Unsure whether my time on AF and TTA is positive or negative.
Post Reply
 
Thread Rating:
  • 0 Votes - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
16-06-2014, 04:16 AM
Unsure whether my time on AF and TTA is positive or negative.
Recently, I was involved in a life-changing series of events. I'm a lifelong agnostic apistavist, and have been since before I discovered a word to describe what I was.

I grew up thinking there was something seriously wrong with me. I could not find a religion I agreed with or even believed the premises of. I have been told for 20 some odd years that I am going to hell for any number of contradictory reasons. And I learned pretty quickly to only tell people I have known and trusted that I'm agnostic.

I have experienced confusion to outright rejection for merely using the adjective, and have been told it's simply not possible to "not believe in anything."

I have watched the utter hypocrisy of people who claim to be religious, but only when it suits them. And I kept it under wraps for a very long time.

I have friends, family, co workers and acquaintances who I deeply respect, who are religious enough I don't think I can clearly state my views around without damaging interpersonal relationships, putting my career at risk, or otherwise ostracizing myself.

This came to a head today, when during a vaguely related fight, I laid into my wife with the grievances and hypocrisy I see in her relatively mild Christian faith, and absolute horror and inhumanity the religion apologizes out of sight.

Without going into too much detail, I have always surrounded myself with predominately female friends (just get along with women better) and for some accursed reason have the type of personality that I can board a city bus, and someone will sit down next to me and tell me their life story, and close friends will reveal lurid details I could live a perfectly happy life without ever having been exposed to.

Suffice it to say, I remember being 13, knowing hell didn't exist, and having my best friend's little sister describe experiences that made me wish it did.

I don't know if I can hold my tongue any longer. For decades, I have watched and listened to horror stories that "turned out alright" because God, and because God will punish terrible human beings whenever he's good and ready and gets around to it.

I hate knowing that karmic retribution, hell and heaven are bullshit.

I hate knowing the statistics of sex abuse,
https://www.rainn.org/statistics

And that 97% of people who commit the most heinous, horrific, destructive act possible to another human being will go unpunished. And it was hard not to cheer out loud watching the end scenes of "Descent" with Rosario Dawson tonight.
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Descent_(2007_film)

I have become more outspoken with friends and family, even when it complicates things. I have to endure constant ribbing and chiding from a close friend whose mother is dying, over "nihilism and anger at God," because I can't force myself to believe in the same nebulous deistic god he does, I don't want him to have to face facts.

But I'm fucking angry. I'm livid. At religion, at what it allows people to do to each other, because of a false cosmic do-over that I don't think exists.

I even hear it from my father. My lapsed catholic gnostic atheist father, who is pushing 60, grumpy as fuck, the embodiment of the "angry atheist" caricature religious people portray, and still wants to know "why I care what other people believe."

Because what some people believe allows for pain, suffering, and absolution of things no mortal deserves to be absolved of.

So I find it harder and harder to hold my tongue, from face-to-face, to Facebook, to friends posting pictures of sunsets as proof of God on Instagram.

And it's me. I'm the immoral one, never mind my nonexistent criminal record.

I'm the broken one. The one who cried and prayed and groveled and begged for a sign of what I was supposed to believe in, and got nothing but more angry at the inhumanity of other people.

B. CCTV

“It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts.”
― Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Sherlock Holmes
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 9 users Like rampant.a.i.'s post
16-06-2014, 04:39 AM
RE: Unsure whether my time on AF and TTA is positive or negative.
It's true, all that you say, I think even mild religion is pretty toxic, and the followers... they're sleepwalkers...

I just... I know that I will not fix the world in a day. I try to live *my* life the way I think is honourable, and hope that... that is enough. I believe that if everyone does their little bit then it adds up to a huge change in the end...

The anger is natural - I've had my periods of being angry... somehow right at the moment not so much though.

We'll love you just the way you are
If you're perfect -- Alanis Morissette
(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 2 users Like morondog's post
16-06-2014, 04:59 AM
RE: Unsure whether my time on AF and TTA is positive or negative.
Your experiences are not unusual. I suggest that your time here can be positive - at the very least as a place to vent.

There are many examples here of how to and how not to communicate with theists and other wackos. It's a place to learn from others with similar issues.

Besides, I like your posts, so that's positive. Yes

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
[Image: flagstiny%206.gif]
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 16 users Like Chas's post
16-06-2014, 05:37 AM
RE: Unsure whether my time on AF and TTA is positive or negative.
Let it out, bro.

Here is a great place cathartic therapy.

I've got into the habit of spitting on the ground as I walk passed the Cafia Church as I go to get milk and stuff.

And on the way back too.

A globular manifestation of the physical disgust that I feel when I think of the slavery they casual enforce on the poor and the insecure and the brain-dead.

I think you are ready for some form of activism... some positive channeling of that rage... towards a legacy that will make you (and us Smile ) proud... and away from those you love.

Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 6 users Like DLJ's post
16-06-2014, 05:56 AM
RE: Unsure whether my time on AF and TTA is positive or negative.
I, for what it's worth, hope you stay. Your posts are always worth a read IMO. This is a good place to say the things that are hard to say in real life.

Sorry things are rough for you.

See here they are the bruises some were self-inflicted and some showed up along the way. - JF

We're all mad here. The Cheshire Cat
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 3 users Like Anjele's post
16-06-2014, 05:58 AM
RE: Unsure whether my time on AF and TTA is positive or negative.
I'm with Chas. You have a place to vent here, which is good for relieving frustrations that we have to deal with in our everyday lives - having to deal with theists constantly spouting their beliefs at us, and always being expected to bite our tongue the whole time. I'd say it's far more likely that you might have just blown up earlier if you did not have a place to vent when you have to deal with having yet another religious person telling you why you need to believe, or treating you as though you are immoral because you don't share their beliefs.

That's why pretty much all of us are here - to be able to openly discuss our atheism and have that relief of knowing that we are not alone. We all have to deal with this crap in our lives, though some definitely have it worse than others). I'd try to get your wife to understand why you got so angry. Tell her to imagine what it would be like if she suddenly had to live somewhere where she was surrounded by people of other religious beliefs who constantly lambasted people who share her beliefs, and who constantly told her that she was a bad person for believing what she does - all the while being expected to bite her tongue because she will be looked on as an angry, rude person for saying anything about it.

Besides, as Chas said, you make good posts. You make a lot of positive contributions here, and that has a positive effect on others. I like having you here, and I hope that you stick around.

“Religion was invented when the first con man met the first fool.” - Mark Twain
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 2 users Like WindyCityJazz's post
16-06-2014, 06:19 AM
RE: Unsure whether my time on AF and TTA is positive or negative.
For me, personally, I hadn't gone to any atheist sites back when I was sorting out my own lack of belief. By the time I came here, I had already come to terms with my own lack of religious belief over two years before. That being said, I did read a bit on atheistic beliefs on a forum related to gaming, and it was helpful to get me to consider a different viewpoint and also to see some of my vague feelings put into words. I think that was very helpful for me.

Now, I'd like to think I can play my part in helping any other confused posters who stumble upon this site. Also, I do think having a way to vent is healthy.

That being said, the most valuable part of TTA/AF for me right now is that you guys are so much fun to talk to, and this is an excellent medium for me to release some snark that I otherwise wouldn't.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 6 users Like RobbyPants's post
16-06-2014, 06:25 AM
RE: Unsure whether my time on AF and TTA is positive or negative.
D. All of the above.

We have enough youth. How about looking for the Fountain of Smart?
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 4 users Like Thinkerbelle's post
16-06-2014, 07:09 AM
RE: Unsure whether my time on AF and TTA is positive or negative.
It can be hard. The world is cruel. But that is not only because of religion, most life is opportunistic and will take advantage of other life if possible.

The world will not be perfect without religion. I tend to think that religion exists to provide a refuge for people, a make believe world where some benign being is ultimately responsible for everything and everything has a beneficial purpose we just can't understand.

Once you know it's BS, it's impossible to go back to it. No more make believe world. So you now see the injustices and randomness of life very clearly, and it's hard to stomach.

I see religion as a symptom and not as the cause. Unfortunately it serves to add insult to injury - it in itself exploits people too.

What I am saying is that fixing the religion issue isn't going to fix the people issue. Religion is only a small part of what is wrong with this world.

I like this place, you come across ways of looking at things that you had not thought of before, you can vent and rant, and you can take home some fresh ideas.

A message board is what the members make it. You are a big part of what shapes this place, and that makes you a big part of what our youth and our recently deconverted see when they reach out to find rationality. I think it's important for places like this to exist, it helps do away with the loneliness so many atheists feel. For some of us it's like we are the only one, all others around us are believers. It is cathartic to see so many others in the same boat.

Stick around, you ARE the message board. If it isn't what you want, change it, start topics you think should be addressed.

I can't tell you how to stomach the cruelty of the world, we all develop our personal coping mechanisms. Just know that you are right about it, and you are not alone.

[Image: dobie.png]Science is the process we've designed to be responsible for generating our best guess as to what the fuck is going on. Girly Man
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 6 users Like Dom's post
16-06-2014, 08:45 AM
RE: Unsure whether my time on AF and TTA is positive or negative.
There is no such thing as evil. There is such a thing as evolutionary traits, the instinct for self preservation and competition with other living things.

There is social conditioning, there is lack of education, there are chemical imbalances in the brain, there is indoctrination and any number of things that can go wrong in the development of a human being. It's amazing that so many sane people result, the ways that things can go wrong are too many to put here.

That doesn't make anyone "evil", it can, however, make them dangerous and they need to be prevented from acting out.

Good and evil is a bunch of crap.

[Image: dobie.png]Science is the process we've designed to be responsible for generating our best guess as to what the fuck is going on. Girly Man
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 5 users Like Dom's post
Post Reply
Forum Jump: