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What made you question the existence of God?

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You don't believe in God? 

YOU DON'T BELIEVE IN GOD?! 

You can do that?

"The world is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion," Founding Father Thomas Paine.

 

by on Jul. 29, 2009 at 1:48 AM
Replies (21-30):
holly_peacock
by on Jun. 12, 2010 at 4:29 AM

when i was 16 my friend got hit by a car.  earlier that friday i was walking home with her, she went and got her bike so she could go meet her bf at work, but she didnt have her helmet.  i told her if she got hit by a car i was going to laugh at her because she wouldnt get her helmet.  she was in the icu dying, and my mom made us go to church.  i tried so hard to be the perfect christian, i thought that if i just prayed hard enough, believed enough, that she would be ok.  she died while we were in church.  we were in youth group, and they told us she went brain dead.  they were talking about how she was with god, god wanted her back, she needed to go home.for a few days after i kept asking god to talk to me.  to let me say i was sorry.  to let her know i didnt mean it.  i figured out no one was listening and i questioned everything.

.JessicaRabbit.
by on Jul. 25, 2010 at 2:35 AM

My family is a bunch of religious nuts. Growing up we went to chuch, said our prayers, I wasn't allowed to go anywhere, do anything, I remember listening to music once, it was Toni Braxton, I was in the 6th grade and my parents told me it was the devil and I wasn't allowed to listen to it. (LOL...)

So my entire life I have always believed that even though there are a lot of messed up things in this world, everything for everyone will work it's way out.

I mean come on, I prayed for a job and got one, then found my husband, had children, and as a general rule, things work out for me. And I always thought, if I just pray, I'm doing things right. If I pray for the right things, everything will work out. Not just material things, I prayed for protection of my family, my husband driving to and from work, relatives, protection of our soldiers for our country and overseas, etc.

So then, 2 years ago, I got a computer. I know, aweosme, right? I hadn't had one in years. Not too long ago I came across a website that was something like photographs that shook the world.

There is a picture there of a baby, maybe a year old or a little older, it's clearly starving to death, bent over in an upright fetal position. And there is a vulture there right beside it, staring and waiting for that baby to die.

That I think is the worst picture I have ever seen. And the more I thought about it, the more I thought about other things in this world. People are starving and hungry all over, women getting abused, raped, beaten, same for children.

And here I thought my prayers were being answered. But really, my supposed prayers were so superficial. If there is a God, why are my prayers being answered and not theirs?

So I decided to look this up. I have been searching for months, (and probably years without even realizing it), and the best answer I could find was last week. The answer was basically, God could help you, but he isn't going to help you because he wants you to turn to him in your time of need.

WTF.

Really? Seriously????????? I could understand that maybe in this country, because we are so so very fortunate here. But what the FUCK, how in the hell does God expect a child who is starving to know what is going on?

That kind of crappy logic, that answer is what made me say this is it. I am done, I can't do it anymore. I'm still sickened by that picture every single day, and I am even more disgusted by the very people who think that it's ok that a child is starving because eventually, God will take care of it.

daqulynn
by on Jul. 25, 2010 at 3:16 PM
1 mom liked this


Quoting .JessicaRabbit.:

My family is a bunch of religious nuts. Growing up we went to chuch, said our prayers, I wasn't allowed to go anywhere, do anything, I remember listening to music once, it was Toni Braxton, I was in the 6th grade and my parents told me it was the devil and I wasn't allowed to listen to it. (LOL...)

So my entire life I have always believed that even though there are a lot of messed up things in this world, everything for everyone will work it's way out.

I mean come on, I prayed for a job and got one, then found my husband, had children, and as a general rule, things work out for me. And I always thought, if I just pray, I'm doing things right. If I pray for the right things, everything will work out. Not just material things, I prayed for protection of my family, my husband driving to and from work, relatives, protection of our soldiers for our country and overseas, etc.

So then, 2 years ago, I got a computer. I know, aweosme, right? I hadn't had one in years. Not too long ago I came across a website that was something like photographs that shook the world.

There is a picture there of a baby, maybe a year old or a little older, it's clearly starving to death, bent over in an upright fetal position. And there is a vulture there right beside it, staring and waiting for that baby to die.

That I think is the worst picture I have ever seen. And the more I thought about it, the more I thought about other things in this world. People are starving and hungry all over, women getting abused, raped, beaten, same for children.

And here I thought my prayers were being answered. But really, my supposed prayers were so superficial. If there is a God, why are my prayers being answered and not theirs?

So I decided to look this up. I have been searching for months, (and probably years without even realizing it), and the best answer I could find was last week. The answer was basically, God could help you, but he isn't going to help you because he wants you to turn to him in your time of need.

