3 Things You Notice as a “Religious Dropout”

Posted by Shane | Posted on March 9, 2021
Photo by Chelsea Shapouri on Unsplash

By the HAPI Scholars

Leaving your religion behind and looking at life purely from a secular perspective is a sometimes scary, but always humbling experience that a lot of secular humanists could tell you about. The truth is that there isn’t one big moment of clarity where you grasp everything that was ridiculous or irrational about your religion; it’s really more of a series of micro-realizations. Here are a few that the HAPI Scholars could recall:

    1. “Bahala Na ‘yong Ginoo” and “Thoughts and Prayers” Shane
    2. Bahala na” is regarded as one of those infamous Filipino traits that you’re expected to outgrow in your schooling years; try using that attitude in the corporate world, and you won’t last very long. And yet, “Bahala na ‘yong Ginoo” (rough translation: “just let God handle it”) is an intrinsic aspect of religious faith.
      Sure enough, when applied to one’s own life, it’s relatively harmless (even if it is a shockingly defeatist stance). It’s when you share the sentiment with others – through say, “thoughts and prayers” – that its impracticality is exposed. Now make no mistake: a friend’s “thoughts and prayers” will always be a lovely sentiment, but it’s utterly useless in the midst of a real-world calamity. I would bet that between choosing a thousand pesos in cash aid than a thousand prayers, most typhoon victims would opt for the cash.
      And yet, even with that impracticality, Filipinos just kind of… tolerate the “bahala na yung Ginoo” attitude. What’s that about?

    3. People are quick to doubt medical professionals because of religious preconceptions. Junelie
    4. Everyone is familiar with this. When most people talk of medical professionals, doctors in particular, there are usually only two topics: how they make a lot of money or how they cheat out on their patients. The latter is usually a bridge to the former. For example, people usually don’t want to visit doctors regarding their illnesses, citing how elderly people who grew up in the old world survived with no doctors and only prayer, but blame both the doctor and the medication when their illness becomes severe or fatal later on. Related to this, some teachers actively discourage their students to take government-funded vaccines because of gossip about them planting chips or prohibiting reproduction—both allegedly going against the Bible.
    5. People can get obnoxious when they find out you’re an atheist. Johnny
    6. …and then they really, really want to push their religion onto you. I’ve found that people start to drop you bombs of foolish verses from the Bible out of nowhere and even take the fight into the core of your humanity. If you can’t respect your fellow man’s beliefs (or lack thereof), is that really the standard you want your religion to hold?

Perhaps due to its widespread normativization, religion emboldens certain people in their respective flocks to feel a sense of moral authority over others who simply do not hold the same beliefs. Often, those people (who might be our friends or family) don’t even realize that they’re talking down on us.

Have you had any experiences like these too? How did you respond to them?

Other good reads...

Godless Grace Essay Contest and Our sponsors, Affiliates and Friends for the Asian Humanist Convention and HAPI Con 2017

Integrity, generosity and kindness emanate from the HAPI Core officers and members.  Indeed, kindness begets kindness. Our supporters  are expanding worldwide, being an international nonreligious society with chapters all over the world. In preparation for the HAPI con, we are launching a Godless Grace essay contest sponsored by our affiliates and those who have helped […]

A Word From HAPI Leadership

Be careful of individuals who want to enter HAPI and make friends with everyone but has no intention of becoming an official member of HAPI. More so, individuals who would usurp HAPI members so they can organize events on their own without even tagging or mentioning HAPI. HAPI is a brand. HAPI is a SEC-registered […]

Veggies and Rice For The Community: A Collaboration Between HAPI and LGBT Pilipinas

Veggies and Rice For The Community: A Collaboration Between HAPI and LGBT Pilipinas Written by Dweng Bulaclac April 26, 2020 Las Piñas City, Philippines Through a simple conversation over social media about the plight of local farmers being unable to sell their goods to the usual drop zone markets due to the in-effect enhanced community […]

HAPI joins Metro Manila Pride 2018’s #RiseUpTogether

HAPI joins Metro Manila Pride 2018

All colors of the rainbow found home once again as the LGBTQ+ community of Metro Manila celebrated Pride on June 30th of 2018 at the Marikina Sports Complex. With 25,000 attendees and over 200 participating organizations, groups and companies, this year’s Metro Manila Pride saw a 225% increase in attendance from 2017. Children of Kids Nutrition […]

HAPI Statement: A time for Choosing: Salonga vs Pacquiao

There was a time under religion that I comfortably ignored the subtle and not so subtle attacks on the LGBT community. Although I had gay friends, I viewed their efforts to fight for equality as an “agenda”. I had chosen the supremacy of religion over the human rights of fellow citizens. My exodus from that […]

Humanism, not religion, is our salvation

Typhoon Ruby is headed our way and already I see dozens of Facebook posts urging people to pray that it will be deflected, for God to spare the country, and so on. If the effectivity of prayers that came before past super typhoons are any indication, I doubt if the results would be any different this time around. Not that […]

Fulfilling Dreams, Pt. 1: Bahay Pangarap

Angie Driskell June 18, 2020 Metro Manila 2020 was meant to be a year full of hope and accomplishments. It was a year I believed would become unforgettable… and it did, but for all the wrong reasons. I struggled to find alternative ways to reach out to those who may need help, or even just […]

About The Author

HAPI Scholars

Hey! We’re the HAPI Scholars, and we’re a bunch of proactive secular humanists-slash-students. If you’re not familiar with the term yet, “secular humanism” is a life stance that pushes for human rights via a purely scientific, non-religious perspective. Most of us “HAPIskos” were raised religious, which taught us a lot of our early humanistic ideals, before eventually dropping the “God” aspect and just focusing on the humanistic part.

Scroll to Top