If you had to choose between truth and comfort which would you choose?
My last post talked about the very clear deception that occurs in Charismatic Christian churches, it was the truth but when I began recognizing this truth it was anything but comfortable.
Comfort, in my own words, is when your understanding of the world is something you are OK with. It’s when your way of seeing the world doesn’t have to be changed by anything because it doesn’t conflict with the way you want the world to be. Don’t get me wrong here, I’m not saying that a life of faith doesn’t have it’s challenges – what with denying your carnal desires and working to please the man in the sky all of your life – it’s tough for many that care enough to pursue it fully – but the idea of an afterlife of niceties kind of outweighs those cons.
I’ve always valued Truth…so much that I’ve often capitalized it as if the word Truth were just as good as the word God (actually, it’s better), the way I determine what is true has changed dramatically though; as I used to believe that if the Bible said it that it must be Truth. I didn’t even have to question that conclusion, my faith allowed for that to be so…it was comfortable to me and I had no reason to question it.
I remember when I first started feeling my doubts, it was very uncomfortable – kinda like sleeping on a bed of nails uncomfortable, it won’t kill you but it’s not a Serta™. It was at that point that I had to make a decision: I could hush my doubts and try to forget that they had ever began…I could be comfortable where I was before or I could embrace the standard of evidence that I had been fully aware existed but ignored most of my life – I could pursue Truth despite comfort. I didn’t know where it would lead me, I never expected to become an atheist but without fully knowing what the consequences would be – I told myself that it was Truth that I wanted, even if it hurt.
I think that was the last day I ever prayed to the god I believed in. I told him that I wanted the Truth, specifically about him and that I was ready for it…I told him I didn’t care about how much this would hurt – I wasn’t going to let my emotional frailty determine what was True any longer. Truth is not relative, it never has been – something either is or is not true and your acceptance of that fact has no effect on it’s reality, the idea of blind faith is an affront to truth as it grants no method of determining and testing it.
I’m not saying that truth and comfort are mutually exclusive, that’s not true at all – the fact is that one should never rely on the other. I’m not privy to the comfort of believing in an afterlife or a big sky-daddy to take care of me, but I do have the comforts provided by science, medicine, discovery, and the prospect that eventually the world will be a better place than it is now.
I think we, the human race if you will, are coming to the point in our evolution where we may be able to start preferring truth over comfort. The numbers of atheists and non-religious are growing very quickly throughout the world and that tells me that we don’t really need to make up truth any more, we can pursue it and until we discover it we are becoming comfortable with the statement “I Don’t Know”. I think we are moving away from our need to believe in an afterlife, prayer, and superstition – it’s happening slowly, but it’s happening. This is a truth that I find rather comforting.