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Thread: Questionnaire for Ex-Christians

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mystic Christian View Post
    There ya go. Another questionnaire! Oh, and atheists can answer it, too, of course.

    Geez, thank you for your permission.


    1. What denomination of Christianity did you start in?
    Pentecostal - though I was also involved with Catholics, Baptists, Anglicans, Uniting, Lutherans and Methodists (all very convoluted)

    2. How old were you when you left for something else?

    I stopped going to Church at about 18 and realized my atheism at about 23

    3. Why?
    I stopped going to church because I couldn't stand the hypocrisy and judgmental attitudes anymore. Oh, they were great support... so long as you stayed in line, did not argue or ask difficult questions.

    I call my atheism a realization because if I'm honest with myself, I've never really believed in god(s), but was more concerned with appearance of believing.

    4. What was your first interest and how did you pursue it?

    Sort of an eclectic spirituality, my search for something mystical that also made logical sense - I studied various religions and mystical traditions. My pursuit led me to MW actually.

    5. Are you in the same path now? (If not, why?)

    Nope. My near obsessive search for a path that bonded the supernatural with the natural crashed due to logical inconsistencies, ridiculous paradoxes and required assumptions. In the end, I settled for a Carl Sage -esque view of the universe.

    6. Will you raise your kids in that path? (If not, why not?)

    Our children will be raised as secular humanists - yes. But they will be free to choose for themselves.

    7. How did your friends and parents reacted?

    My friends were mostly atheists anyway... I was the religious guy in the group. My parents are constantly dropping passive aggressive hints and remarks.

    8. Do you feel comfortable expressing your faith publicly?

    No, cause I don't have any - so there is nothing to feel comfortable or uncomfortable about.

    9. Are you completely satisfied with your path, or are you seeking something else?

    It is impossible to be satisfied with my atheism, it's a null position. But my humanism and naturalism/materialism serves me just fine.

    10. Do you have friends on the same path (not on MW) with whom you can worship or conduct rituals?

    Errr no.
    Last edited by Infinite Grey; November 29th, 2009 at 07:17 PM.

    Our ignorance is not so vast as our failure to use what we know. ~ M. King Hubbert

  2. #32
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    St. Augustine, Florida
    Age
    43
    Posts
    1,588
    1. What denomination of Christianity did you start in?

    Southern Missionary Baptist...in one of those one-room deals with no air conditioning...

    2. How old were you when you left for something else?

    14.

    3. Why?

    I felt that the Bible was the most boring book in the world, the stories and beliefs were stupid, "God" and "Jesus" seemed completely fake to me, and everyone associated with the church was unbelievably idiotic. (If you think I'm arrogant now about being smarter than everyone else, you should have met me at age 14!)


    4. What was your first interest and how did you pursue it?

    It was the 80s, and I didn't have access to much. I made up my own Path based on looking at the excerpts of "bad" stuff in those Satanic Panic books. (IOW, if it said, "You should watch out if your kids do _____." then I would do "_____.")

    5. Are you in the same path now? (If not, why?)

    Nope. I was an avid reader, and eventually ended up reading a lot of Mary Renault, and her descriptions of Hellenic Polytheism rang "true" to me. I could believe in the gods of the Classical world, but the gods of the Abrahamic religions have always felt as "real" to me as Mickey Mouse and Santa Claus.

    6. Will you raise your kids in that path? (If not, why not?)

    Already do. Three wonderful girls. They have their own altars to their favorite goddesses in their rooms. (Though my oldest is all about Kemeticism. At 7, she knows more about Egyptian religion than me.)

    7. How did your friends and parents reacted?

    None of my friends have ever really known me as anything but a Pagan. My parents didn't know until I was out of the house. (It _was_ the era of the Satanic Panic, peoples!) I eventually "converted" my mom, who is more of a White Witch than anything else now, and my dad, who died recently, was never a spiritual nor intellectual person.

    8. Do you feel comfortable expressing your faith publicly?

    Yes, unless I am worried about anti-Pagan backlash, particularly where my kids are concerned. (There are a lot of mean, hateful people in the world.)

