INFORMATION

This website uses cookies to store information on your computer. Some of these cookies are essential to make our site work and others help us to improve by giving us some insight into how the site is being used. For further information, see our Privacy Policy. Continuing to use this website is acceptance of these cookies.

Attending Military Memorial Services

...on serious topics that don't fit anywhere else at present.
Post Reply
Message
Author
User avatar
atw60444
Posts: 10
Joined: January 2nd, 2008, 8:57 am

Attending Military Memorial Services

#1 Post by atw60444 » June 21st, 2010, 9:47 am

I had a new experience yesterday, since jumping off the agnostic fence a few year back and becoming contentedly atheist.
I've recently joined a brass band, so as well as the normal fete type work there's a certain amount support for religious ceremonies. For example, a War Memorial service yesterday playing hymns. That's fine, it's all music.
I'm happy to stand for the last post, observe the 2 minuets silence and honour those fallen in conflict.
There were quite a number of prayers, and "The Lords Prayer" which I notice the entire band, except me, joined in with.
I will continue to remain silent like this in the future, but as sure as night turns to day, I know one of the band jobswoths will give me a lecture sooner or later. I will just state the fact that I'm atheist and I don't believe in praying to a non existent God.

I'd be interested in any comments.

Thanks Jon

Fia
Posts: 5480
Joined: July 6th, 2007, 8:29 pm

Re: Attending Military Memorial Services

#2 Post by Fia » June 21st, 2010, 11:03 am

I think many folk join in the lords prayer just because they know it (I don't remember learning it, but I still know it :shrug:) and have never considered not joining in.

If a jobsworth does lecture I would just calmly state my position. As a Humanist I am not prepared to speak something which I have seriously considered and decided is twaddle. Not very ethical. You may find that there are others in the band who are also atheists, but go through the motions because it's been imbued into our cultural consciousness...

In a similar vein, I attended a religious graveside funeral recently, for a well-known and loved local person. I never speak any of the twaddle, nor bow my head for prayers. In church I look the minister in the eye, but at the graveside I could see the mourners more clearly. I was gratified to note about 40% of the mourners also did not speak or bow their heads, and quite a few of us had a good chat about it over the tea :)

User avatar
Alan H
Posts: 24067
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:26 pm

Re: Attending Military Memorial Services

#3 Post by Alan H » June 21st, 2010, 2:09 pm

Ask what he'd prefer: for you to stand by your well-considered principles or kowtow to religious pressure and conform [---][/---] does he think religions want people to be coerced...On second thoughts...
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

User avatar
jaywhat
Posts: 15807
Joined: July 5th, 2007, 5:53 pm

Re: Attending Military Memorial Services

#4 Post by jaywhat » June 21st, 2010, 5:00 pm

As a teacher in the past along with a few others I would stand on the stage in assembly with my head up and my eyes open and my mouth shut - one bloke even stayed sitting down.
Later as a Head of Year I would only take secular assemblies - and that was many years ago because I retired in 1987. I feel that things have got worse since then rather than better.

ludite
Posts: 603
Joined: April 4th, 2010, 8:06 pm

Re: Attending Military Memorial Services

#5 Post by ludite » June 23rd, 2010, 11:38 am

Good for you, enjoy your music there is nowt like a brass band. I think joininging in the lords prayer is almost a pavlovian response.

Beki
Posts: 710
Joined: July 5th, 2007, 8:43 am

Re: Attending Military Memorial Services

#6 Post by Beki » June 28th, 2010, 7:11 pm

Wouldn't worry about it. I was at a graduation dinner the other night when we were invited to bow our heads for grace before the meal. I never do - not even a pretendy bow just to join in - but it is surprising how many people do at least lower their heads.....
Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever. - M Ghandi

Mike
Posts: 124
Joined: December 13th, 2009, 12:58 pm

Re: Attending Military Memorial Services

#7 Post by Mike » June 29th, 2010, 8:57 am

The idea of being at a dinner where grace is said or at a meeting where prayers are said used to bother me to the point that I would not attend. Nowadays I am older (though perhaps not wiser) and I seem to have become more tolerant. Like Beki I don't even pretend yo pray. Instead I just smile sweetly at the others who don't bow their heads either. We are quite an elite band you know :hilarity:

One way to view prayers etc (which to a degree removes the bad taste) is to look upon them as one of those quaint old traditions that we Brits do so well. IE Black Rod, Ravens in the Tower, Town Criers etc - none of which anyone takes too seriously.

