5 Ways My Life Is Better Without Religion

Just to be clear, this is not about why religion is bad. This is about how my life is better now that I’m not religious anymore. Because my experience of organised religion is based on Christianity, this post is going to be very much Christianity focused. If you’re a Christian, please don’t take it personal.

A few years ago, I realised that I had reached a point where my being a Christian was not really making a difference to my life. I wasn’t praying, I wasn’t going to church, and  I hadn’t picked up a Bible in ages. I picked what parts of Christian doctrine to live by, completely ignoring others. I basically wasn’t doing any of the things that Christians would normally qualify as being a good Christian.

So I put my religion up to some serious scrutiny. What was Christianity really doing for me that I couldn’t do for myself? Did it give me inner peace? I could get that with meditation. Purpose in life? Didn’t need Jesus to figure that out. Guidelines on how to live? I could take advice from the Bible without actually being a Christian. Heaven? I figured if I worked hard at being a good person and God still decided I wasn’t good enough for heaven, then I didn’t want to be in that heaven anyway. Push come to shove, I would just hitch a ride to a different heaven. Anyways jokes aside, I put some serious thought into what I really, truly believed – my personal creed, if you will – and found that I didn’t need to be a Christian to believe it and live by it. So I stopped calling myself one.

My life has improved tremendously in many ways since I left the church, but here are the five major ones:

I don’t feel guilty for doing what makes me happy: As a Christian I found that I would repeatedly do things that Christianity frowns upon, feel bad for doing them, and apologize to God, only to go back and do them again. Basically I was a hypocrite, telling God I was sorry for doing things that I knew I would most definitely do again. I realised the reason for this was that I wasn’t really sorry, because I didn’t truly believe what I was doing was wrong. I only felt bad because the church said I should. When I stopped listening to the church, I stopped feeling bad and started feeling free to live my live the way I want.

I don’t feel like I have to make excuses for God when bad things happen: As a Christian I spent a lot of time wondering why the world is so fucked up and why God ‘lets’ bad things happen. I would make up all kinds of explanations as to why a supposedly benevolent God lets his creation suffer. Things like ‘God works in mysterious ways’ and ‘this world is not our final destination’ are some of those flowery words I would come up with, that sound like so much hogwash to someone who just lost a child in a car accident, or lost a mother to cancer. These days I acknowledge unfortunate events as things that just happen, I grieve and then I do something about them if I can. I don’t spend valuable time asking God why, or searching the Bible for ‘answers’, or trying to explain on his behalf.

Sex doesn’t make me squirm: Christianity has a particularly strong disgust for ‘sexual sins’, like pornography, fornication, masturbation, homosexuality, and so on. I’ve never understood the link between marriage and sex, and why I should ‘wait’, or ‘save myself’, so I had sex, a lot. And enjoyed it. I also didn’t see why pornography was such a big deal. So I watched it. But my Christian upbringing also meant that I would sometimes feel dirty afterward. It seemed to me that I was expected to feel dirty and ashamed for enjoying a beautiful, natural act that isn’t shameful at all and doesn’t harm anyone. Sexual freedom is taboo in Christianity, especially for women.

Female virgins are celebrated in the Bible as though the state of one’s hymen is the measure of their worth as a human being. But now that I no longer subscribe to Christianity’s aversion to sexual matters, sex is no longer a furtive, shameful thing to me, and the fact that I’m not a virgin is a non-issue. I’m very comfortable talking about sex, and I don’t get irrationally worked up and feel the need to preach to people who masturbate, have sex with as many people as they like, or enjoy pornography. After all, who has consensual sex ever harmed?

I’m way more open-minded: Seeing as my framework for morality is no longer based on the Bible, there are a lot of things I previously condemned as being wrong (without really understanding why) that I am now more willing to evaluate objectively. For example, as a non-Christian I am now more open to understanding why some people are transvestites, or why some people are sexually attracted to animals, without passing everything through the ‘Bible says it’s wrong’ sieve. I don’t necessarily agree with everything I used to think was wrong as a Christian, but I now find it easier to evaluate things on their own merit, not against the (often arbitrary) Christian standards of right and wrong. My framework for right and wrong is now based on logic and universal principles any rational person can agree with, regardless of religion.

I don’t have to struggle to stay awake in church: The struggle was too real. Each Sunday morning I would grudgingly drag myself out of bed,  scan my closet for something church-safe to wear (I usually settled for the same dress every Sunday, it became like a uniform), get to church and promptly fall asleep in my seat. The over-sabi usher who found joy in waking me up in the most embarrassing way possible was my mortal enemy. But now that I don’t feel an obligation to go to church, my Sunday mornings and afternoons belong to me. I go to church if I feel like it, not because I must. So if I’m tired, I don’t go. If I’m not in the mood to be told things I already know, I don’t go. If I have other things to do (like sleep an extra 5 hours), I don’t go. Which is very often. In a weird way I kind of miss that usher though.

Over to you! Have you also discovered that you don’t need religion? Do share your experience in the comments. If you’re a religious person, let’s hear about the impact of your religion on your life, whether positive or otherwise.

The following two tabs change content below.
Avatar

K. Rukia

Avatar

Latest posts by K. Rukia (see all)

Post tags:
Comments
  • Avatar

    Hi Rukia,

    I was wondering…do you think a human being can wake up one day and realise that they are not human afterall…that they are in fact a dog living in a human’s body?

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      I don’t know. You’re probably in a better position to answer that.

      February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      Chinedov

      Ufuoma, I assume you’re civilized enough to know not to call everyone with a contrary opinion names.

      From your comments littered across different posts on this website, you come across as a condescending and sanctimonious blowhard. Which is a rather twisted way to live this beautiful life you’ve been offered.

      Accept people’s opinion. They’re not forcing it down your throat you willingly read through it hoping

      If you really get this outraged by the words of a stranger over the internet, you need to reevaluate your self-worth.

      Goodnight.

      February 24, 2016
      • Avatar

        Hi Chinedov,

        I don’t know which comments of mine you have read that showed that I called anyone names. I can only assume that your read the comments of others ‘accusers’ like you, who accused me of calling people names and forcing my opinion down their throats. I assume that you have decided to join the bandwagon and call me ‘condescending and sanctimonious’ without actually reading my own comments. If I write to defend myself from such claims, and I have done so repeatedly, like I am doing now…it somehow gives the impression to new readers (at least you are new to me), to believe that there is something to the claim. But I won’t stop saying there is no basis to the claim, because I have never called anyone names! And I have also expressed repeatedly other people’s right to disagree, the same as I uphold my right to disagree.

        Now, my comment to Rukia was simply because I felt it would only be a logically possibility in a world where people wake up and decide they are actually a different sex (not even a different gender) than they were born. I just wanted to understand how far that ‘openness’ extends. I am not calling her a dog or calling anyone a dog…. It is a logical question.

        And no, I am not and have never been outraged by comments of posts. If I speak or write passionately about something, it is only because I feel passionately about it. And you have passionately written to me, based on little supporting evidence and hearsay what you think and YOU have called me a name (being ‘blowhard’), while chastising me not to call others names.

        I really wish you and others reading will do more investigation before you jump on the band wagon! I know I am an easy target because I am a Christian, but that doesn’t make it right. And you should also check the way you are putting forth your criticism too.

        Sincerely, Ufuoma.

        February 24, 2016
        • Avatar
          Chinedov

          Errrmmmm… Auntie Ufuoma.

          What you always do is play the victim, and like Rosamond Pike from Gone Girl, you have done that quite remarkably.

          In my reply to you, I said “you come across as a condescending and sanctimonious blowhard”. To break that down for you, I meant that your comment activities are consistent with those of a “condescending and sanctimonious blowhard”. This doesn’t make you one – but it damn well makes you look like one to anybody that has followed your posts, replies and comments closely.

          Now, to address how swiftly you moved to categorize me as an “accuser”. All I did was advise you to accept people’s opinion – even when they differ from yours or come across as ungodly and iniquitous. How does this make me an accuser, biko?

          If so many people “accuse” you/complain about you like you cited, then there’s bound to be an element of truth in what they’re saying. After-all, there’s no smoke without fire.

          You’re turning this into a Me against the world scenario pretty fast. You talk about evidence like it would take me an hour to dig up all the dirt – but I haven’t got that kind of time to spend on something that doesn’t put money in my pocket. No one is attacking you, you just happen to carry a target sign around while also playing the victim.

