Saturday, May 9, 2009

EintoB: Introduction

I was raised in a Roman Catholic home. My dad never went to church, and my mom and I pretty much only went on holidays and for bingo but she took all of it pretty seriously in her own way. I had a godmother that I saw two or three times a year that always gave me prayer books and religious items and encouraged me to be a "good Catholic". I was a highly imaginative child and spent many years reenacting bible stories in the alley behind our house and sleeping on one side of the bed so Jesus had room beside me. I believed deeply in God and that he was present in my life and I wanted more than anything to please him.

Yet I fell away from the church in 8th grade and began exploring many other religions/belief systems for the next several years: hinduism, buddhism, Wicca, Voodoun, Santeria and many flavors of New Age fluff.

By the time I was 21, I was married for two years into an Evangelical Christian family that had made it quite clear that I was not acceptable to them as a non-Christian. I was soon working at a bridal shop staffed by charismatics and had a "born-again" experience. For the next 15+ years I went from traditional Presbyterian to Evangelical to adult reconversion in the RC church and ended up in the Eastern Orthodox church as a fervent, zealous convert.

My religious beliefs in part led me to end my marriage of 17 years. In the two years following my divorce I spent my time searching for understanding: why did our Christian friends turn their back on me? Why did my priest not even try to help? What was the basis behind the doctrines that influenced my reasons for leaving? I was able for the first time to examine my beliefs and the very foundation of Christianity itself. In concluding that the faith and scripture was built on little credible evidence, I was left to examine whether *any* religion was true. It was scary and I strongly resisted the process, but I eventually concluded that what described what I was left with was atheism.

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