10/27/07                                                                                       View Comments

Trying to pick up the pieces of all I once "knew"

Sent in by DifferentNow

On January 15, 2007, I told my husband I wanted a divorce.

It was a cold day in New York City. My second time there. We were on a company retreat with our business, the graphic design company we both owned. I woke up at 6 a.m. unable to sleep and went down to the hotel lobby so I could email the man I had fallen in love with and tell him I was antsy... really antsy. I couldn't put on a front any longer. It wasn't in my nature to hide things, and I couldn't keep it up for long.

I had barely slept in two weeks. Two weeks since our first date. Two weeks of listening religiously to the wisdom of Johnny Cash while painting our studio space black. As black as my mood. Pouring myself into the old, worn down building that I convinced my husband to let us rent with dreams creating a theatre space and pursuing the never ending quest for fun, always fun... A pursuit that left him exhausted and asking me often, "why can't you just slow down?" His inquiry always met with my resolution to stay home more, try harder, be a better wife.

My husband followed me downstairs, before I even got time to log in to my laptop. I looked up in surprise, like a frightened teenager caught in the liquor cabinet. I scolded myself for not getting up quieter from the hotel room that all five of us were sharing. I hated myself at that moment. I wanted to hide. I wondered if he could see it. I wondered what he knew.

He sat down, a concerned and sad expression in his clear, innocent blue eyes. "This is our first time in New York City together, and you will barely look at me," he said quietly, his voice trailing off as he tried to make sense of my strange behavior. He often told me I acted like a squirrel that dashes in the street, looks around in a frenzy, dashes back, unable to make up her mind which way to go. I felt like I was crossing the road for the last time.

He sipped his coffee, always black, patiently waiting for my response.

The trendy hotel lobby was quiet this time of morning. Large abstract paintings depicting colorful taxi scenes hung in front of red and black leather couches. A waitress was setting up for breakfast. A few businessmen walked by in a hurry, briefcases in hand. I wondered if they were going to a trade show, the one we were supposed to be at later that day.

"I know. I know. I'm sorry. I'm just not feeling myself these days. I'm sorry."

I had been saying "I'm sorry" for a long time. I said it so much in grade school that my teachers and friends' moms would call my parents and ask what was wrong with me. What did I have to be so sorry about? I was still trying to figure that out.

I was fidgety, sleep deprived, restless. Unable to look him in they eyes. Like I was someone else living in another body, the body of a girl gone mad. I felt 'foggy', like I had described my feelings that last week to our home group that met Sunday mornings at our house, an intimate way of 'being the church' without a building and a budget. People loving people. I loved that concept.

"Should I be afraid?" he asked.

Those simple words. I mentally flashed to a quote he had cut out and taped to his computer screen at home, the neat san-serif font reading "What would I do if I was not afraid?" I had often wondered what he was afraid of, many times viewing him with disdain for what I saw as his black and white mentality, the simple and clean cut ways he thought of the world, God, love, humanity.

I remember a conversation we had had a month earlier, while I was mentoring a teenage girl in our church. She was a beautiful spirit with lots of questions and hunger for life.

One day he asked me, "Is Jenna a Christian?" I was so mad at him for asking me that, for trivializing our depth of friendship so it hung on one, stupid word... a word to him that held the depth of the universe. I felt ashamed for being angered by this, ashamed that I did not care about the answer and that I hated him for asking it. "How am I supposed to know." I answered, always defensive. "We just go shopping together. She likes white cafe mocha and blond boys and dangly earrings. That is all I know." My heart was racing and I felt shallow and wrong. I wondered why I despised him so much.

Sometimes, when he would play the guitar in Bible study, or lovingly listen to people's problems at church, I would force myself to smile and muster a look of tenderness in my eyes like I had seen the other wives doing, just in case our friends were watching me out of the corner of their eyes, thinking, 'isn't she blessed to have a man like him'. I wanted my face to say, 'yes, yes I am grateful. God has been good to me. What a wonderful, sweet, God-loving man.' After all, isn't that why I married him?

I hadn't planned on telling him yet. In fact, I had hoped my feelings would go away. My parents always told me I couldn't rely on my emotions. I was to rely on God alone. And God hates divorce. Divorce. Divorce. The word hung in my head like a dirty rag. Just like me.

I kept telling myself, just get through New York. Get your head clear. You are with three of your employees who look up to you. You run a business together, you can't do this. You will loose everything. What will people think?

"Should I be afraid?"

'Yes, yes, yes, you should be afraid,' my mind was screaming. 'I want a divorce. I want a divorce. Dirty rag. Divorce. Divorce. I don't want to hurt you but "I want a divorce."

Oh my God did I really say that out loud?

He turned beat red. The blood started in his neck and went all the way to his close cropped dirty blond hair. His fair complexion held no secrets. A bulging vein crept up the left side of his head. His eyes welled up with tears. He told me that if we weren't in a hotel lobby he would have thrown his hot coffee at me.

I didn't doubt it. In fact, I deserved it.

I wanted to crawl under the table and cry and cry and cry. I felt so sorry for him. He demanded 'who, who, who is it?'

"No one you know. A filmmaker. I didn't plan for this to happen. I wanted to tell you right away. I couldn't see myself having kids with you. I don't know why. No, we haven't slept together yet. It was only a kiss, a few dates. There is a bigger problem. I meant to tell you before. I tried to say something, you just didn't see. I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry." My words fell out of my mouth and like in slow motion clattered on the tile floor like bone thin china teacups.

Then I was still. So calm. I barely moved. I thought for a moment that maybe I was possessed by Satan. Later he told me that I was. I wondered if this was true. It was like the time I went to see Mel Gibson's "Passion of the Christ." I knew I needed to see it, to come a little closer to understanding what our Savior went thorough, but the suffering of others makes me so upset. I can't even listen to cruelty on the news without it obsessing my mind. So I went into the theater and became numb. I did not let out a single tear for fear that even one would unleash an ocean of emotions.

They say that right before death a flood of memories will overtake your mind, one after the other. As I looked into his anguished expression full of shock and despair, I saw the sweet, kind man I once knew in what seemed another life, walking in the city as homeless people bypass every other soul on the street and come straight to him. As if they can feel his big heart and know he will care. He would always buy them food... he would go with them to the restaurant. Talk with them, ask them questions. Find out who they are and why they were there. He really did care. A good, kind, loving Christian man.

I knew whose side God was on. And I hung my head in shame.

Now, after almost a year of searching, and then stumbling upon this site, I decided that the God who was his God, could not be mine too. So I left the Christian faith and am trying to pick up the pieces of all I knew once to be true.

10/22/07                                                                                       View Comments

Spirit in the sky

Sent in by Sharon

I remember a day in 2000 when my children were still living at home. My de-conversion had already begun, I think. I was getting into their contemporary music, both Christian and “secular,” as it was called. I was going to a church where I felt more free, dancing was part of the worship service, and now I was dancing at home to anything.

On this particular day, I was dancing to a song on a CD belonging to my 16-year-old daughter called “Spirit In The Sky.” I don’t know if it was a “secular” or a Christian artist.

That song made my heart soar, and I didn’t know why. Maybe it was just because I was feeling more and more like flying those days, as I was beginning to loose myself from the restraints of Christianity.

One of my two daughters saw me dancing and ran to get her sister, yelling, “Come look at Mommy! You’ve got to see this!” My other daughter came and saw and both yelled, “Go, Mommy!” and started dancing with me.

I still love that song and dance to it today.

Both of my daughters are out of my life now. One says she has disowned me permanently, and the other says she is just taking some time off from our relationship. They both are devoted Christians, just as I, regrettably, raised them to be. And they both seem to blame me for family traumas that resulted from the heavy negative influence of Christianity on my life and on my parenting style.