          A bandwagon doesn’t run on water – it’s fueled by the comment activities of people like you.

          February 24, 2016
          • Avatar

            Thanks for your reply. It is duly noted. I dare not say more to fuel your smoke and fire theory.

            On another note, there is no need to call me Auntie, or Ma’am. Ufuoma is just fine. Thanks!

            February 24, 2016
        • Avatar
          K. Rukia

          I’ll be honest, it really seemed like you might be calling me a dog, for whatever reason. Anyway.

          “do you think a human being can wake up one day and realise that they are not human afterall…that they are in fact a dog living in a human’s body?”

          First of all, are you asking about possibility or morality?

          If it’s possibility, my answer is that anything can happen. You might as well have asked me “do you think a fish could transform into a human being?”

          If it’s morality, as in, do I think it is right for a human being to “wake up one day and realise that they are not human afterall…that they are in fact a dog living in a human’s body?”
          My answer to this is that I do not care. How am I worse off because of someone’s realisation that they are really a dog? If I come across such a person I would probably pat them on the head like a dog and keep it moving.

          February 24, 2016
          • Avatar

            LOL! I had to laugh at the picture you painted about patting this person on the head.

            I don’t know what answer I was expecting from you. It wasn’t a moral question, however, it was a possibility question. And your answer is “anything is possible”. I’m not sure you really believe that anything is possible. If you believe in science…I’m not sure you can make such a claim comfortably.

            Logically, I don’t think ‘anything’ is possible…except when one believes in God…that is where anything is possible. Even then, God operates on rules…such that He doesn’t even allow Himself to over-ride our will. So, there are somethings that are not possible, even for God. Like, it is impossible for God to lie.

            However, I actually do think that it is very possible that someone in this world we live in NOW can wake up tomorrow and declare that he or she is in fact a dog, and I am saying that because things I thought could never happen in this world are happening! All the rules are being forsaken, so that we can do just whatever we please… If such a thing was to happen, I don’t know if I would blame it on morality…but definitely, I would think that the person is crazy, and whoever believes that that person is actually a dog, instead of a man or a woman, is also crazy (in my opinion).

            Madness has little to do with morality…but we get mad when we dethrone God It may not be immediate madness, but it will come. It is a sort of mental illness, because God made our minds and made us to honour Him. So, in a world where there is no God, no rules, no morality…this outcome is a real and near possibility.

            Sincerely, Ufuoma.

            February 24, 2016
      • Avatar
        Od

        @Chinedov, “civilized enough to know not to call everyone with a contrary opinion names”? And then you go on to call her a condescending and sanctimonious blowhard! And then you tell her she needs to reevaluate her self-worth if she takes offence at a stranger’s writings on the Internet.

        You are like a bastion of hypocrisy or something. Seriously.

        And, yeah, I read your next reply and the one after that and I can’t help but wonder if you’ve ever looked in a mirror. You should probably buy one.

        February 25, 2016
  • Avatar
    Claire

    What an amazing write up. I’ve not finished though. But the introduction got me already. I will not comment for fear of blasphemy. I’d just read and ponder in my head. Truth is every Christian has asked these questions at one point. There are a few areas I can make you adjust your perspectives but it’s cool.

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      Od

      Very big challenge trying to “make anyone adjust their perspectives”. Even God leaves that kind of open-ended.

      February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Thanks for the compliment Claire! Glad you enjoyed it so far. I hope you get around to finishing and maybe change your mind about commenting.

      February 23, 2016
  • Avatar
    Claire

    Enlighten me though…. why would you accept that someone is a transvestite or homosexual. I don’t still get that part.

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      I don’t think I said anything about acceptance. The word I used was “understand’.

      That being said, I would put the ball back in your court and ask why you wouldn’t accept a transvestite or homosexual. Also what do you mean by non-acceptance? You’d have them segregated from other ‘normal’ people? Imprisoned? Killed??

      February 23, 2016
      • Avatar
        Od

        Rukia, she said, “accept THAT SOMEONE IS a transvestite or homosexual. I don’t still get that part.” That’s very different from what you are implying that she said in your reply.

        February 25, 2016
  • Avatar
    Od

    Ok, this promises to be fun, lol.

    Apart from your third paragraph, I could have written all of your article and it would all be true. Ok, I never did feel liberated like you did, never got to the point where sex didn’t make me squirm, for example, but I did get to the place where I got mad at God for making me squirm about something I tried so hard to control and which he didn’t seem very interested in helping me out with.

    I never felt that Christianity prevented me from being open-minded, not really. In my Christian upbringing, yes, I felt the sheltering and taboo attached to checking out other possibilities but I did anyway. I read, watched a lot of TV. I was way more exposed to life as a kid than even my parents knew and I always had a huge curiosity about things that were different and strange. I honestly don’t remember whether I ever felt guilty for investigating all sorts of things. I think I probably did but I’m not sure I ever felt that way because of some sense that I was violating Christian principles. It was very likely more because of how Christians I read or listened to talked about such things…and I always tended to question authority.

    And I never got to feeling good about what makes me happy. I’ve always felt a suspicion of happiness. I felt that I might be hurting someone just focusing on how happy I was feeling about something.

    So maybe I would have written those parts a bit differently. But everything else minus that third paragraph was exactly my story.

    I got to the same point that you did. I questioned my Christianity and decided to call things what they were: I couldn’t be a Christian if I was constantly asking God to forgive me for something I wanted very much to be doing and I had tried so hard to be this Christian I read about in the Bible that God seemed to want me to be. So I dropped everything and tried to live completely as a non-Christian. It was eventful. Spanned two eventful years. And I didn’t mean to stop. Told God I was sick of trying and I hated how much I’d given up playing at Christianity so he could either make it real himself or leave me and my conscience alone to live life as I wanted.

    He did the former.

    And it was really like being born new. Like I was seeing everything for the first time. My mind literally exploded with curiosity and wonder at life and the world. It felt like every dream and thought I had before was too small, too constricted, like there was a whole world out there to explore and I had been choosing to dig a hole and hide in it.

    For the first time, so much I’d grown up with, so much I’d read started to, I don’t know, become real, meaningful. I’d never quite trusted authority and now I could tell why. I used to fall asleep in church and even get mad at preachers who didn’t seem to bother to read the Bible themselves unless it told them how to wheedle money out of people and now I knew why. I increasingly grew to understand what they were failing to say on the pulpit. In short, I felt like I came alive.

    It hasn’t been all fun, I’ll admit. I make choices that are very costly socially, economically and romantically. I have deliberately denied myself pleasures or things that would make me happy to have or do. And I’ve been scared, terrified about consequences of choices I’ve made in being a Christian.

    But, as you probably know, all that just comes with the territory. And it even makes sense. People don’t eat the seeds they mean to plant. Sometimes you take one to the jaw so that you have a fighting chance at something bigger. We all do it, Christian and non-Christian. But Christians tend to do it deliberately and for larger reasons generally.

    Make excuses for God? I learned to stop that from the Book of Job but I’m still curious why things happen sometimes so I ask. When I learn why I share. If I don’t know I own my ignorance. After all, God isn’t quite obliged to share his reasons with anyone. Kind of his prerogative as God and sometimes he keeps secrets because we can’t handle them. “Knowledge is power”, right?

    You know my views on sex. Enjoyed it when I had it. Felt guilty too (which was why I got mad at God before). But I learned why it matters so much and have kept from it since. I like it enough to want to thoroughly enjoy it and savor it without too much thought. It’s exhausting and pleasure-killing always defending your behavior to yourself. And, like I said, I understand now why sex in marriage only so why go to all that trouble?

    Open-minded? Ever since God took the reins my problem has been handling the flood of knowledge and insight. Sometimes I have too much to know what to do with. It’s like I’m stuffed full and then have to grow to make space for more. I understand stuff now. Which is why I don’t accept a great deal of it. 🙂

    I don’t go to church every Sunday either. I don’t hate church and I don’t advocate not going but I’m not a fool. Not every building with a pastor at a pulpit is a church. And not every time is it safe to expose yourself to the things people preach. Jesus and the apostles warned that many false prophets and preachers would arise to draw away disciples after themselves and Jesus himself told us that at a certain point in history when men tell you to come to a place because Jesus is there you should not go. I have been in several different churches and learned practically how deep the spiritual rot is and how very risky submitting oneself to a system of worship is. So I pace myself. I go when I can but at the first sign of contamination I pull back.

