My husband found this article online and shared it with me on Facebook. It struck me as something I have touched on before on Facebook myself. Though my “rant” was a bit different, it had the same component of people forcing their religious beliefs upon you. I’m sharing this not to share my story (I’ll save that for another post), but to comment on this man’s open letter.
While I don’t practice any organized religion, or believe in one, I don’t condemn any one who does. I believe that every person is entitled to believe what they want, so long as they are not trying to force others to believe what they believe. Religious freedom was the basis of people first settling this country we now call the United States of America. Said freedom has, is, and always will be allowed in this country. With that being said, however, people need to remember that while you have the freedom to practice your religion, others also have the freedom to practice their own (or none), even if it differs from yours.
This man’s plea for good thoughts and well wishes, but not prayers, is his own desire. I don’t know his thoughts, nor will I attempt to assume. I, personally, am a believer in positive thinking. I don’t always think the worst will happen. I think a more positive outlook of what you want to happen makes things seem better. His use of the phrase “when he comes home” makes me feel as if this father believes the same. Not if, when.
Telling someone you are praying for them, when they do not believe in your religion, is like telling a vegetarian you are going to eat a cheeseburger for them. They don’t believe in what you are doing, so why do it?
I agree with this father. If me or a loved one are ill, send me positive thoughts, hope, a get well, and well wishes, but keep your faith to yourself. I appreciate the sentiment, but do not buy into the faith behind it.