Note: If you are religiously thin-skinned, this post is not for you. Please bypass it and read one of my more conservative posts. Thanks 🙂 If you are open-minded and ready for some controversy, welcome!
With that being said, I struggle with religion. I was raised Christian -religiously. Meaning, there were rules -so many rules- and regulations to be followed. I didn’t get my ears pierced until I was eighteen and that got done when I went on vacation to visit my sister in another state. No makeup, no jewelry -definitely no ankle bracelets because …you know…. the harlots wore those. No nail polish and if you did, it better not be red because…you know…that was the color the harlots wore. You can’t go to the movie theatre, can’t go to the school dance, can’t go to parties because…you know…Christians are to separate themselves: “come ye from among them“. If you marry, don’t divorce. If you divorce, don’t remarry. Cause if you do…that’s a sin. If you’re unhappily married, pray it through, God will deliver you because “whom God joined together, let not man put assunder”. Well, what about those that God didn’t join together? you know, the ones who see all the signs of “Don’t do it!” and they do it anyway. The ones who get every warning -divine and earthly- that this isn’t the one for you and you sign the marriage certificates anyway. If God didn’t join them….why stay?! Your mate is a drunk bastard who beats you? “hold on…Joy cometh in the morning” and let’s not forget “God never gives you more than you can bear“. No. That’s garbage. pack up and run. If you don’t have time to pack, just run. I digress…. You grow up thinking that everything outside of your religious teachings was a sin. That all other religions outside of your own wasn’t “complete” for lack of a better word. So you grow up Christian. Religiously. And then you discover your love of research. and asking questions. and getting answers. Outside of the Bible?! :O oh no oh no oh no. Why I can’t wear pants? “because the bible says a woman is not to wear men’s clothing.” Yeah, but I buy my clothes from the women’s store, not the men’s store or even the men section of the store, sooooo how is that a “man’s clothing”? And who came up with that anyways cause back in the bible days EVERYBODY WORE DRESSES. I digress… Why can’t I wear earrings or a wedding band (when I get married)? Cause we shouldn’t adorn ourselves with jewelry. Maaaaan please. a pair of earrings and a ring? Yea, o.k. You should see my jewelry armoire now. I’m pretty sure I’m making up for what I wanted growing up… Why can’t I go to the movies or parties? “Because the bible says don’t conform, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds” Yea, that nice Jesus of mine hung out with the thugs and thieves. He liked them, and from what I see, he enjoyed a good party too: “we outta wine?! Man bring the water so I can change it so we can keep this party going!” If I stick to hanging out with Christians, who am I going to influence and inspire to “find the light of Christ”? Exhale.
Religion is exhausting and contradicting
Slavery: as bad as slavery was, has been and will always be, the first mention of slavery that I’m aware of was in the bible. The children of Israel were slaves to the Egyptians. Therefore, if it was allowed then, why wouldn’t it be allowed in this age? So of course the slave owners reflected on this using the bible itself. And you know those slave owners were some praying, God-fearing folks! [insert hard-eyerolling emoji here]
Also, Noah cursed Canaan, and Canaan is the offspring of Ham… and it is said that black people are descendants of Canaan and therefore they/we are cursed to be slaves to others…. Research has shown that this is false teaching and only used to justify racism. Fast forward years later and we come to the history of slavery right here in America and so many other countries and islands all over the world.
Inter-racial dating: back to the bible again. Deuteronomy 7:1-6 tells the Israelites to destroy all the inhabitants of the Canaan land and not to intermarry with them because they would “turn your sons away from following Me, that they may serve other gods.” Let’s take it back to the first point. Slavery. And if the slaves come from Canaan, it’s safe to assume that Canaan was black. IF the Canaanites were black and GOD said not to intermarry with them, then it must mean that INTERRACIAL dating/marriage must be wrong. Again, this is all based on religious teaching.
Homosexuality: don’t panic. Let me start off by saying I do not condone or condemn. It’s not my place. It is simply my place to love and honor you in the place in which you stand. The choices you make are your own. The fact is that homosexuals suffer discrimination because the bible says it’s wrong. O.k. The story of Sodom and Gomorrah -cities located in the southern region in the land of Canaan…I digress– is pointed out regularly. Here’s the thing: at no point in that story did it say “God sent Abraham to set those two cities on fire.” God set those cities on fire for his own reasons. He didn’t need help or permission from anyone. So why do we as humans take it upon ourselves to “metaphorically” set people on fire? Not only that, but it says that God set those two cities on fire because “Then the Lord said, the outcry against Sodom is so great and their sin is so grievous that I will go down and see if what they have done is as bad as the outcry that has reached me…” skip over to the next chapter and you find a whole slew of men wanting to be with the male visitors (angels) that Lot had in his house. Those angels blinded those men “…Then they struck the men who were at the door of the house, young and old, with blindness so that they could not find the door.” (Genesis chapters 18 and 19). So those men were blinded. Those same angels could have killed them just as easily. But they simply blinded them. Again, read it for yourselves. The bible never said God set the two cities on fire because everybody was homosexual. It says God set the cities on fire because their sin was grievous. You know how many sins are considered grievous to God?! A WHOLE HEAP OF THEM. But what does religion do? pick a “sin of choice”, zero in on it, isolate some people, discriminate and crucify over and over and over again. Because, you know…. every body is God.
Church: there’s a quote by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr that says “…it is appalling that the most segregated hour of Christian America is 11 o’clock on Sunday morning.” I would venture to say Sunday on a whole is a day of segregation. Christian religion believes it’s the RIGHT religion. All other religions are wrong or just haven’t gotten it right yet. And at the same time, all other religions believe that they’re religion is the RIGHT religion. Everyone is bosom-buddies from Monday to Saturday, but come Sunday, we all retreat to our proverbial “corners” and worship our version of God the way we apply him to our cultures and tradition.
Religion speaks of a Forgiving God. Then the religious people punish people for screwing up. Basically, God forgives you but we don’t. Do you know that they would “read out” a young woman out of the church for getting pregnant out of wedlock? I mean, they would take the time out of their Sunday to let the church know “hey, so and so got knocked up so this is official notice that we’re scratching her off the members list. Once she has the baby and comes back she can start fresh” I’m pretty sure the wording is different/deeper/”more loving”, but the context is the same. Yep, it happened to me. I don’t know how it goes, but I know it went. I didn’t attend church that Sunday because WHO wants to experience that humiliation? Well, why go through that? I’ll still be unmarried and toting my beautiful happy baby. Soooo why go through all that? Shouldn’t my screw up be between me and God? Yep, I’m sure someone said “well, if you had just kept your legs closed you wouldn’t have to go through that.”… but you know…it got good and -as an older lady said- I forgot to get up” LOL!!!! Gotta laugh at some of this stuff if not it’ll have you in a corner hugging yourself, rocking and humming softly. And from what I see and know, a whole heap of them went through something similar at some point. Why rain down such judgment on someone else?
That is my main problem with religion. The continuous rainstorm of judgement. The good book says “judge not, less you be judged” and yet…. every day… judgement rains from religious people. Then when their leaders screw up, suddenly it’s “let God be the Judge”. HUH?!
So, yes. I confess: I have issues -deep issues- with religion. Not just Christian religion, but religion on a whole. I only focused on the Christian religion because it’s what I know first hand. I write from what I know.
What are your thoughts?