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Does Anyone Ever Wish They Still Believed In God?


Mike D
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Today for some reason I was feeling really emotional, which is very rare for me. It was a warm day and I was driving down some long lonesome deserted highway in the middle of nowhere where I could see a thousand miles in every direction (I live in the desert), with all the windows down and the warm wind blowing around me, watching the sun start to set in front of me, and there was some POD song on the radio in the background and I felt really good. It was one of those picture perfect moments in life that don't come along very often, like the ending of a really good movie where the hero drives off into the sunset to live happily ever after. But as I sat there enjoying the moment, for some reason my mood changed. I started thinking about my life, and and how hard I work so I can afford to buy all this expensive crap to make me feel good about myself, so I can look at others and think to myself "fuck you, I am better than you", and I got really pissed off. I got pissed off that this is all my life is, and in the end none of it matters, and I got pissed off that this is all there is, this shitty world, with all of its suffering and misery and death and in the end there is nothing. And then I just felt sad, and I felt like crying. And for a moment I found myself wishing I believed in God.

 

Maybe the circumstances were different, but has anyone else ever felt this way?

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No - I'm a Deist. I still believe in a Creator, so that base is always covered. I just don't believe in the same Creator as I did when I was Catholic.

 

I do hear you, in reality. There were a few times here and there I got a wee bit nostalgic about my worldview (the positive aspects, anyway) of my old belief system. Then it gets blown away when I remember all the reasons I left Xianity and bear in mind I still have all the positives right here with me, and a slew of new ones.

 

As a Deist, I don't have some ancient world of uber-Xianity (the Middle Ages) to look back on; I have the here and now and all the wonder that is here. Plus, I can look at history if I wish with uncloded vision. As a Deist, I don't have the notion of an all-present god nosing into my business; I have the notion of an impersonal yet un-cruel Creator who brought all this into being, a Creator that is not just compatible with reality in ways no other man-made gods can be, but is also compatible with the god of any fantasy or otherwise ideal world I should entertain myself with or even invent in my head. I don't have to reconcile my thoughts with the tyrant Jehoover and Jesus™, the Scum of Gawd.

 

Not that I claim to know precisely why you felt like that, but we humans for the most part like believing that some kind of Creator is up there, some kind of First Cause or whatever. Dismissing that totally seems a bit extreme; ditching the concept of a Creator (or many Creators) just because we chose to leave this religion or that is like throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

 

My advice, though I know you are an Athiest, don't shut yourself off to your mind's natural desire to ponder. I think that's all you're doing, naturally pondering things beyond the mundane world, and the sights and sensations as you drove along helped to inspire that (they would for me were I in your shoes, though I'd need Iron Maiden on the radio :58: ). I know I may sound like a prosletyzer (not what I am getting at), but after all, a Deist is an Athiest who believes that a Creator (a "god" if you will) exists. But that's just my two cents.

 

Or you could just be experiencing the love of the Holah Spirit trying to nudge you back into the caring arms of Jesus™ ;)

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Must be the misalignment of the planets or something. I've had a weird week, too. Normally I'm a freakin rock. But I went sideways a few days ago over some silly shit that's not even worth worrying about. And, I too went through that process of questioning what this trip is all about. And I had that exact same thought, Mike - that in the end nothing matters. Freaking meaningless.

 

And, it would be nice to think that life continues after this is over.

 

But, during all that, it never occurred to me that Jesus was the answer. Been there, done that, got the T-shirt.

 

Nice to say that I'm now back to my give-a-shit attitude about things. Much improved.

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It sure has been a couple of weird days.

 

Regarding the OP, I haven't felt that way in a long time, but I do remember when I first lost my faith that for a while I wish I could believe again. But at the same time I felt such freedom.

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Not that I claim to know precisely why you felt like that

I am not sure really, it was just this overwealming feeling of angst that came from out of nowhere. Maybe it was because I was feeling like I really was driving off into the sunset to live happily ever after, but then I remembered happy endings don't exist. Guess that's the nihilist in me. But for a moment I wished they did.

 

Thanks for the replies guys, I am sure by tomorrow i'll be back to my usual self and that will be the end of that.

 

Oh and BTW, you'll be glad to know that neither Jeeebus nor Jehova entered my mind once during this episode. If there really is a god I would never attribute a being so extraordinary to those two silly tribal deities :HaHa:

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Regarding the OP, I haven't felt that way in a long time, but I do remember when I first lost my faith that for a while I wish I could believe again. But at the same time I felt such freedom.

