A question for those who don't believe in God?

This is going to spark a debate, I can feel it, but try to avoid that. I'm just curious.

I have a friend who doesn't believe in God. Yet whenever something happens she either says, "Thank God" or "That just answered my prayers" and I assume that if she's having sex, she'll be calling out "Oh God!"

So...why would she do this if she doesn't believe? If she doesn't believe she wouldn't pray so she wouldn't have any prayers to be answered.

And if she doesn't believe then why should she be thanking a being she thinks doesn't exist?

And if she doesn't believe, then why would she call out a name? Why not call out something else like, stapler or horseshoe as those have the same emotional meaning to her as God does seeing as she doesn't believe.

Just curious as to the logic behind this all.

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516

Most Helpful Guy

  • Term of phrase, it's more habit than mental.

    Have you ever heard a Christian say "God damn it?" or "God damn you?"

    I have, and I know Christians aren't supposed to say that. It's just a habit that was picked up from society. We say it without putting much thought behind it, and we can do that because God has no meaning behind it, so thus, the word "Thank God" has no meaning behind it either. So we can comfortably wave that word around.

    Personally though, I just stick with "Thank Stapler." It's much easier, and staplers have always been there for me. So nice and reliable.

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What Girls & Guys Said

515
  • It's Just a term of phrase. I'll say "God" during sex, or "Thank God" when relieved. I'll say "Jesus f*cking Christ" when I'm irritated.

    I'll also say "Praise Satan" when someone sneezes. I think it's funny.

    I also think it's cute when theists like you can't understand simple things like this, and wonder why we don't call out something else, like "stapler" or "horseshoe".

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    • There's just no meaning behind it for nonbelievers so why not call out something else?

    • I just explained that to you. Nobody says "thank stapler". A lot of people say "thank god". It's just a term of phrase. It doesn't HAVE to have meaning.

  • what is the fourth day of the week?

    Thursday, which comes from Thor's Day but do you worship Thor?

    Tuesday - Tyr

    Wednesday - Wodaniz(for the God Mercury)

    Friday - Freya

    It's just a word that people commonly use when they're frustrated or aroused(strange they associate that with God?)

    those words are just quick impulses and it's not like people think very hard about what tosay

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  • These words in some ways have been a bit secularized.

    They've been modernized and to people who don't believe - yes have a lack of meaning. But they still serve the same purpose whether they 'believe' or not. I'll say 'Thank God' a lot - but I don't believe in God - nor am I actually thanking him. It's just a phrase that is so common it's very easy to use. Everyone knows what you mean by it.

    Sort of the same way non-religious people still celebrate Christmas or Easter in one way or another.

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  • it's just a saying. it doesn't mean she's actually thanking god,she's just using a phrase that people use when something goes the way they wanted them to. do you literally mean that this is going to ''spark'' a debate? no,of course not,you just mean that it will probably START a debate,but spark is used to express the same thing.

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  • Its because western culture especially was built on Christianity, it formed the modern scientific methods we use, the culture, integrated highly into our language and architecture. We are a Christian culture that is has slowly started to lose our roots of where we come from.

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  • Regardless of whether or not you believe in God, those are still popular expressions so a lot of people use them. It's more of a metaphorical figure of speech than a literal cry to God. Think of it like saying "don't count your chickens before they hatch" to someone who doesn't have any actual chickens.

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  • Its just a term of phrase, like an accent in some places, its not literal. When my father hears something that surprises him he says "well f*** me pink" , I don't know but I'm pretty certain he's not asking to be f***ed pink.

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  • Like others are saying, "Oh God" or "Thank God", etc. are just used as expressions or interjections. But that was an interesting question. I say "Good Lord" in certain situations, but I'm not religious.

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  • Well it's because of the fact that Europe was predominantly Christian and that influenced the English language. Many words in the English language shares this, so that explains why she would say common phrases.

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  • It's become just a common phrase nowadays. Another example would be how Oh MY God has become shortened to OMG.

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  • a person is not athiest by birth

    but by choice

    she must be used to saying all that since her childhood

    these things will go away with time

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    • A person is neither an atheist nor a spiritual or otherwise believing person by birth. It develops with time, influenced by surroundings, society, and one's own thoughts and ideas.

    • yes and that's what I said

      but when you are a child you catch habits from your surroundings

      and when you grow up and develop your own thinking then slowly those old habits fade away

  • It's just an interjection not a word with literal meaning.

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  • Those are common terms found in our modern lexicon. I'm pagan and I still say oh my God.

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  • Tom and Jerry was my favorite growing up ...god knows why

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  • It's just a phrase.

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  • It's just something that people get used to.

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  • Everyone else basically answered it.

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  • There is no logic behind it, it's just an expression. Like when people say "Knock on wood" or something. They don't necessarily believe the superstition that the phrase derived from, it's just an expression.

    Though I have to admit, a few of my friends have started saying "Thank Science!" when they saw South Park do that in their atheist episode. Mostly because it made them laugh.

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  • Fun fact, "Goodbye" is a altered version of the slang Godbwye short for God be with ye.

    Now, everyone says Goodbye from time to time if you speak English. Do you think everyone is actually saying a little prayer for the person? Certainly not. Phrases lose their meaning when over used, like what society has done to the Lord's name.

    I mean heck, others have pointed out G--Damn it. Think of how powerful of a phrase that is. That's wishing that the Almighty Himself would invoke His wrath upon the person/thing, sending them to eternal hell.

    Yet it just doesn't carry that weight anymore.

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  • It's ingrained in our society to say those things. I'd be surprised if she didn't celebrate Christmas. It's gone beyond just religion.

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