Fear of religion

Discussion in 'Belief and Spirituality' started by hammer, Jul 19, 2005.

  1. hammer

    hammer happatheist

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2005
    Messages:
    23
    Likes Received:
    0
    Howdy all! I have a deep-rooted fear of religion. I don't like it or trust it at all. I guess I feel threatened by it. When people approach me about their religious beliefs I feel uneasy, when people are richeous about their beliefs I feel aggressive. I don't uderstand how people can give up their right to free thought and base their entire life on ONE set of teachings. I see organised religion as an evil thing that brainwashes people and causes a lot of pain and suffering in the world. Anyway.......my feelings here are causing me a lot of pain and anguish. I'm not sure that I need this fear in my life. Am I alone in my feelings? Is it normal for an Atheist to fear religion?

    H.
     
  2. nomanshake

    nomanshake Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2005
    Messages:
    48
    Likes Received:
    0
    Well, if it fear's you, that means that the religion has the power. If religion was just another story, then you might have called it another trend or gimmick. But religion is real, that's why it has impacfts over a person's life. There are many people who do keep belief, but still dont give whole of their life in the name of religion. So it is however important for you to keep some sort of faith and avoid fear. I mean it's better to go to the church every Sunday or go to a mosque at least once a day, or visit a temple twice a week.
    If you do something for God and religion, fear automatically goes away, because you know that you have done something for life after death(who knows it could really be based upon what religion says). It's the power of God, that he makes man feel comfortable and satisfied when you bow in front of him.

    In the end I have to say if you fear these people, then you got to have faith because you aren't comfortable with atheistic belief and trust me I have seen many people who turn into an atheist (with solid reasons) but they turn back to their religion just because of fear. and that's one solid proof of God's existence.
     
  3. juantoo3

    juantoo3 ....whys guy.... ʎʇıɹoɥʇnɐ uoıʇsǝnb

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Messages:
    8,162
    Likes Received:
    443
    Kindest Regards, hammer, and welcome to CR!
    That is not necessarily a bad thing.

    I guess the first thing I would have to ask is what you mean by the term "religion."

    You see, right here you use the term in two distinct ways and confuse the two. I do not think you do it intentionally, it happens a lot. In my humble opinion, you are wise not to trust "organized religion." However, there is a second connotation you cannot escape, what you called here "religious beliefs." This is religion on a personal level, and it is free to operate independent of organized religion. Atheism is but one more religious belief in this sense. So, while you (and many others) see learning, observing and following religious teachings as "give(ing) up their right to free thought," I here posit that a wise and learned person chooses to observe and follow religious teachings precisely because they have thought the matter through to its logical conclusions.

    Now, I will grant that not all followers of any faith have such wherewithal. By far in my experience, most are quite willing to be told how to conduct their lives. I can only guess they believe that they will then not be responsible for their souls. The old "I was just following orders" argument.

    I suppose that an atheist could argue that there is no soul. And I could then posit Pascal's wager, in that if I am wrong, I have lost nothing, if you are wrong, you have lost everything. But for the moment I will refrain, and say that even the most ardent atheists I have met still experience moments in their lives they cannot explain. Science and logic, for all of the great contributions they allow, are seriously lacking in describing the totality of reality. Soul, by whatever name it is known, resides among these mysteries.

    I suspect your anguish is not too severe, or you would not be here at this site. It is not my job, nor my intent, to convert you. You already practice a religion, whether or not you choose to call it by that name. To be concerned about abuse of power by authority, be it ecclesiastical or governmental or otherwise, is a sign of wisdom. To deny one's inner guidance however, is not. The still small voice exists in all of us. Even the most ardent atheist was once a child. To be as a child, is to remember and listen to that voice within.
     
  4. wandering_wind

    wandering_wind Member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2005
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hey Hammer,

    You know what, I feel like that about christianity (not religion exactly, I don't know much about the others so i won't generalise) too. Maybe not as... strongly lol but I understand what you mean. In fact, at one point I was so negative about it that i actually got on my own nerves. But then I turned away from christianity and looked at other things that interested me. There was wicca and things like that, and then after I discovered astral projection that changed my view on some things too somehow lol. But hey, the best way I think is to really think about what is acceptable to you. Like, take some parts of either religions or opinions of other people, place them together and make something of your own. Maybe since you don't like any religion specifically you can simply be open minded, say like oh yea that could be possible or no honestly that's too stupid to be real lol think whatever you like, but if you shut it out completely it just gets painful.