 

It is so unbelieveably freeing to consider that whatever Creator is out there isn't involved with your life and isn't nitpicking every little thing, or isn't even powerful enough to intervene. The burden of Xianity is taken away and you are so amazingly free to define life in your own words.

 

Sometimes, the marks Xianity leaves in your shoulders ache a little, but in the end you're better off without it.

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Hey Mike,

 

I'm normally a deeply emotional person. I've had experiences like that - joyful moments with deep meaning. For me, it's looking up at the stars on a clear night at my mom's place in Texas. The view is just AWESOME! And then I think about the futility of it all, when life ends in nothingness. It's depressing, but it's reality. I sometimes wish that I could believe in God again, and I have my bipolar fits of belief occasionally, but it never lasts. I respect beliefs like deism, but not even that is possible for me. Deep down, I am a convinced atheist.

 

Praze GAWD that Kryasst was busy working His Sky Magic somewhere else and didn't bother you during your sacred moment. Glory!

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Praze GAWD that Kryasst was busy working His Sky Magic somewhere else and didn't bother you during your sacred moment. Glory!

 

:lmao: Ain't that the truth? Jesus™ missed a golden moment here, eh?

 

Seriously, Brothah Jeff has a point. Mike, you did have a sacred experience of sorts, one that nudged you to experience the fullness of life and existence and set aside the mundane world for a moment. It's all about how you look at it. Personally, I hope we all have moments similar to that more often.

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I've had a few moments when I wished I could still pray to a higher power and know that my problems were heard and understood. In my early teen years I was big into prayer as more than just asking God for stuff, but as reaching closer to Him.

 

But... yeah. None of those illusions work anymore.

 

But I have no problem finding sources of meaning in my life; I'm studying philosophy at the University of Tulsa, so I spend a lot of time immersed in such questions. A philosophical search for meaning can have just as much meaning as any religious meaning by fiat. It doesn't hurt that my studies have given me a very tentative idea of what might be causing many people's lack of a sense of meaning in America today.

 

There aren't any fixed places in society today. People are moving around all over socially, and the main thing that moves us from place to place is money--the stuff we need to take care of our most basic physical needs. Everyone has the freedom to choose what profession they want, so people spend a lot more time worrying about how they can or should take care of themselves. Firstly, that breaks social and familial bonds; men and women don't take over the jobs of their parents. or have a definite place in society that they don't have to worry about losing. (I don't want to say that we should return to a class system, but such a society does give people a place to call their own.) Secondly, we become focused on raw possession as a goal to work toward; as societal bonds begin to focus more on business, so does societal structure, which means that there is less and less focus on non-economic goods. We are left with what we want--which tends to be what we want at the moment, for our philosophically uneducated populace.

 

Of course, all this is influenced by religion, which is one of the few places where one can find full-fledged communities structured around something other than purely economic goods. Hence, if you leave religion, you leave one of the last places holding off the banality and pointlessness of modern society.

 

This is all waaaay over-generalizing of course. Just a few ideas that I've been knocking around, which need to be refined and explored further. But there you have it.

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I started thinking about my life, and and how hard I work so I can afford to buy all this expensive crap to make me feel good about myself, so I can look at others and think to myself "fuck you, I am better than you", and I got really pissed off.

 

I think I know what's buggin' you, bro. You're feeling guilty for looking out for No. 1.

 

I bet if you gave away a little money to a deserving fellow, you'd feel way better.

 

PM me, and I'll give you my mailing address.

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I started thinking about my life, and and how hard I work so I can afford to buy all this expensive crap to make me feel good about myself, so I can look at others and think to myself "fuck you, I am better than you", and I got really pissed off.

 

<new age>Look inside rather than outside for things to make you feel good about yourself. Expensive crap is great, but you shouldn't base your self-worth on it. You're not better or worse than anyone. You are just you. Enjoy being you!</new age>

 

But, it's true.

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Mike, you did have a sacred experience of sorts, one that nudged you to experience the fullness of life

Well I have had experiences like these before, and each one of those had one overriding feeling...... the feeling of having something to look forward to, or the hope for something new and exciting, or something better. When I was a teenager it was the hope of moving out on my own away from my parents, then the hope of falling in love, then as I got older the hope of having a good life, finding happiness, etc. There just always seemed to be something to look foward to and I guess those feelings would manifest themselves in these occassional moments of elation.

