Here Begins the Controversy (written Oct 2008)

I think the most insulting accusation a person could make against me would be to say that I'm easily influenced. At a young age, I had a pretty keen sense of self-awareness that most of my peers seemed to lack. Justice and truth were important precepts to me, though I wouldn't have been able to articulate it in that way early in my life.

This sense of self-awareness has forced me to be honest with myself about my own motives; it became extremely important for me to ask questions and to pay attention when things didn't quite add up or make sense. I wanted to know the truth; not simply believe what I'd been told to believe. I wanted to discover the answers to my questions on my own because, if someone else has the capacity to "search out a matter" and come to conclusions on their own, what was stopping me? Why was I not qualified to acquire these alleged truths without help? I couldn't see why anyone had a better grasp of reality than I did.

Also, I was (and am) highly suspicious of other people's motives. Maybe no one else will trust that I've come to certain conclusions based solely on objectivity, but that doesn't worry me. I know that my goal is to accept the truth in whatever shape it takes. I know that this is a process of elimination and an honest examination of the evidence available. If others choose to disregard the facts that present themselves, I cannot stop them. I may be alone in the end, but I will know that I was honest with myself and not a victim of "Satan's temptation".

My goal is to find the Truth.

What good is a belief if held only out of ignorance? Belief is not a choice, despite the popular claim. Any "belief" held despite evidence against the assertion is simply delusion. I will not live my life in a haze of half-truths and superstition. I will not refrain from asking questions because I'm afraid of the answers. If faith equates fear of consequences for doubting, then faith is no virtue but a hindrance to genuine understanding. I will no longer be told that I am too weak-minded to stand under the weight of knowledge. That LIE is what has held us all under the powers that would subdue us.

The truth is: we are being subdued. From the time we were born, we have been told we are sinners and sheep; that we are worthless, pathetic wretches that cannot control ourselves. We have been told that we are depraved and incapable of morality if left to our own devices. We have been told that we are inferior, deficient, defective, base, disobedient, shameful, and wicked. Has anyone ever heard the saying that you get what you expect from people? If we are any of these things, it is because this message has been beaten into our skulls from the moment we took our first breath.

If you had a child, and everyday you told him or her that they were stupid, what would the result be? Some children would be strong enough to overcome this negative message, but most would succumb and live their life as though they really were stupid. Everyone knows this if they've been exposed to any psychology whatsoever. Even Dr. Phil would agree that, if a child is raised to believe it's worthless, it will behave accordingly throughout its entire life.

Why, then, are we told these things? Could it be that, if were to live up to our actual potential, we could all be formidable threats to those that would control us; a threat to the established system? Has it never occurred to anyone that religion is the very tool used to control us?

Obviously, this thought has occurred to many, but there are those who automatically recoil away from even the suggestion. Why?

When I first began my search, I believed all of my doubts would be assuaged and my convictions reaffirmed. I had faith that, if God were truly what He claimed to be, He would lead me to the answers that had been so elusive. I believed, really and truly, that He could not be disproved, so what had I to fear of asking questions? I thought He would encourage it. After all, Proverbs 25:2 states, "It is the glory of God to conceal a matter; to search out a matter is the glory of kings." I felt that it was my responsibility to have a full understanding of what I claimed I believed.

Isn't it common sense to expect someone who claims they believe something to know why they believe it? If a news reporter said they believed the stocks were going to rise next week, we would want to know why he believed that; we would want to know what his sources were and what he knew about the topic at hand to begin with. Was he a mathematician? Did he have some connection to Wall Street that no one else did? Bottom line, we would want to know his credentials for making such a claim. If he just "had a hunch" no one would take him seriously, and no one would put their stocks on the line.

Unless you have some vested interest in stocks, you might not insist that those making claims are credible. You may simply watch the news rather disinterestedly, feeling it's unimportant to know anything about stocks. The news reporter may have blatantly lied in an attempt to mislead investors, but you would never know it because it doesn't necessarily affect you. If asked, you would say you believed the reporter; you may even tell your friends that stocks are going to rise next week because you heard it on the news. But, the fact is, you know nothing about stocks and never researched your source of information.

I guess I'm rambling on like this to say that I've been researching my sources; I've been learning about what I claim(ed) to believe. I want(ed) to have a full understanding of the claims I was making and why. In order to feel I had an authentic faith, I had to search it out fully.

My goal is be authentic.

Views: 122

Comment by paddo on August 16, 2009 at 9:53am
"From the time we were born, we have been told we are sinners and sheep; that we are worthless, pathetic wretches that cannot control ourselves. We have been told that we are depraved and incapable of morality if left to our own devices. We have been told that we are inferior, deficient, defective, base, disobedient, shameful, and wicked."

Then we are told that God loves us.
This would appear to make God a bit weird.
They get around this using some convoluted bullshit about how we wrecked the almighty creator's creation and brought it on ourselves. Actually, the guys weren't to blame for that, we were just eating what you ladies gave us to eat.
The most I can get out of that story is that the ladies have an excellent reason not to have to cook dinner ever again.

