Hi, hope you're having a great day. I was wondering, how did you become an atheist? And if you've already mentioned this somewhere, could you post a link or something? Thanks :) x
I was raised in a secular family, we still celebrated xmas and easter but there were no religious connotations of the sort. I didn’t realize religion was a thing until I was maybe 6 or 7, that was when I started staying with my grandma. She was, and is, a wonderful grandmother. However, she didn’t respect the boundaries my parents had given her in regards to religion (she is a prominent member of a Christian church that is considered by most to be pretty extreme). She started teaching me about God, the Holy Spirit, baptizing, the bible, prayer along with heaven and hell against my parents wishes. At one point she even considered baptizing me on the sly. This went on sporadically for about 6 months. It was when I started trying to sneakily pray at the dinner table that my parents realized what she was doing and put a stop to it.
For a long time I would talk to ‘God’ in my head, sometimes trying to say what I thought he wanted me to say, realizing he would be able to tell I was doing that, and then making myself confused. Other times I cried while in bed, pleading with him not to send my parents to hell because they didn’t believe in him.
In grades 3-5 I began questioning the validity of a God in modern life. It just didn’t make sense to me. I rationalized that maybe there was a god, he just simply didn’t involve himself in the day-to-day affairs of human. A God could have created the universe and then just let it do its thing. (Or maybe he even stopped existing because he created it - that amount of energy must have taken a lot out of him.) Later I realized there is actually a name for this belief; Deism, and I was a Deist. But at the time this was just my rationale.
It was once I hit grades 6-8 that I began questioning even that. “Why am I assuming there needed to be a God to create the universe?” “Sure, we don’t yet know the answer, but we don’t know the answer to many questions - why does the answer automatically become God when we don’t know?”. I wasn’t aware of it at the time, but I had stumbled across the “God of the gaps” argument and been unable to rationalize it from a religious perspective.
It was then I realized I was unable to call myself religious in any sense.
I have spent a large part of high school researching the history of religion(s) and the affects they have on the modern world. I’ve also stumbled across various psychological manipulations and tricks that are all too prolific throughout the bible ((The human mind is a surprisingly weak place, easily manipulated and changed - often with very little effort put forth. I’ve also dived headfirst into identity, how much of you is really you etc etc etc. I could really make a whole post on that. It’s fascinating and makes you question many things… But I’m getting off track here)). I’m also currently in the process of reading the bible fully.
This is also when I started calling myself an atheist. (Technically I’m an agnostic atheist, but I personally believe the agnostic should be implied for everyone as gnostic’s from both groups are relatively rare. Also, trying to explain agnostic atheist to someone who isn’t familiar is quite time consuming.)
I hope that answered your question :). If you have any more questions, or would like me to clarify on some points feel free to ask.
“All I heard was he started asking her to take off her hijab. My jaw dropped,” Raven says. “The man next to her spoke up, but the officer continued to harass her. Ultimately he came towards her in an intimidating way, pulled out his handcuffs and said if she didn’t want to take off [the hijab], she had to leave.” She left.
I am far, far from perfect human being but I am motivated by a vision which exists in all of the great religions –Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Buddhism and others – and which is so beautifully and clearly stated in Matthew 7:12. “So in everything, do to others what you would have them to do to you.” The Golden Rule. Do to others what you would have them do to you. Not very complicated. #Love it!
Jesus and Satan have a discussion as to who is the better programmer. This goes on for a few hours until they come to an agreement to hold a contest, with God as the judge.
They sit themselves at their computers and begin. They type furiously, lines of code streaming up the screen, for several hours straight. Seconds before the end of the competition, a bolt of lightning strikes, taking out the electricity. Moments later, the power is restored, and God announces that the contest is over.
He asks Satan to show what he has come up with. Satan is visibly upset, and cries, “I have nothing. I lost it all when the power went out.”
“Very well, then,” says God, “let us see if Jesus fared any better.”
Jesus enters a command, and the screen comes to life in vivid display, the voices of an angelic choir pour forth from the speakers. Satan is astonished.
He stutters, “B-b-but how? I lost everything, yet Jesus’ program is intact. How did he do it?”