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Wed Dec 5, 2012, 11:25 PM

Religious suicide

05 December 2012, 10:22
sakkiesarel9

Like many South Africans I was born into religion and I am sure most of you can relate in some way. My denomination was the AGS Church; according to many this is the more “lenient” Afrikaans church. Luckily I was never forced to go to church, my mother (PHD Psychology) had enough logic to understand that religion couldn’t be forced on someone but unfortunately the impressionable boy that I was, couldn’t disappoint her. I went to church every Sunday mindless of what I was being taught the only thing I knew was, whatever was written in the bible must have been correct.

I was under the impression that “grown-ups” where older and wiser and they would not make a fool of me or so I believed. It’s just funny when I think about it now. Believe like a child. Children really do believe anything that they are told. Santa will not bring you toys if you where naughty!

The years progressed and I found myself in the “God Circle” That specific group of people you had at school preaching bull crap and annoying you overall. I walked with a bible under my arms, literally! Preaching and damning people to hell. Very non-judgemental of me I know. (All of you will burn in hell you infidels) I Was on top of the world. I knew that I had the answer; my place was reserved for me in heaven and the rest could just suck it! Then I had my delusion buster.

My father committed suicide. I did not know how to react to this. According to the Catholics if you kill yourself you will burn in hell our church never said it outright but I know what they were thinking “you shall not kill” one of the 10 commandments in the bible for those who don’t know. The rules were then watered down to “do unto others as you do to yourself. The definition is very vague but the Christians interpret it the same. My father will not go to heaven. I was at a loss for words. I prayed for days and nobody answered so I did the only logical thing I knew, videogames. This will betray my age for those who know what island boy and ninja turtles are. I played for week’s non-stop only to stop for a few hours of sleep and the occasional Steri Stumpie. It saves lives I promise you!

http://www.news24.com/MyNews24/Religious-suicide-20121205

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Reply Religious suicide (Original post)
rug Dec 2012 OP
iemitsu Dec 2012 #1
ZombieHorde Dec 2012 #2
iemitsu Dec 2012 #3

Response to rug (Original post)

Thu Dec 6, 2012, 12:44 AM

1. Nice example of a young man who experienced cognitive dissonance

and grew from what he discovered.
That is not the usual response.
My own experience was not much different from that of the author.
My parents had six children, I am the oldest son. As a result I did things with my dad that my siblings never got to do: go fishing, build cabins, be his gofer.
I am from a mixed marriage, that is, my parents did not share the same faith. My father was a self-converted Catholic and my mother's family was Lutheran (she was an atheist and a scientist but never revealed her attitude toward religion until after my father's death). She attended mass each Sunday with the rest of the family, so as a kid, I did not recognize that there was any fundamental difference between the two.
One weekend morning as dad prepared a rustic breakfast, on the cast iron stove, he shared with me a dream (nightmare) he had had about my mother being condemned to hell for eternity (actually he said limbo, I suppose to soften the horrible revelation).
I was nine years old.
My mother was clearly the less flawed character. They were both good parents but he was an Irish poet and she was a German biologist. he drank and had fun she didn't. If God were to reject one of them it would not have been her.
That was the moment I rejected the Catholic God and the Universal Church. I went to church each Sunday until I left home for college but since, I have not been into a church, other than for weddings and funerals or as a tourist.
Experiencing cognitive dissonance so early in life has allowed me to adapt to new information and different perspectives easily.
I would not call what happened to the author, of the above piece, suicide. I would call it rebirth.

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Response to rug (Original post)

Thu Dec 6, 2012, 01:28 PM

2. The article is interesting to me.

Religion was exclusively created to control people


Although many religions function this way now, I really doubt this was the intent when religion was created. In my mind, the more likely intent was originally to explain where the Sun "went" at night, what thunder is, etc.

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Response to ZombieHorde (Reply #2)

Fri Dec 7, 2012, 01:56 AM

3. I agree with your notion of the original role of religion

but who ever was doing the explaining was someone in power or someone who was about to have power.
The role of religion may have been to inform or explain the unexplainable but those who did the explaining always had social/political clout.

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