I've Moved!

Atheist Morality is now West Coast Atheist at Wordpress. Stop on by and feel free to comment over there!

08 December, 2010

Came to Unbelieve, Pt 2

I was probably ten when the idea that Santa Claus wasn't real finally solidified into a realization that my parents had been pretending all along for fun. I was ok with that. It didn't bother me in the least. I realized I had probably suspected it for awhile. My second grade teacher's handwriting looked a lot like Santa's writing in his response to me that year. My little sister had the same teacher the next year and I remember Santa's letter saying he was 100 years old, even though by that time he should have been 101 because he had told me in my letter that he was 100.

So the length of time from that suspicion to finally admitting non belief was a year or two. It wasn't a big deal and it didn't hurt. Neither did my belief in God, at first.

If I could have dropped God when I first did, at the age of twelve, I wouldn't have spent my teenage years as a Wiccan or my early twenties as a non-Christian believer. (Pretty much, I believed in "God" but didn't define it through the Christian faith. I adopted "God" as the definition of a loving supernatural being having a great deal of interest in keeping me sober through Alcoholics Anonymous). More importantly, it wouldn't have bothered me so much at 25 when I realized the mortal state of my body and the end of my own consciousness. Atheists who grow up atheists don't express having this problem.

Anyway, the first time I called myself "Atheist" was at twelve years old. My parents divorced despite my prayers to a God I just knew would take care of me and fix my family. My cat got hit by a car. I had always believed that Jesus would keep us safe no matter what before that. I loved Jesus more than anything in the world. I talked to him even though he didn't talk to me back (much like my stuffed toy, Brown Bunny, but she was real to me, too).

Then I slowly realized that the Bible was made up of a story of the line of one family. I knew already that the story started after dinosaurs and protohumans had roamed the earth. I knew from reading the bible that there were other people around during Adam and Eve's time despite it saying that all men came from Adam and Eve. In my young mind, I figured that the Bible might have been written for the sole purpose of telling people how great their family was. I realized when I got older that it is actually the story of the leaders of a nomadic people in the Middle East. Same basic concept.

I expressed this to a school friend who said, "Yeah, probably, but I don't want to talk about it. My belief is important to me." I didn't tell anyone else. I went through the years not really thinking about God much. At fifteen or sixteen I was introduced to someone who was studying Wicca and I liked the idea that I could use my intention to bend the will of the universe. Even so, in the back of my mind I knew that the rituals were just a way to physically signify my own determination and intentions. It was fun. In fact, I'd still practice it today if I had room in my apartment, but without the chants and invocations. It would be a way to meditate and solidify my decisions. Nothing wrong with it, in my opinion.

I found "God" again later. But that's a story for another day. I was a practicing Wiccan until I was 19 and after that only did a few more spells. Recovery brought me to a whole new concept of "Higher Power."

No comments:

Post a Comment