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  • Still have any Gods? If so, who or what?
    None (Does football count?)
  1. Since about 12 or 13, I have never believed in God, Jesus, heaven, hell, etc. I am now 27. For years, my parents always kind of suspected that I didn't believe. But I played along with the whole charade simply because it was the easiest thing to do. I went to Mass (I'm a recovering Catholic); said the prayers; ate the little bread wafers, etc. When I went off to college, I stopped attending Church altogether, even when I was home on the weekends. But I still went to Mass with my parents on "special" ocassions like X-MAS, Easter, and stuff like that. It was important to them. Even so, I think they knew by this point, but it was never discussed. At the time that was fine with me. I really didn't care one way or the other. Then, just over a year ago, my wife and I had our first child. My parents had made all the arrangements to have her baptized. That's when I decided no more. I told them point blank that we are not baptizing our child, and that I am not Catholic. My wife pretty much feels the same way I do, although she has some faint Christian leanings now and then. My parents were shocked, angry, etc. We did not speak for weeks. But eventually they came around and got over it. Now, religion is something that is never discussed. It's kind of like the big pink elephant in the room that everyone tries to ignore. For the most part though, things are pretty normal. There are some awkward times around the holidays when we say a prayer before X-MAS or Thanksgiving dinner, but that's about it. My advice for those who are still in the closet...do not be ashamed of who you are, and do not be afraid to state your position. There is absolutely no reason to feel guilty because you believe differently than your family or friends. The guilt is a remnant from the brainwashing of Christianity. It is a religion based upon constant guilt and self deprecation. You must overcome that. I only wish I had done so sooner.
  2. Shy... Like you I am probably about 90% atheist. I think that there is still a small part of me that will not quite go there yet due to fear. On some level it's a frightening thought that when you die, that's it. But my mind keeps telling me that fact over and over. As far as I know, there has never been an atheist in my family either. Of course, you never know what people really believe deep down inside sometimes.
  3. Yes I see that. I've been reading through the site all afternoon. I must say that there are some extremely knowledgable posters here. That's a refreshing change from most forums.
  4. Thank you! I found this forum by accident on a nother faith forum. I was lucky enough to stumble upon the link. I now have it bookmarked.
  5. Hello to everyone. I am new here. I have read several testimonies and wish to share my own. I was born into a very devout Roman Catholic family. I attended Catechism (basically like Sunday School for Catholics) from a very early age. I was baptized, made my first communion, and even my confirmation with the Church. In 8th grade, my parents sent me to a Catholic school. For five years, it was the most miserable experience of my life. Up until the age of about 12, I believed what I was taught. I don't know that I really believed it, but I suppose that I never questioned any of it. That's just the way things were in my mind I suppose. But about this age, it all began to change. Between the age of 12 and 14, I began to question teachings little by little. The things that I had been taught regarding my religion just didn't make sense. I had more questions than answers. Of course, the standard response to such questioning is undoubtedly...just have faith. Well, that didn't work for me. It didn't then and it doesn't now. I was ridiculed by my teachers and priests at my school for openly questioning the Catholic beliefs and teachings. It didn't really bother me, but it was frustrating to be silenced by these people rather then engage in a rational conversation. But you know, that's the nature of organized religion. It's a cult. Cult's require strict obedience. By age 15, I had completely rejected my religion, and most any belief in God. However, being raised in a devout Catholic family, that wasn't so easy to do. I played along (i.e. attended mass, took communion, etc.) until about the age of 18, when I went off to college. By then, I was finally free, to some extent, to believe as I chose without all of the pressure. I think my parents kind of knew about my beliefs by this point, but just looked the other way. I still played along when I went home. You know, I would go to Christmas mass, say a prayer before Thanksgiving dinner, all of that stuff. From the age of 18-25, this is how I lived my life. Religion was a topic generally avoided in the family. I played along when necessary, and nothing more. Heck, I even got married in the Catholic Church to placate my parents. I suppose that it was just easier to play along when necessary, rather than start WWIII with my family. Then it happened. My wife and I had our first child last year. Being devout Catholics, my parents immediately began to make arrangements to have her baptized in the Church. This is when I finally stopped lying to myself and others. I told my parents point blank: "I am not Catholic. I am not Christian. And I do not intend to raise my child as such." You can imagine the response. Silence. Then anger. Then more silence. My parents did not speak to us for about 6 months. Ironically, my parents seemed to blame my wife more than myself. My wife would have been willing to keep "playing along" if necessary (she still has some very faint Christian leanings), but together we made the decision that it was not in the best interests of our daughter. Anyway, so here I am now. I'm 26, going on 27, and I'm somewhere in between an agnostic and an atheist. I find myself slowly drifing more towards atheism with the passing of time for several reasons. First I have seen nothing in my life that would lead me to believe in the existence of a higher power. Sure, I've heard the testimonials, some even from my own family. I've heard of the purported miracles. But I have personally seen or experienced absolutely nothing. A God could end the doubt of every single human being if it was so desired. So do it. Throw me a bone here! It hasn't happened and common sense tells me it won't happen. Second, history and science is a big factor. Human beings used to worship everything from fire, to the sun, to carved statues. Many of these beliefs existed because they were unable to explain nature and their environment. As time has proceeded forward, science is, one by one, giving us rational explanations for events previously attributed to a higher power. Lastly, the concept of the Bible, and a higher power in general just seems silly. God created us to toil around on Earth, worship him, suffer, die, then go to a magical place where everything is all fine and good? Then of course there's hell for all who don't obey. That's just ridiculous. It's strange, people often talk to me like becoming an agnostic/atheist was a conscious choice. I don't agree with that. To me, it's just the way my brain operates, and the way that I look at the world around me. This is how I think. For whatever reason the electrical impulses in my brain lead me to think in this manner. So that's been my journey so far. It's taken me about 14 years to finally arrive at this point. It's a pleasure to find a forum where my thoughts can be discussed without ridicule; harrassment; and threats of eternal damnation.
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