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I have NO god belief--so when I am grading 362,000 discussion posts and students fail to make replies to peers which cuts my grading time, why do I automatically say, "Thank you, god"?


On the other hand, I never thank him/her for big things.

Gwen_Wanderer 6 July 10

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In nineteenth-century America, preachers would warn against using god's name in vain. And so, alternate expressions emerged:
Gosh darn it!
Dang dingus!
Et cetera. When feeling compelled to cuss, one could use any of the above, and still get front row seats in heaven!

Yes! Xtians who use the seemingly innocuous "darn" are really saying "damn." The same for "Hades" which is sending someone to hell.

It is also interesting to note that "odds bodkins" mostly likely means "by god's bones." This was also blasphemy but now, is just a nonsense phrase.


I broke my habit of using any religious terms, years ago, so I say "Thank goodness!" instead, but a lot of non-religious people I know say "Oh God!" and "Oh my God" and they mean it no more seriously than any other mythical character.

I think we use whatever terms are common in our circles. I have a religious friend who says "Thank you, God!" for big things and I think it takes away from the reality of how the good thing happened. She never says "Damn you, God" when bad things happen.

Other than using "thank god" sarcastically, I am not much on thanking anyone/thing outside of myself when something good happens!

When I was still in church, the trend said that "Oh my god" was using god's name in vain unless he was being supplicated! Nope, not kidding.


When I was first trying out agnosticism for size in high school, when someone sneezed I would say "God, to the extent that he exists, bless you." 😏

zeuser Level 9 July 11, 2024

I do say "bless you" when someone sneezes--it is automatic! However, I am the one doing the blessing, not Jesus.

I am Queen of the Universe, you know.

@Gwen_Wanderer I've heard the rumors, but it's nice to hear you confirm it. 😉

@zeuser it is good not to buy into rumors, but whenever you hear a good one about me, it is very likely to be factual.


I use the god word pretty often but it has nothing to do with believing in a god being.



At a previous job, at one point I was hoping to be fired, my backup plan was to quit in the near future. When I was called into HRs office, and she told me I was fired, I replied, "Oh, thank god!" I don't think she was expecting that! Not that I believe in gawd, she may have, it doesn't matter, but it did make for a very funny moment.

That is hilarious! Usually, I have two classes at each of my three schools. I did not have any from one school this summer and at another, I will have only one class next term. There will be a few more weeks where I will have only one or two at the same time. I might not get any at the third school Enrollment is down all over the country. This is a huge cut in my earnings.

However, it means that I am FORCED to take some off. To that, I also say, "Thank god(dess)!" I won't starve.

@Gwen_Wanderer Just wondering, why is enrolment declining in the USA. Is it for demographic reasons?

@Zealandia at one of my schools where I teach grad courses, it seems to be a general decline in graduate literature majors. This does not surprise me and in a few years, I think that graduate literature programs will peter out.

At the local community college, I don't know why enrollment is down. I have taught there for over 20 years and this is only the second time when I didn't have a summer class. I was assigned one, but a full-timer (I am an adjunct) pulled it as her classes were not filling. However, at that time, only one student was enrolled, so it might not have made the quota anyway.

I plan to cut back in a year or so anyway as I have been teaching six classes for many years. Having only four this summer was great, but I will teach a class or two for as long as my cognitive skills last.


I do not envy you the task of grading papers from those who believe in Koalemos.

I have no idea how many of them do, but I am sure it is the vast majority!


362,000 seems like an awful lot….😮

And maybe it just seems like that many to me!


It is a familiar saying, like..."For Pete's sake." There is and have never been a "Pete" in my life yet, I still say it when frustrated. It means no more than that. 🙂

Betty Level 8 July 10, 2024

Leave Pete alone ffs 😉


My very religious grandmother used to so "Oh, for the love of Pete!" all the time. I don't remember her ever saying "For the love of God" and she was super religious, haha!

@Julie808 Did anyone ever figure out who Pete was?

@Betty No, but all of us grandchildren used to mimic her voice with that saying, since she said it so often, and nobody else we knew did, haha! Pretty sure it's the same Pete for as in "For Pete's sake!" who I would have no idea who Pete is, unless maybe it's Saint Peter, at the pearly gates of Heaven.

@Julie808 If Pete is Saint Peter...the only times he's remembered is when someone is frustrated. lol


I used to be harder on myself for this but the expressions are so ingrained as ideas or ways of thinking in our society that I loosened up about it. One of my regulars is "From your lips to god's ears" which I use both to convey that there's no other logical possibility, or as sarcasm. It's a shorthand that would require a much longer explanation otherwise.

I think "Thank you, god" has an earnest, heartfelt meaning that allowed me to understand exactly how you felt so I'm good with it.

Lauren Level 8 July 10, 2024

The phrases are ingrained. However, I never say "thank you, Jesus," so I could be thanking Zeus or Odin.

@Gwen_Wanderer It's funny how experiences are nuanced: any reference to Jesus gets my back up, but I'm fine with god or Zeus or Odin ... or anyone else, really. My daughter, a life-long atheist, uses the expression, "Oh, Jesus" to convey disgust and it took me a while to become accustomed to it.

@Lauren I will sometimes say or write, "Jesus H. Christ," but I am sure that Xtians would see this as blasphemy!

@Gwen_Wanderer I expect they would! Part of me was thrown that she picked it up, I guess because I was always worried that she'd slip into the dark side because of where we live. Somehow "Jesus" always seemed more religious-y than "god.

@Lauren I agree--"Jesus" is more religious than is "god."


Religion-based phrases saturate our discourse and it's near impossible to purge them all. Do not torture yourself for missing occasionally. We're neither perfect nor forgiven. We make mistakes, resolve to do better, and move on.

Agreed--I always laugh when I say it!


I think expressions like that are just ingrained. That's why I sometimes say "god help us" when I see T. giving a speech, which I quickly turn off.



In Thailand they like saying Oh my god. So I started saying and continue to this day Oh my Buddha.

puff Level 8 July 10, 2024
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