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Why Is Religion A Default Setting?

Religion isn't casual, it should be an active choice.

Why Is Religion A Default Setting?
alain abou-atmeh

Almost nobody chooses their religion anymore. It's as if being Christian in America is as natural as having eyes. You're born with them and it never changes.

Blind faith, believing because you were raised to believe, is passive. Just being a Christian because your parents are, because they took you to church on all the big holidays, that is not a strong faith. Choosing to believe despite other things, that is strong. Questioning your religion can strengthen what you believe.

I'm not saying you should drop your religion. I think everyone has a right to be religious and they are valid in their beliefs, but it should be an active choice you're constantly making, not a default setting because of our culture.

We have to be taught culture and religion. You're not born knowing you should brush your teeth twice a day or that there is an omnipotent God watching over you. So why do we act like it's natural? To accept God, or Jesus, or Mohammed, or Vishnu, or the Buddha as what they are to you is to make a decision. Therefore, we should act like it is one. Instead of raising our children to be exactly what we are, let's give them options. I don't plan to have kids, but if I did, I would want them to explore religion, and decide if they want to believe in something. It would not hurt me if they did not want to be an atheist, that is their choice.

Being an atheist is a choice I have to continuously make. People around me frequently question my lack of religion. I choose every day, when I'm confronted with billboards and churches and everything telling me there is a God, to not believe in him.

What's the point of forcing someone to be your religion? Not giving children the option to be anything but your faith does nothing. I have many friends who grew up going to church even when they didn't agree with the messages they heard. This did nothing for them but make them resent Christianity.

Religion used to be such a large part of everyone's life. You couldn't "casually" be religious. It was a part of your everyday life, and you were often persecuted if you believed the wrong thing. Now religion is such a side note for many people. Believing in God seems like a big deal to me, one that should warrant more thought and choice.

So question your faith. Think about it. Ask yourself why you believe. I may be an atheist, but I think it's perfectly fine to be religious. Some people don't want to debate religion with me, which I understand, but I think my questions can make your faith stronger. I also think it's a good idea to talk to people with different ideas than you on a regular basis. I'm fairly democratic but I follow Trump on Twitter and I try to at least skim some republican news sources. Don't live your life in an echo chamber where all you hear are the same opinions as your own.

If you're afraid to test your faith, you should reconsider what you believe.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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