    9. Are you completely satisfied with your path, or are you seeking something else?

    My path is essentially "eclectic," because I follow a Classical (Greco-Roman) Polytheist path, so there isn't really any issue if I adopt deities or whatever from other pantheons, so long as it is respectful. I sometimes seek new deities, but I always essentially worship from a Greco-Roman mindset.

    10. Do you have friends on the same path (not on MW) with whom you can worship or conduct rituals?

    The only ones I actually see in person are my family, and that's all I really need.
    ________________________________________________________________________

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  3. #33
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Bronx, New York
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    1,883
    1. What denomination of Christianity did you start in?
    Roman Catholic.

    2. How old were you when you left for something else?
    I was 38 years old when I first started considering myself a pagan.

    3. Why?
    I totally lost faith. One day I looked up at a crucifix and all I saw was a homicide.


    4. What was your first interest and how did you pursue it?
    I needed something to fill the void that was left when I abandoned Christianity. I found that a part of me was still deeply spiritual. I started looking and was surprised to find that I could relate to Wiccan tools and the entire altar setup and it's rituals. There were so many similarities I just kept reading and looking and before I knew it, I had adopted a new faith.

    5. Are you in the same path now? (If not, why?)
    Yes I am. The path is a long and winding one, but it has been a very fulfilling one so far.

    6. Will you raise your kids in that path? (If not, why?)
    Absolutely not. My two boys have been brought up to think for themselves. Whatever faith they decide to follow, they will come to it on their own.

    7. How did your friends and parents reacted?
    My family does not approve but there's not much they can do about it. My friends accept me as I am, or they wouldn't be friends.

    8. Do you feel comfortable expressing your faith publicly?
    Totally! I have several tattoos (pentacle, triple goddess) that are very visible. I wear my various talismans openly. I've never been a closet pagan. People can think what they want about me, as long as they don't get in my face. Another reason I didn't make a good Christian was that "turn the other cheek" stuff. That just isn't me.

    9. Are you completely satisfied with your path, or are you seeking something else?
    Completely satisfied in my faith. I am always reading always learning something new. I trust in the God and Goddess to guide me on my path.

    10. Do you have friends on the same path (not on MW) with whom you can worship or conduct rituals?
    I am a solitary till date, not in a hurry to join a coven or anything like that. I've met several fellow pagans over the years but would not call them close friends, more like acquaintances.
    Last edited by Pagan's Sword; November 29th, 2009 at 09:29 PM.

  4. #34
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Owensboro KY
    Age
    45
    Posts
    57
    1. What denomination of Christianity did you start in?
    Methodist

    2. How old were you when you left for something else?
    20

    3. Why?
    wasn't feeling it and had a lot of issues witht he believes of the church

    4. What was your first interest and how did you pursue it?
    Wicca

    5. Are you in the same path now? (If not, why?)
    no now I am more of what you would call just pagan

    6. Will you raise your kids in that path? (If not, why not?)
    yes

    7. How did your friends and parents reacted?
    they were fine with hell most of friends are on the same path

    8. Do you feel comfortable expressing your faith publicly?
    no

    9. Are you completely satisfied with your path, or are you seeking something else?

    yes

    10. Do you have friends on the same path (not on MW) with whom you can worship or conduct rituals?
    yes
    amydoll1477
    Follow Your Bliss-Joseph Campbell
    myspace

  5. #35
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    Cape Breton, Canada
    Age
    28
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    2,421
    Awe damn, I can't do it. I was not raised Christian.





  6. #36
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Idabel, Ok
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    26
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    132
    1. What denomination of Christianity did you start in?
    First Assembly of God

    2. How old were you when you left for something else?
    I felt an attraction to Paganism since I was about 12 but was not introduced untill I was around 14.

    3. Why?
    Alot of things about Christianity did not make sense to me. I questioned too many things, at a young age I began asking where god came from. "Who made god? Who made the entity that made god?" Then one day I realized that although "God" gives you the choice to follow him or not follow him you are honestly only able to choose a lesser of two evils. Burn in hell for eternity, or spend eternity in heaven where nigh everything is taken from you. What are you supposed to do? Spend eternity playing checkers with Noah??