WTF.

Really? Seriously????????? I could understand that maybe in this country, because we are so so very fortunate here. But what the FUCK, how in the hell does God expect a child who is starving to know what is going on?

That kind of crappy logic, that answer is what made me say this is it. I am done, I can't do it anymore. I'm still sickened by that picture every single day, and I am even more disgusted by the very people who think that it's ok that a child is starving because eventually, God will take care of it.

I recently had a convorsation similar to this with my mother. She asked me how I COULD'NT believe in god. I asked her, if there really is a loving, caring diety that you call God, then why are there children dying of childhood diseases like cancer? Why are innocent children being beaten and raped every day.  Where is their god? If he is all-knowing and all-powerful then why does he "sit and watch" these precious children suffer?

Her response was "everything happens for a reason." NO BULL SHIT. There is no reason, whatsoever that would justify an innocent child starving to death, being raped and beaten or suffering from cancer. Nothing.

Blue_Spiral
by on Jul. 25, 2010 at 5:21 PM

 

I never really questioned god as a kid. I was true-blue through and through Mormon mormon mormon.

There were a lot of little things that confused me but one I remember specifically was this:

I was about 15 and watching a science show with my dad. My dad is hardcore "mormon intellectual" if there could be such a thing, and I trusted everything he said because he was soooo knowledgeable on pretty much EVERYTHING from history to science to math to the gospel of the mormon church.

I had recently been learning a lot in school about the universe, black holes, etc. I actually started refusing to do the work because I was so convinced it was anti-god because it really confused the shit out of me. How it could be true, yet god could be true.

Then the stuff on the show we were watching just screamed "anti-god" in my mind, yet my dad was completely and 100% believing it. I asked him some questions about it and it was evident that he thought nothing was amiss.

I went into the bathroom and looked in the mirror and asked god how all this could work together? The "answer" I received was that it's okay not to know everything.

I was satisfied with that for another two years and then I became hardcore atheist.

 

kellaria
by on Aug. 16, 2010 at 5:14 PM

I wasn't raised to believe in god, so I never really did in the first place, and I'm not sure it's something I've ever questioned because the idea was never planted until it was already too late and I had only created circumstances which lead people to believe I "needed" god.

My parents consider themselves Christians, but raised my sister and I in a wholly secular environment, which had much more to do with laziness and indifference for their own faith than any principles speaking toward religious freedom or whatever. They were also drinkers, smokers, and partiers, so more often than not they would have been too hungover to take us to church on Sunday morning anyway. But My mom did take us to church for the youth programs when I was very, very young because she was a midwesterner transplanted into the south and understood that church was just where you went to meet people and find other moms around here. We stopped attending as soon as I graduated their pre-school program, which was surprisingly secular itself for for having taken place in a Methodist church. They never made us pray and never talked about god outside of a "Jesus is nice, he wouldn't want you to be mean," context. 

Growing up, I never thought about god, I never thought about heaven, I never thought about hell, and I don't think I even really understood what prayer was supposed to be. Religion/spirituality was never important in my mind and did not inspire the natural curiosity that other things such as nature and outer space did for me. I simply did not care.

When I was 12, I started hanging out with the "wrong" crowd, and became obsessed with black lipstick, staying out late with boys who had long hair, and Marilyn Manson. This was a couple years before Columbine, when Manson was still at the peak of his ability to shock and terrify parents, and he personified the Antichrist himself for anyone raising adolescents. My parents, of course, flipped out, and completely out of the blue decided I needed god in my life. They had never talked to me about god or religion in any way before the Manson phase started, so I already had a bad taste in my mouth from their blind hypocrisy in trying to enforce a lifestyle they themselves had no desire or ability to partake in.

I was put into confirmation classes in a Methodist church, and from there developed a fearsome angst toward any and all things Christ. Shortly after the confirmation classes started, I was kicked out of public school for pot and the district's no-tolerance policy left no option but to enroll in a private Lutheran school, which naturally pushed my rebellion even further. The Lutheran school was very strict and pretty extreme in their doctrine, so my main focus became to be as offense as I could possibly be to as many people as possible. I took it too far and got pretty ridiculous - I even started taking The Satanic Bible into my classes at both school and the church.  I told everyone that I was a witch and that I worshipped Satan. I said I'd sacrificed newborn puppies and kittens while casting spells and that I had lost my virginity during a ritual to the High Priest at the altar of some Satanic church I had made up. It was all lies - but I was very immature when I was 12 and thought it was very cool to be "controversial."

