By Bob P
I talked to God.
I waited… and waited… and waited...
God must be busy, I concluded. Adults told me that God always answers prayer. That's OK, I'm still young, I thought.
So I talked to God again…
Perhaps God doesn't listen to young people?
Then I began to wonder, who does God talk to? Who was the last person to whom God saw fit to communicate? Back then, I was a boy scout who had earned my God and Country Award and was a member of the Methodist Church. The church had youth activities and I rather enjoyed that. At about the same time, I received my Eagle Scout badge.
At age 16 I was able to talk my folks into buying me a car. It was an old 1931 junker that took constant maintenance; I became quite proficient at keeping it running on a small budget. It had a rumble seat, and that was kind of cool in 1950. By 1951, I had overhauled the engine, rewired it completely, and had it running quite reliably. Because of my Boy Scout background, I was able to get a Saturday job delivering flowers in a 1950 panel truck. In 1951, along with two friends, I was able to get my amateur radio operators license (which I have to this day). Life was getting better, and God had nothing to do with it.
I discovered that my two friends with whom I had earned my amateur radio license were atheists. The gears begin to grind: Did I really ever believe in a god, or was that just fulfilling what adults thought I should believe? I thought I believed in God, but I never had the sense I was being constantly watched, nor did I ever feel any guilt for doubting. Perhaps I was really a doubter all along. It all became blatantly obvious: man creates the gods for power and control, and god is just the mechanism used to perpetuate it. It's all a SCAM! It provides a comfortable living for a bunch of holy men too lazy to be plumbers or too dumb to be lawyers! What's more, it’s not only a scam, it’s the PERFECT scam. It can promise anything, it delivers nothing, it begs instead of working for its money, it's not taxed, and it's perfectly legal! At the same time, the 'sheep' of the flock are happy with the situation! How do you say, "Thank yew Jayesus?"
I would have considered taking up the ministry, but I could never have contained the laughter.
So here I am, some 55 years later at 73 years of age.
Was I ever sorry I gave up religion? Not in the least! For the last 20 years, I have become an open and outspoken atheist. I'm not sure how many people I have acquainted to the process of reason, logic and science over blind faith, but I believe it's more than a few.
Someone once told me I wear my atheism on my sleeve, I had to correct them by explaining I PROUDLY wear my atheism both on my sleeve AND on my cap.
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)