 

I find as I get older those moments are fewer and further in between, I suppose because as I age there are fewer and fewer things to look forward to. There isn't some big pot of gold waiting for me at the end of the rainbow, or some magical state of nirvana I am moving towards or an ultimate happy ending as I ride off into the sunset. I guess today I just realized that the future isn't what it used to be.

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I bet if you gave away a little money to a deserving fellow, you'd feel way better.

 

PM me, and I'll give you my mailing address.

No problem I can offer you a loan at a very attractive rate of interest. And I promise it won't be more than 40%. I'll have my business associate Vito "the magician" Guidarelli email you with the details. (We call Vito the magician because when people don't pay back their loans as scheduled he makes them disappear) :HaHa:

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But seriously, it's all about hope, isn't it?

 

I think this is one of the biggest reasons that religions survive and remain popular. It allows a person to say "the best is yet to come" right up until their last breath.

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Hi Mike. I've certainly had feelings like that come out of nowhere and overwhelm me. I think that you have been under a lot of stress and "handling yourself well" on the out side, and your unconcious mind finally had enough of being ignored and in efect was saying "...hey, what about these things...don't forget about it...figure it out..." in making those feelings rise up so strongly. That can happen, and I think what has made you place so much emphasis on it was that the emotions came out of the blue, unexpectedly. Just the shock of that to your usual equilibrium can be enough to make you worry.

But, I think that we really know the answers to these ideas of how to live and be happy when we are children, and then forget them as we become "educated". Take a close look at children, and notice how they can always find a way to enjoy life, no matter where they are. I think what can be learned from that are to find pleasre and fullfillment in what you do, not what you get from it. See what you learn from children.

 

..hell, I remember once, I had just gotten out of the navy, got a good job and an apartment thousands of miles away from my home town...and I was dealing with making a whole new life with no family or support anywhere. I thought I was handling it well, and then I was driving down the street one night feeling good and all of the sudden I couldn't breath! I would try, and I could not take a breath. And what made that worse was that there were these overwhelming feelings of anxiety and panic that went along with it, that seemed to be about things entirely different than being unable to breath, and all of that confused the hell out of me. Well, it was over in a few minutes, ending as quickly and automatically as it started. I thought I must have a serious, serious fucking problem to lose it like that. Luckily, I had a friends' uncle, who was a psychologist, a phone call away. He explained that it was a panic attack, as I'm sure you figured out by now. They weren't common knowledge in 1981 as they are now, And it was simply the result of accumulated stress. When it happens to us even now days, though, it can be so unsettling that we can forget about this "common knowledge" of panic attacks. I think this is essentially what happened to you, without the shortness of breath. So you got off easy, sonny! It's good that you talk about these things here, though. It's good for you and I'm sure others benefit too.

Good luck!

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Hehe, sorry Mythra. I can't help it I am a businessman at heart. So if you need a loan, don't hesitate to call me!

 

But you are right it is about hope. I don't think hope is necessary for survival, in fact I know it isn't, but it does make life a little easier to deal with at times. Maybe it's just a coping mechanism.....

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Maybe the circumstances were different, but has anyone else ever felt this way?

 

Nope, but I'm not a weirdo like the rest of you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

:HaHa:

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Nope, but I'm not a weirdo like the rest of you.

 

...fucking canadians, always running your mouths! :HaHa:

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Nope, but I'm not a weirdo like the rest of you.

Oh please, you're just as fucked up as we are, and that's why you love us and we love you B)

 

What-EVER!!! :Wendywhatever:

 

I am so not fucked up and so amazingly perfect...... :lmao:

 

 

 

but I do love you guys....even if you're weird.

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When it happens to us even now days, though, it can be so unsettling that we can forget about this "common knowledge" of panic attacks. I think this is essentially what happened to you, without the shortness of breath.

From what I know of panic attacks, this was nothing like that. In what happened to me earlier I was perfectly calm, except just very sad. Just for today anyway, the world seems like a very fucked up hopeless place that we all endure, for nothing. I can already tell I am just about over it, it was a passing moment of temporary insanity or something like that. If fact I am very optimistic that by tomorrow I will be back to my usual greedy materialistic selfish self :HaHa:

 

I am so not fucked up and so amazingly perfect...... :lmao:

I am glad to see you can laugh at yourself :HaHa:

 

Hey, what happened to the cat batting airplanes? Put that back.

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but I do love you guys....even if you're weird.

 

Then you must be weird, if you love us weirdos. :)

 

(And only weird people use bold-face text... hehe)

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