When I started to grow up a little bit and come out of my shock-goth phase, I lost interest in the antics I used to provoke people and make a public spectacle out of my defiance toward religion, and the seething anger I had for church and Christianity started to fade, but I never lost the basic instinct that something just didn't add up for me and the whole idea of god. I've never had to question it because I've always known in my heart that it's not there.

But my experiences with Christianity as young teenager really confirmed my suspicion that religion on the collective level is driven by fear - primarily fear of Hell. I did everything I could to inspire fear in my parents, teachers, and peers, and the more afraid the became, the more insistent they were with the idea that god had to save me. I know if I had never become rebellious and had simply continued to quietly ignore god and religion, no one would have been praying for me. It is only because I did everything I could to cast myself as a demon and convince those of faith around me that not only was I definitely going to Hell - that I WANTED to go to Hell - that I ever provoked concern. And they weren't concerned about me or what my life was like or what I could have been going through that would've aroused such extreme behavior... they were only afraid that I was going to go to Hell. 

ZBandMom
by on Aug. 24, 2010 at 1:59 AM

 I was raised in a Christian family.  Everybody went to Church.  It was like an unwritten rule in my family.  We went to Church and we did not question why.  We just did it.  As I became a teenager (and grew wiser LOL) I began to question the reasonings behind the bible and it's teachings.  I questioned the existance of god and I questioned why god would let humans and other living things suffer.  I questioned why a "perfect" god would create such imperfect things.  If god was so perfect, why were most of his "creations" flawed?  Why did man and woman sin in the 1st place?  Humans should have been created so they would be absolutely flawless, perfect in every way including behavior.  And therefore we would not sin and then god wouldn't have had to cover his tracks by presenting the 10 Commandments. 

  The answers to my questions were usually scriptures that I needed to read so I could find the (nonexistant) answers myself.  I was also told that I should not question the word of god.  God has a plan for everybody and everything in this world and that he loves everybody.  Nice.  So god WANTS us to be in wars?  He WANTS diseases to run rampant?  He WANTS us to suffer?  He WANTS us to ruin the planet that he so lovingly "created"?  Seriously?!?!  Wow!  At that point I knew that the whole thing was bogus.  After all, what "loving" god would sit back and watch his "children" suffer and do nothing about it?  I am a parent and there is no way in this world (or any other) I would sit back and watch my children suffer and not do anything to ease their pain.   I will do EVERYTHING in my power to make their suffering stop and I will not let anybody get in my way!!!  The only way our suffering will ever stop completely is when we die.  How completely screwed up is that?  THAT is god's plan, and to me, it's a pretty shitty plan!

brittany.haper
by on Sep. 18, 2010 at 1:19 AM

 I can remember questioning God's existence as early as four. I asked my Mom, "If God created the universe and everything in it, then how was he created?"  She told me that it was something we must not question as a good Christian.  Later, after beginning school, I asked my Mother, "If God created Adam first, then how did the dinosaurs live so much longer before humans?"  Again, my mom told me that it is something a good Christian doesn't question, that Christianity can't answer every question, that is why we have faith- we simply trust what God tells us. 

I decided that day that the researchers who provided me with clear evidence were much more logical sounding than God.  Then when I was 13 a friend invited me to church (the cool thing to do in my town), and of course I went.  I became "saved" and became a "Christian" though I still wondered a bit about contradictions within in the Bible as well as between the Bible and proven scientific facts. 

When I was 16 we were learning about various people who were put to death for proving scientific facts that went against Christianity; back then they were blasphemers, today we find it absurd and have changed the Christian religion to accommodate these newly found facts.  It just made me think, Christianity changes each time it is proven to be WRONG, and it changes to an absolute fact (...until it is proven wrong beyond a doubt yet again...). Science changes each time something is proven to be LOGICAL, and is kept as a THEORY until it can be proven as a FACT.  Science can admit that it may have faults, Christianity can not... After careful consideration I found that I no longer believed in a higher being.  I didn't "come out" until my little brother died two years later, after getting completely offended by everybody saying, "It was God's will."  Their pathetic God did not take my little brother, the infection that caused his lungs to be underdeveloped is what took my brother.  

ashellbell
by Bronze Member on Sep. 18, 2010 at 10:11 AM

happened completely within the last year, but i've always questioned. my mother was murdered when i was young and i turned to god at 12. i always felt so silly going up to pray at church or even when i got "saved" at 13 or 14. but i always liked praying in private. i always kind of doubted but i went with it. what really started to push it was when i was 21 and my dad (who learned sign language so he could interpret the songs at church for the deaf and who was a marriage counselor at his church) got caught banging his step daughter. nothing happened to him. everyone just kind of turned the other cheek so to speak. but i still believed. it wasn't until last year when i took a step back and realized...all these stories were bullshit. jonah in the whale, jesus walking on water, parting of the red seas, it was all a fairytale. i started studying science and history and educating myself. then one day i got this intense feeling. i finally believed in something. i believed in science lol. but it was tough for me. still is sometimes. i'm a newbie to the whole thing

