Thursday, October 1, 2015

A Year Without Faith, Less Church, more Mimosas.

So It was about a year ago that I had my falling out with religion and faith in general. Considering that the Pope just finished his whirlwind tour of the U.S. and Cuba I think now is a good time to reflect on this year of absolutely no religious activity (aside from railing against it) and how my life has changed.

First and foremost, my life is much more at peace and contemplative. As a child I never enjoyed church and always loved those Sundays where my parents were too busy, lazy or distracted to make us go.  They were lazy Sundays spent outdoors, like a skipping a day from work or school, a personal free day, knowing that everyone was busy, and you had the streets, woods, house to yourself.  I am glad to say, those Sundays are back. Lazy cycle rides and fun gay brunches populate my Sundays now.

Secondly,my family is profoundly uncomfortable with my anti-church, possibly atheist, fervor.  I cannot bring myself to step into a church. My mother is very worried for my soul which is odd because she's a Presbyterian. Short chats with family about her concern, and I thought Presbyterianism was the mayonnaise of main-line Protestantism, maybe there's some spice there yet. Also there are the small religious rituals, practiced reflexively over a lifetime I've let slip away. Saying grace, small prayers, even types of condolences seem fake, and I try to avoid them. 

Finally, there's just a general anger at organized religion in general, with its siren song of salvation, redemption and canned platitudes.  I had a glimmer of hope with the Pope with his glorious PR campaign and sweet words and then he runs off and has secret meetings with anti-gay crusader Kim Davis.  Which says to me that bigotry is tolerated, as long as it slips in the back door. As a gay man, it completely invalidates his messages and all the hard work he was trying to accomplish. It also reaffirms my disbelief in organized religion, whether its the Vatican or Coral Gables Congregational, religious leaders promote dialogue and inclusion but they only want to hear their own words repeated back to them and include only those who agree.

 "Waiter, another mimosa please."

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