User avatar
jaywhat
Posts: 15807
Joined: July 5th, 2007, 5:53 pm

Re: Attending Military Memorial Services

#8 Post by jaywhat » June 29th, 2010, 9:44 am

Not one of us dare sit down and start eating. Chicken.

User avatar
jaywhat
Posts: 15807
Joined: July 5th, 2007, 5:53 pm

Re: Attending Military Memorial Services

#9 Post by jaywhat » June 29th, 2010, 9:44 am

Not one of us dare sit down and start eating. Chicken.

User avatar
Val
Posts: 749
Joined: October 6th, 2007, 10:56 pm

Re: Attending Military Memorial Services

#10 Post by Val » June 29th, 2010, 7:40 pm

jaywhat wrote:Not one of us dare sit down and start eating. Chicken.
Is that because you are veggie, John?

User avatar
Alan C.
Posts: 10356
Joined: July 4th, 2007, 3:35 pm

Re: Attending Military Memorial Services

#11 Post by Alan C. » June 29th, 2010, 10:33 pm

Val wrote:
jaywhat wrote:Not one of us dare sit down and start eating. Chicken.
Is that because you are veggie, John?
I waited for someone else to say it Val. Thanks.

Yes jaywhat, I would.
Abstinence Makes the Church Grow Fondlers.

User avatar
jaywhat
Posts: 15807
Joined: July 5th, 2007, 5:53 pm

Re: Attending Military Memorial Services

#12 Post by jaywhat » June 30th, 2010, 5:42 am

Alan C. wrote:
jaywhat wrote:Not one of us dare sit down and start eating.
Yes jaywhat, I would.
Have you ever done that Alan C ? That I would love to see.

User avatar
Alan C.
Posts: 10356
Joined: July 4th, 2007, 3:35 pm

Re: Attending Military Memorial Services

#13 Post by Alan C. » June 30th, 2010, 1:36 pm

jaywhat
Have you ever done that Alan C ?
The opportunity has only arisen once (far as I can remember) the last wedding I attended on Yell around 6 years ago, the wedding was in the community hall but there was a minister present, everybody was seated and ready to start the meal when the minister announced he would say grace, at that point everyone stood up; except for myself and the brides sister (a strong anti theist.)

I would have no problem doing it again should such a situation occur, there were around 150 folk there and I'm sure there must have been more than 2 Atheists (not least my own wife) I think it was very hypocritical of those Atheists that stood up.
Abstinence Makes the Church Grow Fondlers.

User avatar
Alan H
Posts: 24067
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:26 pm

Re: Attending Military Memorial Services

#14 Post by Alan H » June 30th, 2010, 3:00 pm

Alan C. wrote:I think it was very hypocritical of those Atheists that stood up.
Possibly, but I can understand some not wanting to 'rock the boat', particularly at such a social occasion to which they were invited guests. You and I may not have such qualms, but others can be caught out and have to make a spur of the moment decision.
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

Nick
Posts: 11027
Joined: July 4th, 2007, 10:10 am

Re: Attending Military Memorial Services

#15 Post by Nick » July 1st, 2010, 12:33 pm

At the nearby sailing club they pompously say grace before meals. I get up and leave the room every time. It is gratifying that when I return people ask me why :D

Sadly, though, I didn't renew my membership in protest at a friend of mine being black-balled. Abolutely disgraceful.

Fia
Posts: 5480
Joined: July 6th, 2007, 8:29 pm

Re: Attending Military Memorial Services

#16 Post by Fia » July 1st, 2010, 12:42 pm

If it's any help on the grace front, I composed this one when asked to say a Humanist grace a few years back:
“Before we enjoy this celebration meal, let us think for a moment of three things:
Firstly let us be mindful of those in our human family who will not be eating today.
Secondly let us be aware all our fellow human beings who made this feast possible. Those who grew, transported and made our meal, and those who serve and clean up after us.
Finally, let us make the most of the grand company we share today. May we leave this table fulfilled in body, mind and heart.”
Do feel free to plunder :D

Post Reply