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Showing posts from October, 2003

Fundamentalism Screwed Up My Religion

sent in by Don T. Know

It's sort of funny to have an Agnostic complaining about Fundamentalism screwing up religion. But, upon reading this, I think you'll understand why.

My mother raised us (mostly my sister and I, the two youngest kids) in a Presbyterian Church. In retrospect, it was a "liberal" church – which is to say it wasn't exclusively focused on other-worldly concerns. It also had a this-worldly, humanitarian mission. We learned to try to love all people since God loves everyone. There was no "us" or "them." We were all God's children and we should strive to do our best to get along with others … and to help those in need. Without a creed, it would have represented pure religion as Thomas Paine imagined it: "I believe that religious duties consist in doing justice, loving mercy, and endeavoring to make our fellow-creatures happy."

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Freed from religion while still young

sent in by Kurt Melin

Greetings to all!

My name is Kurt Melin and i am glad to have found a place in which i can debate and explain myself with other former christians.

My story is not a particularily exciting or dramatic one, but I'm submitting it anyways. I was raised by my parents to be a christian even when I was too young to understand anything in the church or why we went. I went to all of the church functions for most of my childhood, but then I went to confirmation.

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What a time to lose faith, in the middle of Bible college!

sent in by Tom

I have always put the issue of eternal damnation on the back burner of my faith. Going more with the feeling that Christianity gave me and not worrying about such as issues as hell or where Cain's wife came from.

But now I have to ask: What purpose would eternal damnation serve? The human mind can't even comprehend the concept of something never ending. Yet we're to believe that anyone who spends there life (even if it was only a few decades) not believing in a God that never proves his own existence will spend an ETERNITY IN HELL! What the f*ck ever! This is such bullshit. Hell is a neanderthal idea thought up by a neanderthal culture that believed in superstition and fairy tales!

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An Awesome Community Here

I've read the responses this community have given to the letter, "I need help," submitted by Emily, the 17 year old girl who is deconverting from Christianity, and I am overwhelmed, myself, by the kindness, compassion, encouragement, and depth of understanding in them. And what I realize is that these responses are not just words, they come from REAL people.

Agnostics, atheists, humanists, and so forth, were demonized by the Christian religion I grew up in. As I have made my own journey out of Christianity, I have met people just like you folks here, and see the lie for what it is.

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One Question

Hello everyone.

I am no longer a Christian anymore. I recently made the decision, and simultaneously discovered this great site. I found that I could no longer believe in the stories of the Bible, lacking any concrete evidence. I also could not accept some of the terrible morality that the Bible espouses. I am much happier now, but I had a question to ask that has kind of been bothering me for a while.

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Freedom

Sent in by Rachel

I grew up as a preachers kid. My father was the pastor of our local church and was always taking us to other churches where he was invited to preach. My mother was the perfect Pastor's Wife, and my brother looked like he was going to follow in her footsteps.

My mother tells me that one night when I was four, I approached her and told her I wanted to give my life to Jesus and 'be saved'. I only remember one thing from this encounter: kneeling by her bed and waiting for SOMETHING to happen. My four year old mind fully expected a light show, a feeling... anything would do. Of course nothing happened I was four years old, not many sins to be cleaned right? By six I was drowning in our church's philosophy. I went to bible camp, started kindergarten in a Christian school, I was witnessing by the age of nine and won a soul to Christ by age ten. I look back and cringe at myself now.

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I still believe in God...

sent in by Craig

Neither my mother or my father were what you would call particulars strong Christians but when I joined the boy scouts both myself and my family ended up going to church every Sunday (along with the rest of the scout troop).

There I learnt about god and Jesus and all the other things a Christian should know about and I began to believe.

Now for something surprising, I still believe in God...

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I need help

I don't know if I am putting this in the right place, but this is where I figure everyone will see it. I need your collective help as a community.

You may remember me from not too long ago; the story of the 17-year-old ex-Southern-Baptist with depression problems.

It has only been about six months since the first time I said out loud, "I am not a Christian." It has only been about a year since I first began to realize that my beliefs were largely irrational and started to question my faith.

Where I stand now, I am no longer uncomfortable thinking about religion in general; I am firm in my disbelief. However, there are certain things that can...get to me. Triggers, if you will, that set off an enormous wave of emotions, particularly doubt (that I am doing the right thing, etc.).

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I was called a Satanist

sent in by Nick

Let's see. My mother is Catholic, and my father was brought up as an agnostic who believed in God. They married in a Catholic church. My mom is a strong Catholic, attended a Catholic High School, and went to church before marrying my father. When I was born I was baptized, and that was my last experience with church. My mom didn't make us go to church because we were a working middle class family, we really didn't have time, and my mom was nice enough not to force religion on me. Although at school it was a different matter.

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An Ex-Mormon's Tale

sent in by Daniel

I was born into a Utah Mormon family, a descendant of pioneers and Saints who had been without exception faithful in their callings. I spent part of my childhood in Central Utah and the remainder in Southern Idaho, always in the loving embrace of the Church. While still an infant I was already being primed with basic Mormon doctrine. I was a shining star in Primary, a golden boy with golden hair shimmering in the light of the gospel and bright blue eyes beaming the joy of being blessed to be born in the heart of the true church. “A Mormon boy, a Mormon boy, I am a Mormon boy - A rough and rugged sort of chap; an honest Mormon boy!” To this day I can still sing my primary songs word for word. Ah, the many times this boy returned home with an adhesive star upon his forehead!

