Yeah there's no real introduction forum so I thought I'd say hi here and fill people in on my story while i was at it.

So I was raised Catholic and went to church every Sunday ever since I could remember. And even though my entire family seemed to be extremely religious and pushed it on me, I never believed a word of it. I always felt weird when my grandma would say "Jesus watch over you" before bed, or saying grace before dinner, or when my mom would say praying made you feel better. To me everything that was said in church seemed like a fairy tale with a moral behind it, kinda like disney movies. So growing up it was hard to view any of my family with any sort of intellectual authority over me, even at a very young age. I officially decided I didn't believe in god around the age of seven. And felt pretty much alone till only very recently.

During a car ride home one night a few months ago with my dad, he told me that my mother had been realizing my atheistness. So I had to come out to my dad right then and there. I learned that night he was atheist too (he, however didn't fully come out till right after I was born. I think that's where I got my non-beliefs). So now me and my dad finally have some common grounds. I also learned that my aunt and uncle are atheist that night. And then, to my surprise, a few weeks later I learned that my cousin (and best friend) was atheist and started an atheist group at his school. Suddenly I felt a little better about my views I spent my entire life hiding.

My name's Josh, and I now have the courage to be an outspoken atheist.

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Hey Josh! Welcome to A/N.

I love this line: "To me everything that was said in church seemed like a fairy tale with a moral behind it, kinda like disney movies."

Good to hear that you found so many fellow atheists so close to you. How did your mother react?
Not too over reacting. She understood. She's come to terms with my dad's atheism so she didn't have a big problem with mine. She's pulled the whole, I'll miss you in heaven thing. but that's about it.

But secretly, I don't even think she's religious anymore. She just won't admit to it.
"She just won't admit to it."

Ah, the book of Job lol ;) At least that's one way of looking at it.
Congratulations on your courage Josh. It's a good time to be a freethinker.
what an awesome story. You are a lucky guy to be surrounded by so many members of your family and friends that secretly shared your views ^^ Well Josh, that settles it, i'm gonna be your friend too!
Great story. Amazing you were able to find so many Atheists around you, most are not so lucky. That someone so surrounded by religious fear and intimidation, is still able to choose their own way, and maintain their natural reason, gives me hope, and is the reason I enjoy these stories so much.

Cheers
You have alot of real life atheists in your life, you're lucky. finding out that your dad is atheist must have been an awesome feeling. I wish i would've seen the light at seven years old. As a kid, i never decided that there wasn't a god, i just always felt that all this church mumbo jumbo is very silly, and i wanted to skip it as much as possible.
I'm not sure when I decided there was not a god...I found all the religious mumbo jumbo boring...And it was just the same old stuff year after year after year. Jeebus said this,god said that Cane begot Able....Watching grass grow was more interesting that Sunday "'school" and the boring sermon after.
Why are people so fascinated by this stupid bible?
I hated being forced to go to church and the older i got the more i resented it. When I was 13 I told my mother i was not going to church again...And that was that.
Thanks for sharing this! I believe there are many people out there who wear the religious persona just to blend in, not realizing so many other, equally disguised allies surround them. I remember how good I felt when my 12 year old niece shyly mentioned to me that she didn't believe in god, and how her face lit up with relief when I laughed and said, "Me neither!" I can't speak for other cultures, but it seems like in America we put a great deal of value on the idea of majority rule, even in those cases where it is so obviously at the expense of logic and ethics. I've come to realize the value in being open about my well-reasoned lack of belief, not so much in the hope or need to change others' religious convictions as to force them to acknowledge and accept my right to think coherently and independently.
I know only one other "Atheist" kid at my school, and his only arguments on Mormonism are something about it being stupid and Jo Smith being stupid and there being no horses in Book of Mormon times. I think he'll break. His friends torment him about it, he has no one to share common ground with, and he's young and impressionable. He'll go back to it all. I want to take him aside, and tell him to read. Tell him to find out all he can, because horses won't convince anyone. I want to explain to him that if he wants to strike fear into their hearts, knowledge, not anger, is the best way. Give him some tips on Lilith, the flood, and Jo Smith's reputation... But chances are, I'm already too late, and I'd probably just come off as a stalker. Maybe a subtle note? The parents of America would hate me.

But my family is secretly crawling with them. My mom is very Mormon. My first brother is agnostic, and I suspect my dad is too. My four older brothers are atheists, my older sister is too. It makes things so much easier, doesn't it? I don't know how I can tell my mom though. She knows I'm not big on religion, but she thinks Atheists are the scum of the earth. :)
Greetings!!!! Welcome :D
Welcome Josh! Great story! Very similar to mine, I was surrounded by religious people and messages and never really bought it. I got into loads of trouble in Bible study asking questions that I knew they couldn't answer.

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