ANSWERS: 51
  • Well, I'm not a hard line non-believer, but I also don't follow anything. I would say "thank-you" politely, and leave it at that. If a person means it with sincerity then why bring any negativity into it?
  • I think that depends upon the intention of the person saying it. Does the person saying it know the person they are talking to is an Atheist? Is the person saying it trying to give comfort or well-wishes to the Atheist? In such cases, it is best to thank them. If the person is saying it out of deliberate disrespect and/or disregard for the Atheist's beliefs, you might try anything from, "Toothfairy bless you," to, "I don't believe in God," to, "Hail Satan!" Your choice.
  • Nod and say "If you wish".
  • Depends on the person. If the person is a decent person, a simple thank you (for the thought and understanding of the tradition) is perfect. If you are a less than tolerant person, you will retort with something less than plesant.
  • Most times it is just an instant reaction, without thinking, (for a sneeze, for instance). It is not usually said to offend or cause a problem. Unless someone knew you were an atheist, and said it to get under your skin, I'd just let it go. It's just a response by some people who mean no harm.
  • 1) Theoretically, you could say: "Thank you for your wishes, but I don't believe in God, so this is meaningless for me. However, I know what it means for you and I am glad that you tell me that anyway. And I wish you the best too." 2) Practically, it would be in most cases better not to engage in a long discussion with people which you don't know very much, so you could just say: "Thank you very much". 3) In some cases, it could be expected that you give the wishes back. (just being polite) You could say "I wish you the best" or something of this kind. If you do not find something appropriate to say, and if just want to be understood, you could also say "God bless you". If this doesn't mean anything to you, it will mean something to them. 4) It some cases, one could also just expect "God bless you" as a standard answer. So either you just say it (whatever it means for you) and accept this situation, or you start a discussion about it. It depends of your mood and if you are a militant atheist. Or, at least, a secularist... I am thinking about German Bavaria: in Bavaria, it is just usual to greet people with "Grüß Gott". Here is an interesting article about this (in English): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gr%C3%BC%C3%9F_Gott
  • "Thank you"...simple, respectful of the other person, and doesn't start a needless argument There is just not enough time in the day to 'correct' every person out there in the world. Pick your battles wisely.
  • Just say "thanks." They're not really proselytizing. No need to argue.
  • "who?"
  • Just say "Thank you". The person saying it to you is only trying to be polite and is just wishing you well. No need to get to "deep" about a simple God bless you.
  • Believing that it is simply common courtesy rooted in social etiquette, you may have given little thought to why people say this. Yet, the expression is rooted in superstition. Moira Smith, librarian at the Folklore Institute at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana, U.S.A., says of the expression: “It comes from the idea that you are sneezing out your soul.” To say “God bless” is, in effect, asking God to restore it. I do not believe in following this ancient superstition. Do what I do, simply say nothing.
  • thank you....i guess
  • The crux of this depends on if the person KNOWS you are atheist. If they don't know, I think it's fair to assume they are being polite, which is nice. If they do know and say it once or twice at most, it could be simply from habit. If they say it more than 1-2 times (such as a coworker), then I believe they are trying to 'get under the skin'. I experienced this myself at work quite a bit. The 3 people I work with continued to use the phrase even when I never responded with a 'thank you', and knowing I'm atheist. I consider this mean-spirited and "in your face" Christainity. I finally had to ask them to stop, stating the obvious..."if you know I'm atheist, why do it". In the end I was the one who appeared to be overly sensitive or aggressive, prohibiting their free speech. Apparently, they aren't imaginative enough to consider their own reaction, if hypothetically, someone were to say, "Satan Watch You", when they fart or hiccup. ;-)
  • Thank you , that is the usual thing I respond with!
  • No response is necessary.
  • I am just polite, I say thank you. Doesn't hurt me. I don't need to squabble or worry over that at all
  • Yeah, I see no need in starting a fight. You gotta be pretty dense if words can offend you that much. Besides, the fact that it has the word god in it is irrelevant. The point of the saying is to say "I hope you avoid any future problems". So it's a nice thing. They just happen to believe in god so they think that that is who will most likely have that happen for you.
  • I'd say "thank you". And I am an atheist, and I have said that. Why be impolite?
  • You can respond by saying, "who blessed me?"
  • i allways say "he would if he existed"
  • I just say "you too." It's simpler than "Although I don't share your belief in deific blessings, I appreciate the sentiment and hope in return you feel blessed with your life." There's no need to refute another person's niceness.
  • I just say thanks if it is a simple non heated situation. If it isn't being said in such a manner I say "Thanks, I'll be sure and sacrifice a goat for you!
  • I just say "thanks". A blessing is a blessing no matter where or who you choose to believe it comes from.
  • Any way they would like. Athiests are not restricted by dogma.
  • I would reply - Mohammed Save you All religions are basically the same, what's the difference between the two?
  • By saying "Thank you" After all, Atheist is not synonymous with rude, is it?
  • personally i laugh at them.
  • Why not just say thanks? If somebody's well meaning, I don't see any need in going out of your way to be impolite.
  • I don't respond to it.
  • I would respond with 'thank you for the sentiment'.
  • Um... "Thanks"?
  • Well, they probably might get offended, then they would suggest you say: "May the it of your choice bless you."
  • You can respond any way you want to (I tend to be a little literal sometimes lol) but it SEEMS like you want to know well how should you I dunno but.... well I can tell you how I and some friends who are atheist or agnostic or non-theist respond. Some kind of ignore it, some might give a slightly funny/disapproving look but might give a little uneasy thank you, some give an uneasy no thanks lol or they just go um ok. lol
  • It seems that the most appropriate and non-confrontational response is a simple thank you, but depending on the situation and the intent of the person invoking the invisible man, I might say "no thank you" or "get fucked"
  • "Thank you." That's how ANYONE should respond.
  • its an act of etiquette. so i dont care. i am atheist. i dont go over board. i say the pledge and dont care god is in it. i just dont believe god is real. but if you do then thats good. you treat me with a smile and a coke and laugh i will do the same.
  • By scratching my ass
  • It's not that complicated. Just say "thanks."
  • if the person is saying it out kindness or maybe if they sneezed ;] then they should just say thank you or say nothing. there's no one reason to be rude. if the person is trying to be sarcastic then you should just ignore them because its just childish for someone to do that and shouldn't even be acknowledged.
  • Hopefully with a polite "thank you" as the person in most cases would mean them no malice and would be wishing something they thought was good on them. Not everything in life has to be a confrontation.
  • I just say thanks.
  • The correct response is "Thank you".
  • Just say "Thank you" and appreciate that the person was being polite. No reason to make a big issue out of it.
  • Just don't say anything at all that's what I do. I don't know why people think they have to say anything.
  • Good manners have nothing to do with whether or not I am an atheist so I say "Thank you" because the people that say "God bless you" usually mean well.
  • i say thank you. it's not really used as a blessing anymore. it's just a manner of speaking
  • I hope so, but I don't know how to believe.
  • Most of the time people say that to be nice, so just take it and say thank you
  • thank you. because you are not stating you believe in a god but that you accept their wishes for you to be healthy [in a different form other than medical]. you can still believe what you want to. it doesn't mean anything to me anyways to hear it. except that they care for your health in their own way.
  • By saying sorry i sneezed at you. Did you know i have swine flue :D

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