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Old 04-27-2005, 03:10 PM   #1
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For those of you who did, how did you lose your faith?

Why did you lose your faith?

I was brought up in a lightly fundamentalist church, dreamed of being a missionary, knew the Bible backwards and forwards (believe me, I slamdunked in finding all the Biblical references in Dante in college). But little things began to nag at me: the uncomfortableness with difficult questions, what I found to be the inefficacy or prayer (or if prayer seemed to be granted, the capriciousness of the answers--someone thrilled that God had
answered their prayers to find a new job while so many other
more important needs went unanswered), the lack of justice. I was taught that God never gave someone more than he could bear--that was a crock. I slowly began to realize that I did not believe in heaven or hell. I'm sure that many people on this forum could preach at me. Most apostates know the routine, know the arguments they will hear. Believe me, we are not novices at being preached at. But when all was said and done, I no longer believed. Other people's beliefs clashed with the reality I perceived around me.

I still think the practice of Christianity can be a beautiful thing. I still see the Bible as a beautiful book and the words of Jesus as inspirational. I still take his teachings (just the words themselves, not the multitude of interpretations I hear around me) as a moral guide. I took a lot of good with me when I left the church. But it's not important to me whether they were God's words or a good man's words.

Could I believe that there is a God or Jesus is His Son? Maybe. I just don't believe divinity or lack of it personally matters to me anymore.

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Old 04-27-2005, 03:25 PM   #2
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Someone here said this (I don't remember who):

"Religion is for those afraid of hell. Spirituality is for those who've been through hell."

At the same time, I once was told something of the sort that, when you're a child, a little faith fills you up, but when you get older and that "cup" grows, that "little faith" just doesn't do it anymore and you need to find a way to fill that void in different ways.

To be honest, I go through periods of faith and anger. There are months where I feel as if God doesn't exist; then there are months where I feel as if I have an abundance of faith. I think it's natural for most people.

I think I started "losing it" when I started losing respect for those supposedly "delivering His message." When I see Christian ministers and clergy spread blatant falsehoods and mistruths, I have to sometimes wonder where God is. As far as I see it, the first "absolute Truth" is that those "Christians" who resort to lies to spread their word or to maintain Biblical fundamentalism are plain wrong. "Lying" is certainly not a Biblical value, no matter which part of the political spectrum you belong to.


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Old 04-27-2005, 03:33 PM   #3
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"Religion is for those afraid of hell. Spirituality is for those who've been through hell."

- That would be Irvine511
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Old 04-27-2005, 03:37 PM   #4
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i'm not sure i had any to begin with.
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Old 04-27-2005, 04:42 PM   #5
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I haven't lost faith in God. I still am moved by the Bible and feel connected to God in my own spiritual walk/prayer and still am active in it.

I have been losing faith in organized religion however. I am very anxious by seeing some things done in His name.
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Old 04-27-2005, 04:53 PM   #6
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went into college a devout evangelical some books, thought about some things...i'm coming out as an agnositc w/ deist tendancies. i could go on and on about it but i'm not going to bother. but i will say that i am 100% more comfortable in my own skin than i was four years ago, whether or not this is a direct result of shedding "faith" is up in the air.
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Old 04-27-2005, 05:50 PM   #7
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Originally posted by Macfistowannabe
"Religion is for those afraid of hell. Spirituality is for those who've been through hell."

- That would be Irvine511
i'm not afraid of hell, and i've not been through hell.

i'm young, but i'd like it to stay that way
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Old 04-27-2005, 06:05 PM   #8
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My faith has always been in myself and my fellow man, trite as that might sound. I want to fail or succeed on my own merits, for my own reasons, not because I was trying to make it to the next life or avoid going to hell, or whatever theological construct might lie ahead of me.

I have no problem with the belief's of other people, as long as those beliefs do not lead to pain or suffering for others, or as long as those beliefs are not rammed down my each their own, basically.

But for me, keeping my eyes on secular matters, and sometimes hoping that if there is in fact an afterlife, that the path I took in this life will be a decent enough one to get me waved on. But, if not, at least I have nobody to blame but me. I sleep fairly well at night adhering to that philosophy.
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Old 04-27-2005, 06:11 PM   #9
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For me, I never had much faith in the religion I was bought up in (Roman Catholic). Nothing to do with priests and their alleged transgessions, or the alleged conservatism of JPII. I just didn't believe in the basic fundamentals.

So, I didn't really lose my faith, I never had it, deep down.

