I love a good fight. I don’t mean throwing punches; I always get my ass beat when it comes to that. I mean a good verbal smack down. Often I am able to argue either side of an argument with such intense conviction that I can win converts over to an ideology that I don’t even particularly agree with. This is something that I have excelled at since I was very young. As a matter of fact I recall being told when I was young that I had a gift for this. Everyone either thought that I was going to end up being a preacher or a lawyer. When I believed in God I was so intense about it that I won over massive amounts of converts to the faith. I remember one time, when I was young, having about 12 kids piled into the back of a pickup truck to go to church. I brought so much fresh blood into the chapel that I was often recognized publicly by the pastor for my outreach efforts.
One of the main things about being a Christian, is that somewhere deep down inside you realize how insane your belief system really is. For example if you were taken to court and accused of a murder that you did not commit would you want the jury to decide your fate based on evidence or based on their faith? How about your paycheck? Do you confirm that you received the right amount through the pay stub or through a prayer? Yet when it comes to a life long commitment to a belief or a church people seem to be willing to accept anything that is sold to them without any type of verification. I recall seeing a press meeting with president G.W. Bush were a reporter asked him if he thought that the happenings in Iraq were the fulfillment of biblical predictions that were leading up to the apocalypse. Bush was genuinely flustered attempting to come up with an argument. On one hand he had to respond in such a way that would not alienate his Christian supporters. On the other hand he had to respond with an argument that made him still appear to me sane!
Because Christians realize the profound idiocy of their belief system on a subconscious level, they live with the feeling that they must win converts. It’s a simple psychological phenomenon that we have seen become prevalent in suicide cults. One person possesses an intense belief that can in no way be verified through empirical evidence so they must get as many other people to believe in it as possible in order to make themselves feel better about their belief system. The more people that believe in it the more it will grow and the less people will question the belief system. When mass amounts of people agree with a particular belief system it tends to verify that belief for all of the others.
It was of course upon the realization of this that I realized that I did not truly and fully accept my new belief system. That is a belief system that is void of any type of superior being or deity. The evidence of this was that I was still out trying to win converts. I was still trying to pull people into my world view in order to validate my own belief structure. I had a growing hatred for the Christian faith and a declining respect for the majority of organized religions in existence. It was difficult for me to have any respect for a person with such a belief system because all I could think about was how much of an idiot they must be in order to accept the things that they accept.
The Christian faith while probably one of the least sound and most contradictory of all faiths, (as evidenced by the mass amounts of dissension and multiple different congregations) actually possesses many uplifting and beneficial qualities. Many churches use their money to feed the homeless or buy toys for under-privileged children. Many send missionaries to other countries for humanitarian efforts and support programs to make individual communities stronger. I understand that a priest molesting children, murdering an attendee to gain their inheritance, or having sex with a gay prostitute, is much more likely to make the news than a church feeding the hungry. But we need to keep it in context. The only time that the church truly becomes deadly to the advancement of society is when they try to get entangled in the political system. Our forefathers knew this well and made provisions to keep the church out of the government. Of course the church is starting to fight this.
Churches do have all of the perks in our society. It really bothers me when religious institutions and religious people talk about how much they are persecuted. They are clearly protected in this country. They have everything from freedom of speech to tax exempt status. I have my own beliefs, why can’t I turn them into an institution for tax exempt status? But you don’t hear me complaining.
The point of my story is that this new found understanding, that I do not have to win converts to agnosticism in order to validate my belief system, has not only solidified the meaning of my position but it has posed the question why do I write this blog. This blog after all is a critique of religion and religious people after all. If I am truly content in my belief structure then there is no need to critique or debate with others who dissent. Then I realized that it is not the debate that needs to go away, it is simply the tone that needs to change. Christians are victims of a mass programming of society. People are raised with fears and guilt that is often very difficult to shake. They are taught from a young age that this is the way that things are. Freethinkers are looked down upon and called outcast. Scientist are said to be blasphemers. Any advancement is seen as a threat to the very core of the religious institution. It is important to speak out against these Christians that are doing exactly what I am ceasing to do. Those that want to push their agenda on the world, influence political policy, and ingrain themselves in the political fabric of our country. Religion as Jesus taught it should be happy with itself. Those that want it should go find it for themselves. But an effort to bring in converts is only useful for the validation of beliefs and for the increase of revenue to the religious institutions. It is that type of behavior that is dangerous, it is that type of behavior that must be spoken out against and if all that I have in my power to do, is to blog about it…………then that, is why I blog.