But the memory of dancing to “Spirit In The Sky” with them that day brings me great joy. That song unleashed a spirit of irreverence that is still alive and thriving in my heart today. As I dance, I sing ever-so-sarcastically, “I never been a sinner, never sinned, I got a friend in Jesus!”

Tongue-in-cheek humor has been such a therapeutic companion in this whole deconversion process of mine.

10/18/07                                                                                       View Comments

Christianity is a crock

Sent in by John

I grew up a Roman Catholic and when I reached 18 was co-erced into checking out Pentecostalism by some friends of mine at school.

I went along and was pretty much converted within a week. What joy! What peace! What a crock!

After wandering around for about 18 years as a bible-believing Christian, I was struck by the lack of real love among the chosen and the total disregard for the "unsaved." I became a street preacher after getting into Ray Comfort's teachings (with Kirk Cameron!) and spent a good year and a half bothering others about their sin!

I met an atheist on the street and we became kinda pen friends. He wrote to me and what impressed me was not just the facts he was presenting but the mere fact he bothered to answer those nagging doubts I had over the years.

After coming to a realization in my own mind about the fact that the whole Christian thing was ridiculous (with some help from some medication prescribed by a shrink) I was cured of my beliefs and finally, for the first time in years, had clarity in my life.

Now I consider the whole thing to be a bad dream in a way, believing everything the Bible said no matter how ridiculous and unrealistic, and slavingly following a dead guy who probably never existed in the first place, was not the best use of my time!

I really hope if you are doubting your "faith" that you continue to ask questions and don't just put your doubts at the back of your mind and blindingly follow like I did.

Believing in an invisible god who dishes out punishment to those who don't agree with him or tow the line is rather silly, don't you think?

10/14/07                                                                                       View Comments

Where are you, God?

Sent in by Scott

I grew up as a Catholic, believing in God. Eventually my faith wandered and I had many questions. I became a Methodist and was raising a family. I still believed in a God that would help explain the mystery of the cosmos, but Christianity was becoming increasingly absurd to me.

Nine months ago, my ten-year-old son Connor died of a heart attack related to leukemia. Needless to say, we were devastated. I'm lost and broken; my whole world was shattered. There is nothing more tortuous than losing your child. It's not like you've heard it described -- "a big hole in your heart" -- it's your whole soul, your very existence being ripped in infinite directions, and so much worse. I've been robbed and violated and there is absolutely nothing I, or anyone else, can do to fix it -- I'm helpless and it is hopeless.

There is nothing like having your young son die, that pulls the rug from under you.

Everything I ever believed or thought I believed went with Connor; I have been disenchanted. My son represents every young child who has ever died. How is there a meaning to life, if children can die? What meaning can we give to life, if young children can suffer then die?

A personal God went out the door. In fact if there is a personal God, I hold him in contempt! As a parent I am completely responsible for my children. I must feed them, clothe them, protect them from harm, shield them from disease, put up with their stubbornness and rebellion, and under no circumstance wantonly harm them physically or mentally, But this supposedly loving and merciful God lets his earthly children suffer -- like the ways mentioned above -- every second of every day. If HE created the universe, HE did a piss poor job by letting my son's own blood poison my son to death.

I've heard all the platitudes. "He was God's gift." Yeah, well, when I give a gift, I don't ask for it back! Or, "It's part of God's perfect plan." OK, what's HIS plan? Oh, you don't know -- then how do you know it's perfect? Or, "You'll see him in heaven." What does heaven look like? Where is heaven? How do you get there? Or the greatest platitude, "God is testing you." Are you kidding me with this one? All I want to do is punch their teeth down their throats. How come God tests me with the loss of my precious, ten-year-old son while you are boo-hooin' because God tests you with the death of your ninety-year-old grandfather, or because you are on your second divorce?

If there is a God, he is apathetic. And like an idiot, I went to the Bible for comfort, only to find the most vile atrocities committed by God. This is what we base a religion on? This is the God of love and mercy?

