June 18 2013, 11:17 PM
Re: Have You Ever Changed Your Mind...
Life is about many things, and one of the more important aspects is building your perspective. The best way to build it is to keep an open mind and not be afraid to question anything you've learned before, to treat nothing as absolute (except for maybe a few fundamental things--we do after all need a rock bed of mental security; the Earth will continue to spin and bring the sun back to our land one more day!).
Generally speaking, religion is the antithesis to this way of thinking. There are some denominations that are more flexible than others, but for the most part the predominant ones hold hard and fast to certain beliefs and will not tolerate questioning or reconsideration. That means they are stunted--they cannot grow.
Life is a thing in motion. It changes. It grows. A series of ideas, thoughts, stories, and edicts laid down in a written work is a fixed thing. It's fine for stories not to change. But thoughts and edicts most certainly can. In the Western world, our understanding of Earth sciences (especially biology and physics) was next to nothing some 2000 years ago (there were Asians who understood it much better). So when various premises were laid down in religious texts, they were framed with that limited understanding.
It is now clear with human biology that sexual orientation is not a choice. It is a physical manifestation. We are not exclusively heterosexual. But try to explain that to anyone 2000 years ago, and you would've been proclaimed a follower of Satan. I still cannot get over how backward certain religions are, all in the face of the public eye. And some of them wonder why they are gradually losing more followers every year...
I have changed my mind about a number of things.
- I used to believe in Christianity as it is written, but then I found the holes... and watched people change the way they interpreted the words to suit their own life situations, rather than doing it for truth. I saw a Pastor beloved by many say that grass was the devil's work, because it bears no fruit only taking the soil's nutrients for its own selfish needs and not giving back. WTF?
- I grew up believing that the USA was all about doing good in the world, that it was keeping the Earth's countries from tearing each other up. Now I see it for what it is... and I'm deeply saddened by it, astounded at the corruption that lies within.
- Society is far more primitive than most people care to believe. They are masked by an illusion of technological comforts that makes it seem more civilized than it is. They do not see what is really afoot, and usually because their lives are so full of personal stress and issues that they just don't want to think about it.
- I used to be more optimistic. I'm not a die hard pessimist, but I'm not so certain we're going to make it as a species. I wish there was something I could do to help, but it seems about the only thing that has any real effect is to just try helping others whenever you can.
- Anger and regret are the emotions that should be felt for a moment then discarded quickly thereafter. DO NOT HOLD ONTO THEM for they are emotional poison.
You also get hugs.
Yeah, as I've said before, I'd rather see an ugly truth than a beautiful lie.
J., since you brought up your switch from christanity to atheism, I do have that say that even when you where christian and was very open about that, you never ever pushed it on people. I always respected that about you, and part of why I grew to like you.
Now, as for my own self. I used to be hardcore romantic, believing in there being such a thing as "the one", et al. These days I'm more realistic. Oh sure, I like romance and doing something romantic for the objects of my affections (so to say, I don't really objectify people) is not a foreign concept. But I think now that love is able to come in many forms and that surely there can't be just one person out there out of billions to be just for me? One hell of search in that case.
On the case of of homosexuality, I found it "icky" for the longest time. pretty much all the way up to high school when I realized that I developed a crush for a guy and well....I understood that the feelings aren't much different, so why should a personal who is homosexual be much different from someone straight. That and he was really cute. Now I'm pretty securely bisexual, if with a heavy intonation towards women.
I think in general in my past I saw things in much more black and white. Right and wrong. These days I try to see the other argument to a matter. I don't always succeed, especially when my temper gets the better of me. But I try not to judge anyone outright.
Yes! Some of the most beautiful things you can see, happen in shades of grey. I should also thank you for being my friend. You're a good man, Emher
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