It's no secret that I no longer identify as a Christian.
It's been nearly two years since I "came out" about it pretty publicly, so if you didn't know and you thought you knew me, well. I'm sorry. If you don't know me at all, I can briefly tell you that I was raised in a Christian home, said the sinners prayer when I was five, worked for a handful of big Christian organizations, spent several years overseas as a Christian missionary, and married a pretty amazing Christian man.
Everything I knew about myself and the universe was strung tightly around my unwavering Christian beliefs. Honestly, I wasn't even aware that there were other valid world-views until 2009, when I started traveling.
The deconstruction of my faith began slowly in 2007 and carried all the way through 2014, which is when most remaining fragments dissolved completely. It was not an abrupt and chaotic crisis of faith. It was a slow and steady undoing. Many people are capable of asking questions without pulling the whole thing apart, but my ability to think critically was so suffocated by theological vomit that I needed to unload it all bit by bit, set it on fire, and walk away.
Now, two years sober, I find myself unable to identify with any title other than
I say sober because while not every religious person can be categorized this way, I was totally and stupidly inebriated; drunk on a mindset which was bottle-fed to me from other loving, well-intentioned Christians. I spent so little time thinking about what I believed and why, that I convinced myself of the absolute foolishness of reason and logic. I was certain that God would tell me everything I needed to know about the Truth if I listened well enough, so I gave my mind an easy out and told myself that critical thinking was unnecessary, and worse: that it was for the weak-hearted who didn't know how to believe.
While I do maintain that some things are unknowable, and that some understanding comes from a transcendent, spiritual awareness which reaches beyond the limits of concrete data,
I believe that omitting critical thought, healthy skepticism, and active doubt from any faith-journey is essentially a form of spiritual and cognitive suicide.
So, for the last two years especially, I've been standing back at square one, investigating and looking on with awe at the billions of things I do not know.
This year, I am more intentionally cataloguing that journey, and for the most part, I'll be doing that here: under this little "spirituality" tab on my little blog space.
As a guide, I'll be reading through, "The Story" which is essentially the Bible in novel form, and supplementing it with other reads (both Christian and non-Christian) to aid me in my ventures.
I'll ask questions, share a variety of perspectives, offer resources, tell stories as often as I can, and do my best in general to actively engage in a much larger conversation the world is having about faith, science, spirituality and meaning.
For some of you who have thought long and hard about these things, my impending thoughts and questions may seem obvious or elementary, and that's okay, because in many ways, I feel I am only just beginning. For others of you who can relate to the foggy feeling of unconscious faith, I hope that this journal-like blog thing proves to be a helpful, illuminating guide. Like a little firefly humming and hovering around your own spiritual path.
Up first: Genesis. Because, beginnings.