God No!

So, it’s probably worth mentioning that one last step I took to call myself an atheist was reading God No! by Penn Jillette. This step was entirely unintentional. My Fiance Patrick bought it for me because he is not a big reader, but wanted me to preview it to see if it was worth him reading. I wasn’t even reading for myself at first!   I certainly didn’t read it  because I wanted to become an atheist, or because I needed more reason to become an atheist or anything like that. In fact, I was quite convinced at the beginning it wouldn’t make me an atheist.  And, to my credit, it didn’t. I made me an atheist. (Or I made the decision to call myself an atheist and return to the natural state of humans as some say.)

But by the end of the first page I was fully reading for myself.  I knew Patrick would love it, and I loved it. I stayed up for hours reading  I laughed my ass off and I also sobbed at certain parts.  I had not been on such an emotional roller coaster since my first birth control.  I digress.  I always thought that in order for me to fully renounce my faith in God I would have to see really good evidence, or hear a really good argument or something. But I had heard most arguments from Patrick, and evidence doesn’t do much good when it’s trying to contradict something based in faith and not logic.

Throughout the book, I realized that a lot of things I said were good about my faith weren’t actually good. They were holding me back from living the most beautiful life I could. It wasn’t arguments or someone telling me I’m stupid for believing in God. It was someone telling crazy, unbelievable stories about their life and how he makes it as meaningful and love-filled as possible. The “infinite” love of the God I believed in wasn’t infinite. The love my friends and family has for me–I can see that.  That is meaningful.

It wasn’t that I didn’t know that atheists could live fulfilled lives, Patrick lives a happy and good life and I defended that to my Christian friends all the time.  But the book helped me look at religion from a new view point. Outside of faith looking in. Looking at it from a more logical view. I’m not sure. I can’t entirely put my finger on what sort of epiphany I had, but the more  I thought about it, the happier I was.

So thanks to my two favorite atheists! Penn and Patrick

M.C.

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One thought on “God No!

  1. You’re lucky. Some of us older folk didn’t have these guys around. It literally took me decades to do what you have done. Before I could say I’m an atheist I had to tempt god to come down and destroy me… blasphemed so he would. Nothing happened… so I waited. Then I did it again. After a few more times I felt sure that what I had learned was true… there is no god. If there is it doesn’t care enough about me to show itself. Like a kid whistling in the dark, I made my way to atheism, then anti-theism. Welcome to the crowd.

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