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Post Reply Opinions on being friends with/romantically involved with people of other religions?
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20 / F / You don't need to...
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Posted 1/31/15 , edited 1/31/15
My background (sorry if it's long, but I have to kind of explain.. you can skim if you'd like):

Personally, I don't care what religion you are, I'm just friends with whoever is nice and doesn't force their beliefs down my throat. I'm part of a Catholic family, but I'm personally very "loosely" Catholic. I support any sexual orientation: homosexual, bisexual, etc. I've only been to church 3 or 4 times in my life, and that was for Christmas and Easter. I'm like half Catholic and Atheist, as I still celebrate Christmas and Easter... but both of those holidays are getting more "mainstream". Like Christmas in Japan for instance. Basically, my family says we're Catholic, but we never go to church. But both my parents strongly believe in God and we have a single cross in our house. And they're iffy on homosexuality: my mom says let them get married if they want, but she still doesn't like it.

Where I live is very diverse, but it's mostly Christian religions... a lot of churches scattered about. There's also a growing population of Muslims, particularly Bosnian Muslims. I'm Bosnian by nationality, and I'm friends with a lot of Bosnian Muslim guys. But I'm best friends with a girl who's a Turkish Muslim, and she's super sweet and smart. And she's my age, and she's doing an arranged marriage. I asked her if she could choose not to do it, and she said yes, but I kind of don't believe her. But I'm still supporting her and going to her wedding in May, even though she's moving away after

I also was friends with this guy for over 10 years, and we became really close friends due to our parents being friends. As well I ended up falling in love with him. Now I would've confessed and asked him out, I played this scenario a million times in my head. But even if I did: he probably would've said "no" out of fear. I had this strong inkling that he liked me back too, but our parents would never let us be together because he's Muslim and I'm Catholic (in a way.. my parents won't accept that I don't believe in God). But my mom admitted to me once that he's a very nice guy. But my parents are like "marry anyone but a Muslim". (This way of thinking is also due to the break up of Yugoslavia in my opinion... read up.)

My parents are also afraid of someone trying to get me to convert to their religion if it's one I don't like, and if the person loved me, and I didn't agree, we would either work something out or I'd just say "I can't be with you, sorry." I would never let anyone take over me like that. I mean, isn't coexisting possible at all?

And also my roommate is Lutheran and likes this guy, but says "too bad he's Catholic" and I'm like "WTF that's so stupid" in my head. Is there really a big rift that much between different Christian religions? Really? I mean, unless he's an extreme Catholic, and he didn't sound like it.

So, what do you think?
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28 / M / San Antonio
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Posted 1/31/15
Well I've heard of mult-faith relationships both succeeding and failing. I went out with seriously Catholic girl in college, and I'm an atheist. Ultimately it didn't work out, so yeah, I guess I haven't had success in that area. It wasn't a nasty break up, just...didn't work out. Anyway, I guess anything's possible. I think it really depends on how serious one or both parties take their religion. If neither are too religious, it could probably work out. But I don't see how it would work out if one or both were really into their faith.
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24 / F / Las Vegas nevada
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Posted 1/31/15
It doesnt really matter if your religous or not.. I would stilll be your friend Or be in a relationship..
To me i see everyone equal i dont care what you are i will accept a person the way they are..
I just dont like people who follows a religion and look down on everyone or trying to convert me to a different religion... Thats when our friendship ends.. I think its disrespectful to do those kind of things
But in the most part i dont care what you are.. If your super religous, athiest, straight, gay, or everything in between.. Thats fine with me
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25 / SF Bay Area, US
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Posted 1/31/15
I'm kinda like the OP: I'm Filipino, so much of my growing up have been around Catholicism, but I consider myself an apatheist. I haven't been to mass in 4 years, likely because of Catholic school (being forced to go to mass at school every Sunday made me dislike it).

