Suddenly I realised that Atheism was the Only Choice

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.

When and How to Come Clean on Atheism

Right now I know I’ve given up on my Christianity, the reasons are many and varied, which will become more clear as I continue this blog. The question that’s bothering me most at the moment is when (and how) to come clean on the matter.

This is really only relevant to one person in my life, and that’s my wife, the person I love the most and whom I least want to hurt and upset. Telling my wife that I have turned my back on the Christian faith that we have shared so many years will be very hurtful to her and its just not something I am ready to do to her.

I know the day will come when we have the conversion where I admit that I’ve made the decision to abandon Christianity and adopted the atheistic conclusion that there is no God. I want to be able to tell her, rather than have her find out, but the right time is always tomorrow and never today. My biggest fear is she’ll work it out and challenge me, which will likely be worse than manning up and telling her.

So for the moment I am in a self induced limbo, knowing the truth about my state of disbelief and going through the actions of Christian every Sunday.

I know there will be many friends who will be very upset as well, our closest friends are all part of the church. Their reaction is far less important to me than my wife’s. Do I tell her at home on a normal day or do I wait until we are alone and away from home? Either way will be emotional and will likely be unpleasant for both of us. What is of more importance to me is how we deal with the after effects.

There is just one person who knows, my brother. I told him very soon after I made the decision, because I knew he had already done the same. He confided in me several years ago and it really wasn’t a surprise for me at all. However, I’ve always been the devout and sensible older brother, coming from me, this news was more surprising.

My brother’s main concern was also for my wife, did she know? Why not? When did I plan to tell her? And critically, don’t leave it too long. I love my brother dearly and his advice is usually very good. He understands my reticence, but cautions strongly against doing nothing.

So I’m doing nothing. One day we’ll have the discussion but I don’t feel capable of having it just yet.

So the pretence continues…..