I also have a evangelical Christian friend who decided to walk with me once or twice a week, because he said, "I want to help and I love you, man." A couple of weeks into our walk we were discussing Abraham and Issac of the Bible and I asked him, "If God asked you to kill your son, would you do it?" "Yes," was his answer. I then asked him how he would do it? He thought a little longer and I had to prod him. "Would you choke him to death? Would you shoot him? Would you beat him to death?" His answer was, "I would probably slit his throat."

(SLIT - HIS - THROAT)

I was dumbfounded. This is where his blind faith has taken him, and you have to remember that he was telling this to me, a father who's child had just died. Needless to say, he is not my friend anymore, and never will be again.

For more on this idea, check out this story: Religiosity Common Among Mothers Who Kill Children


Now I live in misery, my own personal hell, from which there is no escape.

I used to think raising kids was like climbing Mount Everest -- the hardest but the most rewarding experience a person could have, but sadly that experience has crumbled. With the death of Connor I will be buried under that mountain until I die.

Where are you, God? Where is my hope!!??

-- Scott

10/12/07                                                                                       View Comments

I'm an atheist in the Bible Belt -- What do I do?

Sent in by Caleb

Well, I sense my whole de-conversion from Christianity is about to come to a head.

I guess it is funny how it is all playing out. You see, when I was a youth pastor and ministry director, my faith and commitment to God and ministry led me to neglect my family. This caused severe problems for my wife and I, because she was and still is a 'closet atheist.' I say 'closet' because she is to scared/embarrassed to admit her atheism publicly.

Luckily, even then, even as a devout Christian, I realized how important my family was to me. I left the ministry so I could become more involved in my wife and children's lives. Through this time, I was able to study Christianity as more of an onlooker. My church attendance dwindled, and my study of what exactly this religion I was following was, became more intense.

I finally let go of my superstitious beliefs in God, and decided to live life free of religion. Through all this time, I kept a my-space profile. As my de-conversion progressed, my my-space profile evolved into a tribute to atheist videos, and blogs.

One day I became worried though. For some reason, I felt like people I knew were looking at me differently. I started to worry that the views I expressed on my profile were offending people. Since I live in Texas, and in a Christian dominated community, I feel like I am the only atheist in town. I help teach classes at the local TaeKwonDo school, and I am an elementary school teacher. Because of this, I began to worry that my career could be damaged if people think I am some kind of Christian-hater.

Let me make myself clear when I say I am not. Almost all of my friends are very devout Christians, and I still love and respect them very much. So one day in an effort to err on the side of safety, I sent out a my-space bulletin to all of my my-space friends. I basically explained that I was going to delete my profile, because I did not want to offend anyone.

I explained that I was an atheist, but not an enemy of Christians. I also explained some of my reasoning for becoming atheist. I finished by asking that the bulletin be kept a private matter, because I wanted to be the one to explain my atheism to anyone that was curious.

Well as it turns out, most people had never read my blogs nor did they watch my videos. They explained that they saw some of my atheist quotes, but never knew exactly what I meant by them. Now they know however, and the rumor has spread like wildfire throughout the community. I have since deleted my my-space profile, but the phone calls and emails have not stopped coming. So much for it being kept a private matter. It's like my wife keeps telling me, "you should have just deleted your profile, and not sent out that bulletin. Nobody even knew you were atheist."

The hard part is that I know the one family that had to have started the whole rumor mill. Besides, I didn't have that many friends on my-space anyway. Needless to say, my wife is very upset. Most of the people don't know my wife is an atheist, so it appears on the outside that I am the source of problems in my family. Of course this comes at a time when we have been at our happiest as a family.

Now I've come full circle, because it is now my atheism that is causing problems between my wife and I. I don't know what to do. I have always wanted to live an honest life, and be real about who I am. For some reason though, I feel the worst is yet to come.

As the rumor spreads and becomes more and more twisted by the Christian gossip mill, will it eventually destroy my family's reputation? What do I do?

Christianity taught me...

