A Quick Poll: Beliefs

Anticipate some downtime tommorow on the blog, WordPress 2.7 should be releasing tommorow. In the mean time I would like to have anyone that reads this blog comment below with answers to the following questions:

1: What is your belief system? Atheist, Christian, Muslim, Buddhist, Wiccan etc etc…be as detailed as you like, even tell us why if you wish. You dont have to be a frequent commenter to answer.

2: How much do you think your environment growing up had to do with the eventual embrace of your current faith? IE: Did your Christian parents likely influence you in your current beliefs? etc

thanks

  • jen

    Hey Matt,
    I’m not really sure how to categorize my belief system. I was raised a Christian and really took off with it during my teenage years..married a Baptist minister..had a kid…spent ten years being miserable..had a nervous breakdown and an epiphany…

    Anyway, when people ask, I usually tell them I am Agnostic, which is not really true. I just usually don’t like to go into detail. From what I can tell, I seem to fall into the category of Pantheist more than anything else.

    I believe in god..but not in the traditional sense. I believe that we are all (plants, animals, humans..) one being (god)…one collective consciousness on a deep deep level. I think that this explains deja vu, any psychic phenomena and repetitive dreams that people all over the world have in common. I believe that we are all interconnected and interdependent. I believe in the Butterfly effect. And I profoundly believe that what you mentally think has actual physical outcomes. Every time you think a thought, molecules change and shift and move and things in the physical world are never exactly the same.

    I believe the mental influences the physical. That’s one reason I went into massage therapy. I love science and this is how I have come to fit my knowledge of science into something that makes sense to me as far as a “religious” experience.

    In fact, damn, I just went and changed my About section on the blog. You can check that out for more. Sorry for the long post. I am passionate. I am not new age.

  • Christian.

    My parents are agnostic and I did not see a Bible before I turned 20. Does that count as influencing? Dunno.

    I became a Christian at 20 because I had never before read anything quite like to words of Jesus. They filled my “God shaped hole” (C.S.Lewis).

    Then I realised what I’d done, that I’d adopted a world view that seemed to be rationally unjustifiable. I agonised for ages but couldn’t let go of the “Words of Life” that my intuition was telling me were Truth.

    Then I read Mere Christianity and my long journey through the world of Christian apologetics commenced.

    I am still a Christian, some 22 years later.

    My parents are still agnostic.

  • Kittens Cause Cancer

    Peoples Temple.

    I figure 909 members can’t be wrong.

    In all seriousness though I guess I’m still figuring it all out.

    My parents are extreme evangelists and their parents were before them.

  • Matt

    Peoples Temple LOL

    you made me laugh so hard

  • Atheist.

    My mom’s a Christian. My dad’s apathetic. I grew up in a Buddhist household (grandmother). I was baptized as a Christian but was interested in Taoism. And later on, embraced Atheism. lol!

  • Ooooh!! Great questions!!! And I’m going to be long winded!! 🙂

    1. I’m not exactly sure what to call myself. The word Heathen is probably the most accurate at this time, but the more I study the more I am becoming an Asatruer. Asatru was practiced in the lands that are today Scandinavia, England, Germany, France, the Netherlands, and other countries as well. Asatru is the original or native religious belief for the peoples who lived in these regions. BEFORE Christianity. And from what I’ve learned most of the stuff in the bible, most of the traditions of Christians, well they seem to stem from Asatru (and similar variations of Heathenism). Except Asatruers beleive in many gods. (One of these being the Goddess Frigga (or Frigg), from whom I’ve taken my moniker). The biggest difference though is in my relationship with the gods. In Christianity you are meant to bow down to God, to worship him. But in Asatru it’s different. You’re supposed to live your life in a way that makes you worthy of walking along side the gods. I could go on and on about it, I find it fascinating. But the truth is, I’m no where near as knowledgeable about my new religion as I am about Christianity.