    Do I still need to say how being a Christian has affected my life? I think I already did. I know what life is about now and I actually have the power or ability or resources to live it right. That is pretty awesome. I like the fact too that the purpose I got in exchange for the one I made up absolutely blows the alternative away.

    Ok, this is long enough. 😀

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      hrhlordsleek

      Good points. I’d have thought I know who typed this. Basically sums my view about the piece: it all depends on the individual and when God ‘decides to catch’ that individual.

      February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Thanks for contributing, OD! Love how personal this comment is.

      I’m curious to know more about how God made it real for you and how you knew it was the Christian God.

      February 23, 2016
      • Avatar
        Od

        Before he did, it was all strain and messy. If my brain wasn’t twisting around what I was supposed to be doing as a Christian, it was twisting around how much I didn’t want to do it. For example, the sex thing. I don’t know how many times I gave my life to Christ in my teens over that. I was always messing up in some way again. And I really really wanted to be messing around with girls. Like, really badly. The stuff was in my head driving me crazy and I was supposed to be a Christian. It was like pretending you aren’t thirsty in front of an oasis on a very hot day in the desert. Made better sense to just shoot yourself dead.

        But when God came in, it’s not like I stopped having a sex drive. It was more like I didn’t have to deal with it alone anymore. It didn’t have to be all willpower and restraint. Somehow something changed inside of me. I really wish I could speak of it with measurements and stuff but it was really like I changed. So, the strain began to diminish and it increasingly became natural to simply stay away from sex. I didn’t have to push at myself anymore about it. I slipped up a lot but I eventually came to being years without a roll in the hay.

        The day it began, the day he made it real for the first time, it was just something inside that changed. Something about my personality, not necessarily my habits immediately. That latter has taken time. And it’s still ongoing.

        How did I know it was the Christian God?

        There are claims that the Bible makes about him. If they proved true then it had to be him, right? If they didn’t, then it was all hogwash really. That’s how I knew. My experience had to agree with the stuff in the Bible and when I saw that it did, I knew it was him.

        February 23, 2016
        • Avatar
          K. Rukia

          That’s interesting, thanks for sharing. So basically for you the Christian God is someone who takes some of the burden of doing the ‘right thing’ off you so you don’t feel stressed and alone. Inspirational!

          February 23, 2016
    • Avatar

      This reply and your subsequent one are where I choose to stop reading. Cos there’s really no point. You’ve said everything that needs saying.
      If I’m ever in your city, I owe you a drink or lunch or something.
      Thank you for sharing this.

      February 24, 2016
  • Avatar
    kierkedaark

    Very well written, Rukia.
    I share many of your views. Actually, I share pretty much all of them. I know how it feels to have those little ‘wars’ within yourself while you just try to be a decent person. There was always some nagging voice in my head harping on about how much I’d failed and would never be good enough, etc. For my sanity’s sake, religion had to take a back seat. I’ll revisit the issue later, I hope. (Lil’ B, don’t panic if you read this.)

    I hope you don’t mind me answering, Claire. I know you asked Rukia. My own reason for accepting transvestites and homosexuals is very simple. It’s none of my business. If two consenting adults want to get in on, nothing to do with me. If a man wants to wear women’s clothes, as long as he’s not spending my money, I’m good. His problem. I like to think of this matter as almost being the same as having a roommate (the planet being our room, I guess). Yes, we may share a bathroom and toilet but, as long as you don’t leave ass-hairs on the toilet seat and generally clean up after yourself, I don’t really care what you do in there.

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Hi Kirk! Thanks for sharing, and helping to answer my question, lol.

      I like your analogy about the roommate. It’s not your business what he does in the bathroom as long as he doesn’t leave it dirty for you. Exactly.

      February 23, 2016
  • Avatar
    olamii

    Your articulation was meticulous and precise but i dare say all you have stated only holds true to you and maybe one or two other like minded individuals. I beg to differ and i implore you that you answer these questions:
    1. Do you believe in meta-physicals?
    2. Have you ever had an experience that you genuinely believe is above the physical….(spiritual)?
    3. Can you give a firm YES to whether when you sleep tonight,you are bound to see daylight?
    4. Can you explain the mystery behind the breathe in your nostrils?
    I would have loved to go on, but i hope i have not taken you out of context or offended your person or reasoning, so i will leave it as this right here.

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      JAL

      Hi Olamii,

      All your questions can be answered by yourself if only you do ask the right questions and seek the right answers. Depending on how much knowledge you have gathered in your quest for answers, you would know the right answers. I have been atheist since I was 8, and I have spent a good many decades asking and reaffirming answers. That is also a beautiful thing about being atheist or agnostic- you can ask questions and seek answers beyond the average limitations of religion and become way more enlightened.

      I do not know your background, so I would not really want to start answering your questions because it could be a waste of both our times if you do not understand certain concepts of the natural world (or I cannot communicate clearly with you). Now this is not an insult, it is more like a physicist explaining the Higgs Boson to an Investment Banker who is talking about arbitrage. Both are extremely smart and successful (hopefully) in their fields, but they might as well be speaking Latin to the other person. Only if they are both curious to ask questions about each others fields and appreciate the knowledge there would there be any communication and advancement.

      In summary, I can easily, answer your questions, but why give a man fish when you can teach him to fish. If you insist, I would gladly oblige with responses to any possible question you can think of concerning this matter.

      February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Hi Olamii, thanks for contributing.
      In answer to you:
      1. Yes
      2. Yes. E.g. when I orgasm.
      3. Yes. If I don’t die or go blind, or if the sun doesn’t explode, or any number of unpredicatable things doesn’t happen
      4. There is no mystery, is there? The breath is mostly nitrogen, with some hydrogen, oxygen and some trace gases

      February 23, 2016
  • Avatar
    Sally

    I really feel this piece. The cognitive dissonance during my Christian days was deep. And I really did try my best, I wanted to believe, made myself active in the church, pushed down serious doubts I had from the time I was a child but the whole while I felt I was pretending to be someone I was not. Why would a God create someone with such a capacity for love and just expect them to be ok with the fact that people all over the world who didn’t share my faith would be doomed to hell, people who were friends or coworkers? How could I possibly be happy for all of eternity knowing that? A couple of the many questions that bothered me, along with the guilt of always feeling dirty, like something that was from a faulty batch. There was no comfort in salvation, only a reminder that something in me was defective.

    Leaving the rigid dogma was probably the best thing that happened to me. I don’t feel like a hypocrite doing good things waiting for God to give me gold stars so I can enter heaven with no visa. I am more consious of the repercussions my actions have on people who are on this earth with me now. I don’t feel like my existence is some blemish; whatever faults or flaws are nothing more than things to work on and improve as opposed to one way tickets to hell. I’m not afraid to die, only concerned with living well and truly being of service to those around me.

    I don’t think any faith has a monopoly on truth and the truths they hold so dear might not always be valid for all no matter how much one may need for them to be. Death is daunting, so is the search for meaning in life and the possibilities of afterlife but I’m not going to Pascal’s wager my life out of fear. If there is a God (at least the way he is being conceptualized in Christianity) then he already knows my heart and mind, I can’t fool him. So let me just live my life authentically, let me reap what I sow. Anyway I’m sure an omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent God would have better things to do/worry about than how my short existence in comparison to his infinite one is lived.

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      WonderWoman

      This is beautiful! I wish people were more open minded and honest with themselves!

      February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Hi Sally,

      Love the entire comment but this particular statement really got to me: “I’m not afraid to die, only concerned with living well and truly being of service to those around me.” This says it all.

      We are definitely vibrating on the same frequency. Thanks so much for sharing!

      February 23, 2016
  • Avatar
    twisted

    Rukia darling? I love people like you and so does Jesus
    The reason? Its people like you who are so headstrong in your beliefs God uses. At the end of the day, you’ll end up using that same obstinacy to advocate for him.
    so while I don’t agree with you on anything you have said, I don’t judge you either. You are allowed to share your opinions. Its TNC after all

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      JAL

      Nah…Hopefully Rukia would not need to go back to faith (of any kind other than meditation/Yoga).

      @Rukia, if you do have any issues, ask more questions, seek more answers, do something towards solving it and do not rely on the belief that someone/something else would take care of your problems.

