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Christian Beliefs


Darkside
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I recently have been pondering the extant to which Christianity shaped my worldview and my personality. Even now that I have renounced it, it's like a cancer; I removed the tumor but there are still infected areas that need to be rooted out. For example, it's hard for me to stop thinking about my actions in this life being done for the purpose of some life to come, which I'm pretty sure is a remnant of my Christian beliefs. Basically, I want to make sure that whatever I believe, is because I believe it, not because Christianity told me to and is still having a latent effect on me. It's hard to explain. Anyway, I don't want to just haphazardly start cutting stuff out, because some of it is really me, but I do want to determine what parts are due to Christianity's effects.

 

Which brings me to the point. I've been thinking of a list of things that I accepted because of my belief in Christianity, so that I can consider how each belief may be affecting me. The list I've come up with so far is below. I'm sure there are things I'm not thinking of, so I'm hoping some of you can add to this list. Maybe it can help us all to consider what we believe and why.

 

My list:

 

God created everything

God makes rules

God deserves obedience

God demands obedience

Sin is the absence of God

God hates sin

God punishes sin with hell

Christ paid the penalty for sin

We must trust in Christ’s payment

We must believe exactly the right thing to be saved

If we do not trust Christ’s payment we are damned

The damned suffer in hell for eternity

The saved are in the presence of God for eternity

Christ’s payment redeemed us

We are God’s property

Our bodies belong to God

We must sacrifice our bodies for God

This life is not important in view of eternity

We must not live to please ourselves

We must not love the world

The desires of the flesh are evil

The purpose of this life is to serve God

We must place relationship with God above all others

God will never forsake us

Godly living brings persecution

God's ministers have authority over us

The church is our true family

The most important thing we can do for our children is to indoctrinate them

The goal of any interaction with non Christians is to convert them

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Sin is the absence of God

 

Did you mean that Hell is the absence of God? I've never heard that sin is.

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The first thing I gave up when I went ex is the belief in prayer. Whether God exists or not, prayer is superfluous and generates no response whatsoever.

 

But it was years before I finally gave up a belief in prophesy/destiny. Even deists from the Revolution like Paine, Jefferson and Washington believed in divine providence, but it is just another form of divine intervention. It wasn't until I finally gave that up that things started to fall into place. It was the biggest single step in my philosophical growth away from the chaos of Christianity. Looking back, it's hard to believe that I protected it for so long.

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The hardest thing for me to relinquish was my prayer ritual. For me to stop praying was the equivalent of prying open the jaws of a pit bull. I found myself doing it even when I KNEW nothing would come of it.

 

I always knew that prayer wasn't beneficial. I remember when I was a small child my mother told me that, "If you pray and believe God will give it to you." So one night, before I went to bed, I prayed for a huge mansion with a pony in the back yard. I am almost 30 years old now and I still don't have pony(I drive a Pontiac...a Christian might say god answered my prayer in some strange obtuse way...No I worked my rump off for my Pontiac) nor a mansion.

 

However, I kept praying anyway. And whenever the slightest occurence happened I attributed it to God answering prayer.

 

As an Ex-Christian it was hard to let that go...

 

However, I am pleased to say that I no longer pray. I do meditate though. And pray is a form of meditation. Instead of kissing god's ass I now whisper affirmations to myself everyday. And, strangely enough, that has the same effect as a prayer life...

 

Also, I keep being haunted by "what happens after death?" I no longer believe in hell nor the judeo christian heaven...However, for reasons I won't explain, I don't think I believe in total oblivion either...

 

I blame this ambiguity on Christianity. If I hadn't been raised religious I wouldn't give a damn...

 

But everything else listed I have pretty much detoxed myself of. I am 98% ex-christian...and I am glad. :)

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I can say with certainty that I am completely ex-xian. I don't think about anything religious, ethical, or spiritual as I did when I was Xian. I was consciously trying to do that, always examining every little thought or belief to see just how Abrahamic a flavor it may have had. It was a good exercise, and helped me overcome that difficult stage of deconversion.

 

Unless one wants to consider aggressively and intolerantly rooting out the slightest vestige of Xianity from my life to be a Xian-like activity, that is :HaHa:

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