    I hope I helped a little! :D
     
  5. Bandit

    Bandit Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,172
    Likes Received:
    0
    i am not afraid of any religion. after a month at CR nothing can phase me any more.:D
    plus i dont belong to an organized religion or denomination so i guess i have nothing to fear but fear itself.
     
  6. wandering_wind

    wandering_wind Member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2005
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Oh btw, i wanted to mention this in my larger paragraph lol but forgot. Yea I never feared any religion, what's there to be afraid of? (eh, if you don't count the human sacrifices that some people did lol).
     
  7. Freedom of Opinion

    Freedom of Opinion opinionated atheist

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2005
    Messages:
    30
    Likes Received:
    0
    Do you honestly Fear religion, or is it possible you fear the person's reaction? As an atheist I've never feared religion or religious beliefs. In fact, I quite enjoy learning of others beliefs and why they believe them. But I have had occasions where I feared people's reaction to my being an atheist. My family is strict LDS and make me extremly uncomfortable discussing my beliefs. I often find that I'm less likely to express my atheist beliefs in groups when I know that the majority of them are strict religious people. I usually find it easier to simply leave the conversation when it turns to religion at those times.
    Not sure if that's helpful or not, just my own expierence.
     
  8. Jeff

    Jeff 42

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2005
    Messages:
    16
    Likes Received:
    0
    Just because something scares you doens't mean it is a rational fear (fear of the dark, spiders...). I do not understand the logic of beleiving in somthing just because you are afriad or dont understand it.

    Hammer dont be afraid to be Athiest, I know how it feels it feels. When i first became Atheist all my Christian friends tried to "save me." It really hurt me to see that my friends had no respect for my beliefs, and automaticlly assumed that their beliefs were right and mine were wrong. in fact i remember many people telling me the same sort of stuff that Nomanshake is telling you, telling me that i should beleive in religion out of fear of damnation. I remember this phrase from one of my friends when he was trying to "save me", i think it sums up nicely the veiw of people who believe out of fear.
    " Well jeff, If we're right we go to heaven, and if we're wrong nothing happens. But if you're Wrong you go to hell, and even if you're right nothing happens."
    It was this phrase that forever broke my faith in religion. Being Athiest can be scary but there is no need to beleive in religion out of fear, if you truly feal the devine spirit, or whatever, go ahead be relgious, but never settle for religion because you are afraid of the unknown.
     
  9. hammer

    hammer happatheist

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2005
    Messages:
    23
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hey Jeff, That wouldn't be the secret to life, the universe and everything proudly displayed under your login name? :rolleyes:
     
  10. Paladin

    Paladin Purchased Bewilderment

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2005
    Messages:
    2,084
    Likes Received:
    2
    Hmm, I think you're right Hammer, and if memory serves the question was "how many roads must a man walk down" No wait, it was "what is six times seven"

    Hammer, I wonder about fear and what causes it. If we posit that it is Religion, then the locus of control is outside of you isn't it? I cannot tell you what to think or how to approach your beliefs, but for me living with fear isn't life affirming at all.
    I am also grateful to Juan for not positing Pascal's wager again because that would set off a whole other thread. Let it suffice to say that there is nothing to fear.
    Be happy, and enjoy what your own beliefs lead you to discover. If that be a higher truth so be it.

    peace

    Mark
     
  11. juantoo3

    juantoo3 ....whys guy.... ʎʇıɹoɥʇnɐ uoıʇsǝnb

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Messages:
    8,162
    Likes Received:
    443
    Kindest Regards, Jeff!

    I agree, fear is no reason to hold or keep any religion or faith. Do not believe in anything, or in nothing, out of fear alone.
     
  12. juantoo3

    juantoo3 ....whys guy.... ʎʇıɹoɥʇnɐ uoıʇsǝnb

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Messages:
    8,162
    Likes Received:
    443
    Kindest Regards, Paladin!

    Good response!
    Nah, after Jeff mangled it, it just wouldn't have the same impact. :)

    So very true!
     