Sent in by Sharon H

Christianity taught me that I must always forgive. Now I’m learning that while forgiveness is indeed good for the soul, forgiveness is a choice not a mandate. Compassion is more effective than forgiveness, because it involves stepping back and detaching from the tendency to judge.

Christianity taught me that marriage was the second most important goal in life, the first being devotion to God. Now I've learned that marriage is not a goal at all but a formal way of expressing a love relationship between two people.

Christianity taught me that allegiance to one’s life partner is more important than anything—including one's sanity, safety and well being. Now I’m learning that allegiance to self is most important.

Christianity taught me to judge my every feeling, thought, and behavior as morally right or wrong. Now I’m learning that feelings are feelings, thoughts are thoughts, and behaviors are either effective or ineffective.

Christianity taught me to scrutinize myself. Now I’m learning to love myself.

Christianity and its patriarchal system taught me that I was a second class citizen thus setting me up for victimization by those deemed first class.

Christianity taught me to believe in moral absolutes. Now I’m learning the importance of developing and trusting my own set of values.

Christianity taught me intolerance and separatist thinking. Now that I’m freeing myself from these, my mind is opening up to embrace all people.

Christianity taught me to fear hell and to feel guilty. Now it seems my process of recovery from the tyranny of fear and guilt will be life long.

Christianity taught me that good things come only to those who wait. Now I’m learning that I deserve good things regardless of waiting.

Christianity taught me that without god I could do nothing, even parent my children effectively. Now I know I parented my children effectively despite an errant belief system, and given the chance to parent again, I would do so without Christianity's problematic influence.

10/1/07                                                                                       View Comments

The love of the Creator is inside everyone

Sent in by Trish

I was raised as a Christian. My mother's side of the family was Christian, my father never talked about his side, so I don't know what they believed in. My father didn't enjoy church but came if my mother pressured him enough. By the time I was in junior high, he had refused to attend completely.

We attended a United Church every Sunday. I began going when I was about 3. I was a gifted child, speaking and reading at a very early age, with a phenomenal memory. I was very uncomfortable in the building, it seemed cold, empty and unfriendly to me. I remember colouring Bible stories and being anxious because I couldn't understand the contradictions we were told to believe, such as the David and Goliath story. (Thou shall not kill...unless killing is "allowed"?) I was adept at sensing energies and feeling auras and had a number of psychic like experiences that my mother told me I "imagined" and that things like that were of the Devil.

My mother had a thing for the Devil. When I was a kid, she would terrify me by telling me that if I were bad, she would take down my kitten and ballerina posters, and put up pictures of the Devil dragging people down to a fiery Hell. Looking back, I remember feeling panicked and completely horrified, sick to my stomach and fearful that I would somehow "do wrong" and have to spend an eternity there. I couldn't have been more than 6 or 7 then. I would terrorize myself at night with thoughts that the Devil was going to trick me into selling my soul, or that God would judge my imperfect human soul as deserving of eternal damnation. Needless to say, I was a nervous, over sensitive, shy kid.

As I began junior high, I didn't want to go to youth group anymore. Everyone there seemed like puppets, and they all seemed "overly eager" to me. Somehow, it seemed false and fake. It made me keep my distance, because I could not understand what they felt. I used to stare at the front of the church during the sermon, and PRAY to God that He would send me a sign, a feeling, ANYTHING so I could believe and be happy like the rest of them. No sign was given.

I had many friends by now, both religious and non-religious, and I saw from sleep overs how other families lived. Some of them seemed SO happy and loving... but how was that possible when they WEREN'T CHRISTIANS??? My mother had constantly told us that we were "better" than everyone else, that we were "special" because we were Christians. It embarrassed me and I was disconcerted by the idea.

I was a straight A student, a quiet, shy but nice girl, with friends of both sexes and many different races and religions. My mother would criticize my friends behind their backs, making racist comments or judgments about anything she didn't approve. My family life was very abusive, my dad was an alcoholic and severely emotionally and verbally abusive, my mother would have "fits" of rage where she would drag us out of bed early in the morning and force us to clean (no...SCRUB) every inch of the house, while she stood over me in particular, since I was the oldest, and screamed insults and use physical force.

