Room for Thought # Why I am not religious

I believe in God but I am not religious. This will probably confuse a lot of people or rub them in the wrong way but allow for me to explain myself. The reason why I call myself not religious is because if I were to classify myself I could not come up with a religion which supports my views.

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Someone once told me that religion was created by men and therefore flawed and this is something which has stuck by me ever since. I find quite some aspects of religions bothersome. While I do not condemn the Bible or anything I do believe that it is imporant to be aware of the context in which it was written. The Bible was written by a human which means that it is an interpretation. Us humans are incapable of total objectivity because every experience is coloured by our culture, surroundings and character. In my personal opinion it is therefore not rational to hold the Bible as an exact truth because it’s content is coloured. Also the Bible was written a long long time ago which means that aspects of it are simply not relevant anymore and while events do seem to recur every so often it is important to bear in mind the dynamic nature of the earth and life. Furthermore, the Bible had been translated so many times by so many different people who all had their culture and character influence the way they interpreted that the original (coloured) meaning is long lost. I have not even mentioned the fact that people interpret different words in different ways. What this shows me is that it is okay to use the Holy book as a guideline but for me living entirely according to its contents is simply not relevant nor desirable.

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Another problem for me is that religions seem to take out of the Bible what they deem fit but ignore other parts. Meaning that a lot of religious people eat seafood and pork while the Bible tells us not to but yet condemn things such as sex before marriage and homosexuality. The Bible clearly mentions that all sins weigh equally. My point being that to me religion often comes with a lot of hypocrisy. I cannot believe that homosexuality is a choice or that it is bad and the same goes for transgenders. I cannot support the racism that follows religion and the bigotry and bullying.

I know that some people will argue that by practicing my faith in this way I am only enjoying the fruits of my faith. But for me believing in God was never about restriction. I do not think that not drinking or not having sex before marriage makes one a better person. It is your actions which define you as a person. Just as going to church does not immediately make you a good person. I think that the most important thing is to try and always be kind and help others. To me that says so much more than whether you know Bible verses by heart or not.

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For me believing in God is about praying in times of weakness, about asking for help when I am feeling lost and for giving thanks when my prayers are heard. My faith is founded in love not in hate. I am not here to tell others what they can and cannot do. I do not believe that is up to me. My faith is not about me being better than others. I do not believe you are going to hell. I simply do not know. My view has always been that it does not hurt anyone to pray and if in the end I find out that God does not exist than I just know that I had my methods of believing in myself and trying to be a good person.

What is your stance on religion? I hope you guys liked this post.

Love,

Nica

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