    4. What was your first interest and how did you pursue it?
    Hmm... Well everything is of interest to me. All I have done is research, I first started to study Wicca, "To ride a silver broomstick" was the first book I read over paganism. Then I read the Satanic Bible and the Satanic Rituals, the I read the Necrinomicon, and went into a couple years of spiritual regression. (I moved out of my parents house at 15 and did not settle down untill this year) I have looked into Asatru but due to my heritage, but I am still looking for something that fits me.

    5. Are you in the same path now? (If not, why?)
    I have yet to find a path that fits me.

    6. Will you raise your kids in that path? (If not, why not?)
    I will attempt to keep thier minds open to all religions. If they wish to be Christian so be it, if they wish to be Satanist so be it. As long as they are happy.

    7. How did your friends and parents reacted?
    My mother I am sure will be "okay" with it. I doubt that she will be happy with my decision but she will not stand against me she knows full well that I will not tolerate closed mindedness. My step father on the other hand is the exact opposite. He was a deacon and his father is a preacher at a First Assembly of God. My great grandmother was vehemently opposed to me attending a Catholic church so I doubt she would be happy with me being pagan. My friends for the most part are all open minded.

    8. Do you feel comfortable expressing your faith publicly?
    YES. I do my absolute best to open the minds of all who broach the topic of religion around me.

    9. Are you completely satisfied with your path, or are you seeking something else?
    As stated before. I am still searching for a path.


    10. Do you have friends on the same path (not on MW) with whom you can worship or conduct rituals?
    I know few pagans, and those whom I do know are no where near the place in which I reside. I live in the bible belt
    Open your eyes to the infinite possibilities of your own mind, look beyond the dogma of the civilization in which you live and aspire to be more than a blind sheep which shall feed the belly of the beast we call normality.
    Upon the realization of your own beliefs you will become more than bound mule with which the scrupulous invokers of ignorance shall use as a means to pull forward the hypocritical, demeaning, closed minded dogma of normality, you will become an eagle whom has the means and the will to be free and soar upon the winds untill the end of time.
    Thus you have invoked and established your own freedom.
    Be intelligent, be zealous, be strong, be corageous, understanding, and honorable, but foremost be free my friends.
    ~Illumin~

  7. #37
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
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    Mini-Tortuga
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    5,415
    1. What denomination of Christianity did you start in?
    Southern Baptist / None. My mom and dad were from different states. We moved back and forth when I was little. I don't recall ever setting foot in a church when I lived in my dad's state. Then my parents divorced when I was 7 and I moved to my mom's home state, then my grandparents got custody of me. -They were shocked when I was around 3 or 4 and thought Jesus was like the Easter Bunny. My mom wanted me to be old enough to understand what was going on before she took me to church. -Then the grandparents got custody of me and I HAD to go to Sunday school EVERY Sunday.

    2. How old were you when you left for something else?
    In my mind I was never "with" the church. I went because I had to go. I was never given a choice. (A good chunk of my family worked there and my grandfather's ancestor helped found the place.)

    3. Why?
    I could never take it seriously. Nothing ever rang true to me. It was like you had all these stories and some were nice, but they were just that, stories. I remember sitting at the table in Sunday school once, I think I was in high school (I'm that quiet one that hardly ever says anything) I remember listening to them, my classmates and teacher talking about how tarot cards are bad and the work of the devil and how everyone was just agreeing along like sheep. I wanted to say that tarot cards, or any cards are just items, it's the intent behind them and the interpretations given that could possibly make them seem good or evil. A card, any kind, is just that. A card.
    Another thing I noticed was how prosely... prosey... we were told to spread the good word, but no one ever actually did it. ( )

    4. What was your first interest and how did you pursue it?
    You know, I don't remember really. I remember one time I ordered this book on stars through some school thing and the company was low on stock so they sent me a Greek Mythology book as an apology. (or it could have been the other way around, it was years ago.) I didn't get internet until ... 7th grade? I had to pass an algebra test to earn it. (woohoo dial up, lol). Then in 9th grade or maybe 10th I had a class called Classical Culture (latin, greek and roman myths.) - Something sparked my interested. I guess that's somewhere along the lines of where my interest started.

