One question I see a lot concerns how open one should be about their religious affiliation, particularly at work. Religious freedom allows us to believe whatever we want. That doesn't give us the right to behave outlandishly about it and not expect consequences.
You don't get to choose your coworkers. Religion is one of those things that can very quickly make work environments uncomfortable, because lots of people can have lots of very different opinions on the matter and feel very passionately about their perspective. Here are some things to keep in mind.
- Keep it personal. Small, positive expressions of your faith within your cubicle are much less likely to cause trouble than shows of disrespect toward non-believers.
- Don't ask for favors you're not comfortable having granted to others. If you feel you need to take off a variety of religious holidays, be willing to help cover if someone else has the same issue.
- Make sure of the rules. Some businesses heavily frown on or even ban religious displays beyond what is commonly required from a faith.
- Steer clear of overt religious discussions. Mentioning the fun you had at a church picnic is one thing. Discussing the anti-abortion rally you participated in, or how much your version of God loves the world, is bound to cause tension.
- Be willing to explain anything that you display. If you're not comfortable fielding questions about that symbol sitting on top of your monitor, don't put it on display.
- Do not think of your display as an educational tool. Work is not the place for it.
- Respect the displays of others, particularly those that believers are more or less required to show, such as distinctive clothing.