Thursday, April 10, 2014

Journal Day #8

Journal Day #8 - Religion
Prompt:  Would you consider yourself a religious person?  Quite simply - what do you believe happens when you die?  Have you always believed this?  Do your current beliefs align with what you were taught as a child?  And if not, what was the turning point?  This week, talk about your religion or spiritual beliefs (or perhaps your lack of), and try to sum up, if you can, what you believe happens "next."

I'm not going to lie, I read this prompt and thought "ugh."  Religion is one of those things that I don't like to talk about.  My opinion differs from my family, and religion is just one of those subjects where is is easy to offend.  I wouldn't want to say something that made someone I care about feel bad, so I may be awkward and brief.

Do I consider myself a religious person?  No.

What do I believe happens when I die?  I have no idea.  The idea of heaven and reuniting with loved ones is what I grew up with, but I don't know that I believe that anymore.  The science fiction lover in me would like to believe while we cease to exist in this life, maybe we find ourselves in another life or another plane of existence (I know, crazy talk).  Maybe nothing happens except we just stop being.

Do my current believes align with what I was taught as a child?  No.  Growing up my sisters and I were raised Lutheran and we were very active in the church.

If not, what was the turning point?  I started feeling differently about things when I saw how so many of the people I had trusted abused that trust and justified it with religion.  (I blogged about it here).  It left a bad taste in my mouth and opened my eyes to a side of religious zeal I could not get behind.  Once I saw it, I saw it every where.  And then I saw the judging of others, the people who acted like they were better than everyone, and the people who acted christian but were anything but when they weren't being watched.  I wanted no part of any of that.

It's hard thinking about this and feeling the way I do, if my parents bring it up it causes friction.  They have a hard time understanding where I'm coming from.  My parents still attend the same church, one of my sisters is active in her church family.  Despite my lack of belief, I do appreciate the values I was taught.  And I support my sister wanting that for her kids.  I just don't feel like they need to be forced on people.  I can be thankful for what I have, and the people in my life without out going to church every Sunday.

Thank you for the prompt Sometimes Sweet!


  1. Religion is so tough, especially if one has become disenchanted with it; to see abuse and judgement and traumas inflicted on others in the name of their religion is exceptionally painful. I see this at times, in my own religion and in others' religions, and it's so hard to reconcile the "good" of religion with the "bad" of people. For me, I just have to remember that the values (gospel, if you will) taught by the religion are pure - it's the people that aren't. Thank you for your thoughts, and for sharing on a topic that can be painful and divisive.

    1. Thank you for your kind words! It's hard for me to look past the people to get to the pureness but maybe that day will come.

  2. I have to work at it to really see the good of people. :) The gospel of my church teaches us that we are all children of God - combined with the commandment of Christ to "love one another"... when I start to think bad thoughts about people, I remind myself that our Heavenly Father loves them unconditionally and so I try to do the same. And if I can't love them, the least I can do is try not to hate them.

    It doesn't always work, but I'm a work in progress. :) (Sorry if I sound preachy, I do not mean to!)

    1. Not preachy! I think I'm usually a pretty positive glass half full kind of person, so I think I try to see the good in people. I think I have high standards and feel let down a lot. I think it's always going to be one of those struggles for me ;)