Anyway, I have no issues with people of other religions, as long as their attitude is like mine. I draw the line with ignorance and intolerance.
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20 / F / Hotel California
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Posted 1/31/15
Hmm, the outcome of these relationships is entirely up to who the couples are, if they consult with each other on issues like this and don't view the other's religion as an obstacle then it they are A-okay.

BUT, if one of them has even the SLIGHTEST problem or they have a super-religious family then it's most likely gonna crash and burn. Feel free to disagree with me if you want though.

In my opinion, you always think about these kind of issues before you hook up (don't just Wing it) because it will save you from LOTS of heartbreak.
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39 / Inside your compu...
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Posted 1/31/15 , edited 1/31/15

MoxiRoxi wrote:
I'm like half Catholic and Atheist, as I still celebrate Christmas and Easter... but both of those holidays are getting more "mainstream".
So, what do you think?


I think you meant to type "half Catholic and half secular" because it wouldn't make sense otherwise.

I'm friends with plenty of different people. However, romantic relationships are a whole other thing unless neither of you is devout (or in the case of Atheism, a militant Atheist........ yikes... they're the worst). Otherwise, it's asking for trouble to be honest.
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20 / F / You don't need to...
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Posted 1/31/15


I've heard of "secular" but didn't really know it meant that until now. Thanks for clearing that up a little.
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22 / F / None ya business.
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Posted 1/31/15 , edited 1/31/15
I love God, and my religion is important to me. That being said, I don't mind being friends with people who practice other religions at all. My best friend since middle school has gone from practicing Pagan religions and Wicca in the time I've known her, but now she's pretty much agnostic. She always known how much my faith means to me, and has even come to help me work for church fundraisers. I freaking love her.

I've had lots of friends who are atheists or agnostic, and again didn't mind at all unless they were actively trying to put my beliefs down.
My first college friend was Mormon, and two of my roommates are Buddhists, etc.

My boyfriend was between being agnostic and atheist when I first met him. He held a lot of resentment towards the idea of God. But over the years he was actually lead to become a Christian.

Unless someone is actively opposing your beliefs, being close to them isn't an issue most of the time. As long as you can co-exist. Some people just don't want to for one reason or another. But there is something to be said for having a friend or a loved one who shares the same beliefs as you. Because then you can actually relate to one another in that aspect, seek advice from them, support one another, and so on. But it also depends on how much value each person involved places on their beliefs. For me, I feel like it's much better to have a significant other with the same beliefs. But I won't refuse to be friends with people who believe differently than I do.
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Posted 1/31/15
The thing about religion is, religion isn't just a superficial label like skin color or hairstyle. To a person who takes their religion seriously, it's close to if not the core of what makes them who they are. A person who believes "Yahweh is going to judge us after we die" and a person who believes "It is every rational being's duty to act in such a way that would not be self-contradictory if adopted by every rational being" may both come to the conclusion "therefore, I will not kill the other humans around me except in self-defense or similar extenuating circumstances", yet the typical Christian (based on my experience with people who take Christianity seriously) will be somewhere between surprised and shocked at the Kantian's self-generated morality, and the typical Kantian (if you judge by the words of the original, Kant himself) will consider the Christian morally defective for needing an outside source to enforce that same morality. Would you, as the Kantian, want to be in a romantic relationship with someone like the Christian who is shocked by the source of your morality, and (again, judging by people I've talked to who take Christianity seriously) doesn't really believe it works? Would you, as the Christian, want to be in a relationship with someone like the Kantian who (again, by the words of Kant himself) believes the source of your morality is morally worthless? The difference between a Christian and a Muslim, or between a Catholic and a Protestant, may or may not be smaller than this, although between (serious) Catholics and (serious) Protestants, the difference between "truth and mercy comes from God infallibly through the Pope and the Saints" and "truth and mercy comes from God in a way that can be understood individually by each of us without need for any human authority" and a vague idea that the concept of Saints is idol worship, seems to be about as big as the difference between the Christian and the Kantian above. (This is based on a vague understanding of Catholicism and Protestantism and may not be as reliable as my understanding of the Christian and the Kantian.)

