I don’t know if you could really say I have done this, or if I ever could.
My feelings about religion in general is that maybe there’s a god, but there’s not much point in trying to figure out why it made us, or what we are doing here. It seems pretty obvious to me that we’ll never know why, and that we can do whatever we want, but we’ll have to deal with the consequences of our actions. That sums it up right there.
We can be promiscuous, but we’ll likely have to deal with a sense of low self worth, the inability to form meaningful relationships, and lonliness. We can use drugs, but..well we all know about that. We can be violent, but must expect violence in return. We can hate, and will be hated right back. We can be irresponsible, but then must live without any valuable thing, be it relationships or accomplishments. We can be selfish, and again ulimately be alone. This giant hole so many of us carry around is the void created by our lack of commitment to ourselves and those around us, our lack of meaningful connection, inability to trust or to love.
I don’t like organized religion because it is so structured, and it creates an “us and them” mentality. It doesn’t really leave much room for open-minded discovery, and it always seems to create reasons to feel threatened by other people, to feel superior to those who are not “saved”, to always feel like you have to change people, convince them of some supposed absolute truth, or to kill them.
I don’t trust anyone who says they know something about god absolutely. EVERY religion says they know something absolutely! I just feel it’s a great mystery.
I don’t pretend that my personal code of conduct has anything to do with any greater power. I know I am free to change my mind if something convinces me that I am wrong about someone or something. I don’t believe I am going to a reward or a hell based on what I am doing here. There might be an afterlife, but Jeez, I’m doing the best I can here. I can’t be doomed to Hell forever just because I’m not perfect!
I just try to mind my own business, I really try (though usually fail) not to judge people unfairly, to understand people I dislike, be compassionate, and when I decide that I really care about someone, to really throw myself into that person’s life. I believe in supporting worthy causes, volunteering, paying taxes, and being informed.
When you choose to own an animal or have children, you make that your responsibility. You take care of them, love them, etc. because they have no freedom and are completely dependant upon you for food, shelter, health, emotional fulfillment, etc.
I also believe in taking care of yourself. The world is only as good a place to be in as its inhabitants. If everyone is miserable, self loathing, unhealthy, violent, angry, ignorant, stagnant, well how can things improve? One functional person doesn’t stand a chance.
So, maybe I believe in the church of common sense? The church of don’t be an idiot? The church of you reap what you sow? The church of it’s your own damn fault, deal with it? Or the church of you’re fine, just don’t do it again..well. You get the picture.