The side effect of my increased understanding of the scientific method and the impossibility of a literal creation was that more and more of what I had accepted in The Bible was rejected as false.
I can’t remember exactly when it was but over a short period of time I realised that rejection of formerly held Biblical truths could only result on one thing, total rejection of The Bible. I did consider for a while if I could hold my acceptance of Evolution along with the belief in a personal God. The problem that caused me was that it didn’t fix the fact that key events in the Old Testament didn’t happen and if certain key events in the Old Testament didn’t happen, then the New Testament was equally in doubt and therefore Christianity as a whole had little to defend it.
It didn’t take much for me to realise that the end result of the road I was on was the abandonment of my Christian faith. I could not embrace my new scientific understanding and my enthusiasm for more and keep a Christian faith. It simply wasn’t going to happen for me, there were too many questions that resulted in The Bible being wrong or questionable.
So rather than spend years battling with my faith, I decided to shortcut the torment and make a conscious decision that Christianity was bunk and go from there.
While it was an easy logical conclusion to make, there were many things that I needed to consider. How do I tell those I love? Especially my Wife! How will this affect my morals? What do I do about going to Church? How will this affect my views on death? This last one was key as at this time my mother was very ill with Pancreatic Cancer (more on this in another post that will come).
Those first weeks Post Atheism were a bit weird.
It was a few years ago now so I don’t recall those weeks especially clearly, but there are a few things that still stand out for me.
The first one is that I questioned my morals and their source. I hadn’t realised it until then, but my mind-set wad been very heavily engrained with the idea that morals and goodness come from the Holy Spirit and I was good because I was a Christian. Abandoning that must then surely mean the abandonment of my morals. I found myself asking questions about what was now acceptable, could I lie more readily? Steal from work? Cheat on my wife? You know, the sort of things those horrid godless people do all the time!
Well, it turns out that I was still just as unhappy with the idea of any of those things as I was before. So there would be no sin binge, as it were.
Tell No One
At this time I resolved that my state of faith would be a secret until I could work out what to do with the news. My biggest fear was how my wife would react, I knew that if it had been the other way round I’d have likely been devastated and I didn’t want to do that to her. This meant that I also would not tall anyone else because I didn’t feel it would be right to tell anyone else when she didn’t know.
Later I would seriously consider confiding in a close friend first and there were a couple of occasions when that very nearly happened. It just never seemed to be the right place or the right time.
What I did start to do was expand my reading of blogs. I looked for and found several blogs of people who had also come out of Christianity. This gave me a form of release as I could read now read (and participate if required) about similar experiences and not feel alone and unable to express my concerns and frustrations.
- Science Podcasts helped my understanding (confessionsofayec.wordpress.com)
- How do Christians make moral decisions by using there consciences (wiki.answers.com)
- Jon Sharman, absolute morality, homosexuality and slavery (yet again) (politicsontoast.com)
- What are some specific moral emotional and intellectual reason that people reject the Christian gospel (wiki.answers.com)
- Why should people not accept only parts of the Bible as the word of God as Thomas Jefferson did (wiki.answers.com)