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Jared Alesi's picture

There are two kinds of choices: active, and passive (they may be called by different names in different philosophy textbooks). An active choice is one that must be made, and cannot truly be avoided. A passive choice is one that is not necessarily consequential. It can be avoided.

The choice of what to have for lunch is passive. If presented the option of a sandwich or a salad, one could opt out and eat nothing, or eat something else entirely.

The choice of whether you want to go to a concert is active. Either you go, or you don't go. And if you don't decide in time, you're no longer undecided, as you've chosen not to go by default.

Worship of a God is an active choice. Either one does or doesn't. There is no real alternative. So the question should never be, "Do you believe in God?" It should be, "Do you worship God?" Because belief in itself is not the choice to be made. Either you're convinced or you're not. But there are multiple options for belief as well, and if it was a choice it would be passive. If asked if you believe in God or not, one could opt out and say they don't care one way or the other. But if this same person was asked if they worshipped God, they would say no.

So really only one question matters on the subject. "Do you practice the religion centered around [insert God's name here]?"


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Old man shouts at clouds's picture
I cant remember who said it

I cant remember who said it but it was something like religion without faith is like beef without mustard. So brace your self for the onslaught of 'faith" arguments while lambasting the agnostic who practice without belief.
I suppose that last category describes nearly every Episcopalean (C of E ) congregation...there's a stir up line.

mykcob4's picture


Tin-Man's picture
Well, as I have said before,

Well, as I have said before, I do not believe in any gods. However, even IF God(s) did actually exist (particularly the one depicted in the bible), I would refuse to worship him/them anyway. Respect?..... Ummm... maybe, depending on conditions. But worship? Nope. Never.

Sapporo's picture
Also, "Does your view of god

Also, "Does your view of god change the way you live you life?"

Tin-Man's picture
@Sapporo Re: "Does your view

@Sapporo Re: "Does your view of god change the way you live you life?"

Hmmm... Interesting... Honestly never thought of it like that before. I like that question.

Well, as I have said before, even back in the days when I still considered myself to be a Christian of Baptist faith, I always had trouble mentally dealing with the conflicts and contradictions of the bible and what was taught in Sunday school. Add to that all the hypocritical actions I regularly observed committed by people claiming to be devout Christians, and I was forced to acknowledge I was just as bad a hypocrite as anybody else. A bit unsettling, as you might imagine. Therefore, I was at that time "forced" to live my life as though I agreed with the whole mess and constantly made up excuses and arguments to myself and others in an attempt to smother the inner conflicts I was having. (Matter of fact, I see people on here sometimes using some of the exact same arguments and "justifications" I once used, and I think to myself, "Wow... That was ME at one time in my life.") Anyway, I was basically living in constant doubt and indecision, because while my gut instincts and intellect were telling me one thing, the religious teachings that were pressed on me my whole life were telling me something else. Now that I have finally put those doubts behind me and today view god and religion for what they truly are (man-made concepts created by ancient civilizations/people as a means to explain natural events beyond their comprehension), it is much nicer being able to live without all the insecurities and indecisiveness of the past. It is very liberating to finally be confident in my views and beliefs now.

Quick addition: Thinking about it, I honestly cannot say I conduct myself any differently now as I did as a Christian. For the most part (with a few minor exceptions, of course), I still hold to the same moral standards I've always had and make the same decisions accordingly. Now, however, I am able to make those decisions and take what I consider appropriate actions without all the nagging feelings of guilt and "second-guessing" that came from wondering if those decisions and/or actions met the standards or approval of such a vague and questionably moral entity.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
I mean right, they are two

I mean right, they are two different questions, which means both are valid. When someone asks if you believe in God they're asking exactly that, if you believe, if you're convinced, if you think it's true.

Do you worship God only makes sense as a follow up question, since you can believe in God but not worship

MCDennis's picture
Yes, you can act like you

Yes, you can act like you believe in gods or a god

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