Now, although I don't worship any God or go to religious services, I find solace and comfort in listening to music, or appreciating the countryside.
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Old 04-27-2005, 06:46 PM   #10
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i've lost not faith, exactly, but belief, if that makes sense. faith, as i now understand it, actually came about as a result of Bono and U2 -- i became obsessed with them right around Achtung/Zooropa and loved what they had to say about God, because i had been rasied with a very sort of dutiful kind of Catholicism where you go to Sunday School and church sometimes and you get confirmed and if asked you say that you are Catholic but it's more going through the motions than any kind of intense personal connection, and more about a kind of created identity than something organic. what U2 was about was organic faith, and as a teenager, i found that much more rebellious than getting drunk and committing small acts of petty vandalism and pissing off suburban parents.

what i've lost is any kind of certainty, because i've been through a whole lot these past 5 years, and i've been so dismayed by so much that has gone on both in my life and in the world, and some of this is a result, i think, of passing into adulthood and realizing that the world is as it is, as no amount of prayer is going to make any whit of difference in anyone but the person who is praying. this abject fear of the absence of God -- something i've only felt recently -- has also seen the rise of faith in secular humanism, that this world is what we make of it and only has the meaning that we choose to sew into its fabric. that, to me, and as opposed to a belief system, is what i find empowering and inspiring these days. there are no limits to the potential of human beings, and no limits to the depths to which we can sink. at the end, all i know is that there is a finite amount of what we can know. i'm choosing to understand these limitations, to face the bleakness of a definitionally amoral world, and turn this chilling understanding into a tool of secular empowerment and liberation. while the existence of God is important, it isn't terribly practical, and what we need to focus on now is the practical and the real and what can be done with the mess that has been made of the world. while a belief in God isn't incompatible with this notion, it also isn't central to it, nor even all that relelvant. let's focus on each other and what we can do, here and now, and with this solid flesh. for me, right now, God is totally beside the point.
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Old 04-28-2005, 04:46 AM   #11
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I consider myself to be religious, some people want to put a label on that but I don't-and I'm not afraid of hell either.

I've been through some hellish things -religion, spirituality, whatever you want to call it is what got me through them. The strength I got stopped me from turning to drugs, drink, suicide.
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Old 04-28-2005, 11:09 AM   #12
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I was brought up in the catholic church. I consider myself catholic but really when i take a look at my situation i relise that i am not. There are so many things i have serious misgivings about (gay marriage, priests marrying, womens roles, abortion, controception) I hate authority, and religion, any religion, is the hieght of false authority.

I recentley started dating a girl that has had relationships with women in the past. And her telling me of some of the horrible and disgusting things her "christian" family and minister said to her just makes me think twice about the church and any religion for tht matter. I was once againist gays, i had many arguements with melon over it, but i never actually knew someone that was gay. It has changed me in so many ways, and especially when it comes to organized religion.
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Old 04-28-2005, 11:19 AM   #13
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You need to post more Bonoman! I miss you!

I lost my faith for a pretty good period of my life. There were so many things happening that were not under my control, that deeply affected my life, that I lost all faith.

Marriage and having children, changed me, brought me back.
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Old 04-28-2005, 12:12 PM   #14
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I lost my faith little by little. I started asking more and more questions, one after another, until I ran out of questions and had no replies to show for it.

It all started with the death of someone very close to me. It really was very predictable and very chliched; but you 'do' question the logic or the reasons behind these things. At the time my mother was just beginning her studies in yoga meditation and begun to talk about the laws of karma. I remember getting very angry at her, and refuting such laws, which have always seemed arbitrary to me. My own faith, mainly Catholicism, had stopped really meaning anything to me a while back anyway, but now I was questioning something deeper, and it wasn't just religion. I was questioning the very existence of God.

Then suddenly the questions really did become bigger, and whatever logic I had adopted over the years began to tell me that the idea of God was becoming increasingly remote. My seemingly pathological fear of death got worse and worse, and certain obsessions began to get a little nutty, I must say. Then the tsunami occurred. That was the day when it all officially culminated for me. It all seemed so worthless, so arbitrary, so completely and utterly nonsensical. I came to the conclusion that even if there is a God, It clearly isn't worth knowing if It can be as arbitrary with human life in such a manner. Those were my thoughts on the day, and they still are.

At the moment I have good days and bad days. On the good days I think that perhaps it is possible and maybe I'm not seeing the bigger picture. On bad days I think that its all one gigantic lie that we all say to ourselves for comfort we don't realise as false.
It doesn't matter what day it is, however, I can officially say that my faith is dead and buried.

Razors pain you; Rivers are damp;
Acids stain you; And drugs cause cramp.
Guns aren't lawful; Nooses give;
Gas smells awful; You might as well live.

Dorothy Parker, 'Resumé'
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Old 04-28-2005, 12:20 PM   #15
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i think it was thru a period of the time i was married. basically i lost some of my faith because of my exhusband. i was such a suzy homemaker at one time...did the whole housewife thing, worked part time for a while, went to church 2-3 times a week, had a baby, all of that. when i first married my ex, he was very christianlike, was a youth pastor for awhile to some teenagers. then sometime after a year or so after we married, he started to change, alot. i didnt drive back then, had no drivers license, so when he stopped going to church, i stopped. he became very racist (he was a skinhead at one time when he was a teenager, then converted to christianity) and some comments he made would make me cringe, hoping he wouldnt get his ass kicked by anyone who wasnt white (he did get chased by a bunch of people during the riots in 92). it affected me alot, i ended up suffering from depression. when he left me in 2001, i was already bitter, and its changed my outlook on some aspects of christianity. i wont date another christian man again. its hard to say when i'll start going back to church again. i should, but i dont want to.

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