Religion and my thoughts.
Religion… I consider myself an agnostic. There is something out there, I just don’t believe there is only one name for “it”. I call it “my higher power". As a matter of fact, I believe that the “deity” in all religions is pretty much one and the same. I acknowledge the power of prayer, good thoughts, positive vibes and negativity because I’ve seen and experienced it in my life, in very personal ways. The fact is, I cannot support a belief that tries to comfort people by saying "___ needed them more in heaven than we did here on earth". That's BS. One of my best friends drowned in a horrible accident in front of her 11 year old daughter. Explain to me why that is justified. And don't tell me it was the "bad" entity.
I’ve been in churches where I felt a spiritual presence, experiencing a comforting wave in my stomach and soul. I’ve been in churches where I felt the hair on the back of my neck rise up and fought a desire to flee. I’ve been out in the wilderness or even at home in my yard where I felt closer to “it” than in any building, no matter how beautiful. At a funeral for a close friend who was of a religion that I can’t comprehend (and don’t even want to) one of the church members came up to me to ask how I knew the deceased. I told her we’d been close friends for a long time and that I would miss his kind, helpful nature. She proceeded to tell me that basically the only reason he was like that to me is because the church tells them to be patient with those that don’t belong in their church. WTF I don’t remember saying anything back to her. That has changed, I am now comfortable respectfully disagreeing.
I am a member of a 12-step program. One of the sayings that I love is “attraction not promotion”. Essentially, someone comes to a meeting because they’ve seen others who have been able to change their life for the better. It’s not because we knock on doors telling people what we think we can “give” them. If my program implied that the only way I would get “praise” was by putting my beliefs on others, I’d be out of it in a hot minute. I will say that I love the thought of “missionary” work, but not unless you’ve asked and been invited to help. And definitely not going to another country. We have so many people in the United States (actually in our community) who need help in so many different ways.
I am genuinely happy for those who belong to a church or have a religious viewpoint that they support. Don’t get me wrong. I am not against organized religion. Humans are social by nature so having a group to provide support and believe in similar things is what we need to survive. However it hurts my heart and soul when I see “religious” people pass judgment on others for having different beliefs and lifestyles. I help others whenever I can because it’s what I want to do. I prefer to think of myself as helpful, non-judgemental and not pushing an agenda, be it personal, religious or political.
So if you're taking the time to read this blog post, "take what you want and leave the rest"
And know that I wish all of you a life filled with Hope, Joy & Faith.