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A journey from Christianity to Atheism
#1
A journey from Christianity to Atheism
Hi all. Just thought I would share.

I was raised Christian. Not very devout, but Christian nonetheless. We attended church only once a month, but everybody from the church was pretty close. I grew up kind of following suit at first, and I didn't really question anything until I was about 16. I started having doubts. I voiced these doubts to a few people from church that I trusted, and was met with the response you'd expect: Satan is trying to deceive you, don't let him. Then my family got wind and we all had a long, uncomfortable talk that I bullshitted my way through. If I had answered honestly, I was worried that they would never drop it. I kept my mouth shut from then on, but my doubts grew. I started spending long periods of time in my room, thinking. Meditating. Stewing things over in my brain. The things my religion had taught me were in direct conflict with the conclusions my rational mind was formulating. My morals and beliefs that I had been taught were being challenged by my own free thinking, and I didn't know what to do about it. I started wondering why a "just" God would intentionally make bad people and then send them to burn for eternity in a Hell He created. Suddenly, this God fellow wasn't as deserving of my praise anymore. Having a strong interest in astronomy and cosmology, I found it incredibly farfetched that God created this unfathomably vast universe, with its billions of galaxies and wonders... All just for us. And without making any mention of it. The clergy used to execute people for saying the world was round. Don't you think God would've mentioned that?

This continued for quite some time. Then something big happened. This may not be my biggest reason for denouncing my faith. But it is certainly the incident that sticks in my memory. I met a person that just moved to town and started going to my church. This person (we'll call him Joe) grew up in the middle east (I forget what country) and spent his childhood as a Muslim. When he was a teenager, his family moved to the US and Joe eventually converted to Christianity. He was telling me this story, and having a "religion crisis" myself, I asked him what made him convert. He said that after spending some time with a church group at school to learn more about the Christian faith, he became intrigued. His family was obviously displeased, and he kept it a secret until he moved out of his parents house. He said to me, and this is his one quote that stuck with me: "I finally realized and accepted that He is the only God, and that my old faith was a one-way ticket to Hell."

I thought about what he said later, and I though: So this "great" God will send millions of people to burn for eternity simply because they had the bad luck of being born in the wrong country and doing what they believed was right and what was taught to them?

What followed was several weeks of confusion. I think the hardest part was accepting the non-existence of an afterlife. Eventually, however, I realized that I had no faith in God at all. I categorized Him with Santa Clause. But this was the start of a new issue: Morals. My whole life, what was "right" and "wrong" were told to me. I didn't personally understand the reasoning behind it (what's wrong with homosexuals???) but I accepted that I must be too young to understand. Now, all of a sudden, with no omnipotent being to say, "Do this, but don't do that," I was faced with the free will to decide my own morals. Ironic, huh? Christians are always talking about "free will" but I had much more of it now that didn't identify myself as Christian. I mean, obviously some things were simple. I still felt that killing and rape were wrong; but suddenly my mind was battling itself. Is sex before marriage good or bad? The bible says no, but as far as I could tell, it doesn't hurt anyone... So is it wrong? Divorce? Working on Sunday? Should I try talking to that gay kid and maybe find out he's not evil? And of course, on top of that, there was that old curse that haunts every sentient being: The knowledge that I would one day die. The very source of religion itself, IMO.

This mental freedom was overwhelming. And what made it worse? I couldn't tell anyone. I knew that if my family found out... Well to be honest, I didn't know what my family would do, and that's what scared me. So I kept it a secret. I went along with the motions, said grace, went to church, etc. As time went on, I grew more comfortable with being an atheist. I decided on a lifestyle that I still try to follow to this day: My mortal life is all I have, so I try to spend it enjoying life and making a better future so that others may do the same. A few years passed, and I realized that I was happier. My life had less stress in it when I wasn't constantly worried about an ever-present God criticising my every decision.

The rest, as they say, is history. I went through life claiming to be a Christian to avoid ridicule. I'm completely outspoken about it now, but I've only been an "out-of-the-closet" atheist for about 3 years (I'm 23 now, 24 next month.) With the atheist movement growing, I am much more comfortable with it, though sometimes I see someone from my hometown, and they always make it obvious how disappointed in me they are.