Sick of being threatened with Hell, I refused to attend church by the end of grade 9. I could not believe that God would be so hateful, to torture people for minor sins they committed, why people who didn't know of Christianity would automatically go to Hell...it seemed so unfair and cruel. When I was young, I'd ask the Sunday School teachers questions about inconsistencies in the Bible, or moral dilemmas, and they could never satisfy my question. I realized that they could only tell me what a very, very old book said, and since I had tried numerous times to read the Bible (getting frustrated and confused more often than not) I realized that they COULD NOT give me the answers. I decided that though I may not know WHAT I believe, I certainly knew I didn't believe in the Devil!!

In high school I didn't think much about religion...I was more concerned with getting good grades, dating, partying and working to make extra money. Because of the abuse, I moved in with a girl friend after graduation. I lived there for a year before her sister had to move in, so then I went back home. By this time, I was 18, in college and had a real boyfriend and a part time job. One night, while I was at work, my mother went through my belongings and read my diary. Seeing that I had recently lost my virginity, she told my younger brothers that if I called home, to tell me I was no longer welcome...to come and get my things and be gone. I tried to contact her, but she would not speak to me. I didn't even know why.

So I left, and spent a summer sleeping in my car, at friend's parents place, where ever I could. My car insurance ran out and I went to renew it at the store where my family got their insurance. My mother and two teen brothers (both larger than me) were hiding in nearby stores. As I walked up, I heard a voice yell "Get her!" and as I turned around to see what was happening, my brothers and mother attacked me physically. I screamed and tried to get away (this was all in public...on the sidewalk in front of a strip mall.) My mother's friend was there, telling people who looked like they were going to come to my aid, that I had recently escaped from the hospital mental ward, and was "off my medication." Somehow, I got away from them, and did not speak to my family for over a year and a half. I had declined to press charges, even though my brother had said, while pinning me on the floor INSIDE the insurance store while horrified clerks looked on helplessly..."Mom says we're underage so we can do whatever we want and not get charged." My brothers told me years later that my mother had lied to them and told them I was doing something illegal and that unless I was stopped, my father would have to go to jail, and they would lose their house and comfortable lifestyle. My mother told them that, a woman who claimed (and pretended to all outsiders) to be a devout, modest Christian.

The next few years were very hard on me. Raised in a pretty sheltered existence, then kicked out into the world at 18, I didn't know what to do. I met a guy at my work and we hit it off, and he introduced me to Witchcraft, or Wicca. He said he knew I was really a Witch. He was right, and to this day is still a close friend and beloved person in my life. I studied everything I could on Wicca, and was relieved...there is no Satan or Devil in Wicca!! I had been the type of child who secretly loved to be a Witch at Halloween, and had a deep respect and communion with nature from a very early age (we lived on the outskirts of town so I'd go walk in the paths to get away from my family). I knew that my family would excommunicate me if they ever found out I believed in Wicca, but after the damage they had done to me (for no REAL reason, and never apologizing or even to this day ADMITTING what was done to me) I really did not care.

Somewhere in my early 20's, I began to study theology and different religions and forms of spirituality. I found it amazing that similar myths could be found in distant cultures all over the world. Part of trying to heal, I inwardly forgave my family (they wouldn't talk openly about any of the incidents) and began to see them at holidays etc. I thought things were going well, though emotionally I was a wreck...anxiety, depression, panic attacks, drinking to forget the past...when I took some laundry over to my mother's to do it as my washer was broken. Nobody else was home, she and my dad had divorced by then and my brothers were out. I was folding laundry in my old room when (HONEST...sadly, this is NOT a joke or an exaggeration) my mother came in and physically assaulted me, telling me I was possessed by the Devil and that she was supposed to "exorcise the demons" out of me. She was completely serious...and she looked scary, there was a fanatical glint in her eyes. I tried to get past her out of the room, but she is larger than me, and had no qualms about using physical force to hold me on the bed while she recited strange litanies, garbled Bible verses, and screams of "Satan leave her....I command you in the name of JESUS!"

