Over the past six months or so, my position regarding religion, faith, and beliefs have slightly adjusted. I will always be an Atheist, however I am also a Humanist and a Freethinker, who tolerates and respects the individual and their set of personal beliefs.

Being a Freethinker, means that we rely on logic, reason, research, and scientific inquiry, as a basis for our truth. Obviously, I feel that Christianity, or any form of theism is totally illogical and completely unrealistic. However, believers are just as passionate about God, creationism, Christ, heaven, hell, and eternal salvation, as nonbelievers are confident that those beliefs are completely absurd and ignorant to think otherwise. I have to accept that not only do I have the ability to form my own opinion about everything and so does everyone else. I cannot expect to everyone to respect my way of thinking and believing, but that doesn't mean that I cannot choose to respect other people for having an opinion.

My exposure to religion has always been ****** up and twisted. My abusive ex, prided himself of being a Christian. He liked to tell me that I had no moral compass, that without living my life for God, I had no reason to be a good person. He psychologically abused me throughout our relationship, abandoned our child, and then blamed everyone for his ****** decisions. His family (devout Christians) supported his treatment of me and his choice to live his life, rather than be a father to any of his children. I was constantly told how I would have a more understanding and forgiving heart, if would just accept Jesus Christ in my life. They are the prime example of why I assumed all Christians were hypocrites and ignorant about the teaching of their own religion.

I honestly do not think that I am better than anyone, and I do not purposely cause another person emotional or physical pain. I try to live a decent life, a honest life, and a fulfilling life. I am teaching my daughter to be kind to everyone, that her words, actions, and choices affect other people, and that she is accountable for her choices. I cannot teach her to be respect of everyone and then turn around and tell her that Christians are stupid and their beliefs should be mocked. However, I did not begin to see the other side of Christianity until I met my current boyfriend.

When we began dating, we discussed everything, but religion. When we finally discussed it, I told him that I was Humanistic Atheist, he said that he didn't really identify with anything, but the closest thing would be Christianity. Over time he slowly revealed his devotion to Christ, the holy spirit alive in his body, and his judgemental point of views. I listened to his the stories from his past, how he found religion, and how vulnerable he was as the time. I also knew that he was a decent, hard working, kind, respectful and loving man, who was conflicted between actually being himself and who the church says he needs to be. I respect the man that he is, his faith, his beliefs, and the way he is raising his children. I don't care why he believes what he does, his beliefs are personal to him and deserve just as much respect as mine do. I just hope that someday he can accept, that I may never find God.
amazingyou amazingyou
36-40, F
2 Responses Aug 24, 2014

i felt the same in one stage of my life. I am more into tantra, meditation and yoga in a secular way.

Hope that helps

In a perfect world I think you are right. But we live in a world where religion is seeking the power it lost in the renaissance. You should respect people for being people. But as a relational person you should also stand up and fight for your right to honest inquiry. If we continue to respect religion because it is religion we will wake up one day and creation will be in the science classroom. The courts will rule that the constitution allows you to worship any god you like but not no god.

Religion wants power and every generation must work to prevent it from ever having it. Never forget what religion has done when it was in charge! Religion burned people alive, slaughtered whole cities, endorsed slavery, destroyed discovery, propped up dictators, spread fear like a cancer to every corner of the earth.

Never forget, never forgive, expect us when we come, we are religion!

I appreciate your response. I would like to say that it is not that I respect religion, I accept the fact that religious beliefs are taught and instilled in people during the most susceptible, vulnerable and naive' times of their lives. I understand the draw to having faith. I mean if I could be that optimistic and confident that there is something beyond absolute nothingness, when I die, I would want to hold on to that feeling forever. Unfortunately, I was not overwhelmed with guilt and shame, when I questioned the teachings of the Catholic church and doubted the existence of God, because I didn't give two ***** about what my family and friends thought of me. The Christians that I have had the pleasure of being related to, or in a relationship with, have one set of beliefs they grew up with, and the set that they live by, so I respect the person and not the religion itself. As much as hate organized religion and the manipulation that accompanies it, I have no choice, but to expose my child to it. She needs to be informed and knowledgeable regarding both sides of the argument, so she can decide for herself, as well as understand how important personal beliefs are people.