, politics or money and I think that was probably the general societal social taboo given my experience. I've traveled quite a bit in the U.S. and it never came up but then I was only a visitor. I did hear people talk openly about Jesus and such but I would just smile and nod and remove myself from the situation.
 If I hadn't had the experience of living in a theocracy I would have a complete fail in comprehension that people could take such social liberties.
But I understand now why it would be tricky if one took an alternate path in such places.

 
I have had the same experiences as you have. My community is relatively religious and semi-rural (my town is weird. It has a big population but it's so spread out that it's still small. Families all know each other and stuff) but religion doesn't come up in stranger-to-stranger conversation. People will slip into conversation that they attend church but they don't ask if you go in return.

Altair

  • Adept Member
  • ********
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Location: New York, New York
  • *
  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 2909
  • Country: us
  • Total likes: 310
  • Fly high and make the world follow
    • View Profile
    • Songs of the Metamythos
  • Religion: tree-hugging pagan
  • Preferred Pronouns: he/him/his
Re: Who wants to know?
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2014, 07:35:23 pm »
Quote from: Jenett;154189

(I grew up in New England, where asking much about it is considered rude in most social groups unless you make a deliberate opening.)



New York generally shares New England's ethos on this. And esp. here in NYC, where people come from all over the country and the world...where there's a substantial Jewish population...etc., one can't assume anything about anyone's religion. It doesn't come up.

I've worked with folks for years and never known their religion, until some holiday they observe came up and they were out of the office for the day. But that's generally the only way one finds out.
The first song sets the wheel in motion / The second is a song of love / The third song tells of Her devotion / The fourth cries joy from the sky above
The fifth song binds our fate to silence / and bids us live each moment well / The sixth unleashes rage and violence / The seventh song has truth to tell
The last song echoes through the ages / to ask its question all night long / And close the circle on these pages / These, the metamythos songs

Voren

  • Master Member
  • ******
  • Join Date: Feb 2014
  • Location: ND
  • Posts: 255
  • Country: us
  • Total likes: 32
    • View Profile
  • Religion: spiritual
  • Preferred Pronouns: Xe/Xir/Xes
Re: Who wants to know?
« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2014, 07:44:58 pm »
Quote from: carillion;154183
I have a question that kept occurring to me as I read around the forum past and present. In a number of threads people talk about discussing, or the problems of discussing, their belief systems to others.
Except for when I was in one country that was basically a theocracy and I couldn't 'blend', I have never been asked about my beliefs. Canadian are often reticent at the best of times to make such a personal inquiry, but I've lived in other countries and it never came up in those places either.
So who is asking about people's personal beliefs? It's kind of rude, isn't it? ( I mean in general -obviously on a forum like this it could come up). And why would anyone feel the need to discuss it unless , for example, they were contemplating marriage to someone from a strict religious family. But I would see that as the exception rather than the rule? How is it anyone's business what you believe in?

 
I wear my septigram everywhere. So this customer at work one day asks me "do you trust Jesus to save your soul?" I did find it a little rude because; really, what business is it of anyone's exactly what I believe, and it seemed a little pushy. I mean, its like...just because I don't believe the same thing my soul is going to burn in hellfire or something? Nah, I don't think so. Really, if people are going to ask someone about beliefs and religion, it's best to keep and open mind for BOTH people otherwise people tend to get overly angry about things, in my experience anyways. Really, the only time its ok to ask about personal beliefs is among friends and loved ones, but random strangers? In my mind it's a little rude, yeah.
-Voren
(aka Sou\'r-Ghi\'den)

The Singularity

Astrid

  • Sr. Newbie
  • **
  • Join Date: Jul 2014
  • Posts: 16
  • Total likes: 1
    • View Profile
Re: Who wants to know?
« Reply #7 on: July 28, 2014, 08:37:59 pm »
Quote from: carillion;154183
So who is asking about people's personal beliefs? It's kind of rude, isn't it?

I haven't found it comes up a lot in Australia. I've lived in three different states, in two major cities, a medium-sized city, and a large rural farming town. It does depend who you associate with, though. I did attend two all-girls Catholic high schools, and some people are obviously quite strong in their Christian beliefs.

A friend of mine has recently had issues, though, with friends from high school (we're in our 20s now) who have been trying to convert her, insisting she come to bible study groups and church. When she'd finally gotten sick of excusing herself politely and told them she wasn't interested in the religion, they became really quite horrible.

My partner's parents are Jehovah Witnesses and they did ask me the first time I meant them (though, it was far from the first thing they asked). I skirted around the question, saying that I didn't really prescribe to a major religion. My partner is not religious or spiritual in the slightest, so while they send us JW leaflets and information booklets (it makes his mother feel better!), they weren't too surprised by my answer.

Although, admittedly I do have to actively hold my tongue when they make passing sexist and homophobic comments. The only reason they haven't really cut ties with my partner is because he never committed himself in baptism in the first place, so knowing he is dating a bisexual, socialist, pagan witch probably wouldn't go down so well!

I've just realised that I sound like I've contradicted myself by saying that "it doesn't really come up in Australia", and then giving you examples of when it has! I guess what I'm trying to say is that overall, when you meet someone, religion isn't an issue, unless they are in a particularly religious circle themselves, which isn't often an issue because Australia isn't a very religious country. Although most people do consider themselves to be Christian's of one denomination or another, the number who actually actively participate in religious activities is significantly lower.

