Finding Peace Without "God"

I don’t believe in god

I do believe in myself as well as you and everyone else

I don’t believe things happen for a reason or that they were meant to be

I do believe in working for what you want and that sometimes you don’t get it

I don’t believe in a master plan

I do believe in cause and effect

I don’t believe in salvation

I do believe in living a righteous life

I don’t believe in heaven

I do believe in living in peace; free from guilt and remorse

I don’t believe in the devil

I do believe that bad things happen

I don’t believe in hell

I do believe that living with guilt and a heavy conscience is not living at all

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The Devil Does What?

Grammatical errors aside, can I just tell you how incredibly annoying I find this image?   I’m not annoyed by it because it’s yet another God related facebook post but because of the line “When he see’s u living it,………he flees.”  Yeah, that “u” instead of “you” is annoying and the comma before the oh-so-dramatic dot, dot, dot, dot, dot, dot, dot is completely unnecessary, but the message it’s sending is the worst.

The “devil” is essentially the personification of “bad” and to believe that carrying, opening, reading or living the bible makes the “bad” go away is ridiculous.  The “bad” will still happen, the only difference is that the believer will have a coping mechanism which relies completely on faith in a myth.  This is the sole purpose and truth behind all spirituality.  It’s so frustrating not to be able to make others understand this.

The bane of every atheist’s existence.

Believing in god is completely illogical yet having been there and done that  (believed whole heartily) I can sympathize with the ignorance.  –I hesitate to use that word because most of my friends are Christians and I’m not friends with anyone I don’t respect, but I cannot for the life of me understand how these otherwise bright, sensible, forward-thinkers can convince themselves that any of what they’ve learned is true.

Learned…that is the key word.  We are not born with an innate sense of “god”.  We are taught to believe in him and we are told that if we don’t, bad things will happen to us.  The “devil” will get us, now and in the afterlife.

I put the whole religion thing on the same level as addiction.  It’s not until you get away from the addiction that you realize just how messed up it is.

Re-Grouping

It’s been several weeks since I’ve written a new blog or been active on twitter or, well…pretty much anything having to do with all this atheist stuff.  It wasn’t that I didn’t care or wasn’t thinking or that I had run out of ideas or that I was that my passion for god was suddenly reignited-  I was just busy working on other projects (a novel) and frustrated with myself and the direction that this blog was taking, so I decided that I needed to take a break and regroup.

Back around the middle of October I got into a conversation, or at least what I thought was a conversation with a fellow blogger- a believer-blogger and I let him/her get to me.  (I’m not sure if it was a chick or a dude, so for the sake of this entry I’m going to refer to him/her as a him.)  He really made me angry; pretending like he wanted to have an open conversation but really only had one objective- to tell me I was wrong.  I understand and believe that a true believer should  do that, but his tactics really got under my skin.

My intention with this blog is to offer an alternative explanation and way of thinking.  I am proud of where I am spiritually-or not so spiritually.  I have more peace in my life than I ever had when I was hanging on to god.  I worry less.  I enjoy more.  I accept and appreciate better.  These are the things I want to share, along with my thoughts and ideas about the psychology of spirituality.

I have yet to go back and edit my previous blogs, although that is something that I still plan to do.  But for today, I just wanted to, at least, post a little something to say, “I’m back!”

“It may help to step into his worldview for a moment.  He believes that the Bible comes from God and contains life and death information.  He has acted on that information himself and believes it to work in real life.  He believes that the Bible is similar to a cure for cancer, and that everyone – including himself has it.

 Therefore, when he hands out bibles, acting on what he completely believes, he does so out of compassion and love for his fellow man.  It’s possible that he is mistaken about it, and it’s possible that nobody wants one, but he sleeps better at night having offered.  Sleep better at night in the sense of loving people, not religious duty.

Entering his worldview at least helps us to think the best of people, which we should do whatever we think about God.”

I couldn’t agree more.  This is exactly how I feel but it’s so easy to get caught up in who’s right and who’s wrong and feel defensive.  I plan to read this several times a week to remind myself how I really feel without all the negativity that surrounds the atheist community.

