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I've been an atheist for most of my life. Even as a child of 10 deep down I knew that the stories in the Bible were too fastasical to really be believed. My mother and father sent me and my siblings to church for a while, and my dad, not being too good at reading used to have me read the Bible to him, so I had an early start on learning plenty about the Bible. In my teens I attended church for a while, and even fancied myself called by God to preach, but I became disillusioned with it after about 10 years. In that time, however, I studied the Bible for at least 8 hours every day, so I think it safe to say that I have a good knowledge of the Bible. After my stent as a Christian I tried Wicca, but found that unsatisfactory. From there I tried Zen Buddhism, but just couldn't buy the reincarnation and ultimate Nirvana bit. Then I tried philosophical Taoism, which I still find interesting, but untenable. My last stent with religion was clockwork Deism, but I saw the idea of a God who wound up the universe and then went away as superfluous. Now I have returned to my core atheism, and I am a confirmed and convinced atheist. It makes the most sense. I prefer calling myself an atheist rather than nontheist, but that's just me. And I'm proud to be an atheist. I belong to an atheism group on facebook, and I have an atheism blog on google blogs, on which so far I have posted 50 entries since August 5th 2012. I'm 50 years old, soon to be 51.

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booklover, your daughter must have been highly intelligent even at the young age of 7.

Seems your searching was lengthy.  Perhaps the search is what inspires you.  You might consider atheism to be just a pause in that search, as it is a lack of that very thing you seek.

Nah Asa, as I said, I've basically been an atheist all my life. In all my searching I never found satisfaction in all those endeavors and couldn't really put any credence in them. As for my Christian phase, that was mostly to please my mother because I loved her more than anyone on earth. Now that she's gone I see no reason to keep the charade up.

Hi Anthony and welcome.  Your story sounds like very familiar to me and I'm sure to others here on AN. You are among friends.

John, my mother used to cringe every time I said I did not believe in God, and she would say, Don't say that. So I finally just started keeping my atheism to myself. After she became ill, not long before her death, she started wanting me to read the Bible to her and assure her that she was saved and going to heaven. I couldn't bare telling her that when she died she would just go into nothingness. My mother was a simple woman, and I somehow felt that if I told her that it would frighten her more than the thought of dying itself. So I got my old Bible out and I would read it to her, and I assured her that if she trusted and believed in Jesus as her savior she would be alright. So, while I may have mislead her in that regard, she at least died in peace with the hope that she would be united with my sister who had been murdered in 1995. My mother died in early 2006, and to be quite honest, if I had to do it again I would do the same thing, because I loved my mother dearly, more than anything in this world. I know I'll never see her or my father and sister ever again, and I think of them every day with a mix of sorrow and happiness. Sorrow that I'll never see them again, but happiness that I had them in my life for a time.

You made your Mother happy Anthony that's all that counts.

"You made your Mother happy Anthony that's all that counts." Thanks John, I appreciate that.

Welcome, Anthony.  I, too, had very strong doubts at a very early age.  I kept trying to prove my doubts were unfounded since everyone else in my little world believed the myths.  Of course, I could give no credence to the myths so I finally gave up.  I have never been more relieved and satisfied.  It is like a heavy burden lifted off my back.  It is a freeing up of mind and body.  Wow.  Saying that feels good especially on this day.

Lillie, Christians are compelled to hold onto hopes of resurrection, because they cannot bear the thought of death, and Easter is a reminder to them of their own pending resurrection. A lot of people are under the misconception that somehow the dead are aware that they are dead, and that they are sad that they're no longer among the living and that life is going on without them. But being dead is being in the same state that one was in before they were ever conceived, non-existence, nothingness, no awareness, no consciousness, no pain, or fears or worries. To me the thought of death is comforting in a way, and I have no fear of it. I know that after my passing all my suffering in this life will be at an end, and that, indeed, is liberating. It lightens the burden just knowing that.

Booklover, knowing that life is short and death is long, and that this is the only chance we'll ever have to enjoy life, gives us reason to enjoy this life to the fullest, and make the most of it that we can while we can. As for me, while I enjoy learning all I can and sharing what I've learned with as many people as possible, I have lived a life of suffering. I was born handicapped and I'm in physical pain quite often, and I've lost the most important people in my life. I still have two brothers and a living sister, and nephews and a niece (all children of my late sister), but they all pretty much neglect me. So I don't really enjoy this life all that much, and contemplate death and my final release quite often. Not that I ever consider suicide, because I still have a lot to learn and share, but the thought of death comforts me and I look forward to it. As for you, live your life to the fullest. Love your husband and your children with all your heart, and make the most of this life. Be happy, and to quote Mr. Spock: "Live long and prosper".

Booklover, I feel bad for you that your father left you at an early age, and I'm sorry to hear of your neuropathy of the digestive system, but I'm glad to hear that you found a medication that gives you some measure of relief. I guess we all have our burdens. I hope eventually that they find a medication that gives you complete relief from your condition. Heck, they've found a cure to HIV aids, so never give up hope. And if you want you can call me Tony. That's what everyone has always called me. When I signed up for Atheist Nexus I had to put my name, at least that's what it said. That's why my id shows up as Anthony. 

Mindy, I really don't care who knows my real name. I want the world at large to know I'm a proud atheist. I'm not the least bit worried about any god loving weirdos as I don't fear death. There's nothing to fear about it. I can understand your concern though, having a close and loving family. But I wouldn't sweat it too much. I take it by your id that you're a book lover. I am too. The only kind of books I don't like are fiction. All the books I purchase are for the purpose of expanding my understanding and knowledge. Not that I don't like fiction, but I get my fill on tv and dvd.

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