By Tom Holmes
1 In what village do you live? Forest Park
2 How old are you? 58
3 Occupation? I am an executive assistant for a restaurant management company.
4 What was your childhood religious experience like? (In other words do you think you are reacting against it or evolving from it? My childhood religious experience was good. I am a pretty sensitive person and I took religion very seriouly when I was young. I went to Catholic grade school and high school and I would say that I am evolving from that Catholic education. The more I learned about other people and religions, the less Catholic faith I had. And when you are Catholic it is all about the faith and believing that the Catholic religion is the one true religion.
5 How would you define "none" for yourself? i.e. believe but don't belong, or spiritual but not religious, or agnostic/atheist. I suspect different people have different definitions for how the term applies to them.
I call myself a humanist. I think I learned values and morals from both my parents and at school and church, but I do what I do because (I think) it is the right thing to do, not because I am afraid of going to hell or being reincarned as a bug. And if God does exist, I really don't think he cares that much whether I worship him or not. I
6. How did you get from #4 to #5? i.e. what changed you if there was a change?
The more educated I became, the more I realized that there have been many problems caused by religion, in the name of GOD. People who think GOD answers their prayes or saved them from a tragedy really annoy me. I just can't help thinking things like "why you" and why not more needy people? I also think, that the religious zeal in politics today is also stupid. I learned about Jesus and none of these crazy zealots act like Jesus. You know like "Judge, lest ye be judged", "Turn the other cheek", "What ever you do for the least of my brothers", etc. So those are some of the things that kind of turned me off about the whole idea of religion.
However, I may be an atheist, but I also think that if faith/religion works for you, that's fine. I would never try to talk someone out of whatever they believe. As a matter of fact, I sometimes wish I did believe. I am sure that there is a lot of comfort that people get from their faith.