I had been a skeptical believer from my youth, taking everything with a grain of salt, but knowing that as I got older I’d know more. At 17, when I graduated from my Catholic high school, I left the church, believing it to be nothing more than an authoritarian organization. I consider myself to have been an agnostic at that time, not knowing whether there was a god and for a while not caring.
A few years later, I was introduced to Baha’i, and quickly became a member because it seemed to answer quite a number of questions that Christianity did not. To my still-young mind it sounded good. I remained with them for fourteen years, enjoying the comfort of the group and the sense of being a part of something. But there was always that skeptic factor. The founder of the Baha’i Faith had said that if you find something better, run to it. That’s quite a bit different from the blinders put on one in other religions.
One day, while reading The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind, I happened upon a line that said something to the effect that there are no gods, but wouldn’t it be nice if there were. Something snapped. I realized the truth of the statement and have been an atheist ever since. Although I had no problems with my religion I could not undo the damage to my faith. At the age of 35, I resigned from the Baha’i Faith.
With the dawning of the internet, I became a forum regular and began to see people who astounded me. Sometimes a 14-year-old would present arguments against religion that were overwhelming and I was envious. I wanted to be able to make arguments like that. I’ve spent the years since then reading and learning and researching and thinking and I’ve come to greatly enjoy doing so. Once again, I feel as if I am a part of something – a worldwide change as the old edifices crumple under the weight of knowledge.