Sunday's are for BBQs, not church! :P
« Last Edit: July 28, 2014, 08:43:01 pm by Astrid »

"We are the universe made manifest, trying to figure itself out"  - Delenn, Babylon 5


carillion

  • Sr. Master Member
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jul 2014
  • Posts: 664
  • Total likes: 1
    • View Profile
Re: Who wants to know?
« Reply #8 on: July 28, 2014, 08:44:02 pm »
Quote from: Astrid;154231
I haven't found it comes up a lot in Australia. I've lived in three different states, in two major cities, a medium-sized city, and a large rural farming town. It does depend who you associate with, though. I did attend two all-girls Catholic high schools, and some people are obviously quite strong in their Christian beliefs.


I expect that culturally, Oz shares a lot with Kanukistan in this regard.

Redfaery

  • Grand Master Member
  • *******
  • Join Date: Dec 2013
  • Posts: 1345
  • Total likes: 40
    • View Profile
Re: Who wants to know?
« Reply #9 on: July 29, 2014, 04:39:36 am »
Quote from: carillion;154183
So who is asking about people's personal beliefs? It's kind of rude, isn't it? ( I mean in general -obviously on a forum like this it could come up). And why would anyone feel the need to discuss it unless , for example, they were contemplating marriage to someone from a strict religious family. But I would see that as the exception rather than the rule? How is it anyone's business what you believe in?

Family and friends are the usual ones people have trouble with in any society. Even in my native area, which is heavily evangelical, I've had little trouble with random strangers prying into my private religious life. Those who do are usually quite understanding and even remorseful when I tell them that they've made me uncomfortable.

I had a lady try to "witness" to me in the CCE lounge at Guilford. It was an experience which was profoundly uncomfortable at the time, mostly because I was still spiritually lost, but also because I was so caught off guard. Guilford may be a religious school, but it is run by liberal Quakers, who invariably keep their mouths shut about God unless He's given them something to say. I was not expecting a born-again Christian to try and "save" me in an area where I'd always felt pretty far away from all the unpleasantness I'd come to associate with those kinds of activities.
« Last Edit: July 29, 2014, 04:40:56 am by Redfaery »
KARMA: You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

Emma Eldritch

  • Staff
  • *
  • Join Date: May 2012
  • Posts: 1265
  • Country: 00
  • Total likes: 67
    • View Profile
    • https://rocknrollwitch.blogspot.ca/
Re: Who wants to know?
« Reply #10 on: July 29, 2014, 10:55:18 am »
Quote from: carillion;154183
I have a question that kept occurring to me as I read around the forum past and present. In a number of threads people talk about discussing, or the problems of discussing, their belief systems to others.
Except for when I was in one country that was basically a theocracy and I couldn't 'blend', I have never been asked about my beliefs. Canadian are often reticent at the best of times to make such a personal inquiry, but I've lived in other countries and it never came up in those places either.
So who is asking about people's personal beliefs? It's kind of rude, isn't it? ( I mean in general -obviously on a forum like this it could come up). And why would anyone feel the need to discuss it unless , for example, they were contemplating marriage to someone from a strict religious family. But I would see that as the exception rather than the rule? How is it anyone's business what you believe in?

 
It depends on where you are, as other people have said. The town I was born in was full of hippies, so nobody cared. The town I spent my teen years in, on the other hand... wow. The second question you'd be asked after your name was what church you attended. I received a buttload of Chick tracts, had people talk to me about Jesus saving me while I was working, all that fun shit.

In contrast, the city I live in now - which is not that faraway - is full of your typical laid-back west coasters. There's a decent pagan population, and even more who are 'spiritual but not religious.' Religion never comes up here unless the conversation has steered that way naturally.

Tags:
 

Related Topics

  Subject / Started by Replies Last post
9 Replies
2472 Views
Last post July 12, 2011, 12:53:14 am
by EldritchTaranis
14 Replies
2857 Views
Last post August 07, 2011, 09:17:34 am
by ikshahar
15 Replies
1259 Views
Last post December 25, 2012, 04:34:35 am
by mandrina
18 Replies
4775 Views
Last post January 12, 2013, 11:29:35 am
by Altair
8 Replies
1019 Views
Last post June 13, 2013, 10:52:19 pm
by sailor

* Who's Online

  • Dot Guests: 25
  • Dot Hidden: 0
  • Dot Users: 0

There aren't any users online.

* Please Donate!

The Cauldron's server is expensive and requires monthly payments. Please become a Bronze, Silver or Gold Donor if you can. Donations are needed every month. Without member support, we can't afford the server.

* In Memoriam

Chavi (2006)
Elspeth (2010)
Marilyn (2013)

* Cauldron Staff

Host:
Sunflower

Message Board Staff
Board Coordinator:
Darkhawk

Assistant Board Coordinator:
Aster Breo

Senior Staff:
Aisling, Jenett, Sefiru

Staff:
Allaya, Chatelaine, EclecticWheel, HarpingHawke, Kylara, PerditaPickle, rocquelaire

Discord Chat Staff
Chat Coordinator:
Morag

Cauldron Council:
Bob, Catja, Emma-Eldritch, Fausta, Jubes, Kelly, LyricFox, Phouka, Sperran, Star, Steve, Tana

Site Administrator:
Randall