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Current time: 25th February 2017, 23:11

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Why I'm an Atheist...
#1
Why I'm an Atheist...
So I'll tell my life story,

First off, my name is Will. I've been an Atheist for about a year and a half now, and I will briefly discuss how and why this happened. Keep into consideration that now I see myself as a Gnostic Atheist, and although it's more common in the community to be an Agnostic Atheist, I feel the evidence  points so heavily towards there not being a deity, that there is no doubt. Anyway, I'll get into my story on how I became an Atheist.

To understand where I am now, you have to understand where I came from. I'm from a town in the state of Virginia, a state that is quite religious being it's in the "south", and unsurprisingly, I was raised as a Southern Baptist. My family comes from a pretty religious background, as some of my past relatives served in religious positions in various churches. From the moment I was born, religion was hammered into my life. I apologize for the graphic nature, but this shows in the fact I was circumcised as an infant, a fact I will touch on later into my essay. I was baptized when I was around 5 years old, and went to Church every Sunday with my parents. On top of this, I am now enrolled at a private Episcopalian preparatory school which sees religion as a cornerstone of education. We have a chapel service three times a week, and are forced to take two biblical studies courses during our time at the school. With all this religious indoctrination that I suffered, it seems quite astounding I was able to escape the clutches of folklore and story.

My journey out of religion began with an accidental conversation in 8th grade during a Biblical Foundations class. The class was waiting for a teacher to arrive when I struck up a conversation with someone who would eventually become one of my closest friends and strongest allies. For anonymity's sake, I will henceforth refer to him as M. M was someone I had never truly talked to, but somehow we got on the topic of religion. I remember him talking about how the only reason he takes the class is because he has to, and also talking about how he feels it's all false. This concept was foreign to me, and I remember talking to the school Chaplain about it, as I was deeply religious at the time. She explained to me how some people in life don't believe in religion, and introduced me to one of the most important terms I know, "Atheist".

As time went on, and weeks became months, I began researching Atheism. Sources such as the Freedom from Religion Foundation, and YouTubers such as The Amazing Atheist and Cult of Dusty began educating me on the basis of Atheism as a community. After learning all about atheism as a group and secular/humanist lifestyles, I internally began debating. My faith, which had been so tightly knit, feared for my safety and me going to hell at death, while this new Rational side of me was comprehending all of these new arguments. I believe the tipping point came in a Biology class. It's cliche, but it truly opened my eyes, as I learned that all the beauty and splendor of life and the universe can be explained through science, something that can be seen/tested. The study of evolution also broke down the integral part of faith, which explained that a mythical "sky-man" didn't create life, but it naturally occurred to to matter and particles coming together due to the astounding odds against it.

At this point, I was an Agnostic Theist. My faith was holding on by a string, and it finally broke after three crucial events. One of them was my introduction to The Church of Latter Day Saints. I love musical theater, and I wish to be an Actor on Broadway in the future. I mention this because the musical "The Book of Mormon" peaked my curiosity in the faith. I researched it, and learned that the faith is obviously false, as it was simply invented to create a group to travel with Joseph Smith. I then realized that all religions were founded due to similar reasons, as having ignorant believers could be the most powerful tool known to man, as the followers would blindly believe the "leader" Second was my introduction to all other religions, mainly Islam. After researching the life of the "Prophet" Muhammad, I learned he was a merchant warlord who wanted power, and religion would give it to him. Lastly, it was my reading of "The God Delusion" by Richard Dawkins. It was a book that opened my eyes to the problems of religion. Christopher Hitchens also made a point on Circumcision in Judeo-Christian religions, when he stated about how if humans were perfect, why permanently mutilate the genitals of a young boy. This practice is also based in secular lifestyle, as back in ancient times it would have been harder to clean foreskin, and infections were more common. Enough about genitals though.

After all this, I became a Gnostic Atheist. 

Nowadays, I study religions and debate religious people at my school, and I have started a protest along with other atheist students to Not bow their heads and keep their eyes open during the forced prayer sessions. We have made a statement for Secular society, and hope to formulate a theology club for Atheists and Theists to study all religions, not just Christianity. Thank you all for reading, and I hope my story brought some contentment to you.

Will
Paul was a misogynist: A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. 1st Timothy 2:11-13
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#2
RE: Why I'm an Atheist...
Welcome, Will! Thanks for sharing your story, it's very interesting. I think you have the makings of a substantive regular contributor if you stick around.
I'm not anti-Christian. I'm anti-stupid.
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