Posts filed under ‘~Guest’
Leaving “the faith” was a long process for me, around seven years to be exact (the universe has a funny sense of humor). It started with my questioning the concept of sin. At many times during my Christendom, I wondered why something I did was wrong. I could not reconcile how something that I enjoyed, something seemingly harmless, could be grounds for damnation. Furthermore, I could not reconcile how honest mistakes, such as letting the word “god” or “Jesus Christ!” slip, could be grounds for an eternity of torture and punishment. I also didn’t understand how simply believing something could change the rules.
For a long time, I simply just ignored those raging questions or accepted the Sunday School answer that god didn’t like it anymore than us, but that was just the way it had to be. As time went on it became more difficult to ignore. With each Sunday the questions screamed at me louder until I could not longer ignore or accept the answers given to me. Being born into “the faith,” I was attached to all the notions that Christianity (more so fundamentalist Christianity) had given me. Because of this I blamed the church first. I thought that the nature of sin had been distorted.
I rationalized that a sin is not so much an action that is inherently bad but rather it was the result of that action that granted it the classification of sin. I thought that a sin was something that brought us away from god. It made sense and was compatible with the life I wanted to live at that time. I clung to that notion for as long as I could. Slowly but surely my idea about what is good and what is bad slowly eroded. Well not exactly. They were never really my ideas. I always had my own feelings about right and wrong. Really those ideas of right and wrong I had adopted had been replacements for my true feelings on the subject…
When I first started blogging, I found it difficult to articulate my current perspective on religion. Thus, I wanted to use my blog to explain my spiritual development, my journey, and how I got to such a complicated, cosmological place. Through writing entries, and commenting and reviewing other religious blogs, I have found that I am more sure of my position than I originally believed. I now feel the strong desire to articulate clearly my contemporary viewpoints. However, my spiritual history has not yet been entirely fleshed out.
And so, I am going to continue on, explaining my spiritual development.
Through out my life, I gradually began to refute and dismiss certain religious claims.
I didn’t believe Jesus was a God. I didn’t believe I needed to confess to a Priest. I didn’t think St. Peter stood at the gates of Heaven with a book that listed who could enter. I didn’t believe in Creationism. I didn’t believe in the Garden of Eden, Noah’s flood, or Jesus’ resurrection.
It was just a matter of time before I contemplated rejecting religion all together.
Starting in high school, I started to identify myself as non-Christian. But I was still very much tied to a lot of the Catholic ethics and morals. The Catholic guilt ran through my mind everyday.
I was so conflicted with my Christianity…
I had a conversation with someone lately via email and they were asking about how I became a Christian and how I ended up leaving the Christian faith. In most cases, Christians do not see how someone could have been a “true Christian” if they end up leaving the faith. So, when they hear that I am no longer a Christian, they assume that I had a false faith of some kind. I wanted to briefly share my story of how I became a Christian and how I came to not be a Christian. I know that many Christians may still feel as though I was not a “real” Christian but there is not much I can do about that. The bottom line for me is that I was honestly a Christian and believed in Jesus and the Bible with all of my heart. I left the faith because I feel that I was bound by my conscience to be honest with myself about what I could and could not truly believe anymore.
I grew up in a Christian home but…was not serious about my faith as a teenager at all. I was into drugs and alcohol quite a bit and I had a pretty bad experience on some heavy drugs which scared me into stopping. As I sobered up I had this intense feeling that I was not right with God. I felt that if I were to die that i was likely going to go to hell. I KNEW what I had to do to get right with God from my Christian upbringing and so after a few “divine appointments” of meeting people who invited me to church with them I accepted and went. I KNEW that this was the right thing to do and I FELT that as I heard the gospel and responded that I was forgiven of my sin and assured of eternal life because of the atoning sacrifice of Christ in my behalf on the cross. I accepted this by faith and my life totally changed…
I am a Christian who reads this blog quite a bit. However, I find that the debates seem to always go back to the uselessness of faith. This is kind of strange – on a personal level – like Christian faith is ‘bad’ or something. It is this issue that I would like to ‘flesh out’.
