86/365 crisis of faith (sec.3)

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    Religion and Faith are something I've dealt with for pretty much my entire life. I was born Catholic. My parents were non-practicing for the most part but felt it was something I should have. My parents gave me the choice to be confirmed or not when I was a teenager and I inevitably chose not to. Not because I was lacking faith at that time but being gay I didn't really feel like I wanted to be part of a religious faith didn't want me to be there. Out of resentment I abandoned my faith and gave up my beliefs in that area and moved on, which didn't matter much at that time. However I was left with a void that I couldn't seem to fill at the time. Faith, belief in a higher order and purpose, these things become part of your daily life when you have them.

    Eventually I embarked on a quest to fill that void. It started in early college when the first person I ever fell in love with someone who happened to be Jewish. I was inspired by the sense of community and family structure and ideals of the religion and that had a great appeal to me. I even started learning up on hebrew and the torah in consideration of possibly converting. But eventually that fell to the wayside and I decided I didn't want my belief structure based upon a community but rather the inverse.

    I found my way into Uniterian Universalism and they are awesome. The respect of all peoples and community shared with them was incredible as well. And I find their view of religion being a personal experience that we all can share together to be in line with my core belief of humanity. But alas I discovered them at a point in my life where that was not a priority and that never ended up progressing.

    I find myself now quite where I was 10 years ago; with a belief in a benevolent loving god whose nature, while being the epitomy of all that is good in this universe, is still ineffable to me. I have a hard time with Christ and think I may not end up a Christian at the end of it all. But I definitely still feel the void left by its absence often and have not given up on finding the solution to this problem.

    denislpaul, and 1 other people added this photo to their favorites.

    1. justaduckbaby 87 months ago | reply

      i'm with you there bub, i grew up methodist, but when my parents divorced when i was 20, everything that the church stood for disappeared and left my mom and i in the dust, while my dad was taken care of. i felt abandoned, and alone... i wasn't mad at God, but at my church, how could this body of people that i grew up in, just leave me like this? so i left... i'm still searching, and i still believe, but i don't feel right in a church... the rules and the contradictions, has me asking questions... and so my search still continues... ~hug~

    2. ~Twon~ 87 months ago | reply

      I'm sorry to hear about your experience. I wish you luck upon your journey as well!!

    3. justaduckbaby 87 months ago | reply

      well it's definitely made me stronger, and more independent... good luck with yours too bub :)

    4. aubecherie [deleted] 87 months ago | reply

      This is so comforting. The struggles we all feel so alone in, when shared, make us realize we are ALL having the same doubts and fears. I think a lot of people stick to their church because they are just terrified to question because the 'fear' has been placed in them. It's when we step out of a comfort zone and think for ourselves that real courage shows...

      :-)

    5. ~Twon~ 87 months ago | reply

      Yeah, I wish people would stop using their faith as a weapon, as a crutch, as a reason to justify their fears and prejudices and experience how wonderful it can be to let the joy, hope, kindness and forgiveness aspects of faith into their hearts and be one with all the glory of the universe.

      wow, I'm lame :)

    6. thatsparklychick 87 months ago | reply

      That was a lot to read.

      I didn't make it all the way through :-P

      --
      Seen in my contacts' photos. (?)

    7. ~Twon~ 87 months ago | reply

      figures the athiest-from-birth would give me the big "tl;dr"

    8. misplaced in the city 87 months ago | reply

      I also grew up catholic, and have since abandoned that organization. I find I'm just not one for group worship. Perhaps you could try looking within, as I did. Maybe you'll find what you need there.

      Just don't give up sweetie. You'll find what you need.

    9. ~Twon~ 87 months ago | reply

      thanks for the comforting words. I have no doubt I will make peace with this situation eventually. It's one of the big questions of life. I don't need to find the answer tomorrow.

    10. Rafa from Brazil 87 months ago | reply

      I also was born Catholic but I've never been very religous, and I think I lost some of my belief in God in the past few years, but I'm still a believer, although I believe much more in the mother nature, maybe that's my way to see God.

    11. ~Twon~ 87 months ago | reply

      Well like I said, if I believe anything at the moment, it's that "God" and religion are a very personal experience and I think we all see God differently, even if we subscribe to the same faith.

    12. jk5854 87 months ago | reply

      I can understand this. I've been wanting *some* kind of faith in my life for a few years now.. I mean for christ sake (no pun intended) I was an alter girl for like 3 years!

      But then I think of all the hang ups I have with organized religion. I can't bring myself to pursue it. I believe i can have faith without actually being accountable of being somewhere once a week.

      I think if i ever was to make the decision to actually go down the strict religion blvd., it would have to be wiccan. i know the most about that and from what I've seen and learned I like it.

    13. ~Twon~ 87 months ago | reply

      Juli- lol at your Christ pun! I intend to pick this issue back up in the spring. I may do up the unitarians i think. Try it, youll like it. And I'll refrain from making a Wiccan lesbian joke :)

    14. thp365 87 months ago | reply

      I believe in Jesus, I believe in God.

      I don't believe a church has the right to tell me how to do that.

      Thats the conclusion I've come to after years of thought.

      I also think said lord has a sense of humour, and not in that "thats why this happens" kinda way, but in the, its okay to make jokes etc kinda way.

      cool shot.

      --
      Seen on your photo stream. (?)

    15. ~Twon~ 87 months ago | reply

      Maybe you should consider becoming episcopalian then...

    16. thp365 87 months ago | reply

      I think I'm just going to stay clear of the entire organized religion thing... but I do have a lot of respect for them.

      --
      Seen in my recent comments. (?)

    17. denislpaul 84 months ago | reply

      Great photo and great thread. I'm sorry i'm coming into it months late. As a unitarian Universalist minsterial intern, in my congregation this past Sunday I began a 5-week program called healing the wounds of our religious past. It's amazing how many people come to our church looking for exactly the kind of discussion going on here.

    18. ~Twon~ 84 months ago | reply

      yeah, Its amazing how much people about are willing to talk about their innermost feelings about stuff when given the chance.

    19. LyssaWrites 30 months ago | reply

      Thanks for sharing your story, and letting this picture be used through CC. We featured it on happiness website DailyHap.com in an article you might be interested in: dailyhap.com/articles/even-in-agnostics-religion-enhances...

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