I'm glad to be here. I'm hoping to make for decades of ignorance.
I grew up in a Fundie community and was conditioned to ignore any evidence that contradicted the "Word of God." The only question I had about the 6 days of creation in Genesis 1 and 2 was, why did God take so long to do it? Why not just create everything in an instant? I was so well conditioned that in the 1970s, I wasn't sure that dinosaurs had actually roamed the earth. As more and more fossils were being discovered, then it was obvious the dinosaurs had lived in Antediluvian times...with Humankind. I mean, that's what the Flintstones portrayed so it seemed plausible "to a kid. As I got older, Iearned of Answers In Genesis where "actual scientists" gave irrefutable proof that Evilution" was an insidious plot of the Devil to deceive God's childen.
I remember as a pastor in my early 30s I read a book about the Old Age Earth theory. I felt so progressive in losing my belief in a 6,000 year old earth when I was convinced that the earth was actually 10,000 years old! Later I started to give some credence to the theistic evolutionists that said that some of Darwin's theory was right, only the impetus for Natural Selection was God's doing. I left the ministry 10 years ago, and although I never thought the title applied to me, I had in effect become an agnostic-lite. "Lite" because I was to fearful to say I didn't believe in God. Finally one day, probably within the last 6 or 7 years, I realized that if evolution explained everything about the development of life of this planet, then there really wasn't a need for a deity, was there?
So here I am; a man in my late 40s with a lot of years of education still ahead of me. I do still have some emotional issues about the wasted years of ignorance, but at the same time am excited about that I'm finally learning the truth about this Universe we find ourselves in. I look forward to digging into the posts in this group. Bear with me if it seems I don't have much foundational education; because I don't.
I welcome your thoughts, questions, comments, dirty jokes. :-)
Hi Erxo! Welcome to AN! I feel you on the "lack of foundation education" bit. As I have been coming out of the Adventist church for the past few years, I've read everything from Hawking and Gould to Dawkins and Grayling, and yet I still get caught up on simple things every day. I realized just this week that I didn't actually know what a "tree" was! At least, not in a biological sense. I went to religious schools grades 1-12, and somehow, that got missed. But it's certainly gotten better, and I feel much more comfortable in the world now that I know so much more about it. :)
Thanks for sharing your story, and thanks for being brave enough to leave it all behind. I can't imagine how much harder it would have been for a minister than it was for me. I'm super glad to see you here, and can't wait to hear what you have to add to the conversation.
Erxomai, I've not heard of the Old Age Earth theory, but I've been wondering why some people think the earth is 10,000 years old. Can you enlighten me on that?
I was raised mormon and taught that the earth was 6000 years old. It took me 55 years to completely break-out of mormon brainwashing, and like you, I still have some emotional issues about the wasted years of ignorance.