Christianity and Conspiracies to De-conversion and Agnosticism

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By Pinkbunion ~

Hello everyone, this is my first time to post on this forum, and I'm quite nervous about it. I am a former Christian, specifically, Roman Catholic, who fell in the rabbit hole of conspiracy theories artound 2010 while looking up my favorite band. That Internet search result linked the band's name with the Illuminati. So, I ended up on vigilantcitizen.com, got intrigued by the articles, and on it went. These beliefs were pretty much maintained until the year 2020. My deconversion all started last September 2020, when I watched a conspiracy theorist video that exposed the evil of the Old Testament (the video creator was not Christian) and the reasons why some crazier conspiracy theories were false. So, first, I am going to relate what happened to my beliefs from 2010-2014, where it remained the same. Second, I'll discuss what I believed during 2014-2020, where there was a shift in my beliefs and I became more committed and certain of it. Finally, I'll state my beliefs from September 2020 to now, when I deconverted.

I grew up on the typical Roman Catholic religion in the Philippines, where we have to attend mass every Sunday, pray before every meal, pray the rosary every night, act properly and follow the rules on morality. Before 2010, I did not really mind the religion at all. I just accepted it as part of my life, and it just being there. I just believed and accepted it since it was what my parents, neighbors, and community believed. After 2010, it still stayed the same. However, with the inclusion of conspiracy theories and conspiracy videos that emphasized Christian wording, and mixing Christian ideas with the theories, I suddenly took the religion seriously. For example, theorists usually said that they the elite are going to control the world and the rapture will come, and it's going to be hell for those who will be left behind, or that it's ok if you're alone and no one believes in your conspiracy theories, since the Christian people/conspiracy theorists are "peculiar people", and "not of the world". My faith became stronger, I leaned more on God and the Christian religion as a way of facing the grim and often hopeless picture the conspiracy theorists were painting. There were times I became more paranoid, more serious, and kind of avoidant and scared of the world, and distrustful of people around me, because of the conspiracy theories. Christianity became the comfort for me in this conspiracy world, where I leaned on the Trinity in times of trouble and doing my best to follow God's rules so that he will protect me from misfortune. I, of course, had no community in real life to tell this to, so the conspiracy theorists became my community. I told none of my parents or family about this, since I was afraid of the backlash.

During 2014-2020, I noticed that a lot of conspiracy theorists that I watched rejected religion. They despised how the church was too formulaic, too rules based and restricting. They didn't want to join Church, and instead, wanted to have a personal, individual relationship with Jesus. I just continued and followed with whatever they told me, just like before, since it was where I got my purpose in life and a general understanding of life. I never really thought to stop and think if these things were real. A community is hard to find for me at this point because most of the people around me were your typical Christian believers, therefore, these conspiracy theorists were my community, as it were. I also didn't tell anyone about my new belief, since I was afraid of what their reaction might be. During this time, my faith grew stronger, I became genuinely happy about my relationship with Jesus, but not the religion. I used the bible as my inspiration and guide to life. I leaned to the Trinity during troubled times. Everything was good, except that I had doubts. I expressed this to my elder sister, who, even though she was still Christian, was open to modern ideas, and unlike my parents who were somewhat close minded to these ideas, especially my dad. I doubted about whether or not it's true that being one of the LGBTQ+ is bad, is it necessary to pray repetitively (e.g. the rosary) for God to hear us when the Bible says that doing so is not allowed, is there really a Heaven and Hell, is it ok for a God of infinite love to withdraw his protection from his children or allow them to get hurt and be angry with them when they do a teeny weeny wrong act, such as thinking 1 bad thought, etc. I never told any of these to my parents in a serious manner or conversation, since I know they won't accept it and they'll keep justifying their beliefs. Regarding conspiracy theories, I just believed in the famous ones as they came, like the Pizzagate theory, fake actors in false flag events, QAnon etc. I really had not a lot of doubts about them, since I just watched the conspiracy theory videos and swallowed whatever they told me, and I didn't believe in the more bizarre conspiracy theories (even though the famous ones are bizarre enough) like Flat Earth or that elite people are lizard men. I was even anti-vaxx, and at one point didn't believe in Covid.