 

Stress

When I set out to write this blog I didn’t really have a goal. I was mostly just venting out of frustration from all of the Christian propaganda that surrounds me. After a couple of conversations with other atheists that I met on twitter, I realized that I did not want to become and angry atheist and therefore my plan was to focus on offering alternative ways of thinking without name calling or hitting below the belt. I am not a mean or spiteful person- quite the opposite in fact. It takes a lot to make me angry and even when I am angry I usually keep it to myself, or at least take time to cool off before addressing the issue. However, I am quickly learning that keeping my cool is going to be hard for me on this subject. Not because I don’t like Christians, but because I don’t like being told that I don’t know the “truth” about Christianity or what it takes to be Christian.

I know good and well how it works.

My ultimate goal was: to not be offensive to anyone. While I realize that this is an unattainable goal since religious views are very personal and it’s near impossible not to take what I say personally– I can still strive for that goal.

What I find scary and worrisome is that I might offend someone who I know and love. This is why I decided to keep this blog anonymous, well that and I don’t want to lose my job. But mostly because I don’t want to lose the friends that I cherish. It’s hard because I really do feel the things I say, but I don’t mean them at the people I love. They are not the ones saying the things that make me so angry. I’m not being two-faced, I’m just fortunate enough to be surrounded by people who, no matter their beliefs, are accepting of my own.

I guess, my point is- if you are a personal friend of mine and you read this blog, please don’t think that I ever think poorly of you or your beliefs. I may not agree with your religion but that doesn’t mean I don’t respect you.

How I “Felt” Jesus

The following is actually from the comments section of my “How I Got Here” tab.  (top right of your screen) Since it will get lost in that portion of my blog, because that page isn’t visited regularly, I decided to post it as a blog.  I’d love to know your thoughts, so comment away!

Most, at least the way I learned in the Baptist church, Christians do not believe in ghosts/spirits because after we die we either go to heaven or hell and therefor ghost cannot exist.  Even people who don’t believe in ghosts can get spooked by the power of suggestion. For instance, even though I don’t believe in ghosts, if I was with someone who did and we were alone in an unfamiliar place and that person said to me, “I feel a presence here” and then elaborated on that, I could easily start to feel uneasy and perhaps even get caught up in what they were saying. If I let my imagination go, I could even begin to see shadows or “sense” something too. I could get spooked. So, my point is, that our minds are very powerful and our imaginations can take over- when I said that I “saw Jesus” what I meant was that my mind imagined it. I never actually SAW him, like I looked up and he was standing there, but I was able to “see” him in a spiritual way. I FELT him or at least what I thought was him. I FELT that warmth come over me. I was able to “see him work” in ways that I couldn’t explain. I “knew” that he was present and real. I don’t know how else to explain it. But I promise you that I HAD the “Christian experience”. The difference between me and continued-believers such as yourself, is that I realize now that those feelings were imagined. I doubt that I can convince of any of this because, at risk of sounding presumptuous, you are blind to any other possibility. You BELIEVE. I do not. But I believed at the time and it was real to me at that time.

Since that point, I have been on a journey. I have questioned. I am a natural skeptic, always have been, always will be. I am incapable of believing in god. Even though I had those experiences and at that point in time, I believed that it was real, I eventually began to question, just as I always have.

I wanted to believe. I wanted it to be true. But it isn’t. I couldn’t MAKE it my truth. You have made it your truth and unless your mind changes there is nothing that I can say that will make you understand.

You don’t need to feel sorry for me or try to convince me that your way is the truth. I am not afraid or scared of MY truth. I am at peace.

I believe in myself and others. That is enough for me.

I understand that you believe that I need saving. I understand that you want me to go to heaven. I understand that it’s your job as a Christian to spread the word. I understand that you “love” me as Jesus taught you. I UNDERSTAND! I GET IT!

Now what you need to understand is that it doesn’t matter how much scripture you throw at me. It doesn’t matter how many questions you ask me about my knowledge of god, Jesus or salvation. It doesn’t matter how much you try to convince me that you are right and I am wrong.

Your imagination is not my reality. I do not believe in god. Therefor your scripture is worthless, you questions go no where and I will know that I am right.

Feel free to pray for me if you’d like.

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