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IS it a choice?(not a post about homosexuality!)

I'm just curious who thinks their religious beliefs (or lack of religious beliefs) was actually a choice they made?
Being an atheist, who happens to be extremely spiritual, I can say that I had no choice in what my heart felt. I could pretend to go to church, and TRY to continue to believe in God, but it was all a lie to me. When I was growing up, and forced to attend church, my inner voice was always telling me, "No, this is not your truth". Finally I listened, and found the path that was always within me.
It wasn't and still isn't really a "choice"'s simply listening to my inner path of my heart.
Is it not this way to those who believe in a God? Is it a conscious choice to continue to believe? Is it a difficult choice or a battle?


Asked by sahmamax2 at 9:22 PM on Dec. 27, 2009 in Religion & Beliefs

Level 37 (88,208 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (30)
  • As is typical for me, I can't give a black/white yes/no answer. I seem to see only shades of gray. To me it is both a choice and a "destiny", if you will. A long series of choices led me to my current beliefs. I chose to head down the paths that I have and see where they led. And since I don't follow a pre-set belief system, I have made my own choices about what I would and would not do. Those choices further refined my beliefs. So, in that sense it was not just A choice but MANY. BUT I know when I'm getting close to the place I want to be spiritually because I have a deep sense of *rightness*, almost a feeling of *coming home*. When I'm *there* it just feels like what was meant to be, but I had to make a lot of choices in order to get to that point. If I had made different choices along the line, I'm not sure if I would have ended up in the same spiritual place. It probably would have been similar, but not exactly the same.

    Answer by jessradtke at 12:20 AM on Dec. 28, 2009

  • I don't think my religous believes are a choice that I made. My mother is Catholic and that is how I was raised. It is familiar to me, so that is what I go with. I don't believe everything the Catholic Church says that I have to. I do have the choice to change religions, but I really like some of what I was raised with. I just don't belive that I have to go to church in order to prove that I believe.

    Answer by tyfry7496 at 9:28 PM on Dec. 27, 2009

  • I was raised outside of an organized religion. My mother is a Christian, but she is not very outward with her beliefs and my father was raised Catholic but has been estranged from the Church since probably his confirmation. I found the Church on my own and became a Catholic at 27. I don't know if it was a "choice" exactly. I had attended Mass at several different Catholic Churches in the area and none of them really took. When I finally came to the parish I belong to now I felt at home immediately. I felt like I had found a place where I belonged. So I don't know if it was a choice but it certainly fit once I found the right place.

    Answer by beckcorc at 9:29 PM on Dec. 27, 2009

  • Raised Catholic but am totally spiritual. I chose to be gnostic or spiritual and believe in past lives and the whole bit. My mom thinks I'm nuts.

    Answer by jeanclaudia at 9:32 PM on Dec. 27, 2009

  • jeanclaudia....was the path your on now a conscious choice though? Or was it something you realized you felt more passionate about and begain to follow it? Was being Catholic not what your heart was telling you to be?

    Answer by sahmamax2 at 9:34 PM on Dec. 27, 2009

  • I really don't see how belief is a choice. You either believe or you don't believe. At various times I have 'tried' to believe... and what I found was that although I could learn about something, or could pay lip service to it, I couldn't actually choose to believe it. It's like trying to believe the earth is flat- I could pretend to do so, if it benefitted me in some way, but I wouldn't actually believe it if evidence to the contrary was persuasive.

    The biggest thing I tried to believe and couldn't was the idea of God as a personified deity. It's not that I don't believe in God... I just don't perceive God to be 'humanlike' in the sense of having a will and an ego and likes and dislikes. Much as I tried to believe that, it never rang true to me. I've always been more of a pantheist- I don't remember choosing that, I remember having a pantheistic view of God as a small child.

    Answer by Freela at 9:42 PM on Dec. 27, 2009

  • I'm not unhappy about being raised Catholic but I don't follow it. I had a pull in my heart toward spirituality and things began to happen to firm up my beliefs in leaning toward this way of life. I got to a point where I couldn't ignore the obvious prophetic dreams I had, spirits I saw, intuition that guided me, and on and on it goes. Now I just regularly talk to my spirit guide and Mother and Father God and when I call on them, they always have some kind of answer. I actually feel really lucky that I didn't ignore the push toward spirituality. It is the only thing that resonates with me and explains everything. Believing in God (not the guilt!) was perhaps kicked off by being Catholic but even in saying that, I have always felt there was a supreme force/God, whatever. Even my Mother has seen things happen in my house that she cannot explain!

    Answer by jeanclaudia at 9:48 PM on Dec. 27, 2009

  • No, I am an atheist too, and I did not choose not to believe.

    Answer by metalcowgirl34 at 9:52 PM on Dec. 27, 2009

  • i dont think its a choice, i didnt choose to be a satanist, i just am lol.


    Answer by necro1134 at 9:54 PM on Dec. 27, 2009

  • No, beliefs of any kind aren't a choice. I mean, you can't just decide one day that you are or aren't going to believe something... Belief takes personal proof. If you don't have proof of something in your life, you aren't going to believe it, no matter how much they want to...

    Answer by SabrinaMBowen at 9:58 PM on Dec. 27, 2009