      February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Thanks for commenting, dear Twisted! You can keep your fake love though 🙂

      February 23, 2016
  • Avatar
    Miss James

    The truth is religious teachings will make you feel all of these things you just mentioned, just like OD said, I once felt the same way until I realised that I don’t have to struggle on my own to make heaven, that my fate was settled when I got born again and each time God sees me he sees what Jesus did on the cross and is very unrepentant about my righteousness therefore He cannot decide that I no longer qualify.

    I’m not gonna lie, I have an idea of why you feel you’re better off not being a Christian and that thing is called religion.

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      woyi_oc

      “I have an idea of why you feel you’re better off not being a Christian and that thing is called religion.”

      and this brings us to “Why Religion-based Morality Is Flawed And What Can Be Done”.

      Here’s the link http://thenakedconvos.com/22475-2/

      February 24, 2016
  • Avatar
    S

    This is so beautiful.
    I can relate to every single thing, it’s pretty great to know I’m not the only one out there. There is this article I read about how church is not the place for a young black girl.
    I don’t know if it’s the way I see religion being practiced here that turns me off it. But I do know that at some point in my life I would like to maybe try a different spiritual experience, most likely Judaism.

    February 23, 2016
  • Avatar
    Buchi

    Every day, a post that relates with my mind’s present preoccupation. TNC is on some kind of roll.
    Talking about the post, I’ve been in the battlefield as well, probably still there. I think I’m coming to the conclusion that, for me, religion is a tool necessary in a society that is all too willing to forgo values.
    I’m of the opinion that Religion has its purpose, as our everyday ideas for right or wrong has its base in religion. Its not the be all and end all however, and like a flexible constitution, it should be malleable enough to receive modifications and version updates in order to continually remain relevant in a dynamic society.
    It’s not perfect, and it doesn’t totally define my life or actions, but it’s useful and I won’t readily throw it away.

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      thetoolsman

      ” ….it should be malleable enough to receive modifications and version updates in order to continually remain relevant in a dynamic society.”

      Didn’t need to type after reading that. Well said.

      February 23, 2016
      • Avatar
        Buchi

        Thanku Sir.

        February 23, 2016
      • Avatar
        Od

        Tools, the text of the first paragraph of comments now looks bunched up. And inserted images seem to be gone. Is this a glitch or are you guys testing something?

        February 25, 2016
        • Avatar

          Hmm. Haven’t noticed this. On mobile or desktop? Maybe send a screenshot? Also just added a picture to this comment.

          February 25, 2016
          • Avatar
            Od

            No, images like that are displaying ok, Tools. I meant the emojis like the smoothies and glasses of champagne you’re always sharing. 😀

            Screenshot of the comment thing is on this post. I’m on a mobile.

            February 27, 2016
          • Avatar
            thetoolsman

            Ive noticed the issue with the comments. It’s restricted to some devices it seems. We’ll work on that. As for the emoji’s that just because of the device. Some emojis are not available on competitor devices.

            February 27, 2016
          • Avatar
            Od

            I used to see the emojis just fine. I noticed both issues at the same time on the day I mentioned it to you.

            February 27, 2016
        • Avatar

          @od hmm.. Can you see this? ??

          February 27, 2016
          • Avatar
            Od

            Ah, yes, I can. You’ve fixed it. 🙂

            February 27, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Hi Buchi, thanks for being here!

      I agree with you, religion definitely has its uses. Care to share how it has been useful to you?

      February 23, 2016
      • Avatar
        Buchi

        Welcome Rukia.
        It’s been of use, not just to me, but to Civilization as a whole. Most of our basic values of right and wrong are derived from the tenets of religion, Whether Christianity, Islam or what not. Whichever way we look at it, the Ten Commandments is responsible for the bulk of the laws and dictates of past and present societies.

        February 23, 2016
        • Avatar
          K. Rukia

          Most of our basic moral values might derive from some religion, but it could just as well be the other way around you know – that our basic moral values were carried over into religious doctrine.

          Not sure about the Ten Commandments being responsible for the bulk of past societies as you said though… so many ancient societies existed without knowledge of these commandments and had their own laws and moral dictates, many (but not all) of which we would still agree with today.

          February 23, 2016
          • Avatar
            Buchi

            It’s a possibility that our basic moral values were probably carried into religion, however, the earliest I knew about morality, I knew in religious or religion-fed settings.
            And about the ancient societies, you’ve got a good point, but then, they also had their own religions too. The Mayans, Greeks, even ancient Arabia, we’re Pagans, and that too, is a religion. Their societal values stemmed from their religion. I think.

            February 23, 2016
  • Avatar
    Ray

    I think it’s important for anyone trying to understand this post, to note that Rukia didn’t say God doesn’t exist or religion is something everyone else should shun. She has only stated what works for her.

    Anyway, I am not a good Christian. I believe God exists, I have questions about His existence and the Creation of the Almighty, I would like to know what happened before that beginning where there was Word and the Word was with Him and the Word was Him; but I have chosen to kill my curiosity because I will likely never find the answers and I noticed Good Christians hate my Questions. I don’t attend church all the time and I don’t feel guilty when I don’t. I don’t pray for hours or ‘scabbash’ anymore, but I talk to God and somehow, I know He listens. I’m not an adept reader of the bible. I don’t like good Christians so much cos they have a tendency to force their faith on others. I regard the good nature of people way higher than their Christian beliefs. I engage in sin and I do not kid myself into apologizing to God and promise to stop cos I know I won’t stop. But I do know that I will get to a point in my life, when I will take my faith serious and Have a great relationship with God but that time is not now.(Please spare me that ‘what if you die now’ talk’).
    I think the important thing is to understand if religion actually works for you and to be comfortable with whatever choice you make. And for those who choose to have a relationship with God, like Nosa said some posts ago, understand if you follow God because you love Him or because you are afraid of eternal damnation.

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      Anonymous Aboki

      But what if you die now, ehn?

      February 23, 2016
      • Avatar
        Ray

        Then, whatever happens afterwards, so be it.

        February 23, 2016
      • Avatar
        joe

        maybe we should describe the Heaven most people want to go to

        1. street made of gold, gold is of no importance when it becomes a common commodity or what you can just pick on the floor, i dont see anyone craving after loamy soil or clay soil.

        2. There will be no Family, no food, no drinks, i dont know about sleep, no marriage, no sex ( c’mon no sex?) no drugs and mary jane. pls what are we going to be doing?

        3. we will be singing halleluyah and blowing trumpets. pls for how long? take your time and calculate for how long eternity is.

        if we are to judge by biblical standard of confessing christ and following his teachings to make heaven,people like Tupac ,Notorious BIG, Gandhi, malcolm X, king Haley Selasie wont make heaven, though we dont know how they spent their last moment. I really want to meet these great people again.

        maybe we assume they are at the other side, does it really make sense burning people in hell and still claim “the all loving god”

        just maybe there’s a third place not like we are sure of the heaven and hell.

        February 24, 2016
      • Avatar
        Od

        Bro, how you been? Seen my mail?

        February 27, 2016
        • Avatar
          Anonymous Aboki

          I’m alright man! I’ve responded.

          Salaam.

          February 28, 2016
    • Avatar
      hrhlordsleek

      Key Point: “understand if you follow God because you love Him or because you are afraid of eternal damnation”. Alotta people do it for the latter

      February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      “I think the important thing is to understand if religion actually works for you and to be comfortable with whatever choice you make.”

      Major key Ray, thanks for pointing this out!

      Btw. What is a scabbash?

      February 23, 2016
      • Avatar
        Ray

        You’re welcome.
        Lol to scabbash is to speak in tongues.

        February 24, 2016
    • Avatar
      Hunnie

      Lol don’t deceive yourself… the earlier you become serious with God the better for you.

      Some people just don’t like to hear the truth

      February 24, 2016
      • Avatar
        Ray

        Here we go again.
        I said I am ready, I assume you know my life better hence you know what my priorities should be.
        Anyway, know your truth and I’ll know mine.

        February 24, 2016
      • Avatar
        Tee boy

        Hunnie…what is truth?
        Or do you mean your truth?

        February 24, 2016
  • Avatar
    KaBuK

    Interesting piece. Bold too, I’ve always thought (Ms) Rukia is a true refusenik…this further reinforces that notion.
    That being said, I’d like the author of the first comment to be less elliptical as I think that’s way out of line even for a Child/Man of God.
    PS: I’d like to pick Rukia’s mind before I die.

