Tag Archives: atheism

What Convinced Me? My Response to Greta Christina.

Recently, atheist blogger Greta Christina asked her readers how they changed their minds about religion. This is my answer.

*****

First, a bit of background information: I was raised in a fairly conservative sect of Lutheranism, the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod. From preschool to the end of high school, I went to private Lutheran schools.

Now to plant the seeds of skepticism: During my senior year of high school, my religion teacher invited us to write questions about faith on index cards and submit them to him anonymously. One day, I asked about the whole “homosexuality is a choice” myth, and the answer he gave the class left me even more confused than I had been before. I concluded that I wouldn’t be staying in the WELS much longer.

After I started college, which was the first time I’ve gone to a secular school, I began identifying as a Protestant rather than a Lutheran. It was also around this time that I began talking to Paul, a fellow writer on DeviantArt. He was the first person to make me really question my faith, and soon I considered myself a deist. I wavered between deism and agnosticism until August of 2010.

My mother volunteered me to organize felt storyboards for the preschool students at my former elementary school. One day, when I was assembling the cast of the Fall of Man, the thought came to my head, “If God is omnipotent, why did he allow Adam and Eve to eat from the Tree of Knowledge? And if he’s omniscient, didn’t he know they’d sin? Did he plan for them to sin?” Luckily, I was working alone, because for the next twenty-ish minutes, I nervous-laughed and paced around the room, going, “Holy shit, God doesn’t make sense! I’m an atheist!”

And finally, the aftermath: Now I’m twenty. I’m still an atheist, and I don’t see myself going back to the church. I feel SO much better about myself since I’ve abandoned my faith. And you know what? The world is so much more beautiful without God, and I’ve gotten much more interested in science.

Since I’m still dependent on my parents, I haven’t come out yet and probably won’t for a long time. I have a lot of supportive friends at my college, though, and for now, that works.

*****

Advertisements

Obedience

I suppose it started in Sunday School; where we were praised for following God’s word. Obedience. Ever since, I’ve found obedience to be such an ugly word.

“Be obedient,” they told us, “and you’ll enter the kingdom of heaven.” Heaven didn’t sound so great to me. In heaven, it seemed all we’d do is sing Christian rock songs and kiss the holy ass of God for all eternity.

“Obey your parents,” they told us, “because it’s the right thing to do.” My parents told me that I wasn’t allowed to date the Asian boy at school or to be friends with the lesbian I worked with at the library. They cut up my clothes into rags because they’d been meant for a boy instead of a girl. They scolded me for mentioning such radical ideas as civil rights and social responsibility.

“Obey the government,” they told us,” “because God put them in authority over you.” The government will pay for a thousand fleets of fighter jets, but not for healthcare for the poor. They throw people in jail for using the wrong bathroom and won’t let my neighbor marry his partner of twenty years.

“Obey the Lord your God,” they told me, “because He has called you to do so.” If I recall correctly, God advocated slavery and rape, and endorsed genocide. He berated His followers and told them they’d never be good enough for Him unless they surrendered their free-will and powers of reasoning to Him.

Well fuck that.

Instead, let me think how I please, dress the way I want, and befriend and love whomever I choose.

Never call me obedient.