the tribal aspect of christianity lends itself to many strange delusions.
like the idea that agnostics, atheists and liberals are some kind of strange beast. who knows what they talk about or plot in their living rooms at night. they probably watch colbert and hate on christians and smoke pot and watch porn and tear pages out of priceless bibles, if they even own one.
whatever they are, it isn't normal.
they don't pray over their meals or obsess about having their *devos* and they don't spend time "in the word" and time "with god" and they are probably being constantly attacked by demons - except maybe demons attack gods people because they want to get those active in the faith! - and they live in fear of things like demons, having an empty life that means nothing and going to HELL when they die.
these people are in rebellion to god and his word and they are reaping the fruits of their sinful, disobedient and godless lives. therefore they are miserable, on anti-depressants, probably coke heads or hippies.
as i said before, when i called myself a "hopeful agnostic" i really didn't see it as a complete derivation from the faith. i didn't imagine that i was a godless hippie. it wasn't until i truly began to realize how others who were IN the fold saw me that i understood. i had become the "fool who says in his heart, there is no god."
suddenly i know, from intimate experience, why and how everyone is flipping out and why this is such a big deal. i'm not ME anymore. i'm not whole. i'm not safe. i'm not a christian.
i am the cautionary tale.
but the truth, from my perspective, is completely different.
i'm still absolutely the same.
dropping a title of faith has not changed what i believe to be right or wrong. my political and faith switch from conservative to liberal was pushed forward and encouraged by my faith, by the things i was learning and by the bible - by jesus.
my moral and ethical beliefs haven't changed. i still don't spank my kids, as much as i want to. i still don't cheat on my husband - but to be fair, ian somerhalder hasn't approached me yet. i still teach my children to be kind and generous and i hope some of it sticks. i'm not watching porn tonight, i'm watching the biggest loser. but that's kind of a false comparison for me, since i gave up my crusade against porn a long time before i gave up my crusade against women pastors and those who pervert law and gospel.
i spend my time doing the same things i enjoyed before my fall. studying theology and psychology and sociology. taking photographs and making my own little bits of art. writing. i finally want to write again. i even finally enjoy digging through my crap and finding who i am, who i really am, deep down.
the anti-depressants went the way of faith. instead of being that faithless person who can't live without them, i was a stronger person who found life bearable again.
this whole process has been one of finding so many things that were presented to me as undeniable truths fall apart.
maybe it was the idea that christianity (minus the evil libruls) is a cohesive and united bunch.
maybe it was the idea that "the bible clearly says" anything. take your pick of your pet theology.
maybe it was that atheists are amoral or immoral people.
most likely it was that christianity is a force for good in the world, as i watched and heard person after person testify to the hurt caused in their lives by christianity and read historical story after story of christians oppressing and hurting others.
for me, my personal experience held more weight than often conflicting abstracts that others were using to shame me into being someone i'm not.
and i'm a happier, healthier person now.