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Abeg which one come be refusenik? Lol

      You’re welcome to pick my brain anytime 🙂

      February 23, 2016
  • Avatar
    Danny

    we looooove u Rukia…

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Rukia loooooves you too!

      February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      Tee boy

      Yeah….don’t we all just love her?

      February 24, 2016
  • Avatar
    Anonymous

    The thing about organized religion is that some people have made it out to be a cult or practice it as one and that’s what most of the time sends the wrong message to people. Should religion be rigid? Heck no! Should it allow for updates? Within certain confines, yes. Should it change its fundamental beliefs, no. Hell no.

    I’m a Christian and I believe I’m one of the most open-minded people I know. Now let me get to your points one after the other.

    1. I don’t feel guilty for doing what makes me happy – I don’t know what you’re doing but I can’t imagine doing things that make you happy makes you feel guilty. I think it begs the question, “what the expletive are you doing?”

    2. I don’t feel like I have to make excuses for God when bad things happen – At some point, every believer in some faith must ask “why did this happen? I believe in such and such, so why did it still happen to me?” In my opinion, life will be life. Things will happen. Take each day as it comes and keep it moving. Shit happens.

    3. Sex doesn’t make me squirm – I see this a lot and for the life of me, I don’t know where the basis of this teaching comes from. Personally, I think parents have used this “God will punish you if you have sex” line so that their kids will behave. I for one think that is utter bullshit. I grew up in a Christian home and I don’t remember when sex or sex talks was taboo. I think this just boils down to the kind of parents you have and not Christianity. About porn, what you fail to realize is porn is addictive and another thing, especially for men, it’s dangerous. The misogyny in porn is out of this world, literally! Also, excessive masturbation can lead to hematospermia (I’d love to go into this, but this isn’t the place nor time).

    4. I’m way more open-minded – My opening statement says it all. And like you said, you evaluate things by their own merit and that’s what it should be. Going by that, someone who decidedly sleeps with animals has just by their actions revealed that they need help. Lots of it.

    5. I don’t have to struggle to stay awake in church – Now this is your own problem. Do you struggle awake in class? Maybe. Do you struggle to stay awake in a meeting where one person is droning on and on? Maybe. So why should you staying awake in church be any different? I mean at the end of the day, it’s someone teaching and/or talking for hours. Your staying awake is dependent on your interest in the subject matter and the skill of the orator. I mean, I have fallen asleep in a creative meeting (I’m a creative) and someone has held my attention for almost 3 hours talking about advanced Chemistry. It just depends on the day.

    Now, this is something that I like to tell people. If I’m wrong about God, I will only have wasted my time on Earth and if you think about it, I haven’t really wasted anything. I can do everything but just within certain confines. But if you’re wrong about God, it means the life after this one is gone forever.

    Sorry for the epistle, no Paul.

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      Ray

      I think the purpose of this post is for people like Rukia, who have decided religion is not for them, to share their experiences. And maybe for other who stick with religion, to talk about it’s impact on their own lives.
      I don’t think it was written for anyone to scrutinise and attack the points she says her decision has scored for her.
      It is about ‘what has religion done or not done for you?’, not ‘why is Rukia’s decision wrong’.

      February 23, 2016
      • Avatar
        K. Rukia

        Thanks Ray, on point as usual!

        February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Hi Anon!
      Let me answer your questions
      1. Watching porn

      3. Are we talking about the same Christianity? The same one where premarital sex leads to eternal damnation? I believe parents use the “God will punish you” line because the Bible actually says that.
      Porn can be addictive but so can Coca Cola. Also not all porn is misogynist. You’re just watching shit porn.

      5. I simply said that I don’t feel obliged to go to church even when I know I’ll doze off. Of course I know it’s my own problem, Captain Obvious.

      Quick tip, maybe try to be less acerbic next time you comment. No one is fighting with you. I said very clearly that Christians shouldn’t take the article personal, it’s like you didn’t read that part.

      February 23, 2016
      • Avatar
        woyi_oc

        “Also not all porn is misogynist. You’re just watching shit porn.”

        RUKIA-SAMA BANZAI

        February 24, 2016
      • Avatar
        Gimmo

        Lool why u dey vex Rukia? Is this not how u sound on other people’s posts?

        February 24, 2016
        • Avatar
          K. Rukia

          I reserve the right to vex on my own post, thanks

          February 24, 2016
      • Avatar
        Glow

        The Bible never said Pre-marital sex leads to eternal damnation. As a matter of fact, according to the Bible, the only sin that leads to eternal damnation is refusing to acknowledge God’s son(Jesus) as Lord, according to the popular John3:16. Other sins might come with their own consequences but not eternal damnation. Please be guided. Bless your soul Rukia.

        November 8, 2016
    • Avatar
      woyi_oc

      “Also, excessive masturbation can lead to hematospermia”

      0_0 Omo….This one no happen to me oh

      Opps 😡

      February 24, 2016
    • Avatar
      Femme

      Gbamest!!!!

      February 26, 2016
  • Avatar
    JAL

    An atheist true and through (since I was 8). Nice article and I can relate to certain aspects of it. All I can say is have fun and do not waste your time forcing others to understand your belief/thought system. They are in whatever religion they are in for a reason- they are comfortable or do not ask questions or it is all they have known or some other stuff like that. Just enjoy the feeling of being unencumbered in life that comes from being an atheist. They would not understand because they are not atheist. Period.

    To the religious brethren (even to the Christians who claim to not be religious but are Christians), do not ask questions if you are going to be too scared to live with the answers. God/god/Brahma/Ik Oankar/Allah (sorry if I did not mention your supreme spiritual being) is/are great, loves you and will take care of you. Leave it at that and you will be fine too. Or ask questions and you would still be fine. Either way you would be fine. Please shaa, do not try to convince me (without my approval) why yours is the right way when you have not tried or asked about to her ways. It would be a waste of both our times and I will most definitely avoid you the next time we meet.

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      Miss James

      LOL…no be fight.

      February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      Od

      @JAL, but if we are all going to try not to convince each other, what is the point of coming into discussions at all? You yourself have just offered to provide answers to someone who is not irreligious like you right here on this thread. And even though Rukia did not state outrightly that she is an atheist you have given your own push toward her either becoming one or staying one and never considering the possibility of change.

      You obviously feel pretty passionate about this stuff. Shouldn’t that give you an idea how religious people feel about sharing their beliefs too?

      Basically, I’m just saying keeping the conversation open is great. You never know what you might learn, right? It’s the job of humans to try to persuade each other to share their convictions and beliefs. It’s hard otherwise to even talk with each other. That’s what atheists learn very fast once they drop religion. I’ve never seen more aggressive proselytes than some atheists, as a matter of fact. So, keep an open mind, bro/sis. 🙂

      February 23, 2016
      • Avatar
        JAL

        Hehehehehe… You are right Miss James. No be fight.

        @Od, what I am implying with religion discussions is that they are mostly to share/learn and not convince anyone. You take what you want from the discussion. In Christianity, you try to convince people to be saved by accepting Jesus as their personal Lord and saviour. That is the norm in Christianity which is why a discussion to learn with a Christian about this subject matter would most likely lead to the Christian trying to sell you the way to a better life and praying for you. As an atheist, in a predominantly Muslim/Christian society, you would also initially try the same approach. Call it teething/newbie problems. After about a decade of doing so, you would probably come to realize that it takes a certain level of knowledge to have discussions on this subject matter and anything short of that would be futile. Hence, my initial advice is to avoid convincing people. If you must, have discussions for fun/to learn/to share. When you do meet someone with the right amount of exposure and asking the right kind of questions, then you can try convincing the person about what it means to be atheist and why it makes logical sense.

        About offering answers, I first of all wrote an epistle about the person finding that out by himself. If the person tries that and still does not find answers then I can offer to point him along. Not convince him. Share with him. About Rukia, she is seems to be not religious. So I am sharing with her a method that has worked for me and many others-atheist and non-atheist/religious people. Most issues in life do not have to be attributed to a higher being. I think in Christianity there is a phrase for it- Faith/Prayer without work is useless. I am not even convincing her on anything. She will probably be okay without my suggestions. No need to convince her except when I know more about her and she asks questions. please look at that statement as me looking for the previous commentator”s trouble.

