This BLOG is for you
you are a religious believer
with serious doubts.
The dilemma for you, the doubter, sitting or kneeling in your church or temple or mosque is, “How do I resolve this nagging uncertainty?”
This BLOG is intended to fill the need that I have not found in other sources. The need for doubting believers to take that initial step of breaking away and beginning to resolve the conflicts they feel between what they are being told by clergy and what they suspect may be true. This BLOG is intended to offer a way to tackle unfounded beliefs head-on and help men and women find a way to gain control over their life and death questions. Just picture yourself being free on the Sabbath to do as you please without feeling guilty. That is clearly a great benefit when you realize you may have 10, 30 or 50 years of Sabbaths ahead of you.
Most BLOGs I have seen concerning religious doubt fall into one of two camps. One is for the fairly hard-core atheist/non-believer and often sarcastic. The other addresses doubt with the goal of helping a person sustain their faith in spite of their misgivings.
And, yes, there are excellent books for those who have already found freedom from religion. “The Blind Watchmaker,” by Richard Dawkins and “The End of Faith,” by Sam Harris are two. I found these and other
books a great help in providing assurance that I had made the right choice about faith versus reality and reason.
But the singular event that crystallized my thinking and helped me escape from irrational belief was to read my Bible from cover to cover then ask myself if I believed it. Sounds too simple doesn’t it? But if you do it, the scales will fall from your eyes. Ask yourself, what have you ever read in your holy book beside what you have been led to read by your clergy? The clergy mostly cherry-pick the passages that support the doctrine of your religion and never mention the rest.
And so, you may ask, how did you ever come to suspect that reading the Bible from cover to cover would provide you an escape from irrational belief? Several years ago, I met a fellow in a grocery store in the Colorado mountains who I got to know quite well and we got around to discussing religion. His name was John McEntyre and he was somewhat of a recluse. He even lived in a yurt somewhere he declined to disclose. John brought me a collection of notes he had made over the years that struck me as the key to escaping blind faith and religious doubt.
Five years later, I published his work as an ebook expressed as a story people could identify with. John called it “The Last Lunch.” The story follows a group of colleagues celebrating an end-of-project success. Their lunch conversation takes an unexpected turn down the path of religious questioning. John’s notes addressed some issues doubters may have that I have never seen addressed anywhere else. One question concerns life after death. Many, or perhaps most, doubters fear that if their religion is not true, does that mean there may be no life after death? John offers some thoughts on the possibility of oblivion that I have never read anywhere else.
Interestingly, I have had conversations with atheists about their beliefs and oblivion and was surprised to find the subject is very unsettling to some of them. But I found that John had a very offhanded way of thinking about it.
The characters in The Last Lunch also discuss the purpose of life after religion and the pain of separating themselves from their religious/church family.
“A book is less important for what it says than for what it makes you think.”
Louis L’Amour, “The Walking Drum.”
I’ve given you a lot to think about. You are invited to contribute, your thoughts and experiences – especially to help others across the great religious-to-reason divide.
*** Afterword ***
If you “buy” the premises of “The Last Lunch,” it’s a risk-free decision. You can always return to your religion. They will be happy to have you back.
But if you stay with your decision, your clergy will probably tell you that you risk going to hell. At that point, you may wish to ask them, “Which hell? The Baptist hell? The Catholic hell? The Moslem hell?” There are so many to choose from.