    5. Are you in the same path now? (If not, why?)
    I'm not on any path. I want to follow the path of my ancestors. I'm doing genealogy to try to find where all they were from. So far I have ancestors from:
    England, Scotland, Ireland, Wales, France, Germany, Switzerland...
    So I guess I'm looking at Celtic or Norse? I do have more of an interest in Celtic though.

    6. Will you raise your kids in that path? (If not, why not?)
    There is no telling. I need to find a path and learn it first. I'd like them to be able to make their own decisions, however,
    First I'd need to: (not necessarily in this exact order)
    learn that whole dating dooflatchee and meet someone
    marry them and have a kid or however many
    MOVE somewhere not here. - I am LITERALLY surrounded by family that has no idea I'm not baptist and they are REALLY baptist. I don't care for an earful, so I keep my beliefs to myself.

    7. How did your friends and parents reacted?
    Family - no idea. Although funny enough my Gran gave me a book on tarot and deck of cards that was hers once. (Did not know that... she knows I have an interest in astrology. So no telling what she knows, I just leave it where it is.)
    Friends - don't care. One friend was into it for a while, but went back to Christian after reading the Narnia books. She's okay with it, she likes to find ways to celebrate the changing of the seasons.

    8. Do you feel comfortable expressing your faith publicly?
    Honey, I live in the south. HECK NO. I do wear a pentacle ring though. No one seems to know what it is, either that or they just don't notice. - Haven't been able to wear it this fall, it's too big right now.

    9. Are you completely satisfied with your path, or are you seeking something else?
    Still seeking A path in general.

    10. Do you have friends on the same path (not on MW) with whom you can worship or conduct rituals?
    Nope.


    Freedom of speech means not only the freedom to say what you want, but letting others have the freedom to say what they want, regardless of whether or not you agree with it.

  8. #38
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Atlanta, Georgia
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    39
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    453
    Quote Originally Posted by Mystic Christian View Post
    I made this up myself, asking the things about which I am curious:

    1. What denomination of Christianity did you start in?
    Didn't start in Christianity. I was raised in a (pretty much) non-religious home... in Tennessee, somehow.

    2. How old were you when you left for something else?
    Around 8 years old. I can distinctly remember thinking, 'So the Holy Ghost isn't really a Ghost?' The idea of 'God' didn't sink in at all. Slid off of me like water on a duck.

    3. Why?
    Hell, I dunno. My brain is programmed that way.

    4. What was your first interest and how did you pursue it?
    Mythology, mostly. Bulfinch and I are old friends. The first myth that I can remember really enjoying is the Twelve Labours of Heracles.

    5. Are you in the same path now? (If not, why?)
    I was never on a path to beging with. Stuck at agnostic. Went through phases of this and that, but never committed to anything.

    6. Will you raise your kids in that path? (If not, why not?)
    No path to raise them in. I'll just let them make up their own minds.

    7. How did your friends and parents reacted?
    Friends were cool. Mom told me I was going to church every time the doors were open... then I threw her hypocrisy in her face and she never said another word. It isn't an issue now. Dad could've cared less.

    8. Do you feel comfortable expressing your faith publicly?
    Sure. It's easy to say, 'Hell, I dunno.'

    9. Are you completely satisfied with your path, or are you seeking something else?
    I'll never be satisfied with any belief system. I'm always gonna be a seeker, and I have a feeling that I'll never find what I'm looking for.

    I'll probably be one of those people who die feeling alone and clinging to life with my last ounce of will because I don't want to be erased when I die.

    10. Do you have friends on the same path (not on MW) with whom you can worship or conduct rituals?
    No rituals to conduct. My ritual is going to work, loving my wife, and attempting to show honor and decency.
    Cease then and let me alone,
    that I may take comfort a little before I go whence I shall not return,
    even to the land of darkness and the shadow of death;
    a land of darkness, as darkness itself,
    and of the shadow of death without any order,
    and where the light is as darkness.