        Passionate about this stuff. Maybe. Not really thought about it like that. More like I have been on this journey for many years and know what I know and know what I do not know. So far, there is only one question I have yet to find an answer to, and it is still baffling even to serious physicists whom are well exposed (not all scientists are well exposed so please do not come at me with the X said so and Y confirmed it). We may never find out that answer, and if any Christian had ever brought that up in a discussion I would have been tripped enough to actually listen. But they never read that far. I digress. Yes, I do understand how religious people are passionate about their beliefs. That is normal human/animal behavior. It makes evolutionary sense too for us to be passionate about our beliefs. So, I do understand. I see it every day especially on Fridays and Sundays.

        I agree on keeping the conversation open. But I stand on my earlier mentioned observations which I have learnt from many years of experience. I will not try to convince you if you are not asking the right questions or are at the right level of exposure (exposure concerning this o, you could be an over exposed guru in your religion). I can have a discussion with you about it, and learn a lot about. I think I have a discussion once every 2 weeks with my staff and we laugh over it at then end and we all still believe what we want to believe.

        Phew…! That was a long reply. Hope I responded to your comment appropriately. Apologies ahead of time for anything I have said that is not politically correct. You will be “K”.

        February 23, 2016
        • Avatar
          Od

          I think you only have to read this reply you made to see what I said both about passion and a reflex to preach your point of view to other people.

          I often say that it is easy for the irreligious to be hypocritical about stuff like this. You don’t really make a huge deal out of self-examination like some religious people do so you are again and again found accusing them of things you are guilty of yourself. We all preach and try to convince and persuade and we all judge because these things are how human beings try to form community. We are always trying to establish uniformity of values to ensure security. And we are always trying to expand our numbers for the same reason. Well, maybe except for Christians in a sense.

          February 23, 2016
          • Avatar
            JAL

            Err…okay? I fail to see where I have tried to convince you on anything. You asked multiple questions and I replied as succinctly as possible. You have an issue with that and call me hypocritical? Okay…? You obviously have not seen me in my “trying to convince a person mode” before otherwise you would have not posted that comment. I thought after you posted “@JAL, but if we are all going to try not to convince each other, what is the point of coming into discussions at all”, you wanted a discussion. So I guess this discussion is done here. Apparently I mistook the intentions behind the questions. I guess we just wasted both our times. I think I did say something about this time wastage of a thing in one of my earlier comments. Walking out now…

            February 23, 2016
        • Avatar
          woyi_oc

          “We may never find out that answer, and if any Christian had ever brought that up in a discussion I would have been tripped enough to actually listen.”

          What is this thing you speak of? I’m curious

          February 24, 2016
  • Avatar
    hrhlordsleek

    Best part of this piece? This: “My framework for right and wrong is now based on logic and universal principles any rational person can agree with, regardless of religion.”

    If only we had less religion in this world, this earth world probably be a better place.

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Mr. Hrh, thanks for commenting!

      I agree, the world might be better with less religion. However it appears to be a necessity for many people.

      February 23, 2016
  • Avatar
    Blaqlotus

    In as much as i totally relate with this post, I don’t want it to remain this way. I want to be a better Christian.

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      Ray

      Same here. But I also know I’m not ready yet.

      February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      E

      Anty Blaq! Am standing on same ground with you…can relate with all this but i still want to be a christian (a good one,God help me!)

      February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Hi Blaq, thanks for contributing and good luck on your journey!

      February 23, 2016
  • Avatar
    Horla

    Errr…why does JAL feel the need to comment on everyone’s thought/view? This topic is very personal for most people. If you want people to respect your view, keep it to the intelligent-minimum. It’s not sexy being in everyone’s face.

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      JAL

      Apologies if I offended you. This is a discussion forum, and if it were another topic you may not have been offended. Still I am sorry. You can skip my comments.

      February 23, 2016
  • Avatar
    Ola

    chai!!! I tire o, don’t even know what to say to this girl sef…

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      MADU

      You don’t need to say anything. Just respect her views.

      February 23, 2016
  • Avatar
    nikky

    My life is better without religion in more ways than five. I would like the world to be void of religion because it will be better but that is just wishful thinking. I understand that not everyone can function with out subjecting themselves to what they consider the dictates and rules of a deity. I am optimistic however that atheism is growing, I hope religion is replaced with reasoning and logic. I’m hoping in a few thousand years we will all be like Mr. Spok (with a sense of humor).

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      I feel you Nikky! I also feel that humanity might be better off without religion altogether but I acknowledge some people need it.

      Care to share some of the ways your life is better without religion?

      February 23, 2016
      • Avatar
        nikky

        I wear jeans, pant suits, wigs, nail polish, I can show my face in public, show my yam legs if I want to, i can drive, eat shrimps and, bacon, marry who I want, take charge of my uterus,etc. As a woman religion will restrict me from doing most if not all of these things. On a more serious note I love questioning things and situations, and I find that religion asks us to just blindly believe and not question. That is just incredibly impossible for me to accept.

        February 24, 2016
    • Avatar
      Sally

      I don’t think all religions are terrible. We’ve grown used to seing religion practiced in only one way (the monotheistic abrahamic Gods) that we assume all come from a place of rigidity, are scientifically averse and devoid of “logic”. You would be shocked to find out that a lot of traditional african religions we’re scientific at their base for example, it was not a matter of a personal god but a means to understand the universe. Our ancestors had an amazing grasp of fractal geometry, the multiplicity or complexity of the universe and many other ecologically sane practices that were derived from religious practice. It’s a shame that knowledge was deemed superstition and demonized because those who came across it did not understand, and it is quite ironic that the Western world would eventually come to adopt or “discover” so many of these concepts centuries after denying them.

      Spok life isn’t ideal IMO – I think there’s this fallacy that logic means no emotion but we are social beings, our emotions are what make us evolve and survive as a team, what is a great factor in the intelligence of our species. I get the sentiment though but we’re not some machines who act rationally all the time, some of our greatest inventions of time involve great logical leaps, things that logic is far to slow process. Logic is simply a means of coming to the “truth” but it is not the only way. Logic is quite like morality in the sense that it is depended on a certain ideological framework or culture and very relative. Anyway enough stray thoughts for now 😀

      February 23, 2016
  • Avatar
    Od

    @JAL, you seem upset or something.

    You still say here that you don’t see how you were doing any convincing in your comments and you go on to tell me that I’ve not seen you in your “trying to convince people” mode. I don’t know you. I don’t know what such a mode looks like but I know that your comments here have been about providing an alternative to religion and you have, however mildly, tried to show religion to be inferior to your alternative.

    Degrees of passion may vary but passion is passion. Same thing with arguments for persuasion and conviction. You were doing the equivalent of what Christians do and I wanted you to see that. That was all. Why does that upset you?

    February 23, 2016
  • Avatar
    anon

    Hello Jal,
    Your relies to Od are the cutest comments I’ve read today.

    While I have no intention to get in the mix, I must say that it’s funny watching you miss the point, twice.

    When I saw your first comment, my reaction was “this Jal is sure serious with his atheist thing!”

    You popped here, and there too, stating how exposed you are as an atheist and stuff stating the merits thereof while also insinuating the naivety and simplicity of religious people; subtly “demeritizing”?

    You low key make a case for atheism/ “non-religiousness”…and heck! It’s funny you don’t even know!

    Like Od said, you only need to read your comments again and maybe, you’d get the point.

    You’ve got passion for atheism and it shows!

    February 23, 2016
  • Avatar
    S

    The thing about religion is that, much like prostitution (I know this is an extreme example) it still exists because it serves a function in the society. Religion exists because man needed something to believe in, something supernatural. I’d like to point out Karl Marx’s popular saying about religion being the opium of the masses and it’s extremely evident in Nigeria.
    Much like anything made by man and constituting of men, it’s not without its flaws. I can’t say how strongly I believe the world might just be a more peaceful place without religion.
    As per, reasoning real life issues without reference to religion, I really think it’s the ideal way to go because if I get into an argument with someone and religious references are made, I automatically tune off. You cannot argue based on religion in certain circumstances because many times you will not be on the same page with the people involved in the argument. Use religious arguments when you know for sure that you are from a similar religious background, not when your faith or lack of differs.
    I don’t know, it generally makes me uncomfortable.
    Countless years of being forced and guilt tripped into going to church and so much more, I finally had enough. Religion or a relationship with a supreme being shouldn’t be forced and that’s where a lot of Nigerians miss it.

