My name is Zeno and this is my conversion… and deconversion story.
I loved my life growing up in my middle class family just north of Detroit. Life was exciting. Skateboards, break dancing, virgin sex, Nintendo, and boom boxes were sure to make most days pass on with a smile.
Most of my friends and I were doing drugs by the time we were fifteen. Those were great beginnings in my naivety, but things became much darker and stale as time went on in my lustful pursuits. What used to be a party just became a lifestyle… and I’ve never done anything small. This was sure to lead into some extreme forms of behavior just to get a thrill. Fires, fights, familial destruction, LSD, sexual conquest… all decorated with loud music and a constant flow of pot were my diet of choice.
Soon, all the ‘sex, drugs, and rock-n-roll’ became the natural emptiness it is… when it is the consummate substance of your existence. Like most youthful extremists, I had to push it to the edge of the wall until it came crashing down.
I crashed into Christianity. I was weak, tired, frustrated, and needy. I went back to the only thing I knew before the party… Jesus.
I did not start going back to church. No ‘sinners prayer’ was prayed to ‘get saved‘ as is the ‘formula‘ for many. Journaling, thinking, being alone, challenging myself, and reading the bible was the attraction now. The book of Proverbs lit up my life with its nuggets of ‘wisdom’ and the example of Jesus was my new aim. I was nineteen when I finally got off drugs and began making new friends.
Where does one find friends that will support these ‘pure’ activities? The answer to that question according to my Middle American experience was… among Christians.
Campus Crusade for Christ became my cult and my popularity grew like a California Fire. Dynamic speaking, heartfelt music, and sincere hunger for the ‘Word of God’ became my reputation and my magnetic way was the force I needed… to be a dynamic soul winner.
I spent more time doing evangelism, leading bible studies, and writing Christian music than I did in scholastic activities without question.
Graduation from college was a huge shift for me because I was now living without the cult community that is so common in the University experience. I was no longer surrounded by young, impressionable, and confused college students receptive to the ‘good news of Jesus.’ My Christian fame had ended, but my passion for ‘things of the Lord’ certainly had not.
Marriage came quickly and kids right on its coattails. Searching for a church was a chore. We were picky and most at church seemed stale, watered down, and void of passion. We found our home in a United Pentecostal Apostolic Church. Their convictions were strong and their passions were aflame. These were good authentic people with a fresh look and seemingly logical view of the scriptures. The first few years were new and exciting.
Everything Changed when I started asking questions.
Questions were asked, not out of skepticism, but out of a growing hunger for the truth. I wanted the Absolute Truth and I eventually found exactly that. I now know the Absolute Truth.
The bible says…
“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.“ 2 Corinthians 5:17
I wanted to understand my identity in Christ more than anything and what I found wasn’t exactly ‘Christian’ and certainly not smiled upon within my community of fundamentalists.
My journey out of Christianity was at first a spiritual one… and then an intellectual one.
Intense searching lead to the first recognition that the bible ‘seems’ to contradict all over the place and it takes devotion and an ear attuned to the voice of the Lord within you to understand what the ‘Spirit sayeth to the churches.’ I stopped trusting others around me to interpret the bible for me and I started to trust myself. According to Fundamentalist Leaders, this would have been my first mistake.
This lead to my drifting among other sets of Christian sub-cultures and modern Christian thought.
It is safe to say that I have researched or been involved with all general sub-cults within Christianity. I have heard every major interpretation of the bible and know how to argue both sides of the argument. It was always rare, and still is, to find a Christian that knows the bible better than I do.
The walls eventually came crashing down in my attempt to reconcile the four gospel accounts of the Resurrection Story. It simply can’t be done. All of the four accounts must harmonize, though they are from differing perspectives. My horrid and devastating (but honest) conclusion was that they can’t logically commingle. It’s impossible.
These days were the most psychologically devastating days in all my adult journey.
Everything I believed in, worked towards, and invested thousands and thousands of dollars and hours in… was a Pile of Shit! The gospel message I preached was based on myth perpetuated by controlling fucks and swallowed by ignorant peasants for millennia.
I Was Wrong!
Destruction was married with my Ultimate Freedom and the recognition of the Absolute Truth that I originally sought. As devastation as this period was, I found the Truth I was looking for I discovered the answer. I could now recognize the reality that…
NOTHING IS TRUE
In that, I mean… nothing is permanent and all things are permissible. All things change, are born, and will die. I faced my death and stopped the chase. I finally could settle into My Self. I was finally free… and began pissing on the Cross of Christ shortly thereafter for the shame that it is.
This obviously lead to mass personal destruction in my life. I lost all of my friends and my lack of commitment to Christ naturally lead to marital divorce.
I found much comfort in the new communities I was discovering online. My diet migrated over to some fantastic forums. The people at Debunking Christianity, Ex-Christian.net, and Dr. Marlene Winell let me know that I wasn’t alone and supported me in my Journey.
Who would have known that this straight laced street preacher, worship leader, moral fundamentalist, Christian song writer, and Class A bible thumper… would one day create Obscenitease.com … selling the most offensive, blasphemous, and hilarious Anti-Christian Shit on planet earth?It was January 3rd, 2008 around 3 am. Some of the most blasphemous and hilarious sayings I’d never seen came flashing through my mind and I knew… Those have to be on t-shirts!
Over the next year, I began the conquest of building the Most Blasphemous Company that Planet Earth has ever seen. We’re certainly have much further to go, but the tremendous sales, support received, and excitement shared by many is proof positive that we are not alone in our heresy.
My personal mission is to be a source of entertainment for the sinners of this world… and piss off the uptight fundamentalist along the way. We are here to be a beacon of Free Speech. Our torch is the Light of Tolerance of All… save Intolerance. I will spend my life supporting ideals of freedom and personal choice all whilst laughing in the face of the rule makers and guilt slingers. Many will hate me for what I’m doing… but as I always say…