Sent in by Jimmy
Okay, maybe "journey" is bit of an overstatement.
It's quite simple really. I was born and raised in a Christian household. I went to church every Sunday (though it bored the piss out of me when I was younger). I was taught that the Bible was the inspired Word of God. I was taught that evolution was a big lie perpetrated by the scientific community. (Or was it liberals?) Oh, wait, I know! It was the Devil himself. Eh, I can't remember which one it was; all those things were taught. Every time I would hear the big, bad 'E' word I would loudly and proudly announce to anyone who gave a crap that "I didn't come from no monkey!"
I was taught that to be a homosexual was a sin and an abomination against God. Yep, "God made Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve," was one of my favorite sayings. I was taught that everything written in the Bible were historical accounts of actual events. I believed all these things without question. Then about two years ago I actually began thinking about these so-called historical events in the Bible -- I mean really thinking about it. For the first time in my life they seemed ridiculous. Fucked-up is a more fitting term. The reality that was forced upon me since at an early age started to look like something out of a Dr. Seuss book or something.
I started searching the Internet for evidence for creationism and their so called "proofs" just seemed, well, retarded. I began reading up on everything on evolution from a non-biased viewpoint and actually started to learn something. I realized that I rejected it my whole life without ever knowing the first thing about the topic. The only reason I believed in any of the things I did was because my parents told me since I was barely old enough to walk that this was the real deal.
I was indoctrinated, which is just a nicer way of saying brainwashed. I was taught that being a good person won't get you into Heaven. How fucked up is that? You could beat your wife, beat your kids, be hateful and intolerant of those different than you, lie, cheat, steal, hell even commit murder and none of that matters as long as you just "accept Jeezus into yer heart and ax fer fergiveness!" and you will get a pass through the pearly gates. On the other hand, you could be the most selfless, compassionate, loving person who dedicates your life to helping people who are less fortunate, never judge those who are different than you, but because you were not "saved" you will go to Hell where you will be tormented beyond imagination for all ETERNITY just because you didn't choose the right religion among hundreds of others.
I had never really taken the time to think about this before. Once I did, though, the idea seemed cruel beyond words. I used to think I was a better person than non-believers because I had "good Christian morals". Looking back now, I realize that I'm a better person now than when I was a Christian. I was a HUGE homophobe. I was that type of asshole who would physically assault you just because you were attracted to the same sex. These days I support gay rights, especially the right to marry. Some of the most ignorant, close-minded, hateful, intolerant, self-righteous, arrogant, hypocritical, judgmental people I know are Christians.
This all began for me in 2006, but I didn't finally admit it to myself that I was no longer a Christian until last July. I never really came out and told my family, but I drop some hints every now and then. My old man pretty much thinks I'm going to Hell. I know it. We even came to blows one night last summer because I dared to criticize his belief in the Biblical flood. I now absolutely cannot stand the Christian cult and I have nothing but contempt for it's fundie followers. Notice I said fundie. I realize not all Christians are fundies.
Every since I de-converted I feel as if this huge weight has been lift off of me. I now feel free to actually think for myself and to be more open minded. The Bible that I once called the "good book" I now refer to as the ol' ball 'n chain. Today, I consider myself an agnostic. I'm open to the possibility of a higher power and if their is a God I don't know who He/She/They is/are. All I do know is that if a God does exist, I don't believe it is the petty, childish, cruel, tyrannical sociopath of the bible.
Or should I say, "the ol' ball 'n chain?"