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      S, I really like the way you think, probably because you think like me, mostly 🙂

      About religion being the opium of the masses, I agree 100%. I feel like Western/Middle Eastern religion was introduced to Africa by colonial powers for a purpose – it’s so much easier to control people when you have control of their faith. And I do think they achieved their goal, fantastically well. Foreign religions supplanted our traditional spirituality. We were made to believe that our traditional religions were primitive and evil, made to burn our effigies and shrines. (This is probably the origin of this deep-seated ‘anything from the white man must be better’ mentality we are cursed with in Nigeria.) We were made to abandon ancient practices that were integral to our cultural identity and made us who we are. And to add insult to injury, we were made to worship a white man who wasn’t even white (Jesus was Arab, but somehow he became blonde and blue-eyed when white people got a hold of him).

      And then long after the colonial masters and their missionaries are gone, we carry Christianity/Islam on top our heads more than the people who introduced it to us. White people don’t even attend their own churches; they are being converted into bars and libraries. To top it off, our own people (read: Nigerian religious leaders) have taken over from the colonial masters to use religion as a tool of self aggrandisement and control of the masses. Bloody shame.

      February 23, 2016
      • Avatar
        Tee boy

        Rukia….Rukia…..How many times did i call you? (No need to count)
        Chei!!!! you wowed me again with this post.
        Secondly you stole my comment sha. (Couldn’t have said it better)
        But since you said it already, I’d just like to add that humans have been made to believe they need to look up to something higher, so other humans take advantage of that and hence control them. (Just like minions – funny movie but can relate)
        Most of our Religions in this country and most are ‘imported’ or imposed and like a commodity it is sold to those who are willing to buy in willingly or forcefully and soon becomes a way of life.
        There is something about the unknown that makes it either intimidating (arousing fear)or intriguing (arousing fearless curiosity). I choose to be the latter.
        For me, I question the norm and some think I am insane or just refer to me as “being in the mood”
        But if we don’t ask questions and seek knowledge or solutions we will be stagnant.
        Today we can fly, we can put the power of 500 horses in a car engine. Medicine has gone beyond old belief and methods.
        How liberating is that? I say its very liberating.
        I have asked myself these questions and I have asked other people too but it always ends up in long endless conversations or arguments. I have come to a conclusion that at the end of the day it’s a choice. I decide how big my own personal space or boundary is and how much I am willing to ask or know or let go of.
        I know doctrines are man made and since I am a man i might as well come up with a few of mine too.
        Thanks R.

        February 24, 2016
  • Avatar

    I’m a little curious as to why Rukia hasn’t shown up to respond to any comments here yet… Anyway, the comments are interesting and revealing.

    I honestly have very little to say at this point, hence by short contributions. I would really love an answer to my initial inquiry though… It would be interesting to know if that is a possibility and why not.

    Cheers, Ufuoma.

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Peekaboo! 🙂

      February 23, 2016
  • Avatar
    Snow

    Last Last Una go dey alright

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      Miss James

      Hahahahahahahahahahahaha…I was going through the comments and thinking the same thing.

      February 24, 2016
  • Avatar
    Od

    Rukia, I’m pretty sure I said something different even if I used a lot of words.

    “so you don’t feel stressed and alone”.

    That quote is the common idea atheists have about religious people. Apparently, God is our “Sky Daddy”, the dude whose existence, real or imagined, makes us feel better/less frightened/etc about life and the afterlife.

    What I actually said, Rukia, is “so I can live life right and do so without the strain of obligation”.

    I don’t deal with the stress of an obligation to do certain things anymore, I gained a natural inclination to those things. So, using the sex example again, instead of leaning hard on myself to avoid getting in the sack with a girl, there is actually a natural disinclination to doing so. When I am offered the opportunity now, it’s considerably easier to turn it down and I find it ridiculously easier to never seek it out unlike before.

    That is an example. I use it because of my personal experience. Not everybody has sex as the challenge it represented to me.

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Thanks for clarifying. A skill you might want to develop is using fewer words to convey your point. Especially important with the short attention spans of modern times. I’m working on it myself, good luck! 🙂

      February 23, 2016
      • Avatar
        Od

        @Rukia, yeah, that costs too much in time for me right now. And I tend to feel obligated to unpack loaded statements, so I avoid making them. But thanks for the advice.

        February 23, 2016
  • Avatar
    Od

    Western religion, Rukia? I’m curious why you say that. And the history lesson too. What part of Nigeria are you talking about? Because the North never gave up their religion to the British. They’d been Islamic for hundreds of years before the West came.

    And that bit about worshipping a white man who wasn’t even white, it sure sounded like worshipping thunder or earth somehow seemed more classy. Do you think it is? Ok, I’m really not trying to be confrontational o. 😀

    February 23, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      I did say Western/Middle Eastern, i.e. including Islam.

      Classiness has nothing to do with it. I’m more concerned with the identity of the Black Person and their sense of self-worth, which stems from knowing their history and valuing their traditions. We were tricked into slaughtering our traditions on the altar of Christianity/Islam. By all means, change your religious beliefs, but that doesn’t mean one must tag their ancestors’ traditions and worldview as paganistic, primitive and evil in favour of all things foreign.

      February 24, 2016
      • Avatar
        Od

        But neither of them is Western. They’re both Middle Eastern. That’s why I wondered why you said what you said. Also, Jesus was only as Arab as any Semitic person is.

        That’s a common misconception. Nobody really tricked us into anything. All over the world, whole peoples abandon religious systems they inherited from their forebears for something new and different or modify them to suit whatever new priorities they adopt. It’s normal.

        In Igboland where I come from, we are reputed as people who deposed our gods and priests when we felt there was a need to. It’s just one of many examples of the very real human search for the meaning of life.

        I personally think that Christianity was popular with most of our native peoples because it reduced the violence and barbarity they had to put up with for so long. Consider the very popular story of Mary Slessor and the Calabar twins. Back in school, we were taught that twins were killed when they were born because of some superstition they had about them. Mary Slessor was no politician or British entrepreneur trying to exploit Africa economically. She was just a Christian who thought it was wrong to kill babies because more than one of them came out of the same womb in one pregnancy.

        I’m sure that when you look through history books you’ll learn a lot more about why Christianity appealed to our forebears in spite of their native religious setups.

        I’ll add that Christianity does not, in its definition, necessarily subvert cultures. It may change a lot of things about a people but it does not try to strip away their identity. If it does it is only if that identity is evil. Like, why would Christianity leave a people to still be identified as murderous, superstitious and wicked?

        February 25, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      And I know you weren’t trying to be confrontational 🙂

      February 24, 2016
  • Avatar
    woyi_oc

    I was abou to reply “”I’m a little curious as to why Rukia hasn’t shown up to respond to any comments here yet””

    With “She and the other shinigami are busy dealing with the Quincy invasion in Seireitei”

    But then she showed up. Way to ruin my punchline, Kuchiki. -____-

    February 24, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Too slow. Lol

      February 24, 2016
      • Avatar
        woyi_oc

        *Filling Application for “Flash step lessons with Yoruichi”.*
        (¬_¬)

        February 25, 2016
  • Avatar
    Chinedov

    The most dangerous weapon in the hand of an ignorant person, is religion. It is like handing a spoilt 7 year old a hand grenade.

    February 24, 2016
  • Avatar
    Makachuks

    @ Rukia
    * Big ups for tackling this heavy issue in a succinct buzzfeed, easy to digest, non aggressive manner.

    @ JAL
    * You will be surprised, how many Nigerians go through the motions of religion, just because it’s the accepted norm of society.
    Meet people at their level, religiosity, like most learned habits, is really hard to break.
    * For years, I have questioned the bible, with its holes and sanctioned Jihads.
    After I finally arrived at the hoax that is Christianity ( The life of Jesus – Ernest Renan). I still find myself going back to the warm comforts of habit.
    I am there every, Sunday, but the stories no longer hold water.
    So please take it easy.
    Once again, nice one rukia

    February 24, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Thanks Makachuks, I really appreciate your affirmation. Glad you enjoyed the post 🙂

      PS. I love Buzzfeed!

      February 24, 2016
  • Avatar
    nO2_EFX

    So ummm….Hi.

    Anyway, there was a friend i shared some rock music with complained about the lyrical themes being too christian.
    So that led to talks about God, organized religion etc.

