When I was a very young child, starting around the age of 4, my dream was to be a nun. I just wanted to go around singing to people and healing them, have a personal relationship with god, and wear a fashionable veil. That bubble was burst when I found out I wasn't Catholic. So I figured preacher might be a better fit anyway. That bubble was burst when I found out you had to have a winky before god would even look at you. I began to wonder if any of this was nothing more than bullshit. I remember hearing a Bible story where someone tested god's presence by leaving a dry clothe out at night. If it had no dew, it was proof that god existed. I could totally be getting this wrong. Whatever it was, I thought I could get my proof in the same manner. I placed a dry rag in the closet and prayed that, if god existed, it would be wet in the morning. I had all manner of faith that it would be wet.

I was wrong.

The next morning it was dry as could be. I was 7 and that was the morning I began to question the nature and existence of god. I wanted desperately to believe. Something about the myths and songs from various cultures always brought me a kind of peace. Science fiction began to fill a hole in my myth that god just could not anymore. Even when I discovered Witchcraft and felt the Divine Feminine for the first time in my life in 1989, it still wasn't completely enough for me to suspend all disbelief and give myself over to a higher or otherworldly presence.

When Aunt Tudi died, I encountered two people too busy with their church activities to help me deal with some issues. The screamed hypocrisy to me. It wasn't god's fault; rather, it was the flaw of people trying to follow in god's footsteps. What else could I say? But there was a part of me who resented it all. God had taken away my way of life. God had taken away my willingness to live. God had stirred a strong longing for human extinction within my breast. And those friends I though I had, they'd been transformed into Stepford Wives for Christ.

I've always considered myself a student of spirituality, an agnostic looking for a place near deity where I could finally rest and learn. I'm further from that place than ever before. For the first time in my life, I'm looking more logically at atheism than I ever did blind faith. When you stare into the dead eyes of the woman who raised you and you find no indication where she my have gone, if anywhere, atheism has a valid argument. When all the Hypo-Christians circle your broken spirit to get you in their church when you're at your most vulnerable, atheism looks like a lot sweeter deal.

I don't know that I believe anymore more. I don't know what I want to believe. I don't know if I want to believe anything at all anymore. And I'm too tired of all of it to be a good agnostic and seek for my place in the universe/
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As you know, or might know, I am an atheist. Like you I came from a religious family, and I kept running headlong into things that did not make sense. Instead of a detour into Paganism, I dabbled with Spiritualism and honestly that only re-enforced that there was little to no proof of the supernatural past anecdotes, nerves and spooks, and emotions. I don't say that meaning to trample on anyone else's belief's or experiences. It's just those are mine.

Like you I felt a strong attraction to Science Fiction with it's other worlds and possibilities.

What finally made me turn the corner was Lovecraft. The idea that alien Gods just beyond our perceptions just chugged along, mostly not even aware of us.. and *offended* when they became aware got me thinking. It really struck me that any supreme being, any unifying universal consciousness, would probably be just as aware of us as we are of the mites that live on our eyelashes. And we understand about as much about the Universe as those mites know about us.

I am agnostic in the aspect that I don't know whether or not there is a supreme being, but I live as though there were not one.

I share all that just to let you know that you are not alone in your searching, and that if you ever want to talk about it, I'm open. I won't prosthelytize the way some might. I'm just here.
The only religion that makes sense to me is Buddhism. I felt such a resonance when I really thought about the Four Noble Truths. The first two really opened my eyes.
1. Life entails suffering. (I don't find this morbid or depressing at all. I find it comforting. The idea that pain or suffering is an aberration is partly why it hurts so much.)
2. Suffering is caused by desire (really, it's more clinging/clutching, attachment, etc - not that it's bad to enjoy what is enjoyable, or love people, or have fun in life...If we can get our minds around the idea that things are designed to be transitory by their nature, we won't struggle as much when the natural ebbs and flows happen.)

It's worth exploring and studying. Plus, it's not a deistic religion at base, although some of the traditions have expanded into a more traditional "gods and angels" kind of framework. But it isn't necessary. The Buddha was not a deity, he was a man. Many miracle stories sprang up after the fact, and there is a rich mythology, in the Tibetan tradition especially. But the Buddha never spoke of gods or afterlife or any of that, so it's not part of the core teaching. So someone can be a theistic Buddhist, or an atheistic Buddhist.
I believe in you! I hope one day you'll find what you're looking for. Xxxx
We'll talk soon, hon. Been there, but it's not the actual beliefs that matter in the end;something inside you slots into place. I only wish I had worked how you speed up the process. Hugs.
IMO, "belief" is overrated. I'll figure out what the real scoop is on the afterlife once I actually get there - which I'm hoping to put off for a good long time.

I know that sounds kind of flippant... but I've been browbeat by a number of christian-somethingorothers over the years and it really hasn't changed my attitude towards organized religion ("None for me, thanks"). I've learned to tune them out, smile and nod, and generally play the polite "that's nice dear" while being non-commital enough that they assume I share their beliefs. Social lubricant, for the most part. I don't normally bring up my lack of religion, because it's none of their business, really.