    - Job

  9. #39
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Here. Now.
    Posts
    3,775
    1. What denomination of Christianity did you start in?Presbyterian

    2. How old were you when you left for something else? 22

    3. Why? Christianity just hadn't been cutting it for me. It started with being raised in an interfaith household, studying other religions in college, and trying to reconcile my homosexuality with Christian dogma on the subject.

    4. What was your first interest and how did you pursue it? I'd explored Zen Buddhism and Baha'i in college, but my first real interest was Wicca. I read a lot, took some classes, attended open circles, and worked with the Pagan group at my college (I'd just graduated and still had a lot of friends in the group).

    5. Are you in the same path now? (If not, why?) Not really. I'm still Pagan, but I'm now a non-deistic cottage witch. I finally realized that my real underlying issue with Christianity is that I don't believe in deities. That cut Wicca out of the picture pretty well, too.

    6. Will you raise your kids in that path? (If not, why not?) Cats have religion?!? No, seriously, I'm childfree, so that's not going to be an issue.

    7. How did your friends and parents reacted? Since a lot of my friends were already Pagan, their reaction was, "Yeah, OK, whatever, see you at Yule." Mom was pretty upset at first, because she thought Pagan = devil-worshiper, but we got that sorted out and now, apart from the periodic reminder that "Jesus will always welcome you back," she's pretty accepting. Dad just doesn't talk about it. I think he still thinks it's just a phase I'm going through.

    8. Do you feel comfortable expressing your faith publicly? To an extent. I'll tell people I'm Pagan and give a broad overview of what that means, but I won't give specifics of my own personal beliefs or practices.

    9. Are you completely satisfied with your path, or are you seeking something else? Right now I'm completely satisfied, but as I grow and change, so will my path. It's not that I'm seeking anything new, but that my path is constantly becoming something new, just as I am.

    10. Do you have friends on the same path (not on MW) with whom you can worship or conduct rituals? There's my wife. Her path isn't exactly the same as mine, but it's close enough that we have no problem walking side-by-side. There are also a couple of witchy friends we get together with for ecumenical Pagan solar festivals.
    If you're lucky you'll find something that reflects you,
    helps you feel your life protects you,
    cradles you and connects you to everything.
    Dar Williams, "The Hudson"

  10. #40
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    185
    1. What denomination of Christianity did you start in?
    Roman Catholic

    2. How old were you when you left for something else?
    I'd say 17

    3. Why?
    I think it was the guilt, having to keep track of sins like someone on a diet counts calories. The sacrament of confession made me cry *every* time. Also, the fact that women couldn't be priests; the idea that I couldn't approach God directly because what was between my legs just didn't make any sense to me, and well, it may seem superficial, but church was boring.

    4. What was your first interest and how did you pursue it?
    I had been interested in world mythology since elementary school, but I was first introduced to Wicca. This was the first book I ever read on the subject:

    http://www.amazon.ca/Book-Wicca-Heal...9613069&sr=1-6

    5. Are you in the same path now? (If not, why?)
    Nope, it just didn't fit me, particularly the system of ethics (funnily enough). It's not that I wanted a free pass to go around hexing people, it's just that it seemed completely ahistorical to me. I think the soft polytheism was also a point of contention, and trying to squeeze deities into "maiden, mother, and crone" categories seemed to ignore other aspects of goddesses that do not fit that mold.

    6. Will you raise your kids in that path? (If not, why not?)
    I don't plan on ever having children, but I don't think I would. I'd like them to have a solid grasp of many religions and let them choose what to believe in.

    7. How did your friends and parents react?
    lol, my parents think I'm an atheist. Pagans don't exist to them. My friends don't really care either way.

    8. Do you feel comfortable expressing your faith publicly?
    Not really, my neighbourhood is Catholic and I think they'd call the cops on me if they witnessed anything strange. I wear a Goddess pendant around my neck in public, though.

    9. Are you completely satisfied with your path, or are you seeking something else?
    I'm not sure, I'm still trying to work out what my path actually is.

    10. Do you have friends on the same path (not on MW) with whom you can worship or conduct rituals?
    No, I'm a lone wolf, I like to do my own thing.

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