To Believe or Not to Believe
One question that I have been asked before, and I do not doubt that many other people are asked is this “What are your religious beliefs” or “Do you believe in God”? This question is one of the focuses of many political debates, it is asked when filling out most profiles on dating sites and religious beliefs have been the causes of wars for centuries…religion is so confrontational and divisive but it is such a strong part of the whole world culture.
My always say that my beliefs are hard to explain, but truth be told…they are not really that hard. I am what you would call agnostic. Agnosticism often gets lumped into the same group as atheists, as people who just dont believe in anything but thats wrong. Agnostic just means that I do believe that there is some sort of higher power out there but I am not going to sit here and say that I know what that is, or try to explain it. It means that I do not go to church or identify myself as a member of any certain group, but I dont discriminate or say any group is better or worse than another. It means that I do not sit down and read the bible for spiritual enlightenment, however I have read it (not all of it) with an open mind. It means that I have no idea what happens to people when they die, and that I believe there could be a God out there, but I dont think humans are or ever will be meant to understand anything about it.
Ill share something with all of you…My mother died 9 years ago on this July 20th…If I was entirely without religious beliefs then I might have a grim outlook on what happened to her after she died…but I dont. I believe that my mom did go to somewhere that is better then this Earth but I dont know if it was Heaven or something else…however I am confident that there is a better place that people go after death
My beliefs do not come from the way I grew up though. If anybody reading this just thinks that I am this way because I did “not have God welcome in my home” while I was growing up, you are wrong. My great-grandmother and many of my family on my moms side of the family are Catholic, in fact I even have a distant relation that is a Cardinal in Rome. My Stepmother in Canby is Mormon and I even attended church and was baptized in Mormonism when I was younger. I also have many other people in both sides of my family that fill out various denominations of religion..so I did not grow up without any religion in my life. The reason behind my current beliefs is myself deciding that as an adult I will keep an open mind about things religious, and not limiting myself to the beliefs of one denomination. It has enabled me to see that most religions are just different people trying to tell the same story
My unique beliefs have enabled me to have a unique perspective on the world. I can look at many things with an open mind and an unclouded view…its actually quite liberating.
Now let me get this out…I do not think of people that do deeply believe in their religion as judgmental bigots. In fact I think the idea of religion is great. I think that if religion did not exist in this world, it would be a terrible place to be…If everyone in the world believed that when we die, all we do is rot in the ground than we would be living in a terribly depressing world. I also believe that if only one religion existed in this world than that would not be good as well…what makes this world great is the fact that there are so many different opinions on…well everything!
What I do not like about many religions is the fact that there is so much hatred because of it. Now if I remember right, the Bible tells people to not judge others…but I find that many religions are deeply judgmental…actually no, its not religions as a whole, but individuals.
I dont know how many different branches of Christianity there are but they all read the same book and worship the same god…so why are they all so competitive with each other? Why are we all so judgmental of the Islamic people…it is not the religion that preaches terrorism, but the individuals that try to convince others to kill for their own gain. Why do many religions denounce scientists when some of their work might someday prove what is written in Genesis?
And then there are the extreme religious sects…like the Westboro Baptist Church who believe that most of the world, save for them are going to be burning in hell very soon…or the extreme Mormons who marry childern and practice Polygamy (Mormons I know insist most of the church outlaws polygamy) and what of Harold Camping, the man who told his followers that the Rapture was coming last year and many of them sold all of their belongings waiting for an end that never came…and after it didnt happen all this man said was “I guess I was wrong”
My final point I wish to make is this…It is great to believe in your religion and I admire all of you that hold deep beliefs in God. It is a gift to be able to believe in something like that, and it is perfectly fine to share your gift with the world, but I urge you all…dont be judgmental of people who do not share your beliefs because there are so many other ways to think and the world will be a much happier place when we all accept others beliefs just as we accept our own.
Have a fantastic night and I thank you for reading!!!