I'm sorry this was so long-winded. To those of you who read the whole thing, thank you. For those of you who gave up or skimmed it, I can't say that I blame you. Thanks for looking, anyways. Good night.
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#2
RE: A journey from Christianity to Atheism
Ha I'm 21 I know what are talking about I went to a Christian school all my life and even thought I was A Christian.....the fear of telling everyone that you don't believe is hard...everyone questions you and feels they need to save you from your misguided ways...I've always known it's because they care...your story sounds like mine (i read the whole thing. By the way )

"You know, I know this steak doesn't exist. I know that when I put it in my mouth, the Matrix is telling my brain that it is juicy and delicious. After nine years, you know what I realize? Ignorance is bliss." -Cypher (the matrix)
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#3
RE: A journey from Christianity to Atheism
Good grief....21 and 24. I've got socks older than that.


But you young guys are the future. Keep giving it to the morons. They richly deserve it!
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#4
RE: A journey from Christianity to Atheism
No you are mistaken...we are the delusional morons Smile
"You know, I know this steak doesn't exist. I know that when I put it in my mouth, the Matrix is telling my brain that it is juicy and delicious. After nine years, you know what I realize? Ignorance is bliss." -Cypher (the matrix)
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#5
RE: A journey from Christianity to Atheism
http://gretachristina.typepad.com/greta_...etter.html
[Image: Untitled2_zpswaosccbr.png]
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#6
RE: A journey from Christianity to Atheism
(May 22, 2011 at 9:36 pm)thesummerqueen Wrote: http://gretachristina.typepad.com/greta_...etter.html

Oh man, now I have to make an "Atheists do it better" t-shirt.
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#7
RE: A journey from Christianity to Atheism
(May 22, 2011 at 9:36 pm)thesummerqueen Wrote: http://gretachristina.typepad.com/greta_...etter.html

oh, come on this cant be proven Christians are very hush hush about there sex life!
"You know, I know this steak doesn't exist. I know that when I put it in my mouth, the Matrix is telling my brain that it is juicy and delicious. After nine years, you know what I realize? Ignorance is bliss." -Cypher (the matrix)
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#8
RE: A journey from Christianity to Atheism
The more you learn the less you can believe.

My brother-in-law, a devout christian, wanted to become a missionary and attended divinity college to get a doctorate. (Yes, he already has two proper degrees).

Late one night, over a bottle of Remy Martin, he confided in me (in the family, a known "doubter") that he had had to abandon the course. He found that the more he learned, the weaker became his faith. To maintain his faith, he had to stop learning.
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#9
RE: A journey from Christianity to Atheism
(May 23, 2011 at 12:30 am)Rudolph Hucker Wrote: My brother-in-law, a devout christian, wanted to become a missionary and attended divinity college to get a doctorate. (Yes, he already has two proper degrees).

Late one night, over a bottle of Remy Martin, he confided in me (in the family, a known "doubter") that he had had to abandon the course. He found that the more he learned, the weaker became his faith. To maintain his faith, he had to stop learning.

I'm glad he has his priorities thoroughly in order...

What do we call people who are simply ignorant? Misinformed.
What do we call people who are willfully ignorant? Idiots.

I'm sorry your brother has transitioned from a high school degree in misinformation to a doctorate of stupid.
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#10
RE: A journey from Christianity to Atheism
(May 23, 2011 at 12:30 am)Rudolph Hucker Wrote: The more you learn the less you can believe.

My brother-in-law, a devout christian, wanted to become a missionary and attended divinity college to get a doctorate. (Yes, he already has two proper degrees).

Late one night, over a bottle of Remy Martin, he confided in me (in the family, a known "doubter") that he had had to abandon the course. He found that the more he learned, the weaker became his faith. To maintain his faith, he had to stop learning.


Tired of life without Koko, Rudy?

[Image: gorilla240307_468x624.jpg]

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