    2. I think my environment growing up has a lot to do with my current belifs. I went to church a lot as a child. My Dad used to go to Catholic church, but when I was 4 he switched to a Christain “Grace” Church. My Mom had me baptised as an Epispicallian (SP?) when I was about 10. Oh, their divorced btw. But neither of my parents really had a relationship with God like they pastors would preach about. My Mom eventually stopped going all together. My Dad still goes, I’m not sure why. He’s the one I used to have amazing conversations with about religion. Together we would question everything and then go to the pastor for answers. I think that was about the perfect environment for me. I wasn’t forced into believing, but I was forced into THINKING for myself and coming up with my own faith.

  • Hey Frigga – That’s awesome. I have two very good friends who are Asatru.

  • Matt

    I thought Frigga came from Frigg…but i wasnt sure. thanks for the info Frigga

  • I tell people I’m 99% atheist and 1% polytheist. Sometimes it’s 95-5, but not often any more.

    I was a very, very firm evangelical Christian, went to Bible school, did summer missionary terms, protested abortion clinics, sang in a Jesus rock band — even studied creationism with the creationists in San Diego. The whole nine yards.

    I began to change my mind slowly about a lot of things, find contradictions in the Bible that couldn’t be explained away, all sorts of things. Gradually I realized that I just didn’t believe it any more. For a while I was a polytheist, because I think if there is any evidence for a deity, it points straight to multiple gods. For various reasons, my view now is that it’s either atheism or polytheism, and monotheism has the absolute least evidence ot support it.

    Once I’d been out of that world for a while, I realized I’d been handed a whole package of beliefs that all linked together. And now that I was out, it was like I found myself blinking in the real world, a world that had always been hidden from me because it didn’t fit into that package.

    I had to analyze every single one of those beliefs in the first few years, to decide if I thought the evidence supported them, or if I should discard them. So I essentially reconstructed my world view from the ground up, this time deciding for myself and not just swallowing what someone else taught me.

    I was raised in an evangelical Christian family, and had gotten all caught up in the Religious Right, at the beginning when they were just starting their organizing to take over the U.S. government. Being Canadian, I used to wish I could move down there and help them. Now I work toward undoing the damage I did in those days. But my family are all still evangelicals and convinced I’m going to hell. Heh.

  • I'm a Christian, someone who choose to struggle and obey the Word of God. I surrendered my life to Christ in my college years, and I'm currently training myslef to think less of myself and more of others.

    My background really does influence my belief system. I was born in the "first Christian nation in Asia" but is also known as the 2nd most corrupt nation in the world. Yeah there are crowds of hypocrites and con-artists in this place but I didn't doubt the existence of God though I doubted a lot of times how He works. I'm still a Christian because I am thoroughly convinced of its ramifications though honestly it has been hard to confront myself of certain values. What makes me believe all the way is that I see people who are living their lives like an open book, willing to lose their jobs rather than being bribed, preferred to be killed by their Muslim students than change the students' failing grade and more.

    I believe Christianity is altogether logical, experiential and physical.

  • “I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use.” – Galileo

    How nice of you to let us speak out on this topic. I was raised as a fundamentalist Baptist, but I always had questions about contradictions, the Bible being taken literally, etc. I am no longer a Baptist, and I was never a fundamentalist. Thankfully, my parents taught me to think for myself. They led by example, not with the iron fist.

    I am more spiritual than religious and I am not thrilled with organized religion as it stands now. Each person is on a spiritual journey, and it is up to each of us to find our own path.

    True Bible study reveals the truth – the Bible is a book, it is not inerrant and it is not meant to be taken literally. It was written by humans, some of whom chose this method to politically control the readers.

    I’ve had many mystical or supernatural events in my life and so I know (for myself) that the Creator exists and that there are many angels and spirits around us.

    I do not believe that you must agree with any particular church or denominational doctrine to experience God. I don’t even believe that you need the Bible, although there are many good moral lessons to be learned there.

    Meanwhile, I live my life as a apiritual seeker, striving to live in harmony with God and to be a blessing whenever I can.

    • Matt

      very good response Sandra, thank you for that. I especially like your summary of the Bible…alot of folks dont realize the implications of creating such a falsely powerful book and the sorts of power that might impose over a people.