A big thanks to the creators of this site. I grew up in the heart of the Bible Belt southeastern US. My parents were very popular gospel singers who had a local TV show that aired in the Charleston, SC area in the 1950's and 60's so I grew up on the BUSINESS end of fundamentalist Christianity.
My story is too lengthy to go into here, but suffice to say that even though I was never physically abused or sexually molested, religious indoctrination was a big part of life.
As the son of gospel singers who traveled all over the southeastern US playing churches of various denominations, I was exposed to all of fundy Christianity's many versions of insanity from mellow soft sell Baptists to tongue talking Pentacostalists. I remember during one performanance at the First Pentacostal Church of Mt.Pleasant, SC, my parents were playing a particularly fast song ( I think the title was "He will set your fields on fire," a tune made famous by Bill Monroe) a middle-aged man jumped up and began rolling in the aisle like he was having a seizure, and I was puzzled as to why no one was calling an ambulance to a man who obviously needed it. When I asked my parents about the incident, they told me that it was normal for them and they called it being "slain in the spirit." I was about 10 at the time and became convinced that these people were mentally ill.
I don't know if I ever really believed in the madness, though at various times in life I tried. AS Will Smith once said in a movie, "I have a strong allergy to bullshit"so that's probably why it never took on me. The indoctrination took many years to completely shake, I had nightmares of being carted off to hell by demons as late as age 12 and similar dreams of the tribulation as late as age 14. I credit the influence of brilliant scientists and friends who were freethinking scientific types for offering sanity in the midst of madness. Arthur Clarke was a big influence on me when I was an adolescent as was Darwin which I studied as a kid in secret, my sister aquiring a copy of Origin of the Species for my 6th grade book report that the school wouldn't let me do at the time. I have another story about that science project, but I'll save that for when I hear back from you guys. Thanks for the opportunity to let me vent. The world is in a stae of intellectual and moral emergency, I believe, as it is still dominated by Abrahamic madness.
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