Faith? What Faith?

Justin - Smithfield, Utah
Entered on December 6, 2007
Age Group: 30 - 50
Themes: atheism

When I was young, my parents would get me up every Sunday morning and drag me to Church. As much as I resisted going to the LDS sacrament meeting, it was basically a requirement for all my family to attend. This was the case until I turned eight. At age eight, kids are supposedly old enough to assume responsibility and be accountable for their actions. So I embraced this new duty and got myself baptized. The thing about it was that I didn’t really feel cleansed after returning from below that large tub of warm water. As my uncle embraced my neck and pulled me from the depths, I felt weird, like everyone was watching me. Interestingly enough my entire family was there watching. I don’t think the guy who thought up that strange ritual had intensions of ruining a poor child’s faith in God, but that’s almost certainly what happened to me.

My parents were good enough to let me make my own decision about going to Church and never forced me to go again. I don’t feel that I missed out on a whole lot of social interactions since I was one of maybe six kids at school that attended the single LDS Church in the county. Growing up in Columbia, Maryland did introduce a wide range of religious beliefs. Not attending Church wasn’t too far from the norm. As I grew older, the need for a God in my life was replaced with my desire for truth. So far, I have been content with life without God. I do not live in fear of the unknown, as the saying “God fearing people” implies. I do what seems right and good by my own standards and I stand by my convictions.

It is not easy being an Atheist in the world today. I try to be understanding of others’ points of view, although much of my stress does come from watching the few religious leaders mislead the masses. I feel that a large part of war is rooted in people’s religious beliefs. Because of this, my political opinions are seldom accepted with open arms. My beliefs in God, or the lack there of, have sculpted me into what some may call an anarchist. My anarchistic view point is similar to an Atheist’s view of God; believing in nothing is better than believing something that is perceived as wrong. I do feel very strong about this and I’m usually willing to engage in heated discussions about it any chance I get.

I really do wish to live long enough to see a world without religion. As unlikely as it may be, I feel that religion is keeping mankind from achieving a state of Eudemonia. I do not want to be the one out preaching Atheism since that would be too much like a religious fanatic. I only wish for a better time when mankind can put all that energy into something that is more productive.