Death and Religion

Mike - 15017, Pennsylvania
Entered on April 3, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30

The issues surrounding the phenomenon we know as death are perhaps the greatest set of unanswered questions in the history of mankind. Everyone wants to know what happens after they die. Some fear death while others embrace it, some cling to religion, others to some other form of ambiguous artificial consolation. It is accepted by the masses of course, that we do in fact die.

I was raised in a primarily Christian household; I went to a private neo Christian, Jesus freak, god fearing, spank-the-kids-with-a-wooden-paddle school until I moved on to the secular dungeon that is high school. I spent the majority of my childhood blindly following this intangible ideology with no real concept, no real grasp on reality. I lived a vain sheltered existence, and it wasn’t until a few years ago I began to question and analyze, try to figure out what my beliefs are, and as a result of my search and innumerable hours spent in contemplation, I now am even farther from having a solid belief system than I ever did before. I’ve never been the type to blindly accept any beliefs, especially those as monumental as to govern my entire outlook on life and how I live it. I don’t like the idea of being strapped to a philosophy that requires you abide strictly by a set of rules and regulations or your “out of the club.”

I can’t help but feel, by thinking rationally, that religion was crafted as a means to control people. Some conveniently forget that in the beginning, the church was the government. The same church that led some of the most atrocious and brutal campaigns in history in the name of God, yet somehow overwhelming majorities of people still blindly follow it. I now view religion as an attempt to not only control people, but also to give some kind of meaning to life, to answer the unanswered questions. The only problem is, there is no proof. I’m not a scientific person, but I find it very hard to devote my entire life to something without having any semblance of any evidence. Unfortunately, in this world, the only thing that I’m certain of is that nothing is for certain. Maybe there is a God, maybe there isn’t. If not God, maybe there is some other omniscient, omnipresent being watching over us every day.

Maybe one day I will be able to safely adopt a belief system to live by, whether it is created by me or somebody finally gets it right, it’s going to be a long, meticulous journey. Agnosticism is a curse, while it allows you to question the childhood beliefs you received, it also leaves a large gap of uncertainty and despair. I may be searching for the rest of my life. This I Believe.