That's the important thing, I think, is to be true to who you are. I didn't make a very good atheist lol I felt lost, empty. That's just my experience. Perhaps I felt that way because I was raised in a Christian household, and to walk away from it all for a few years, felt strange, to be honest. But, I didn't come back to faith on my own, I had an experience of faith. It led me back. I understand what you're saying here, faith should be more than a security blanket, or something to comfort us when things get tough. But, I can't judge others' faith or even lack of faith. We're all on a journey and we find what works for us, I guess.
My experience of faith was the holy spirit. I ended up coming back to Christianity from the experience. I hear you about the Bible, I don't take it all literally. I'm not a fundamentalist, and honestly don't go to church regularly. But, my faith is my own, now...It's not just something handed down to me from my upbringing. My relationship with Jesus is personal, my own. The Bible can ''teach'' one about the faith, but the Bible can't ''teach'' faith. I think as much as we can read a holy text about faith, we also have to experience it.
I think it's interesting that you envy people who have faith. Do you wish that you had faith? I appreciate your post here, and look forward to your reply.
Yes I do, because after we die, I don't really think it makes any difference what we believe. The only difference it will make, will be to our lives now. I often imagine that somebody with faith will perhaps be much more at peace while alive, knowing that our worst nightmares, such as losing somebody close to a horrible illness or being completely lost/rejected/hurt/unloved etc, will be according to 'god's plan', whatever it may be and that everything will be 'revealed' at the end and that Jesus or <insert god of choice> will take good care, no matter what.
But in reality, I don't think it's that simple for people even with very strong faith: it might be the case if one was 100% convinced but having 'faith' is very different from 'knowing', a concept that many atheists perhaps fail to identify with.
Some religious people may proclaim they are 100% convinced but I am not so sure they think as they preach. Speaking with some of my friends who have "faith"' on one level or another, it seems to me that faith to them is more like hope and I think atheists and the 'faithful' are actually not as far apart as the arguments between both camps may imply. Basically both feel lost and hopeless at times, except one may turn to god when in despair and the other will turn to something else.
So my idea of 'faith' may be based on an idealism that may not exist. All I can say is that there is no way for me to be able to accept something as fact, or even to hope for something that may sound like a nice story, for which there is absolutely no rational reason, no indication or hint of any kind (except what we narrate ourselves about what we see around us: which is a highly subjective perception of reality).
I think it is possible that reality may be way more quirky than we can suppose, it can even be possible that there is no such thing as 'reality' except what we make it out to be. Or it can be many other different things. But if I was looking for 'truth', it would not be in the bible or church etc. The only reason I might look at the bible was if I was a historian.
I'm not sure how to phrase these things without sounding condescending to the ones with faith. But I hope I was able to lay out my thinking more or less.
I think you are right, we are conditioned to think more closely from the way we were brought up. Or I may just be lacking that 'faith' gene. Yes, I sometimes wish I had one.
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