I am a former Christian [...] who fell in the rabbit hole of conspiracy theories [...] like the Pizzagate theory, crisis actors, QAnon, etc. As the years went by, I felt my doubts about religion grow. I even watched a Christian YouTube channel that claimed God can heal any disease, as long as you pray a certain way. I had doubts about this, since it was too good to be true, especially during Covid time. During this time, I went from not believing that Covid exists to it existing, but that we didn't need to wear masks or social distance. I changed my belief because I thought that it was too unbelievable that the whole world will undergo a really drastic change that affects everything - socially, mentally, financially, economically etc., in a person's, nation's and community's life, if Covid wasn't true. However, I still followed these rules when I went outside in order to avoid trouble. In that year, I unsubscribed from a lot of conspiracy theorists on Youtube because I think they spread a lot of the more bizarre conspiracy theories, which I didn't believe, but I still followed a lot of them. Then, on the year 2020, I unsubscribed from most of the conspiracy theorists on Youtube, since I now doubted more of the conspiracy stuff in general.

So on to the year 2020. During September, I watched a Youtube video from a conspiracy theorist that I always watch. He was into meditation and posted a lot about meditation videos along with the theories. He stated how the Old Testament was evil, since it requires a blood sacrifice and loss of life for forgiveness, which in truth, was unnecessary. He also had several videos like this that I watched. He also posted several videos about how some conspiracy theories were false or were posted by other "conspiracy truthers" for money and views. Starting from that point on, I doubted the 2 world views. It was crazy how they were intertwined in my life, and how they broke together at the same time. The double fracture of my two world views breaking (world of Christianity and world of conspiracy theories) was like dropping a BIIIG 2,000 megaton nuclear bomb, on a nuclear testing site!

Since then, I have started from Spiritual to not Religious, then Atheism, then Deism, then Atheism again, and right now, Agnostic. Maybe my belief system changes depending on what information I get. My feelings during this time were varied, going from up and down. During my Spiritual But Not Religious (SBNR for short) phase, I was very sad because I just lost the faith that defined most of my life up to this point. So, I was still getting various ideas about God and I felt like floating, not sure on what to believe. Then, I switched to the Atheism after that, I found some ideas helpful in improving my life, but I was still sad for losing the stability and community of the previous religion. Furthermore, I then tried Deism. It was great since it recognized there's a God and there's a respect for other religions. However, I still can't square with their belief in God and how I could apply it in my life. Moreover, I moved back to Atheism again. Atheism helped me in several areas of my personality, but I was still yearning for spirituality. So, right now, I think I have decided that being open minded and balanced in my world view, instead of settling for one belief system, is better, and thus, I settled for Agnosticism. I still think I need some spirituality in my life, so Agnosticism allows that, but it doesn't restrict me to any one system, and allows me to explore new ideas and see how it affects me and others and how it feels.

I have changed in my belief systems over the years. During 2010 and before, I have started by taking the religion as granted. Then, from 2010-2014, I became more serious with it as I encountered conspiracy theories and their inclusion of religious belief in their ideas. Moreover, from 2014-2020, I moved from a religious Christianity to a more personal Christian spirituality. At the same time, my doubts about the religion and conspiracy theories grew. Finally, from September 2020, up to now, I have experienced the deconversion from both worldviews and its huge effects on my life. Right now, I still hope to discover more about the world through the lens of agnosticism. Its open-ended aspect allows me to explore different ways to see the world and act on life. At the moment, I'm happy with my choice and I hope that those who deconverted will have the strength to see it through too and have happy lives. It took some courage to finally tell the world of my experiences, but cheers to myself and to others for doing so, and let's have fun in the journey ahead!!

COMMENTS

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ExChristian.Net: Christianity and Conspiracies to De-conversion and Agnosticism
Christianity and Conspiracies to De-conversion and Agnosticism
I am a former Christian who fell in the rabbit hole of conspiracy theories [...] like the Pizzagate theory, crisis actors, QAnon, etc.
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