Be warned, this is a semi-type-rant. I am not sure if its the Jose Quervo hangover induced mania or the excess thinking time I spent in the saddle going after the 1 steer that was seperated from the herd and took it upon himself to high-tail it to the next county. And,the beautiful but very green chestnut 8yo, 16.1 hands gelding I was riding that does not know how to neck-rein (it was a bitch in the brush, omg, I am scratched head to toe!) but anyhow consider yourselves warned.
A few days ago, I became engaged in a fairly heated debate about my lost Catholic faith. M. Bighorse, a friend of mine, who at times can behave like M. Bighorses Ass attacked my views on his (which was once mine) religion and the belief in ‘God’ in general. His attack was personal and I am very offended by his obnoxious mentality to think he can bully me into changing my beliefs. I am the least likely person to be bullied by anyone- he KNOWS this. Because I choose not to discuss my feelings with our communitie’s Catholic Priest, M. Bighorse informed me that I was becoming an atheist and my soul would burn in hell for eternity(yikes!) among other things too trivial to type. So help me, if he sends Father T. out to my place, I’ll run him off just like I do the Jehovah Witnesses or whoever those religious door-knockers are! I feel compelled once again to defend my stance on my lost faith…….my origional post here is the best explanation I can offer:
Here is my position from my earlier post ( a small quote):
“I was a practicing Catholic when I was younger, over half of my life. I would not call myself atheist — agnostic is probably closer — but I’ve definitely had a shift. Life lessons have taught me that there is a way to retain spirituality (of a sort) without adhering to dogma. More than once, I’ve noticed that some Christians have a vastly different concept of Christianity than mine and were (excuse the sweeping unfair generalization) often one-sided jerks really made me rethink my identification with that group. Values are important, and I have a myriad of Christian beliefs and some that are regarded anti-Christian. A few of my beliefs: I believe strongly in the death penalty, abortion is a woman’s choice (as long it is not utilized as birth control), and I am not against euthanasia in some instances. Where do my values fit in with Christianity and Catholicism? They don’t. Hypocrites run rampant in religion. I refuse to agree with certain beliefs when inside my heart, I cannot change the way I feel. Life is not fair, but in the Bible it is stated numerous times God is ‘just and fair’. If God created life, why isin’t it fair? Then the answer to that question is: the story about Adam and Eve. Buying into all of the symbolism and rituals is difficult for me, I am an analyzer, I like scientific methods and finding out ‘how’ and ‘why’.”
Agnosticism is the process of deduction, atheism is the logical conclusion. I am not in any way an Atheist. Thru-out the years, I have lost my faith in the Catholic religion and albeit slowly, in God as well. Does The Almighty exist? I have no idea….and as time goes by I am doubting the existence of ‘God’ more each decade. When my life is over, will I be next in line to meet my ‘Maker’? Possibly……oh no, then I’ll have to explain all sorts of things. Like, when I was in high school, I wrote term papers for struggling students to make extra $$, I once out ran the city police onto Federal Indian Land in the middle of the night during my wild party days to avoid getting a ticket (and got away w/ it). Those true life examples are the more tamer ones, I do not want to incriminate myself too badly! If ‘God’ does exist, I hope he/she is a forgiving one, I do not relish the idea of an eternity banished to hell, which is something I might very well get for being honest about the way I feel. Hypocracy does not sit well with me, so, I cannot change the way I actually feel.The American Heritage Dictionary defines “agnosticism” as follows:
1. The doctrine that certainty about first principles or absolute truth is unattainable and that only perceptual phenomena are objects of exact knowledge
. 2. The belief that there can be no proof either that God exists or that God does not exist.I have an open, inquiring mind and a curious, analytical nature, but, I have become agnostic, because, after being exposed to different religious beliefs and my own personal life experiences, I’ve come to a personal mental state that questions ‘faith’ and ‘God’ in general. Each human, who is a believer, and their God have their own personal and unique connection which really doesn’t require any external bridge to maintain (such as pastor, priest, minister, good book, whathaveyou)……even in the darkest of hours or under the bleakest of conditions…only a person’s own deep, down belief/faith that this connection exists.
Personally, I don’t feel there’s any need for a middleman to talk, commune or what-have-you with your maker (whomever or whatever one might deem that to be).Despite the more obvious ‘facial’ differences between all the beliefs and practices of the major organized religions (and a growing multitude of others), they all have one central character or theme around which everything in the world as they know it revolves and an all-knowing, omnipotent ‘presence’ to whom they rely on to validate their existence. Each religion has their own ‘idea’ of their perfect ‘God’ defined.
This may be one presence alone or more than one (operating as a whole, such as the Holy Trinity in which I was taught/schooled), but, this ‘source of the believer’s being’ would have to have a personal connection with each and every being who gives it this stature and power for the belief to exist at all. Some people may seek guidance to their religious leaders for constant affirmation that a higher power does exist or maybe to justify, reform, or learn certain behaviors relating to thier supposed faith.
So, that said, what need is there for a middleman when a direct connection is already an essential component in the belief system to begin with?Have I thoroughly confused you? I know I have thoroughly confused myself. And for the record, I am changing Mr. Bighorse’s name to Mr, Jackass because I have met many horse’s asses that were more agreeable than Mr. B…
absit invidia: Latin for “no offense intended”