Like many South Africans I was born into religion and I am sure most of you can relate in some way. My denomination was the AGS Church; according to many this is the more “lenient” Afrikaans church. Luckily I was never forced to go to church, my mother (PHD Psychology) had enough logic to understand that religion couldn’t be forced on someone but unfortunately the impressionable boy that I was, couldn’t disappoint her. I went to church every Sunday mindless of what I was being taught the only thing I knew was, whatever was written in the bible must have been correct.
I was under the impression that “grown-ups” where older and wiser and they would not make a fool of me or so I believed. It’s just funny when I think about it now. Believe like a child. Children really do believe anything that they are told. Santa will not bring you toys if you where naughty!
The years progressed and I found myself in the “God Circle” That specific group of people you had at school preaching bull crap and annoying you overall. I walked with a bible under my arms, literally! Preaching and damning people to hell. Very non-judgemental of me I know. (All of you will burn in hell you infidels) I Was on top of the world. I knew that I had the answer; my place was reserved for me in heaven and the rest could just suck it! Then I had my delusion buster.
My father committed suicide. I did not know how to react to this. According to the Catholics if you kill yourself you will burn in hell our church never said it outright but I know what they were thinking “you shall not kill” one of the 10 commandments in the bible for those who don’t know. The rules were then watered down to “do unto others as you do to yourself. The definition is very vague but the Christians interpret it the same. My father will not go to heaven. I was at a loss for words. I prayed for days and nobody answered so I did the only logical thing I knew, videogames. This will betray my age for those who know what island boy and ninja turtles are. I played for week’s non-stop only to stop for a few hours of sleep and the occasional Steri Stumpie. It saves lives I promise you!
I was trying to make sense of the bible in correlation with what happened to my father. Do you know how difficult it is to get a straight answer from a priest? They always give you the same answer. God has a plan; God works in mysterious ways and never question the will of God. What pissed me off the most was the following statement “God has a plan for you, predefined destiny if you will but when you commit suicide you go outside of that plan and you can’t reach your destiny. How can you use the word destiny and then go around and say it’s not destiny. Even a person of average intelligence must see the contradiction.
I continued going to church prolonging my agony but this time it was to debunk the lot of them. I could see everything with a clear mind and was no longer wearing my God goggles. Here is few examples of what I had to deal with at church.
Speaking in tongues, you could literally say anything and people would regard it as divine blessing. Supposedly you would speak in another language but this couldn’t be further from the truth. They were just making shit up. I chuckled because it’s really funny to see a bunch of people just blurting out random sounds. My popularity was declining; luckily I could blame it on my father’s death so they tolerated me for a long time
Exorcism, this is the biggest load of tripe that you can subject a person too. First they make you believe that the things you did wrong is not because you are human no it’s because you have been possessed by some lame demon who had nothing better to do. This demon then micro manages your body and uses you like a drooling zombie. Only when the pastors scream and pray the demon decides he is irritated enough and leaves the vessel. Almost like Constantine but without the cool special effects. You won’t believe how many people fall for this
Mass healing, wow have any of you guys been to one of these spectacles? They use mass hysteria to drive these people into frenzy; they will believe anything you tell them. This stunt unfortunately only seems to work in big groups where you can be coerced into believing in something that you know doesn’t work. Luckily adrenaline makes you superman for a few moments so the hoax seems to work for the few deluded. It’s just strange that tannie Sarie who was healed last Sunday has the same illness this Sunday but with a better attitude (strange).
So many things I thought to be true were an utter lie! I couldn’t be part of this farce anymore. I tried to convince my friends explaining the logic behind it but they only rejected me saying that they couldn’t be my friend anymore. (very Christian like, thank you) In reply I opened my satchel with a nice cold beer in it and opened it up in front of them and said: “Thank God I don’t have to feel guilty about this beer anymore” Left and never spoke with them again.
Noting has changed. I still care about people and try to help where I can and I have a moral life if you want to call it that. What are morals I suppose it’s different to each person. The only thing that has changed is that I am not chained by guilt and resentment anymore I don’t have this fear that I will not go to heaven and I have made peace with the fact that when I die I will probably cease to exist.
Religion was exclusively created to control people and the only way they could make you to believe it was to promise delusions of mass grandeur and if you did not follow these rules you would end up in the so called “hell”. Stop torturing yourself. Free you mind and body and experience all the things life has to offer you. You only have one life my friend. That reminds me I have a cold beer in the fridge…