Sent in by Jessica
As most stories go, I had been raised in a Christian household. No we weren't the stable Christian family, and we didn't attend Church every week, but we were believers, said our prayers, read our Bibles... Well, that's a lie. I didn't actually read the Bible myself until my teens. I even tried once to read it from cover to cover (Oh dear... what a dire and feeble attempt I made... three pages in, I gave up.) I gave my life to Jesus quite young, around the age of nine or ten, blindly, and I can't recall why or how it came about exactly, but I put it down to living with Christians and witnessing people doing the act. Monkey see monkey do, right?
I was a 'hardcore' Christian over the past few years, on the flipside of a messy divorce between my parents, and I was fully immersed in the message of the Bible. I did this partly to support my blubbering mother, who clung to her religion like she had nothing else to live for. We attended ALPHA courses at Church in an attempt to enrich our faith in God. I was sixteen at the time, and upon reflection now, was probably at the highest threshold of my Christian faith.
But what goes up must come down, and slowly but surely my thirst for attending Church every week with my mother faded. "Why don't you come to Church with me anymore? You don't love me," she would say. My answer to that was that I couldn't be bothered. I eventually became one of those Christian types who didn't believe that attending Church every Sunday was mandatory in order to gain entrance into heaven.
But this year, things changed. And by my life, they changed for the better.
I don't recall exactly how it happened that I started to question the origin of my faith, but nevertheless I did, and I was stumped. I couldn't remember why I gave my life to Jesus. Then I recalled the memory of lying in my bed that night. Then I thought about how I was raised a Christian. Then I got to thinking... I only ever truly believed in God when something was going wrong in my life — divorce, being overweight, having acne, losing hair, friend problems, fear of death. I thought about the Bible, who wrote it, when it was written, how many versions there were, how many times it must have been translated over the years. I scoured the internet like a madman, searching for evidence that Jesus existed, that he was truly resurrected, therefore solidifying him as the son of god. But contrary to my ambitions, I found nothing. I was believing in something that I couldn't validate. I was debating online and in person about god, Jesus, heaven, hell, the Bible, without reason. I only knew that it was real and that I believed. But then it was like a switch was flipped — I stopped believing.
I told my mother, 'I'm just questioning my faith, Jesus, and all this stuff.' Needless to say she was shocked and straight away feared for my life, because I would now surely burn in hell, for turning ones’ back on the light of god is the worst sin one can commit.
So the more I read, the more I learned, the more I researched about the Christian faith (and religion in general), I eventually came to a point where I realised, once and for all, that what I believed in didn't exist, and that like many thousands and millions of people in this world, I had been a pawn in the grand scheme of religious control.
Being part of the Christian religion has granted me more pain than good over the years. I felt more alone then ever to realise that maybe there is no God. It was certainly hard at first to rid myself of my faith. It was something so rooted in my soul, and I can tell you that it was as if I had ripped out a part of my being. But now I am finally free from the stigma of faith and its only now that I feel truly whole and empowered.
I could go on and on about my experience with Christianity, but in all honesty, I don't need to. If you can't see why Christianity and religion in general is wrong, and in my opinion the most evil poison of humanity, then I urge you to research. Scour web pages, books and articles like I did and discover for yourself. I'm so glad now to be free from religion and for the first time in my life I feel completely happy and can't wait to discover more about life, about our world and the universe that it feels as though I'm a child again.
I am an atheist, and I am happy.
And let me just say that it's much easier to discover why there is no God than it is to discover Him.
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)