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Tell me about your spiritual path to Agnosticism/Atheism - Page 2

post #21 of 25
Originally Posted by Tuesday View Post

But I just had to thank you GFREELISHY for expressing your thoughts. To this day I don't "get" why people of various denominations (or not) seem to think what they "believe" is right and what everyone else believes is wrong.

It seems like people are in these tiny boxes and can't see out of their own personal box to realize it's only their own viewpoint of the world.
Glad you agree! Yeah, it's quite frustrating at times. One of my cousins and I got into a huge argument about this. He said because I strayed off the "right" path (which is obviously Catholicism ) that I'm headed straight to hell, my life is "clouded with sin", etc. I was like umm, pretty sure you're not the one to tell one what religion I can or can't believe... Gahh it was annoying. We're fine now but he kept repeating over and over how I left THE religion. I tried telling him it's just a belief. But he said it's the truth. So I digress...
post #22 of 25
i don't really see agnosticism as a step toward atheism per se, but it is for some people.

agnosticism is really it's own thing. it says 'I don't know whether or not god exists." it rests comfortably in uncertainty.

atheism is more assured. it says "there is no god" just as theism says that there is. both are certain of their position.

for me, i'm not exactly comfortable with either title.

first, i am not uncertain about what i believe in. to give a more accurate but not precise definition, it would be theism. but, it's not precise because of my buddhist studies/practices.

in the school of buddhism in which i practice, the idea is that there is Nothingness. This has attributes of divinity, creative potential, etc, but is not worshipped as a God. it is simply the place from which everything arises and returns. It is the ultimate consciousness, and when we achieve enlightenment, we are existing from this place of NoThingNess. there are no divisions between I and You for example. because I and You are really NoThingNess.

So this is understood to be Atheist.

To me, this NoThingNess is atheist. but it has divine attributes, so it looks a lot like God. in a way, it is.

To me, it's just an issue of language. Atheistic buddhists would say that it is nothingness. A theist of nearly any sort would say that it is God.

so for me, I am comfortable saying it is not god or nothing and i am comfortable calling it god. either way, i am fine.

thus, it's not really agnostic either. agnostic says "i don't know what exists." i believe that nothingness/god exists, and that it is a nothing-something. it is a something-nothing. so i do have a belief.

and that belief--depending upon how someone else frames it--is either theist or atheist. and i don't know what to call it myself, or even care to call it anything really, and so that is "sort of" agnostic.

so, atheist, theist, and agnostic are not precise, but they can be accurate depending upon context.
post #23 of 25
Sociologically speaking, the US is one of the most religious countries. So, perhaps this is a reason that you find that you don't know of any others with your own beliefs.

I come from a fairly strict old-fashioned European roman catholic household. After my dad died, we all left this faith. We just did, because we were not interested. In fact, our congregation doesn't even exist anymore due to lack of members.

I myself have journeyed through various religions to atheism, nihilism, and back and must say that my beliefs are now 'West Coast' eclectic, leaning towards hinduism. I am not an agnostic anymore, after I experienced something totally awesome which I can only attribute to being divine. I see divinity everywhere, all the time. I believe in karma, not harming people, respect and wonder. It makes for pretty good days.
post #24 of 25
I'm not exactly sure what to say except, no - you aren't alone. I know what you mean about EVERYBODY being a Christian and feeling like your thoughts and beliefs are so different.

I don't know if I'm agnostic, probably, but I know I'm not Christian. I just can't swallow any of the organized religion dogma. To me it seems so man-made and so needed by man vs. an actual "truth", if that makes any sense. It's a way to explain all of the things we don't understand.

There are other reasons, but a main reason is what's called an anthropogenic God. They say we're created in His image, but I believe we created HIm in ours.
post #25 of 25
I remember reading somewhere that religion is mostly an emotional experience, to fill emotional needs. I'm not an emotional person, neither are most people in my family. I think I might be incapable of understanding religious beliefs, especially since I wasn't raised with any.

What I'm saying is lack of religious belief can be a totally natural thing. Many people I know have absolutely no interest in things like souls or afterlife.
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