All the while I was quite calm inside, surprisingly, because I think I knew she might not be in her right mind (if she even had one!) Sorry if that sounds flip, my mother was and is a very troubled person and takes many prescription mood altering drugs which she couples with alcohol against doctor's orders. She also was severely abused and deprived as a child by her religious/alcoholic family. I asked her to let me go, told her there is NO demon, I am NOT possessed by Satan, I am not an evil Witch, etc, etc. I didn't want to hit her or hurt her which I figured would be the only way to get away, so I repeated calmly to her the same words. Finally, after more chanting and praying and "televangelising" she let go of me and I grabbed my laundry and left. My mother and I have not had a relationship since then. I've seen her a few times, but she refuses to "remember" any incidents and criticizes everything about me and my life, so I choose to stay away.

Well, I wish I could say these were all the problems I've had with the Evangelical Fundamentalist belief system, but since I am not close with my mother, when my aunt (mother's sister) and cousin moved to my city, and I became close with them. My aunt is a fundamentalist Christian, but she never attempted to force it on me, and seemed genuinely loving and caring, so I tried to believe that my mother was ill and that Christianity wasn't to blame for her actions. Until my aunt, who had become like a mother to me, went online and saw that I had joined a Facebook group about Wicca. She sent me an email saying she would NEVER have me in her life and family because she was "A CHRISTIAN!!!" her emphasis, not mine. Furthermore, I was not allowed to contact my 34 year old cousin anymore as she worked for law enforcement and "cannot be associated with anyone in the occult". I was devastated, but not shocked. Yes, it hurts, because I finally felt like in them I had a family. It hurts to be excommunicated because of WHO YOU ARE and WHAT YOU BELIEVE IN.

I have NEVER tried to force my beliefs on anyone, and I try to accept everyone for who they are, unconditionally, because I know the pain of being rejected. I am against Fundamentalist Christianity because it can DESTROY families. It can tear families apart. I KNOW. I should also mention, that since this last rejection, I have completely come out of the "Broom Closet" and have chosen to start teaching Wicca in my city. I've belonged to two covens in my life, and gone to Wiccan retreats, and I must say that almost everything fundamentalist Christianity says about Wiccans are LIES. Sometimes they get the name of our holidays right, (lol) but that is pretty much all the accuracy they have about us. They deliberately make up lies and distribute hate propaganda about us. And people, like my aunt, brainwashed into believing whatever her televangelists say and quoting a 2000 year old book of uncertain origins, actually believe that I, the niece she loved a few months ago, being a Witch/Wiccan, kill and eat babies, sacrifice animals, worship the Devil, cause malice and strife to loved ones and generally am a horrible, evil person. Someone she loved a few months ago, told everyone what a loving, kind, decent soul I was, now believes I am evil and going to Hell because that's what the Bible (or Pat Robertson, or Jack Van Impe says.) By the way, my aunt is disabled and very ill, and living on less than $800 a month, and she sends these frauds money to keep their hate-promoting agendas going...money she could spend on her health or on food.

I'm sorry, but any religion that won't let people think for themselves is not one I have respect for. I have recently done much research on the history of the Bible, and the authenticity of it, and I have found so many errors and discrepancies, I find it hard to believe that any rational, intelligent person would believe much of what is in there. I will not deny that there are some good spiritual lessons, but the horrific stories and contradictions far outweigh them. The violence and brutality, the way God is portrayed as a cruel tyrant rather than a loving creator, it saddens me. I'm sure this wasn't what Jesus intended, if he really did exist. I am sorry that my family has been brainwashed into fundamentalism, but I am relieved that I was able to make it out, and still be able to love, trust, and worship my idea of Deity. The love of the Creator, (by whatever name we call him/her), is inside of us all and it is through our similarities, not our differences that we can be healed by seeing in all souls part of the Divine, and part of ourselves. Blessed Be.