Kelly.Marie.105
by on Sep. 24, 2010 at 7:34 PM

I've always had doubts about the whole story and the existence of god. I remember I was about 8 and I was playing with my friend. His parents are devout christians and he was telling me about the stories in the bible and I remember thinking "That sounds a lot like magic and magic isn't even real." That was a breakthrough for me. His words were "It's not magic it's the work of god." He would tell me about Atheists, and the mark of the beast, and how Atheist were devil worshipers and horrible people.

I was raised Southern Baptist and it just did not make any sense to me. I would have nightmares about hell and I thought that every bad thing I did would send me to hell. I was told that I could not repent if I knew what I was doing was wrong and if I knew I would do it again, so I never repented. It was just all crazy. Science was fascinating to me. I was so intrigued by evolution and dinosaurs. 

Then the older I got the more I saw the real issues in the world and I kept thinking to myself that if there really were a loving god then he would never let this kind of things happen. But I was too scared to admit it out loud. I thought that if I kept my doubts to myself then god wouldn't punish me for it. But why was god answering all these people's prayers who really didn't need anything? Why were children dying when we prayed for the end of disease and hunger? Why did my grandfather die of cancer when I prayed for god to heal him? 

Then I met my husband, who is an Atheist. We would have long talks and everything made sense to me. I realized that it's okay to have questions and speak those questions out loud. I embraced my doubts and finally said out loud "There is NO god!" and it was the single most self gratifying,, freeing moments of my life. I felt a huge weight get lifted off my back. I feel more alive being Atheist than I ever did trying to be a christian. 

tegansmomma
by on Sep. 26, 2010 at 12:40 AM

I too questioned the god thing from a very young age. I remember being very young, under 10, and asking 'If god created the world then who created god?" The answer was 'he was always there.' That didn't make any sense. Growing up I continued to question the churches I went to and the doctrine that was taught, and I was always given some bogus answers, usually things straight from the bible. I'm sorry but if you're trying to prove the bible right, you can't use it as a source reference!

As a young teen I was sexually abused and told it was my fault (by my church of ten years). I quit church. From there logic and reason and common sense led me towards agnosticism. When I was 21 I met my husband, a very strong and educated atheist. He would debate with me for hours. I was still scared to completely ditch religion, until I realized that it was only fear holding me back. I didn't truly believe and of that nonsense, but I was terrified of going to hell. My entire life I had been taught that I had to do these things or burn for all eternity - what kid won't be terrified by that and do what you tell them? It's worse than hearing santa clause isn't coming.

Within months of meeting my husband, I was quite sure that atheism was the only true answer. I'm currently reading through Dawkins 'The God Delusion' and it's great so far.

A few things that helped concrete my atheist beliefs: My husband (a medic) had to teach me at 22 years old that men and women have the same number of ribs. I had believed for years that women had one more rib than men, because of the adam/eve bible story. I was homeschooled so my parents could control outside influence and this was something we learned in church.
Another one - my perfect wonderful baby brother at 8 years old was found to have a horrible genetic disease, adrenoleukodystrophy. It's rare, progressive, and incurable. The doctors have done everything they can but at the age of ten my wonderful baby brother is blind, deaf, wheelchair bound, unable to take care of himself or communicate, and waiting to pass. It's one of the most heartbreaking things in the world and I can not accept that there is any reason for a god to allow that. I've always heard 'well sin causes these things, not god.' But if god is so powerful, he should be able to heal it.
The other one that is equal to my baby brother: my son was born a year ago. When i got pregnant I read and learned all about how people are made, how they grow, the reproductive systems, biology, etc (all things that were left out of my chrisitan homeschooled education). It convinced me that there is no god - just an amazing universe and evolutionary system. If that wasn't enough to cement me, my son was born after 9 months with severe brain damage. Totally unexpected, and as the doctors said, apparently 'just a fluke.' My son is now delayed and catching up with 5 different weekly therapies. But at birth we were told he may never walk, talk or do anything but sit in a stroller and stare at the wall. Everything he has done now is because of his strength, our doctors education and medical practice, and my husbands and mine involvement. Not a virgin-born all-knowing being living in the sky for two thousand years.

Zeitgeist also was a real eye opener. 

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