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Mar 29 2012

Why I am an atheist – Anne Marie

After careful thought and consideration, I decide I would write in as to why I am an atheist. Up until about six years ago, until I was 22, I was a believer in fairy tales. I believed that when you blessed yourself and made the sign of the cross that it would be as though it was a “direct telephone line” to God and that whatever I said would go straight to his ears. During mass I would count the number of times I blessed myself to make sure I “hung up” so that in case I thought of something bad it would not go straight to him.

I used to have a rosary and miraculous medals with me at all times, and even carried a scapular and small figures of Mary and Jesus in my purse. After tenth grade I stopped going to church mainly because I hated the parish I went to and detested the monsignor there, who always seemed to be the one officiating. But I still carried those trinkets with me wherever I went. Even though I no longer believe, I still cannot bring myself to throw them away, for sentimental values (gifts from my parents and grandparents).

As far as science goes, I was taught evolution in school and it was not until high school that I learned that people actually thought the world was six thousand years old. Needless to say, those girls were terribly misinformed then as they are now. I am at least thankful that I never believed in that nonsense. The Big Bang makes more sense than creationist stories about how the earth was formed. I love physics and engineering, and am going back to school to learn more about it and to get my degree in mechanical engineering (I know, big leap from fashion design, but I always want to know how things work and why and now that I am 28, I realized what I wanted to be when I was 18 is not what I want to be now that I am no longer a teenager).

The biggest thing that caused me to question and ultimately read about religion more than anything was the child abuse scandal and when the Catholic Church decided there was going to be no more Limbo, which goes back to my constant need to understand things and why it is done that way. I could not believe that no one would come forward for these kids and how dare the priest cover for themselves. It disgusted me that basically the entire hierarchy of the Catholic Church cared more about the pedophile priests than they did for the children whose lives were ruined because of them. Additionally when the Catholic Church announced a few years ago that despite the fact that they are infallible, they made a mistake for a few millennia and that unbaptized babies no longer go to limbo they are in heaven. My grandmother had a stillborn baby some fifty odd years ago and she spent every day until her death ten years ago thinking that she would never see her baby in heaven because the Catholic Church told her it was in Limbo with no chance to be with her.

It was because of this anger that led me to start reading about Catholicism and its history, which led to reading about Protestants and finally other Abrahamic religions and a little of the other world religions. I read why Jews didn’t accept Christ because he did not fulfill the prophecies of the Old Testament. I read about how there is no evidence for Jesus aside from the Bible. I started to realize that if I grew up in India and raised Hindu, I would believe Hinduism is the only way, or if I grew up in Saudi Arabia I would be Muslim and Islam would be the only way. I started to question why would God only allow his religion to be given to only a few select people. I then started to realize that it was all crap. It was all man made and it all boils down to this one thing: people are afraid to die and are afraid that there is nothing after our time on this earth is over.

Through time and reasoning I came to the conclusion that all religion is false and that I now pity people who believe in it and base their whole lives on pleasing an invisible man in the sky. My family is now what we joke as being on the “Dark Side”, and my mother is pretty much an agnostic now. My siblings are also atheists as well and my dad is a strong agnostic too. I am not going to go back to believing in fairy tales ever again. If only the rest of the world would too.

Anne Marie
United States

6 comments

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  1. 1
    generallerong

    “I love physics and engineering, and am going back to school to learn more about it and to get my degree in mechanical engineering (I know, big leap from fashion design, but I always want to know how things work and why and now that I am 28, I realized what I wanted to be when I was 18 is not what I want to be now that I am no longer a teenager).”

    Attagrrrl! Changing a career path can be as stressful as shedding religion, and here you’ve done both.

  2. 2
    Storms

    Congratulations on obtaining enlightenment and freedom! Bravo!

  3. 3
    davidgentile

    DarkBright Side.

  4. 4
    elind

    Why I am an atheist:

    Some 14 billion years ago a Quantum Fluctuation, out of as many as can be imagined, condensed with a randomly selected configuration. A few elements existed, stars formed from them and promptly exploded forming heavier elements which formed other stars and planets, of which many continued to go nova forming more stars and more planets with more elements, all the while forming groups of stars we call galaxies, perhaps 400,000,000,000 of them with perhaps as many stars in each,(that means 400,000,000,000 multiplied by 400,000,000,000) and those are only the ones we can see.

    Then chemicals combined to form entropy reducing groupings of various complexities that we call life and on one little planet out of 400 billion times 400 billion times whatever the number of suitable planets is out of the likelihood there are several (or moons thereof) per star, and some 68 million years ago a comet was directed at same planet so as to eliminate most life (not the first time either) leaving room for the existing remaining life forms to change direction, resulting in Homo Sapiens (after numerous false starts, like Neanderthals) and a few million years later after countless false gods had died or been killed off, just 2000 years ago the truth was finally revealed.

    All this was for humans (never mind that most of it is meaningless to human existence) and after all the quadrillions of tweaks and prior extinctions of animals and perhaps sentient beings (who knows) over millions of years the end result was finally at hand, as witnessed by the Pope, Muhammad, and Joseph Smith, among countless other prophets.

    And guess what..? The message is that it isn’t going to last, the end is nigh and all this work was done so all can die, not a natural death, and many will be tortured for much more than 14 billion years into the future (can you spell infinity?) and the rest (very few at that) can kiss ass and love it, forever.

    Sorry for the run on sentences, and I admit I did not know all this some 55 years ago when I decided I was not superstitious, but I think I was pretty prescient at 13, in retrospect.

  5. 5
    wcorvi

    I had an interesting experience this spring. My GF is majoring in interior design, and I am majoring in mechanical engineering. She claimed that her studies were just as challenging as mine, so I suggested we trade classes for a day – she go to my fluids class, and I go to her design class. We would each video record, in case we had any trouble explaining the class to the one who needed the information.

    We met for lunch, and in the afternoon, I explained to her how to calculate how much paint one would need to paint a room – wall length times wall height, then subtract off the area for the windows, and add for all four walls. Take the coverage per gallon of paint, and divide into the area – presto, the gallons needed. She thought I had done an even better job explaining it than her teacher would have done.

    Then it came her turn to explain how to calculate the lift and drag of a jet airplane. She couldn’t explain even the opening sentence. She said the lecture was about ‘something’, but couldn’t explain just what that was. Fortunately, she had made a video of the lecture so I could get the material I needed.

  6. 6
    leonpeyre

    I’m having a Gandalf moment, Anne: “Breathe the free air once again.”

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