Hello all, I have been reading this forum for some time and decided to share a post too. I will try to expose my views about life and not give so much detail about my life story but rather share my thought process about religions and how I navigated through that and lastly, why I think in a particular way about things.
First of all, I have been interested in Christianity for the last 3-4 years. I was born in an atheist family and was never exposed to religions until I took an interest in Christianity as an adult. I considered myself to be a Christian during these few years and understood an enormous amount of the concepts of Christianity over a very short period of time.
It is very important to mention that I know what it means to be a Christian in case some Christians read this post. The reason is very simple - many Christians have a theory that if someone in the faith suddenly disbelieves, it means they were never converted in the first place.
Ironically, this is one of the reasons why I know now that Christianity is not true. Noone knows how I felt, what I thought except for me during this time. I took such a genuine interest in this whole thing and prayed so much that I will find the truth about life that eventually I did.. but this truth was different from what I expected. In the end, I do not know anything for sure and I understand that human knowledge is so limited. At least I know now that world religions are man made systems. However, I do think there is a God and that this God is outside of the world religions. Perhaps the closest description of my world view then is an agnostic.
I am very passionate about the truth. I have no fear of asking different questions and I certainly have no fear of hell as Christianity teaches there is an actual hell. Why? Because I believe that the ultimate virtue is to search the truth without putting any limits or fears on oneself. I have the courage to break all the prison bars of human propaganda and ask the questions one might dare to ask.
Such questions can be why are we here, what is our purpose in life and so on (basically many of the questions covered by Christianity discussions too). However, what I found out to be problematic in Christianity is that it closes the loop in the same cycle over and over again. Basically, all the questions are answered in the same way - Jesus is the answer.
It wasn't long after that when my personal life conflicted with the set of rules imposed by religion (obviously a topic covered so many times in the Bible). Of course, at this point I wanted to know if what I believe is true since it puts limits on how I live. The obvious one rule was sex and choice of a life partner. I realised that religion puts a very definite limit on who you can marry. So wait a minute here. It is not only the control of what I believe and think but also what another person thinks or believes which is obviously beyond my control since I cannot program another person's worldviews! Red flags started right here at this point.
What I believe now is that sin exists. I believe envy, murder, corruption etc etc all exist and we are all committing sins in one way or another. However, living to the standard of a Christian living is near to impossible because of its so many rules. If Christianity is true, it proves impossible to follow with these many rules! This was a contradiction for me because I genuinely tried this living and it did not work in the end! I know I tried!
In fact, I do not hold anger towards Christianity (which perhaps is strange because anger is natural in case of oppression as in the cases of others in this forum). The reason I do not hold anger is because I genuinely sought for existential answers to life and I was naively committed to what I believed was true. By simple logic, I know that the truth is somewhere else because if it was true, by my genuine personal commitment in the past, the Christian God, wouldn't have left me here. If Jesus was this God as described in the Bible, He would have helped me in my sins since I asked for this specific help so many times!
Here is the contradiction - if I am created with sexuality, how is it that I am expecting some God to remove this from me? Obviously, we are sexual beings and we have religions telling us to oppress that unless we are married. At the same time, I am not 'allowed' to marry someone I love because he is not a Christian. So what is my choice exactly? Separate and have no sex?
Okay. Ironically, this is exactly what I did!!! I did what is so hard for a human to do, break up from someone and I totally denied myself as in the Christian description. The irony comes there that after my personal denial of the self, there was an absolute silence. Nothing. I felt no connection with a higher being or whatsoever. After many months passed, I knew I was simply one of the victims of religion. All the world religions are the same, Islam, Buddhism, Christianity..they have a closed loop of beliefs and explanations to all of the questions that are closed within this very same loop. The release comes only when one's life circumstances prove to be in contradiction within this loop and one starts to ask logical questions. The release especially comes when one has genuinely sought for answers within this system of beliefs and hasn't found them. Then one knows there is only one possible explanation - one believed a lie.
At present, I am at peace with myself and I do not hold resentment towards Christianity because it actually made me think deeper about life. I think as any other thing, it can be positive or negative to an individual well being. In my case, it ended up being negative. However, I believe many of the things Christianity teaches are genuinely good things like loving your neighbour as yourself, but again, these are not things that have to be taught as a set of rules, these are virtues one must seek to have if one wants to be a good person in general. I am a person who seeks to live a good life without harming others and trying to have a balanced life with no extremes like unhealthy passions (alcohol, drugs etc etc)and I just want to have a normal life where I respect others and live in harmony. I do not need religion to live this sort of live. I do not need religion to be grateful or humble. I believe there is a God,a great designer out there but the more I am curious about this God, the less I know. Does this God even hear our prayers and why if this God is not in the world religions, doesn't answer? I simply do not know but what I know is that I want to live a good life without any manipulation games from other people. And ironically, I will end this post with a bible verse - and then the truth will set you free.