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My name is Doug, I am 53. I was raised early on in the Pentecostal Church. At age 12, my family converted to the Lutheran Church-MO Synod where I was baptized and confirmed. Left in my early twenties because of its anti LGBT stance. This was the early 90s and no church was welcoming gay people then. Reform Judaism was and I converted in 1996. I no longer believe in any religion or god or gods. I do feel spiritual in nature and appreciate ritual. But I think I’m just done trying to find meaning in anything. 

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5 hours ago, DougP said:


I do feel spiritual in nature and appreciate ritual. But I think I’m just done trying to find meaning in anything. 


Welcome!  I also wrestled with meaning and purpose, but always saw nature as fascinating and was able to take lessons from "her".  Promoting life in general, and well-being for humans (including self as well as others) filled the gap.   I do miss the community found at church, but the inner peace is sufficent. 


I recently started a book you might find interesting.  It is written very cleverly and is a rational look at religion.  A LITTLE HISTORY OF RELIGION, by Richard Holloway.  $10.99 E-edition on Amazon, and $15 paperback.

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Hope you are well.

    I personally don t get why people had a problem with the church anti lgbt stance in particular. I mean why not with polyamory or restrictions of sexual activity - oral/anal/masturbation in general? My exp with church was that it had an ideal - celibacy, permitted activities beyond the ideal - some type of sexual activity inside a longterm heteresexual monogamous relationship sanctioned by church and state, outright of anything beyond it with  various degrees of gravity. God wants you to be, do X , you try to do it, the level of deviance from that is the level of sin. I never quite understood Christianity as about"emotion" be that "love" ( especially that Jesus defined love as obedience to God s will) or lack of suffering. Obedience to God which translated in obedience to the designated clergy mostly.

      So one of my biggest problems was that I could never be sure that I was actually obeying God. Plus the system taught to me made so you could not actually do it, with its set of co tradictory ideas anyway

 So many religious ideas floating around it seemed that I did not have any good critarea to choose. So, for now, I kind of have up certainty.  And when you give that up, the whole edifice crumbles. At least for me.

      As for meaning, it depends. What do you mean by that?.A system of understanding the world? Well that gets built and rebuilt over time. :)

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Welcome to X-Xian! Man, the anti-LGBT stance of churches makes me so mad. It's so dumb, arbitrary, and abusive, and it's clearly a distraction from pressing moral violations that are rampant in the church power hierarchy. It's barely defensible even from a biblical literalist standpoint and pastors end up squawking the same two or three wanna-be-apostle Paul's passages like a cracked record. 

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