This begins right after the final jack-o-lantern is picked up. Next the holiday advertisements start splashing their way into the newspapers/ commercials on the television and jingles singing on the radio.... AND THEN the Jesus freaks suddenly converge upon us (the sinners and faithless).
We, the ones that need a Savior, must have a certain glow about us that attracts them to us like moths to a flame.
Perhaps its a pheromone of sorts, or do they have a special scenting ability like the Beagle dog?
Whatever it is, these lively and well meaning individuals weave their way through crowded stores, restaurants, bumping this way and that to reach over and touch your hand or lock eyes and offer you a moment to say a prayer. Sometimes wringing their hands or fretting with beads, eyes baleful and ready to pour their hearts out to blend their own sorrows with yours. It is better to understand the pain of others by sharing your own.
Oh I do TRY to behave (and I had someone that was with me that can confirm that I DID behave the other day) and not push them away every time or perhaps give them a debate as to why it's an intrusion on my life(style) to put their beliefs upon me. If I am sitting for a cup of coffee and having a nice conversation with a friend, please do not step up and ask me if I need a blessing. Seriously, I'm sure you mean well but I have enough thank you.
Here's a thought, go have a seat over there in the corner and put your hands together and say a prayer for the whole room. Thanks for taking up nearly 20 minutes of my time looking quite neurotic and needing a hefty dose of Haldol for your Schizophrenia.
Perhaps when Jesus comes to talk to you again ( while you were sitting in the shitter at Starbucks He told you that someone just outside the door was having leg pain and another was having problems with their family) and you can ask him why you are coming to a cafe to spend $5.00 for a coffee instead of $0.50 per cup at home and you could donate the rest to a charity and REALLY make a difference!?!!
When someone sneezes, I'd prefer not to say "Bless you" instead I would offer 'Be Well".
Interesting enough the use of gesundheit is quite proper for those of us not wanting to invoke spiritual intervention. It is used as an interjection in German to wish good health to a person who has just sneezed.
A note on "Gesundheit"
Most people think "Gesundheit" is synonymous with "God Bless You". The confusion over the real meaning of the word Gesundheit, which means simply "health," probably dates back to the time of the Bubonic Plague, where sneezing was a symptom of the disease. Sneezing was supposedly the person's soul making a break for it! It was believed that sickness arose due to the lack of a soul. And so "soullessness" and ill-health became synonymous during the middle ages.
The custom of saying "God bless you" after a sneeze was begun literally as a blessing. Pope Gregory the Great (540-604 AD) ascended to the Papacy just in time for the start of the plague (his successor succumbed to it). Gregory (who also invented the ever-popular Gregorian chant) called for litanies, processions and unceasing prayer for God's help and intercession. Columns marched through the streets chanting, "Kyrie Eleison" (Greek for "Lord have mercy"). When someone sneezed, they were immediately blessed ("God bless you!") in the hope that they would not subsequently develop the plague. All that prayer apparently worked, judging by how quickly the plague of 590 AD diminished.
The connection of sneezing to the plague is not the first association of sneezing with death. According to Man, Myth, and Magic: The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Mythology, Religion and the Unknown, many cultures, even some in Europe, believe that sneezing expels the soul--the "breath of life"--from the body. That doesn't seem too far-fetched when you realize that sneezing can send tiny particles speeding out of your nose at up to 100 miles per hour!
We know today, of course, that when you sneeze, your heart doesn't stop, nor will your eyes pop out if you can keep them open (www.straightdope.com/classics/a2_30 4.html), nor does your soul get expelled. What does get expelled are hundreds upon thousands of microscopic germs. (thanks thestraightdope.com for the above blurb)
Does the Satanist say instead: "Satan curses you"? Do Buddhists retort, "Buddha bless you"? Allah for Muslims? Darwin for evolutionists?
What about meeting in between and just saying "Einstein" when any anyone sneezes. It works well. It's quick, easy and encapsulates the essence of religion vs. science in one fell swoop.
(thanks to The-Brights.Net for the above blurb)
The whole year can practically go by without a single sign of human compassion and sharing. People run and bustle daily with their own lives, often forgetting those around them until they are reminded by Thanksgiving Day circulars, diddey's on the radio and the bell ringers outside of Wal-Mart.
Your $0.77 might really help someone, well after they peel off the first $0.43 to pay overhead and THEN maybe someone will get a crust of bread.
I do not have children, I don't want children and I'm not particularly interested in taking care of yours therefore I do not share our gains to welfare of any such.
crazy cat lady I am, or so I'm told. Therefore I donate my efforts to needy animals. However, I do not give the shelters money either because quite frankly the same situation happens there as it does anywhere else. Money has a trickle down effect, but supplies are always on demand.
A bag of food WILL feed hungry mouths. A helping hand will clean faster than a promise will get something done.
Since I have all of my issues people always want to say a prayer for me, ya know what - DON"T.
It's not working. You've been doing it for a really long time and nothing has changed. Pray for someone else or just wish really hard for me to win the lottery, wouldn't that better improve anyone's life? I think so. Money will buy better medical coverage than any health insurance will cover.
Wanna do something good for me, want to just give me something that makes me smile.
I like expensive chocolates.