It is a tenet of my own religion (as yet unnamed, and called a "religion" half-jokingly) that if you profess a belief and yet that belief doesn't somehow affect every aspect of your life, it's not your real belief. Religious beliefs generally say something about the fundamental nature of reality, the universe, and human existence, so if you profess a belief in a certain religion and it doesn't make you uncomfortable having an intimate relationship with someone who professes a fundamentally different belief, then at least one of you doesn't really believe it.
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F / ar away
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Posted 1/31/15
I'm an atheist and I wouldn't let another person's beliefs dictate my friendship for them. I'm open to and respect whatever beliefs anyone else has. However I think ideally a person that I might fall in love with and want to spend my life with, I think the preferred situation would be that they were either an atheist like me, agnostic or pagan. I don't think a religious person would have enough in common with me for me to consider having them as a life partner. My interests are very in line with what's typical of many atheists and non-believers. It would just more likely work out if they were an atheist too.
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24 / F / Johnstown, PA, USA
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Posted 2/1/15 , edited 2/1/15
As long as our differences don't become volatile, I don't mind. Respect is important, and I'm not just referring to them respecting my own stance, and vice-versa. I do have people I care about who are of other faiths, or lack thereof, and I don't have much tolerance for them being treated like shit. Basically, when dehumanization rears its ugly head, I get pissed off.

Personally, I am what's called an Apathetic Agnostic.
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Posted 2/1/15
Suppose I can only answer from a Christian perspective. If you value you're religion, you will value the religion of the person you will be spending most of your life with. You will value it because you will want to raise your children in the faith. Religion isn't something aesthetic, something you can identify with when you don't believe it. You can't be Catholic and Atheist, you can be one or the other but not both. A Christian in particular who takes their Christian religion seriously knows they have responsibility to catechise their children, to bring them up in the faith will be picky with who they want to marry, if they want to marry at all.

Love between two people does not trump the belief in ultimate things. Temporal relationships are nothing next to eternal relationship and union with God after all. There is a huge gap between people of different religions, perhaps especially more so in Christianity. An evangelical protestant (who actually believes in their religion) is not going to go to mass each Sunday and receive the same cup and Eucharist as his wife, nor is he or she likely willing to have their children baptised at infancy and catechised in Catholicism. Marriage in certain Christian contexts is an important thing after all, for most Christians it is a sacrament, something done for God and gift from God to the married.


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Posted 2/1/15
your parents are wrong, people are people.. unless you have a large inheritance, in which case you do what those bigots tell you to do til they die, then you can accept people as people again.
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29 / M / Atlanta, GA, USA
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Posted 2/1/15 , edited 2/1/15
Well, I'm a Christian.

I would definitely marry someone who wasn't Christian, but their beliefs would still have to involve peace and love for all, as well as saying "sorry" whenever they hurt someone. Those are the only beliefs I think are particularly important.
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Posted 2/1/15
I grew up in Christian churches and had friends and acquaintances that were Hindu and Muslim. In fact we were always invited to celebrate their holidays and we'd do the same for them. We'd swap celebratory foods. I've been to a mosque for a Muslim wedding, it was great. I've been to homes that had Hindu shrines and even looked been invited to observe puja. Every year I joined everyone to watch the Hosay parade when they make floats that look like temples and palaces. There'd also be the sun and the moon. There'd be Tassa drums being played. These were made at the time of fasting and presented when the fasting was over. They were taken down to the sea. I've heard things are different in Iraq/Iran for this festival their they have ritual self castigation on the celebration.

My ex is a muslim convert. He grew up Catholic and all of his close family are Catholic. His father is Muslim but they'd split up and his father went back to Saudi when he was a toddler so he didn't grow up with Muslim influences. Religion wasn't the reason my ex and I split up.
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