Sent in by Chris A
Although the Biblical concept of the human experience had always seemed somewhat unfair, my doubts really began with the issue of homosexuality; specifically, why did the Christian god despise it so much?
"Why," I asked myself, "Would God kill everyone in those cities for following the urges that He created them with in the first place?" It was shortly thereafter that I realized that this irrational act on god's part was just a microcosm of an even greater injustice: "Wait..." I thought, "If God is all-powerful, why must He persist in creating sinners instead of saints? And why must He then damn people for following the sinful natures that He gives them?"
You'd think, wouldn't you, that such impious ruminations would herald a formal conversion to atheism?
You would, however, be mistaken. Rather than having the courage and mental fortitude to pursue my inquisitions, I resolved to deal with my growing uncertainties by becoming profoundly religious. For me, this entailed having me very Southern Baptist Grandmother read the Bible at me, occasionally stopping to relay her interpretations of the verses, regale me with accounts of times she'd "spoken" with god, and break into outbursts of incoherent gibberish ("tongues"). These sermons punctuated the end of each day for me, the remainder of the evening to be spent either in miserable sorrow at the prospect of a "good, Christian life", in mind-numbing fear of hell, or in tearful frustration when my prayers failed to bring forth any affirmation from god.
Of course, I could never keep this up long enough for a formal baptism to be arranged; I would have gone certifiably insane from fear and grief within the year. I started scouring the Internet for arguments against religion as soon as I could work up the nerve, and once I found them, I never looked back. I still have moments of doubt, since I can't scientifically prove there isn't an Infinite Psychopath patiently waiting to torture me for all eternity because I refuse to wallow and grovel like a worm before him... Then again, I also can't scientifically disprove Allah, Odin, or the Invisible Pink Unicorn, so there's really no hedging bets, I guess...
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Online Reading List
- An Outline of Intellectual Rubbish by Bertrand Russell (1943)
- Bible Teaching and Religious Practice by Mark Twain
- God is Imaginary
- Is there an Artificial God? by Douglas Adams (1998)
- Skeptics Annotated Bible
- The Age of Reason by Thomas Paine (1795)
- Which Way? by Robert Ingersoll (1884).
- Why I Am Not A Christian by Bertrand Russell (1927)