All Beliefs are Welcome Here!
Wondering what you guys think of this article. I've been blessed to work with people and bosses who knew "the real me" and didn't care or judge. But I've also come up against people - a clinical supervisor, for one - who told me I would never be successful in my field because I wasn't a Christian. At another job, once one of my supervisors figured me out there was a definite change in how management interacted with me - to such an extent that I had to eventually leave that agency. There was never anything overtly discriminatory in what they did so I couldn't ever do anything about it, but I knew what was going on once the supervisor in question started treating me differently and taking my clients away from me.
As a rule, I don't talk about myself and where I stand, spiritually, at work. In terms of what I do with my clients, it would be highly inappropriate anyway. If they talk about God and their religious beliefs, a lot of times they'll ask me, "What do you believe?" I always say, "What's important is what *you* believe... let's explore that a little more." With coworkers it doesn't really come up as much, but there's a lot of praying and talking about God being good, and I just gloss it over. I'm selective about who I share things with, with good reason.
I think if you allow a particular view to be a deciding factor on your behalf, you also allow yourself to be subject to that view.
As a rule, I don't talk about myself and where I stand, spiritually, at work.
Should the topic come up, well you've allowed these people to stifle you.
Interesting point. Do you think that what you do, vocationally, plays a role in that? I'm a clinical therapist. It might be different if, for instance, I worked a retail job (in my opinion).
It depends on your both your capabilities and approach. I've worked in a variety of professional fields and it's been a non-issue because I don't 'allow' the common view to stifle me in anything I do.
I wish I had that freedom... maybe I don't allow it? Maybe I'm afraid?
Several years ago I had a clinical supervisor who was most definitely Christian - you walked into her office, and it looked like a Christian bookstore. I remember asking her that someday, once I had my license, would I be free to decorate my office in any way that I chose? I embellished a bit for dramatic effect; but I asked about pentacles and crystals, an altar complete with a cauldron, maybe a skull or two. She looked me straight in the eye and said, "Then you will never succeed in this field." I said that as a pagan and a private practitioner, I should be able to decorate my office in any way that I chose just as she had. You could tell that she was struggling with the idea on principle, but as a Christian she was holding firm to the idea that she was right and I was wrong. She shrugged her shoulders and said, "Nobody wants a pagan for a counselor. Everybody is a Christian."
I was floored by her response, and disheartened. I've been in the counseling field for fourteen years and I have never, not once, had a pagan client. I've had clients who have identified as non-religious, or atheist; but they're either Christian or not. Now, I'm also a Reiki therapist - my clients there are more broad, more open, most are definitely not Christian. But these two areas never intersect, for liability reasons. I'm hoping to change that once I get my license.
Sorry for the long-winded response. :/
It sounds as if you are unsure how to respond in a professional manner so it doesn't affect your ability to succeed.
Even if she said this to you, there's a number of ways you could have responded. That's what I was referring to in terms of capability.
I'm a Satanist and when my son needed some counseling, he ended up at the Christian psycho therapy center. He wasn't asked about his religious/non-religious persuasions. It never came up.
I'm hoping to change that once I get my license.
You can be changing it now. It will take courage and conviction.
No body wants a pagan for a couselor? Really? I would have loved to know my counselor was pagan, might have been able to clear my BS far sooner.
Making the choice to not broach specific subjects is not akin to 'stifling.' Practicing discretion at work is not stifling or oppressive or in any way a detriment to the person unless they feel the act of doing so is somehow detrimental to their...stance. That's like saying that pleading the fifth is a cop out.
And then saying "It depends on your both your capabilities and approach. I've worked in a variety of professional fields and it's been a non-issue because I don't 'allow' the common view to stifle me in anything I do." indicates that you're more concerned with being against the common view instead of objectively deciding for yourself the usefulness of the common view for yourself, so that's letting the common view stifle you by letting it define your behavior by it simply being the common view. So then, considering your advice that weedblossom is somehow letting her sense of discretion 'stifle' her by simply taking the professional stance shows a lack of maturity in your stance on the issue.
Making the choice to not broach specific subjects is not akin to 'stifling.
In your opinion, fine. The thing is, the subject was already broached by co-workers. If you're incapable of responding appropriately, then you've allowed it to stifle you.
indicates that you're more concerned with being against the common view instead of objectively deciding for yourself the usefulness of the common view for yourself, so that's letting the common view stifle you by letting it define your behavior by it simply being the common view. So then, considering your advice that weedblossom is somehow letting her sense of discretion 'stifle' her by simply taking the professional stance shows a lack of maturity in your stance on the issue
If that's the way you see it. I'm not. I'm more interested in diversity than allowing one particular view to shape the environment. How professional is it to allow her coworkers to talk down to her?
People aren't required to participate in any conversation that they don't want to, and it doesn't lack professionalism to let them be as they are and not participate in return. Even if they have the authority to hire or fire her, if she simply chooses to decline to converse about it, she is well within her rights as an employee to simply not respond. It lacks professionalism to attempt to blur the lines between professional and personal relationships and perspectives, bring personal concerns into the professional environment, and expect personal expression to be accommodated.
In the example she provided, it lacks professionalism to tell your subordinate that you won't go anywhere in life if you don't conform to the common view.
My grandma was like that about paganism in general. I lol'd about it. "Don't tell anyone you're a pagan..."
I've worked for all sorts of Christian organizations. One in particular was fairly conservative Orthodox Greek. By the marks on my car, it caused them ask me if I worshiped the Devil. I told them I did. They didn't believe me. So I told them I was a Witch and I worked for the Devil. "Oh? What does the Devil provide that God does not?" To which I replied: Tax Loopholes.
Have a sense of humor about it, learn to communicate with people that believe in weird things and it's not really that difficult. Even if they think you're going to burn in hell for all eternity, so what? It's their hell right?