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Meditation 29
Becoming Agnostic

by Travis Rieken

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I have been surfing your website for the last couple of days and have thoroughly enjoyed the content. I personally want to thank you for providing a place for all of the people of the Agnostic state of mind to state our thoughts.

Truthfully, I have only come to realize that I am Agnostic within the last couple of months although I now realize after some thought that I had been Agnostic for a longer amount of time.

I was born into a family of diverse religious backgrounds. My mother was and still is devout in her beliefs in Christianity. She is conservative in her beliefs which really does not bother me. I never really knew what my father's religious beliefs were because I never really asked and will never know as he passed away about a year and a half ago. But I do know that one time upon saying I was going to church he asked why. So I can assume that he was either Atheist or Agnostic.

I surrounded myself in my early teens with individuals that spent their life in church. I attended church on a regular basis as I thought that it was the right thing to do. So I guess I can say that truthfully I've never had religion in my life. I now believe that a large reason for myself attending church was basically out of fear. My belief is that many attend church out of fear (Fear of hell, Fear of death, etc). Some people believe my last thought might be ludicrous but I am still a firm believer in fear being a reason for finding religion.

And lately to cement it in my mind that as humans we will probably never know if there is a Supreme Being or not, I did a good amount of research on Freud and Jung after finding interest in the field of psychology. In my time looking around the website, I don't see any content from what I believe are some of the greatest thinkers in history. Freud believed that religion was the neurosis of man, a disease. He also saw projection in religion. Projection is a defense mechanism which we all use. In terms of religion, most people project a father-like figure as God. For example, if they haven't had a great relationship with their father they might see God as an angry-God. Jung on the other hand was not as negative as Freud. Jung's belief was that if you believe in God, then there is a God. To look at it at another level: If one believes in Santa Claus then in that person's mind there is a Santa Claus. I'm not saying that this shows proof either way of a god or of no god but it is an interesting perspective.

I have recently witnessed personally certain people showing animosity to me whenever mentioning the word Agnostic. I have had people, whom before I went public with my new found views were considered friends, quit associating with me because I am not a Christian. For a religion of persons who preach loving and forgiveness, most of the people whom I have run into don't practice what they preach. I am not going to budge with my views. The world needs to become more accepting of of differing perspectives on life.