I updated my Bio
I thought there was a thread for this, but I couldn't find it in the search anywhere.
Anyway I've updated my Bio on my profile with a quite detailed story of why I'm here now.
For the sake of making this thread worth something I'ma just copy/paste it here xD I know a lot of people are interesting in this sort of thing, so I thought I'd bring it to peoples attentions.
(To those who don't know: click "[SNIP]" to open the whole thing)
Quote:Was raised as a Mormon until about 8-10 years old when I was allowed to opt out for the most part.
Was interested in biodiversity since as early as I can remember, and even when I was 5 or 6 I was aware of 'micro evolution' among ants and termites.
By 10+ years old I was reading absolutely everything I could about pre-historical animals, especially from the Jurassic and Cretaceous periods, also alongside that learning about geology and continental shift. I was a follower of Robert Bakker's ideas on dinosaurs as a child, the ideas which have since been proven and are now key for all dinosaur theories. A little later on I studied marine biology in my free time, learning again the scientific processes I'd learned with other things, how dolphins came to be, etc etc.
At the same time I studied history a lot, old Greek and Roman, even pre-Roman and older civilizations dating back to around 8000-10,000BC.
My lust for knowledge of these things lead to a lot of my mother's friends, and even some of my teachers to buy me general encyclopedias which allowed me to just absorb random facts, like the make up of the cosmos, or the evolutionary phycology of the human race, and even our physical evolutionary history, at least what we knew back in the late 90s.
Unfortunately I wasn't so good with my school work as I was with the books xD
On the other side of things, when not studying on my own or at school, I was taught the Mormon way of things. How I should think about people, the supposed history of things, and a lot of stories which went against everything else I was taught, and everything I'd ever experienced. Many things which were contradicted, especially 'historical' events in the Bible and Book of Mormon, things which contradict everything gathered by historians and scientists over the last 4000 years of written history.
Possibly the worse things were the ideas the Book of Mormon had about the Native Americans. A claim that around 2000 years ago a group of Israelis somehow built an Atlantic worthy boat 1500 years before anyone else managed it, then made it to Mexico and somehow evolved into near 300 Ethnic groups in less than 1500 years. And apparently be the first and only people there, although the fossil record shows that at the time the Native Americans were thriving in all corners of South and North America from as far back as 10,000 years BC, and even some tribal spoken history stretches back past the BC/AD mark. Also no explanation in the book of Mormon why the DNA line travels from Oriental to Native American with no hint of Middle Eastern or North African in it.
Anyway, I didn't really buy into it because the scriptures was a stand alone book series with only "Believe this, you don't have a choice not to" as a back up, whereas science and history was verifiable, but very easy to reach out and touch and show that it is real, and that reality in contradiction with scripture at almost every turn.
I remember when I was 9 or 10 I told my mother "If people didn't believe in heaven or hell I don't think they would kill each other anymore," to which she replied; "No, that's wrong. People would kill each other more often."
When I asked for an explanation I was silenced.
I also asked later than same day, "What makes us the true religion, when every other religion also thinks they are the true religion?" to which she replied; "Not all religions think they are true, and the ones are do are proven wrong because they do not follow the Book of Mormon."
I often pick that day out as the day when I could no longer believe in Mormonism, though I did semi-try for a while. My grandma told me that if I cannot believe in Mormonism then it would be just as good to believe in the teaching of another church. I didn't do this, however until about the age of 14 I did loosely go by Mormonism. As least I believed that God and Jesus were real, and that the Book of Mormon was as good as any other religious book, though I couldn't believe a literal translation due to my understanding of science and history.
I don't remember the exact point I decided that belief in a god was entirely illogical given the lack of evidence for god, and the pile of evidence against. But I know by my second to last year of high school (age 15: British high school ends at 16) I was saying "I don't believe in God, I'm an evolutionist", which was the only way I could describe it as all I'd heard of the word 'atheist' at the time was someone who rejected god to work for Satan, and as I also put Satan in the same list as God, as a fictional entity, I didn't use the word to describe myself until I was 17 years old, when I was relieved of my ignorance by the Oxford Dictionary.
And I think that's about it, unless of course you like art, then you can find that here: http://cetaceaphile.deviantart.com/ :3
Live long and prosper.