We were lied to as children and yes I think that was as a means of controlling us. Divesting oneself of the lies is an arduous exercise in true science. Once it's over, the truth is worth it.
Comment by Morgan Matthew on August 16, 2009 at 4:40pm

Comment by Cara Coleen on August 16, 2009 at 4:46pm
@Paddo... As far as Adam and Eve are concerned, it depends on who you're talking to as far as who's more to blame. Since Adam was supposed to be the protector/head of household, he should have known better... or, if he was so close at hand, should've stopped Eve from partaking of the fruit to begin with.

My problem with the story is... what did God expect to happen? He made us curious creatures, and also... hungry. Even if we could have whatever we wanted in the garden, of COURSE we're going to be drawn to the ONE thing we can't have. Who wouldn't be? Even animals are guilty of this. To me, God set us up for failure; he KNEW we'd succumb, right? He is God, after all.

The Bible says God doesn't tempt us, but I can find no greater example than this. If you set a chunk of meat in front of a dog and instruct it not to eat it, he can only withstand the temptation so long. There's only ONE being responsible for the Fall, and that's God himself. He knew what would happen anyway.
Comment by Reggie on August 16, 2009 at 5:40pm
Since Adam was supposed to be the protector/head of household, he should have known better... or, if he was so close at hand, should've stopped Eve from partaking of the fruit to begin with.

Good point. He should have cut that damned tree down and then asked God "WTF, man?"
Comment by DeSwiss on August 16, 2009 at 9:53pm
An absolutely excellent post! Thank you sharing it. One point that you made sticks out to me:

"If faith equates fear of consequences for doubting, then faith is no virtue but a hindrance to genuine understanding."

The seeds of religion were first grown in the soil of FEAR. Fear of what was unknown. Religion gave us answers. Bullshit answers it is true, but answers nonetheless -- and we accepted them because it calmed our fears. And faith is necessary to maintain that calm and for religion to exist, because once one does begin to understand what it's truly all about one can easily determine that religion is BULLSHIT. Thus religion does not wish to be understood by its adherents, nor can it be -- only believed as "truth." And if all else fails to at least fear the consequences of non-belief -- everlasting torment from one of our earliest fears (no doubt), fire.

We are taught from the first to accept what religion says is truth, without question. Once one begins to question the truth of religion, we are never the same. Thus, religion constantly harangues its followers over and over again to believe its fairy tales and to have faith. It must constantly do this. It has to because religion knows that the doubts are always there. The people who accept this nonsense must be constantly reinforced in these beliefs for it to stick for any appreciable length of time. It is also imperative from religion's standpoint, that children are indoctrinated in this madness and are baptized (committed and given a sense of acceptance from the larger social grouping), as soon as possible so as not to miss establishing and marking its engrams upon the brain.

And it is for these reasons that it is so difficult for others to challenge religion's lies and BULLSHIT. Because our acceptance of it is inculcated and interwoven into the fabric of our very being from the innocence of our childhoods. Like a virus invading a cell's membrane, religion becomes interwoven into our personal belief systems -- systems which include the idea that our parents and our relatives all love us, and would never tell us something that is untrue nor do anything to us that is harmful. Unfortunately at the time when all this begins, we are unaware that they are already infected themselves and so therefore they cannot distinguish from the lies religion tells. So they feed their children this poison, unknowingly. And the circle is complete.

Complete until people like us come along and break it.......
Comment by Reggie on August 16, 2009 at 10:26pm
Thus, religion constantly harangues its followers over and over again to believe its fairy tales and to have faith. It must constantly do this. It has to because religion knows that the doubts are always there. The people who accept this nonsense must be constantly reinforced in these beliefs for it to stick for any appreciable length of time.

This is true in marketing and sales. It is done extensively in "hard" sales because the salesperson needs that psychological reinforcement constantly to perform in an area where doubt is natural but detrimental.
Comment by Cara Coleen on August 17, 2009 at 12:18am
HAHA!!! Yeah Reggie... someone definitely should've cut that tree down. Can you imagine leaving a cookie in the middle of a room with a child? Even if they had all the toys they could ever hope for, that forbidden cookie would become more and more irresistible. If you don't want your kid to eat the f'ing cookie, take it away! If the poor thing eats it, it's YOUR fault... he's just a poor, dumb kid after all (like humans supposedly were at the beginning).
Comment by Reggie on August 17, 2009 at 12:39am
If my kid eats that cookie, I'll torture him and his descendants for all time. But only because I am a loving father.
Comment by paddo on August 17, 2009 at 9:04am
CaraColleen you're quite right, the fairer sex cannot be to blame for all this. If women don't understand the mind of God well enough to hold high office in the church or preside at rituals then they can hardly be blamed for not knowing that the big fella was a bit precious about his apple tree.
Comment by Gary Bergeron on October 4, 2009 at 1:36pm
Adam and Eve would have to be the strangest humans we could ever meet. They were made by God and woke up fully grown. They never had a childhood! What kind of human being never had a childhood? That never knew the warmth and love of a mother? Never played games or bask in the wonders yet to be discovered?
Our childhood is where we learn right from wrong and the social dos and don'ts, etc. A long childhood is a trademark of our species. Our childhood helps define who we are as adults.
How could an an omniscient creator punish humans who have been deprived of a childhood?

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