Post # 47
Like one of these cohorts was like “You don’t know this song??” when we a Christian rock song came on.
Don’t worry, you’re not missing out on anything there. I’m a Christian and can confidently say “Christian rock” sucks. A lot 😉
Post # 48
@kate169: I’ve had similar thoughts, but I too can’t quite completely buy in. I’d say I’m more agnostic than anything. I think I generally live my life according to Christian principles.. but without the church and God stuff.
Every now and then I re-examine it. I just don’t know.
Not too many people I know are religious, though.. so I guess that helps. I don’t feel out of place, but sometimes I wish I were religious. My boyfriend is Catholic… but he got divorced and isn’t exactly practicing anymore. He doesn’t go to church or anything anymore. He believes in God and I ask him lots of Qs, his insights are interesting.
Post # 49
No. I don’t ever wish I was a Christian, nor do I feel the desire to “fit in” with those who are – but I do think it would be nice to believe in Heaven and believe that I will one day see my deceased family and friends again. Not believing in an afterlife makes dealing with death extremely hard for me because there is no hope of reuniting someday. But on the flip side, I like to think that makes me embrace each day and each interaction with my loved ones to the fullest because I know (or believe) that this life is all I have.
Post # 50
Quakers. All the community you need, without all the religion.
Post # 51
No. I have friends who are Christians and just because I am not, doesn’t change our relationship and I’m never made to feel left out.
I’m perfectly happy with my beliefs.
Post # 52
No, maybe it’s different where I live, but there is very little religious pressure anywhere. My family and my FI’s family are generally a mixed bag of agnostics (if anyone’s familiar with the “agnostic spectrum,” I think between us the family hits every point at least once). I find my community in my Amnesty International group, and don’t feel the pressure to be defined by my beliefs before my individuality/profession/morals and actions/etc.
But, let me just reiterate (because I do not want to come off as sounding high and mighty), I am sure that is mostly a function of where I live (culture incl.).
Post # 53
No… I really don’t.
I don’t miss the fake people. Unfortunately, my parents were/are heavily involved with our local church so I saw all the political scheming, power trips, etc that happened behind the scenes. And yes, it happens in ALL churches/sects/religions because humans are corruptable. If they’re corruptable, who’s to say they haven’t corrupted the religion from the get-go. I also don’t miss the hypocracy and judging. Especially how most treat other people in disdain regarding different lifestyles (religious, sexual orientation, etc).
It also doesn’t help that I studied Psychology (the study of mind and behavior), Sociology (the study of society), and Art History (which deals a lot with ancient cultures). I figure that if I was born in a different time and culture, I would have believed in and/or followed other gods such as Zeus, Hera, Jupiter, Ra, Anubis, Buddah, Shiva, and more. Nothing makes one “more true” than others because non of the can be proved to exist/not-exist. Gods exist to explain the unexplainable and provide guidance to benefit a society whether now or at the beginning of human culture. They all serve the same purpose.
I’m comfortable with my beliefs and I can play on a level field with christians because I have studied the bible when they preach to me. I’m proud to be me and I can get along with other people perfectly fine as long as they don’t persecute others for being different. Also, my hobbies/interest provide me with places where I can have a “family” outside of my family so I don’t need a church family. If you’re looking for a sense of community, I suggest finding it in something that you love. You don’t need a church just for that.
Post # 54
Wow! I thought I was just crazy! It’s really nice to hear that others feel the same!!
Post # 55
I am a buddhist and I love it!! Just like anyone should love their “religion.” MMMM how I love buddhism. Love love love. Christianity sounds nice and if the christian god is real, I have made my piece with him/her and I do not fear not “believing.” Church is very nice for participating in community but there are other avenues of getting involved. Volunteering, adult sports teams, clubs (meetup.com), and working out at the gym classes. Humans are very social, aren’t we?
Post # 56
I do sometimes too….Like I can’t imagine thinking everything will be ok because “god will take care of it”, I would like to experience that kind of blind faith, just to know what it’s like. But as others have said, I just can’t believe in it no matter how hard I have tried.
Post # 57
I started questioning the Bible at 13. I was an agnostic from 13 to 19, and from then on an atheist.
I don’t miss it. I never want to be religious again. Thankfully, most of my friends/co-workers/etc. are at least agnostic or not very serious into religion. I do have some friends who are very religious, but at least they’re generally sensible people and they can see both sides of the coin (belief vs. non-belief).
I sure as crap hope there isn’t a second life. Are you people kidding me?! One round of this life business is enough. Maybe this is odd, but I find that it lends my life even more importance and gravity- this is the only one I’ve got, and these days are precious, so I’m going to live them as though they’re precious. Not just “oh, I do well with them, then I get to live forever in a great, big paradise.”
FWIW, I think the worst thing that believers can do to encourage non-believers to believe is to…encourage them to read the Bible. I started reading and studying at 13, and the more I delved into it, the less and less I believed. It was all just so absurd to me.
Post # 58
Ignorance is bliss. I really do believe that.
I miss the comfort and certainty that comes with being a Christian. Sometimes just the thought of death is immobolizing and terrifying to me. It wasn’t that way when I believed in heaven. I miss that with all my heart.
I miss the community that comes with being part of a Church. There is *nothing* like it I think within the atheist communities. There is a reason why religion is so popular, and for many people it has little to do with the actual theology and more to do with the comfort that exists in repetition, traditions, community, etc.
I am proud of who I am, definitely. I think I am a better person as an atheist. A kinder person, a more intelligent person, and a more indepenent person.
I have tried to believe in it again, once I started to slip. But it’s impossible. It’s like trying to re-believe in Santa Claus. No matter how much I want it, without some sort of psychological break, it just ain’t going to happen.
And in the words of Dan Savage: If I were the kind of person who could believe, I would believe. But I’m not that type of person. Shit.”
Post # 59
I wish I could just believe in something (anything!) any religion without question, but I can’t.
Post # 61
Wow. See, I’m Christian but everyone around me is agnostic at best! But I’ve heard your story from a lot of other atheists and agnostics, and the opposite for Christians! That’s funny. Pretty much none of my friends are Christian, or if they are, they’re like… casual, secular Christians, if that makes sense.
I’m definitely not a stereotypical Super-Christian, as those people are more “religious” than “Christian” and don’t actually know a lot about their faith and were just “raised” that way or got caught up in the hype and what everyone told them, but didn’t think much about it. Most “Christians” give real Christians a really bad name, and actually turn a lot of people away just from their ignorance. The most intelligent people I personally have ever known are/were either real Christians, or agnostics, who have often come from atheism.
Don’t feel bad, most Christians don’t really know much about what they believe anyway. Start asking them a lot of logical, hard questions and ask them to get back to you. Make them work. They’ll get uncomfortable really fast because they really have no idea what they believe, and are basically regurgitating what they’ve heard from friends or whatever, and are really good at judging people and not making sense.
Christianity makes a lot of sense, historically and logically. Most “Christians” just don’t think about it enough to get that far and are a bunch of blind sheep. Just ask them detailed questions. They’ll get uncomfortable when they realize they don’t know, and maybe it’ll force them to think about it and go try and figure some stuff out. lol
Oh, and a common thing I’ve heard is that you’re not supposed to question anything. I don’t know where this idea comes from. How else can you live without questioning? How can you decipher what is right and wrong? How can you separate fact from myth with anything in life? If you don’t question, you’ll never know anything, and just be completely susceptible to everything. Your friend runs to you and says “Your husband is cheating on you!” are you going to just be all “OMG THAT PIG!” and break up with him? You’ll probably ask some questions first.
Faith is not an absence of questioning, faith is simply a belief in something.