How is it that the Christian faith is something ‘bad’? I cannot find concrete reasons to believe this. Science cannot provide this reason – it cannot because science does not delve into morality and immorality per se. Science is really of no use in this debate.
(a) The core Christian faith teachings deal with moral ideals – like the ‘do nots’ of murder and adultery or ‘love your neighbour as yourself’. I cannot find places where the teachings actually allow for the immoral behaviour of someone committed to this faith. We know that it happens – but any small reading in the gospels will reveal they have no right to treat people like crap – none whatsoever.
(b) The Christian faith, if it is bad, does not produce very many bad people (per capita). I see the odd bad person crop up – that will commit murder in the name of God or picket funerals. However, they are the exceptions to the norm (deviations from the standard)…
This book is written primarily for Christians who are questioning their faith. It mixes a story of my own de-conversion with facts about the Bible that, in my opinion, basically show that the Bible cannot possibly be real; it couldn’t have been written or inspired by a god. I show how the Bible completely contradicts many known scientific facts, and I talk about similar ancient myths that clearly served as an influence for the old stories in the Bible.
I also talk about the theology of Hell and how Christianity works primarily to scare people into submission with the threat of Hell. I spend a good amount of time on this, as that’s usually the number one fear of people questioning religion. And I approach this one from many directions. First, I show that even believing Christians have little reason to believe in Hell, as the mentions are very few and vague in the Bible itself. But then I show how those few parts of the Bible are nothing more than rip-offs of other religions, and in turn cannot possibly be real. I logically and systematically break it all down and, in my opinion, leave little doubt that it’s all a big myth.
The goal of the book is basically to show that there’s absolutely no reason to be afraid. I show how the Bible isn’t true, and how that means Christianity in turn isn’t real. And at the end of the book I give tips on dealing with the emotional difficulties of letting go. This site is mentioned in my book…
I would like to share with the d-C readers, the primary reasons why I de-converted and why I no longer have to consider what some mysterious, mythical, and hideously confusing god feels about me.
- Watching my religious mother and both aunts die of cancer, while begging Jesus/god to save them, and he did not. Not only that but I also worked in the pediatric ward of a cancer hospital in Houston and watched entire churches praying for god to save babies from cancer, and he did not.
- Knowing that between 1900 and 1999, more than 180 million “good” Christians and Jews died in wars begging, pleading and praying to god to spare their lives. And their imaginary god did not. I participated as a co-leader in a therapy program of former religious Jews (many of whom are now atheists) whose entire families were murdered by Nazis in WWII, who asked the same question – “where was god? Many came to the conclusion, that instead of believing a god was going to save and protect them from “evil,” they should have been preparing to save their own lives. Many had tremendous guilt and anger at being lied to since believing those lies resulted in false sense of security (god’s love, god’s protection, blah, blah, blah), which resulted in entire families going to the gas chamber because of their delusions…
Hi everyone! My name is Shai, I am 23 years old, I live in a city near Tel-Aviv, Israel, and I am an atheist. As an atheist, I lack the belief in a god, gods, or any other supreme/supernatural being. I believe that everyone on the planet earth are godless creatures that were not created by anything and that the origin of life and its evolution are the product of purely natural processes.
Now that I’ve firmly depicted my worldview, I want to share with d-C’s readers why and how I adopted this rather unusual worldview. (if you lived in Israel, you’d know that it’s quite unusual, although, as far as I know, not illegal, to be an atheist)
I was born and raised in Israel. Since I read that this blog is mainly about Christian de-conversion, my story is probably going to be a bit alien to you. My atheism owes itself to 3 major factors: My personality, my upbringing, and some atheist asshole who sent me some websites about critical thinking and atheism.
First of all, let me tell you a bit about religion in Israel. Israel is defined as a “Jewish democratic state”. Although I bet it sounds to any American/Anglo-Saxon reader to be some sort of cynical euphemism for “Jewish Theocracy” – it’s not entirely true. Israel, on the whole, is a fairly secular nation. But that’s not because Jews are a jolly good bunch who know that personal freedom should trump religious dogma at all costs. First of all, we have organizations here in Israel that are entirely dedicated to removing religious impositions upon Israeli citizens…