PLEASE NOTE:

MyNews24 is a user-generated section of News24.com. The stories here come from users.

 
ingwe
 
Comments: 142
Article views: 835
 
 
Latest Badges:


 
View all ingwe's badges.
 

Meaning of atheist life?

23 January 2013, 15:59

Many of the theists who comment on the various articles give the impression of not understanding why many atheists or nonbelievers feel the way they do. The majority of the atheists were brought up in religious homes and environments (particularly those born into the white South African culture of National Christian life and education).

The bible was the one book that in many homes was read on a daily basis, the lessons were absolute and could not be questioned. Concepts that contradicted to word of the bible were automatically wrong. At the school I attended biology was not an option as evolution contradicted the creation story as presented in Genesis. The threat of divine punishment was a great weight on the shoulders of pre and pubescent teens.

The forbidden pleasures often resulted in confession and atonement in a vicious circle with the acts themselves. As I progressed through my school days I found myself questioning the religious teachings more and more. As a boarder at a religious run school there were many of the teachers and house masters who were available to answer the questions. Many of the answers were lacking in logic and conviction. I read the bible and found many things that did not make sense or were contradictory.

I started reading as many books and authors that covered religion and philosophical subjects as were available in the libraries I had access to. During national service we were constantly told that we had god on our side against a godless enemy.  I knew some of these enemies and knew that they held the views they did out of strong religious conviction. Who was right?

Before I completed my service I concluded that religion was a means of control, of suppression and silencing. For close to thirty years I continued to read but had because of where and with whom I worked to keep my lack of formal religious belief to myself.  The advent of the internet came as a breath of fresh air, I was able to read and study the writings of many atheist and agnostic authors.

I was able to read the writings of many theologians and to compare in some cases their views on the same subjects as the atheists. I was able to read up on and discover all the writings and work published on the evolution of the universe and the earth. I discovered great writers and thinkers but the one who has had the most impact on me and my thoughts was Robert Green Ingersoll. Nothing more so than his Vow!

"When I became convinced that the Universe is natural that all the ghosts and gods are myths, there entered into my brain, into my soul, into every drop of my blood, the sense, the feeling, the joy of freedom. The walls of my prison crumbled and fell, the dungeon was flooded with light and all the bolts, and bars, and manacles became dust. I was no longer a servant, a serf, or a slave. There was for me no master in all the wide world, not even in infinite space. I was free.

free to think, to express my thoughts

free to live to my own ideal

free to live for myself and those I loved

free to use all my faculties, all my senses

free to spread imagination's wings

free to investigate, to guess and dream and hope

free to judge and determine for myself

free to reject all ignorant and cruel creeds, all the "inspired" books that savages have produced, and all the barbarous legends of the past

free from popes and priests

free from all the "called" and "set apart"

free from sanctified mistakes and holy lies

free from the fear of eternal pain

free from the winged monsters of night

free from devils, ghosts, and gods

For the first time I was free. There were no prohibited places in all the realms of my thought, no air, no space, where fancy could not spread her painted wings

no chains for my limbs

no lashes for my back

no fires for my flesh

no master's frown or threat

no following another's steps

no need to bow, or cringe, or crawl, or utter lying words.

I was free. I stood erect and fearlessly, joyously, faced all worlds. And then my heart was filled with gratitude, with thankfulness, and went out in love to all the heroes, the thinkers who gave their lives for the liberty of hand and brain

for the freedom of labor and thought

to those who fell on the fierce fields of war, to those who died in dungeons bound with chains

to those who proudly mounted scaffold's stairs

to those whose bones were crushed, whose flesh was scarred and torn

to those by fire consumed

to all the wise, the good, the brave of every land, whose thoughts and deeds have given freedom to the sons of men.

And I vowed to grasp the torch that they had held, and hold it high, that light might conquer darkness still."

This is what not believing in myths means to me!! I hope that it will bring a degree of understanding to some.

Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.
 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
142 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Larry
International law is not a suicid...

Reason will apportion blame where it belongs. Only the children of Gaza are innocent and their blood is on Hamas’s hands.  Read more...

0 comments 0 views
Submitted by
Samantha Corbett
What does a book mean to you?

The right to literacy and the right to education should be fundamental pillars for every society. Books represent many things, but at their core, they’re a powerful medium for education and the growth and distribution of knowledge Read more...

1 comments 42 views
Submitted by
Reflect 014
Is this Middle Ages Plague stagin...

In addition to the ongoing spread and efforts to contain the Ebola virus there has been a re-emergence of a middle-ages bacterial disease known as Bubonic plague. Read more...

0 comments 32 views
Submitted by
Brian Faul
The unseen unkown world around us

For the past few months I have been involved in a project in my hometown. Read more...

4 comments 1227 views
Submitted by
Enzo Ball
The road of no return

I started making the transition to atheism during my mid-twenties. It wasn’t a single event or a tragedy that made me decide to abandon my religion.  Read more...

61 comments 557 views
Submitted by
Ryan_Ruffgrain

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Up to 60% off - clearance sale!

Save up to 60% on appliances, books, electronics, toys, movies and more. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Deal of the Week!

Get bestselling John Green novels now just R99 each! Hurry and get yours while stocks last. Shop here.

Mind blowing deals on beauty & fragrances

Save up to 30% off beauty and fragrances. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 50% off hair care products!

Save up to 50% on professional hair care products at kalahari.com. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off academic books

Score a mind blowing 30% off academic books! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

 

services

E-mail Alerts The latest headlines in your inbox

RSS feeds News delivered really simply.

Mobile News24 on your mobile or PDA

E-mail Newsletters You choose what you want

News24 on your iPhone Get News24 headlines on your iPhone.

SMS Alerts Get breaking news stories via SMS.

Blogs Your opinion on you, me and everyone.

Calais Website keywords automated by OpenCalais.

 
Interactive Advertising Bureau
 
© 2014 24.com. All rights reserved.
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.