  13. louis

    louis Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Messages:
    148
    Likes Received:
    0
    From Louis..
    Is it realy "religion" you fear or "church" ?
    Religion is honest human curiosity about the nature of "reality" -
    what we are and how we relate to the world around us - except
    it comes from the instinctive, emotional side of the mind instead
    of the evidence-based, intellectual side we call "science".
    On the other hand, you have every reason to careful of Church and the way it tries to "save" us from ourselves.
    But you don't have to be afraid of it - just avoid it if you can.
    And when they try to "recruit" you, just answer them with
    reason and logic (applied reason) - then watch THEM back
    off in fear .....
     
  14. enton

    enton www.theoldpath.tv

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2005
    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    0
    Study first your religion. I recommend James 1:27
     
  15. ISFP

    ISFP Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2004
    Messages:
    242
    Likes Received:
    0
    hammer-

    i do kind of share your sentiment. while i enjoy studying religion and discussing it, feeling that others are cornering me into accepting soemthing i don't believe with makes me uneasy.

    but fortunately not all religious people aggressively prosleytize. try attending soem low-key inter-faith activities. well, actually, you're doing that right now by being a part of this BBS!
     
  16. jaxree

    jaxree Member

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2005
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Churches are run by people, and people are flawed. "Organized religions" are no different than any other human institutions. Well, perhaps there is one difference: Religions aspire to ideals. But as a human organization, they can be just as political, just as destructive and just as barbaric as any other institutions. On the other hand, they are no worse than other institutions and I can't see a reason to fear them more than, say, governments, or corporations. In fact, because they are built on idealistic visions, they often try to be of some real help in the world.

    I guess I would say you have every reason to be wary of organized religion, but I wouldn't fear it more than the industrial-military complex. That stuff is really scary.
     
  17. InLove

    InLove at peace

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2005
    Messages:
    3,267
    Likes Received:
    4
    Hi jaxree--if I have not met you before, I should say that I welcome the opportunity to read your thoughts.

    I believe that my salvation lies in Christ. I also tend to agree with you about organized religion. It can be helpful, or it can be harmful.

    Sometimes I think it can be both at once.

    InPeace,
    InLove
     
  18. Bandit

    Bandit Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,172
    Likes Received:
    0
    if i lived in a country that does not allow freedom of religion, especially my beliefs, that would be a good reason to fear that religion. You would have to hide all your beliefs and/or lie if you dont want to be executed.
     
  19. Satanist

    Satanist Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2005
    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    0
    I agree with the orginal poster. Thats one reason for being a satanist.

    Almost any sensible, cultural and personally important activity could potentially offend a religious person with enough support to forbid it.

    Many religious persons do outright demand services and beheavors as
    a part of respect from unbelievers or they become agravated just becouse you rather have fun than joining their crusade.
    "if your not for me you against me" or something like that.

    Just say it: "I'm evil. I don't care for society. I do exactly what I want to becouse I want to."

    that way we can behave just like we are anyway and
    the religous persons get something to be angry over.

    Everybody wins.
     
  20. Silverbackman

    Silverbackman Prince Of Truth

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2005
    Messages:
    267
    Likes Received:
    0
    hammer are you the hammer from AVA Ezboard?

    Anyway I think you are overgeneralizing religions too much. When religion comes to mind what are the first religions you think of. Well most atheists that accuse religious folk in being people who cannot think for themselves think of Christianity, Judaism, and Islam. Keep in mind there are other religions out there such as Buddhism and Hinduism that have no violent verses other than the occiasional you have the right to defend yourself. Also Eastern Religions encourage people to search for knowlage, they do not condem it like Judeo-Christianity (and possibly Islam).

    Don't get me wrong I think Judaism, Christianity, and Islam do have some messages from God but they maybe the most corrupt of the major world religions. Hinduism, Buddhism, and Sikhism on the other hand are more closer to what God wants, but in the end only combining world religions will we ever find the ultimate truth.

    And your assumption that religious people cannot think for themselves is very much off. I know for a fact that I am a much bigger free-thinker than you and I really get annoyed when Atheists claim to know more than religious people and what not.

    The point of religion is not to prevent people from learning. It mainly serves to help people do the right thing and that there are rewards as well as punishments for doing the right thing. If you live a good life then you will get more out of life, that is the message religions is mainly saying;).
     

Share This Page