I recall very vividly my first major infraction of Church protocol. I was seven years old and I was being edified with a Primary lesson on Noah’s Ark. The day before, our family had visited the zoo…

Why I reject Christianity

sent in by Mike Douglass

I think with regards to religion, we are born into our particular faiths/ideologies, really, we have little choice. Upbringing, tradition and ultimately fear seem to keep so many locked into blind and unquestioning subservience. One learns very early on in life, that it is wrong to question, that they should simply “have faith.”

I was born into the Catholic faith, and indoctrinated accordingly, and although my parents thankfully weren’t fanatical about it, my brothers and I were still made to go through the motions of confirmation, receiving communion, and the once a week trip to the “lord’s house” to hear the sermons of God’s mediators. I believe I was 12 years old when I began to feel in my heart that something was not quite right with the whole thing, but unfortunately, I was not encouraged to think freely or question, in fact it was just the opposite. Don’t question God, just accept it, do the little rituals, and be like everybody else. This whole attitude…

You Should KILL YOURSELF!!!!!

This amazes me! How you put down God! How about you go to http://www.carm.org and find the answers of why God allowed some wars. Further, these false contridictions in the Bible, you didn't take into consideration that through God, all things are possible. Albert Einsten said we use at the most 10% of our brain power, so who posses the other 90%? If you guys REALLY were athiest however, you wouldnt go through all the trouble to make a website, because plan and simple, athiest could careless because in the end it doesnt matter.

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Can a Girl Be the Anti-Christ?

sent in by Ellen

It's been a month since I registered here -- a month of gaining strength from being among all of you. Thank you. I don't think I could express the following anywhere else.

My heart starts to race whenever I think about submitting my anit-Testimony because I know truth is required here, and I can't tell it. My story is so conflated with gothic overlays and my own reshaping of memories over the years that I'm not sure I know fact from fiction. I hope a sincere attempt will suffice.

My large extended family, its roots in the American South, was a severely under-educated crew, albeit with gleaming intellect. Most of my family members put this gift of mind into the twisted service of various forms of Pentecostal/Evangelical preachment. Some chose to let neither their intelligence nor their piety stand in the way of their incest.

My parents already had three children, ages six through ten, when I was born. Since she'd almost died with her thi…

Parking Lot Preaching in the Bible Belt

sent in by Chris "Daye"

I was 15, a Freshman in high school. I left Christianity for Paganism and Wicca. I live in the Southern Baptist capitol of Oklahoma, by the way. The Baptists of the area didn't like my idea much (I actually started thinking for myself! ), so they decided to preach to me. They did so, excessively: at school (both students and teachers. At one point, I was pulled out of my Algebra class by a Bible-thumper teacher so he could preach to me about how worried he is. He even used the words "You think too much when it comes to religion." Fancy that!), at school-sponsored football and basketball games, and even at my house, physically and via telephone, violating my constitutional rights. After about 4 months, I threatene legal action against the school and church, and the harrassment dropped off, for a bit. At one point, however, I was beaten - severely beaten - for being a "satanist".


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Jesus Loves You!

Itisacounterfeitlove thatis contingent uponauthorityp
unishmentorreward.Ina nutshell, GodhadtokillHimself
toappeaseHimselfsothat Hewould nothavetoroastus,Hi
sbelovedcreations,inHELLforever.Helovesusmorethan
wecanevercomprehend,butif wedon'treturnHisaffection
s,Hewillmakeusregretitforeternity.NowthatisAMAZI
NGGRACE!Itisa

The Way of the Intercepting Mind

sent in by Erik

Like most people, I was born into a Christian family. My mother was a baptist, my father a catholic. Luckily, they were both of the "Chicken Soup for the Soul" variety, in that they did not ram church down my throat but just said there was some God up there who loved me and Jesus is his son, and prayer is good...blah blah blah.

Unfortunately for them, I was not in tune with their passive natures. They went to their jobs, took care of their kids, voted in an election now and then. I had more concerns and an eager need to do something about them. My parents would always advise me to just pray to cope with my troubles. That wasn't good enough for me. So I went to church, on my own, to try and "reach" my God. Once again, the sermons I had heard repeated the passivity of my parents: "It's all in God's hands," relax, get through this life and the next will be wonderful. Once again, it was not good enough for me.

(Click Her…

Free at last !

sent in by Ian Lowe

I had an unhappy start to my high school years being badly bullied as a youngster: I was intelligent and read a lot in an environment where playing football (soccer) was pretty much the only skill that was recognised.

My mother was suffering her own crisis of faith within the methodist church, and despite my father's protests took my sister and I to the local Baptist Church's sunday school. Within this environment, I suddenly found my intelligence and ability to memorise large sections of the bible being rewarded: I was encouraged and found a little refuge from the beatings in school.

As with most ex christians that I have spoken to, there's a certain disbelief, an almost out of body experience of looking back at my own actions now: I can't see why I was taken in, why I so completely fell for the God-myth. The fact is, fall I did: and hard. I found myself studying the bible to the detriment of my academic studies.

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The Awakening

sent in by Emily

Wow, I have to express my gratitude that this webpage exists. This is a very recent deconversion for me and I am ready to get some things off my chest.

For my entire life, I was raised Southern Baptist. My earliest impressions of religion surmounted to Sunday School cookies and red fruit punch, gold stickers for good behavior, and singing pretty songs. Naturally, the whole atmosphere was pleasing to my childish brain and I loved going to church. My family takes religion very seriously and in this light I would always try and please them. When I was about 9 years old I started reading my Bible. I made it my mission to understand the text completely--front to back, mixing it up for flavor every once in a while, re-reading parts that didn't make sense to me. And I did. I became engulfed in it. I loved this idea of this suffering God--in retrospect, most likely because of some sordid details in my childhood (sexual trauma, etc.) that I will not relate now.

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