Losing Faith

Posted by Herb7734 3 years, 6 months ago to Philosophy
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I lost religion at the age of 14. I was studying for my bar-mitzvah (The Jewish confirmation ritual initiating a boy into manhood.). I did pretty well going through the procedure but it struck me at that time, after all the studying and learning the prayers when it was over, I discovered that I was no more manly than when I began. It started me thinking that perhaps I missed something. I thought that perhaps other religions had something going for them that I missed in Judaism. The closest one I could think of was Catholicism. (Islam was not even a consideration.)By the time I was 14 I no longer believed in any God or any religion. The reasons were multiple but when I discovered that the universe was many billions of years old and earth less than a third of that and further, that religions could not be traced back more than 5,000 years which would be the equivalent to a grain of sand in the entire Sahara desert, I felt cheated.Then, I realized that mankind had evolved from hominids, ape-like creatures similar to chimps or bonobos.It became increasingly evident that the many gods and religions were simply recently invented fantasies.So, what good was religion and what was it's purpose? It was mainly the subconscious urge to escape oblivion.Should the practice of religion be discouraged?No! Those who find solace in it should be left alone and even protected if need be.


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  • Posted by VetteGuy 3 years, 5 months ago
    Although I consider myself an atheist, most of my friends are religious. In most cases, religious people seem to be good people, even if they are doing the right things for the wrong reason. I don't try to convert them. Actually, I kinda wish our politicians were more religious. Maybe if they were afraid of hell, they would behave like decent human beings instead of power-hungry overlords!
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    • Posted by 3 years, 5 months ago
      "By their acts shall you know them." In my many discussions with priests and rabbi's, etc. the more clever ones understand that what you do is more important than what they think. As one rabbi once told me --"I don't care what you believe, although I'd prefer you believe as I do, so long as you say the prayers and perform the rituals."
      Hmmm, imagine that.
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  • Posted by Lucky 3 years, 5 months ago
    Ok but a comment on who should be protected, there should be government, one of its function is to protect certain individuals, those who cannot (not the same as will not) function as adults, especially children. Having belief in something, or not, should not qualify for the benefit of the state as parent.
    If you mean protection from persecution and violence, then yes, but this applies to all.
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  • Posted by $ 25n56il4 3 years, 6 months ago
    My biology teacher was an Athiest (so he said). One day he was asked to describe life. His response was, 'A gift of God having 8 functions!': I reminded him he was an Athiest. He told me this was the only answer we had at this time. (1950's).
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  • Posted by Demetrius 3 years, 5 months ago
    I felt much the same way until something pretty alarming happened to me. On a bus trip through California, age 17, I contracted San Joaquin Valley fever and then meningitis, I ended up in the ICU in a San Francisco Hospital where I ended flatlining for 12 minutes. I was at this time an agnostic raised in a family of atheists. What I experienced in those 12 minutes totally convinced me of a conscious existence after corporeal death. Years later, I was astonished to read a newly-released book called LIFE AFTER LIFE that mirrored my own experience pretty darn close. While in this disengaged state, I was able to move around the hospital, and I noticed that someone had left a melting ice cream cone on the top of a vending machine that was not at all viewable from the ground. (My account was published in a later book.) I can't address the topic of religion versus awareness of a spiritual afterlife where beauty and compassion endure - and I certainly don't have all the answers - but I also have no fear of either death or religious leaders'[ dictates. I've been there. They haven't.
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    • Posted by 3 years, 5 months ago
      You are not describing religion, but an attempt at a rational understanding of death through a near death experience. The problem with most religions are the stories that are mostly fiction and the prayers and rituals that are entirely unnecessary to the true believer but used to overwhelm the member of the religion with guilt if they stray from the pre-destined path which is for everyone except the upper echelon priesthood. Entire chapters could easily be written on this topic rather than the abbreviated answers given here.
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