Sent in by Tina
I've struggled with faith my entire life, and now I truly believe that religions were established so power mongers could control and oppress people (especially women).
My late mother walked away from her church as a teenager and never looked back. She was still very much a believer in the bible but did not believe in the trinity theory that so many Christian churches teach. She did encourage her children to go to different churches with friends and decide for ourselves what we wanted to believe. As a youngster I frequented Catholic, Baptist and Methodist churches and even visited a synagogue once.
My mom spent years studying the Bible on her own and obeying all of the “rules." Virgin until she married, never cheated on my dad (and he probably cheated on her), gave birth to children she really did not want and tried to live by the rules spoon fed to us by our Christian based society.
What did my mom get in the end? A miserable and slow death from cancer (dying that way was her biggest fear). She fought it for 5 years and suffered so much on and off through those years. I loved my mom so very much; she was the only thing in this world that I had any faith in. If her God does exist then I hate him/her/it/whatever for making her suffer in the way she feared most.
I have done some bad things in my life, but I look at those as crimes committed against self and other humans, not crimes committed against some god. A Christian friend once told me to confess my sins and beg forgiveness so I can be saved. Forgiveness for what? For being human? Saved from what? From being able to think for myself?
I have asked for forgiveness for my past transgressions but I only ask it of myself and of those I have wronged. I will now try to move forward and be a better person for myself and those who love me, not for some imaginary god.
Why do we need the fear of an invisible god or a place like hell to love and respect one another? This is a question I ask of Christians all the time and cannot get a straight answer.
I find it hard to believe that a god would let billions of people (especially children) suffer so some prophecy can be fulfilled. I find it hard to believe that if I do some bad things in an estimated 75 years of life that I will be condemned to burn in some hellfire for eternity (that does not seem fair).
I see good people who have bad things regularly happen to them and I see bad people who have everything go their way. I am guessing all of those good people are required to wait until after death to receive good things. Total BS in my book!
I used to blame myself for bad things that happened to me and those around me. I thought it was my fault because of my “sins.” Finally I realized that all things, good and bad, are just part of the cards that life deals to you. Sometimes we are dealt good hands and other times not so good hands. It is all about choices, coincidence, luck, timing and sometimes just plain hard work.
If there is a god who will make countless people suffer (including his own son) to fulfill some prophecy, then I want no part of it. If this god loves us so much and is so powerful then why subject the innocent to unspeakable cruelties?
I was once told that god is supposed to know the good people from the bad people before they are even born. Why is this god allowing the bad people to be born? Is the purpose of the bad people to tempt the good people? Does this god need to prove to some other being (Satan) that it is superior because its followers will resist temptation? To me it just sounds like some sadistic chess game in which humans are used as the game pieces.
I was insulted and hurt when my boyfriend recently said “there is nothing wrong with believing and having values.” I pretty much took that as him telling me that I have no values because I don’t believe in something that is nothing more than a fairy tale. I am now reassessing my relationship with him because of that statement. One can develop values without joining a cult (I believe all religions are cults) and one can have values without believing in an invisible being in the sky.
I have so much more to say but don’t want to bore everyone. I feel so much better just typing this. Hopefully it will help me get over the anger and depression about my mother’s death and allow me to move on with the remainder of my life.
I am so glad I found this site!
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)