    Later that day, I called my Dad and told him about it. Know what he said…?

    “My son, the job of a Christian isn’t to CONVINCE PEOPLE TO FOLLOW JESUS. That’s the Holy Spirit’s job. It isn’t about weaving an impressive argument as to why Jesus is the way. That is religious philosophy/theology talk. Your own is just to say that ‘there is God oh’ (See what I did there?). It’s ‘TELL them about Jesus’, not ‘CONVINCE THEM TO FOLLOW JESUS’. If they want, you go further to talk about it based on the bible. If not, you continue relating with them the same way you did before.”

    I’m actually just paraphrasing because this conversation took place about a year ago.

    So yeah. I get What Ruk’ is saying. I especially get this part of the article :

    “Things like ‘God works in mysterious ways’ and ‘this world is not our final destination’ are some of those flowery words I would come up with, that sound like so much hogwash to someone who just lost a child in a car accident, or lost a mother to cancer.”

    I TOTALLY GET THIS. When my dad died, all that God is in control talk just filled my neural network with such…..**Insert appropriate word here. because what i felt can’t be described with any human language I understand**

    My uncle just died recently and I couldn’t bring myself to tell my cousins “I’ll pray for you guys in this time” or “He’s gone to be with the lord” or any of that.
    “Why?” ’cause I knew what it felt like being told all that after watching your father suffer on a hospital bed for weeks before kicking the iron bucket. They probably wouldn’t mind my saying it but…No. Just No
    Grief is f@#ked up, man. Sometimes what you need is just for your nigga to just say “yo I gachu! A’it?”. Sure his back up might actually be prayers but at least he’s being “real”.

    Oh, then there’s a comment I saw about Homosexuality acceptance or something.

    Now I’ve had a lot of time to think about this. And I think Christians have it wrong. Let me explain. Yes the bible says it’s wrong. Yes all those who do what the bible says is wrong are not entering heaven. BUT remember Mathew 7 verse 1…I think…

    “Judge not or you yourself will be judged”

    Y’all might vex and call me a heathen, but i feel if Jesus 1st came here in our time, He’d hang with everyone. EVERYONE. EVEN GAY PEOPLE. He wouldn’t approve of their lifestyle, going by the bible, but he’d love them. In fact according to the bible, Jesus loves us all: liars, thieves, rapists, murderers, gays, cheats, fornicators, adulterers, the envious, the haughty, the greedy,….JESUS LOVES US ALL. It’s why he came to this decadent piece of $#!t world and died so we could live ABOVE our NATURAL IMPURE impulses with the help of Holy spirit ( <—-this part might not make sense to the non Christians)

    CHRISTIANITY is a name coined because people saw the apostles and could see Jesus' attributes and character in them. That's what the bible says anyway. Jesus has one thing that he has for us. and that is LOVE. And he said LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF. You're "fortunate" enough to not be born with the urge to want to have sex with people of your gender, good for you. But always remember that you're no better than them. The only difference between a christian and someone who isn't is that you have ACCEPTED JESUS AS YOUR SAVIOR, FRIEND, LORD. And if it wasn't for your decision you'd still be a sinner. And salvation not some automatic one day thing…you still have to keep exercising discipline and stuff.

    In fact, our judgemental attitudes, as Christians, towards those who aren't is probably why they don't listen when we tell them about the Love Jesus showed us ALL. We look down on them and treat them like we're better when the only difference we have is that the Christians made a choice to give their lives to Jesus.
    Man, I've talked and hung out with people who are gay. I have had one or two good, loyal caring friends who were lesbian. They are people too. According to the bible "ALL HAVE SINNED AND HAVE FALLEN SHORT OF THE GLORY OF GOD" & "OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS IS LIKE FILTHY RAG BEFORE GOD". Na all of us sun shine for, na all of us rain dey beat. No christian is better than an a non-christian. It's just that the christian has made a choice the non-christian hasn't. And if Christians keep acting high and mighty, they (non-christians) might never make the decision.

    I shall leave with one of the few things i remember hearing when my dad forced us all to watch TBN (I wanted to watch CARTOON NETWORK OH! BUT THE OLD MAN NO GREE): "People don't care what you know until they know you care."

    Goodnight…or good morning.

    February 24, 2016
    • Avatar
      Miss James

      I have a very short attention span so I read about three paragraphs of your comment and I am totally satisfied. Our job is not to convince people, tell them and move on.

      February 24, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Hi NO, I’m really feeling this comment. SO many gems!

      “i feel if Jesus 1st came here in our time, He’d hang with everyone. EVERYONE. EVEN GAY PEOPLE. He wouldn’t approve of their lifestyle, going by the bible, but he’d love them”

      “In fact, our judgemental attitudes, as Christians, towards those who aren’t is probably why they don’t listen when we tell them about the Love Jesus showed us ALL”

      “Na all of us sun shine for, na all of us rain dey beat. No christian is better than an a non-christian. It’s just that the christian has made a choice the non-christian hasn’t”

      Thank you so much for sharing!

      February 24, 2016
    • Avatar
      hunniebunnie

      I was scrolling through comments, trying to find the bottom so I could post mine when I saw you’ve “said it finish”. I think it’s the way we practice Christianity (or whatever religion) that is the problem. There’s this sanctimonious, hypocritical, judgmental thing with Christianity, that has overshadowed the basic rules Jesus gave when he Pharisees were trying to quote all the plenty plenty Old Testament jargon to trip him up – Love God with all your heart and love your neighbour ( the Muslim, the Eckist, the Gay guy, the woman selling fish down the road with 5.5 kids) as yourself.

      So no, Going to church doesn’t make you a better Christian, neither does attacking other people’s beliefs or judging people who sleep around (The adulterous woman in the bible as a case study) or don’t do morning devotion and night prayer everyday. There’s no difference between you and a Pharisee.

      I will not force my beliefs down anyone’s throat, I will talk to God when I feel led to whether morning or night, I will not fast except I’m led to, even though it’s time for 100 (or whatever number) days fast and I will be kind to everyone as much as I can, not only my church members. I’ve realised that most Christians around me don’t think I’m “Christian” enough. Not that I care though, but I as a result keep my thoughts and opinions to myself

      Oops, this was meant to be 1 paragraph…

      February 25, 2016
  • Avatar
    PAAL

    K.Rukia open mind, would love to confer with you. From various previous post I can infer that you’ve chosen to be ” independent” in the real sense. I admire your thoughts, though I don’t concur. Your posts have been offering me insights like back to back to back… Rukia ti take over.

    February 24, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Lol. Hi Paal! I admire your willingness to acknowledge that you admire views you do not agree with.

      I’m happy I could offer you these insights and grateful to TNC for the platform ^_^

      February 24, 2016
      • Avatar
        PAAL

        expecting more insightful posts…..

        February 24, 2016
    • Avatar
      woyi_oc

      “Rukia ti take over.”

      Hahaha

      February 25, 2016
  • Avatar

    If I had read this post without commenting it would be a sin on my part. This had always been on my mind and I’m glad that I’ve seen people who are as open minded as I am. Personally, I think Christianity is tiring, and this pastors/religious teachers’ are not helping matters. Anyways I’m happy that this was written by a female

    Thank you for writing this

    February 24, 2016
    • Avatar
      Miss James

      Sin against who/what?

      February 24, 2016
      • Avatar
        woyi_oc

        I think she was just being expressive. Like how some people consider it a “SIN” not to have watched the “LORD OF THE RINGS TRILOGY”

        February 25, 2016
  • Avatar
    Olushola

    I live for knowing… And the comments section hasn’t disappointed…at least, not yet.

    Thank you TNC for making it worth it.

    February 24, 2016
  • Avatar
    Olushola

    I live for knowing… And the comments section hasn’t disappointed…at least, not yet.

    Thank you K. Rukia for writing this.

    Thank you TNC for making it worth it.

    February 24, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      I live for knowing… this should be on a t-shirt. Legit.

      You’re very welcome, Olushola.

      February 24, 2016
  • Avatar
    Miz

    Ok, I get that these posts about religion are comment-bait but really, it’s been almost two weeks and they’re beginning to get monotonous because it’s basically people restating their points over and over again.

    Seriously, the posts are starting to get a shade-y vibe and I feel like I’m trapped in a battle between factions/districts…like some weird cross between Divergent and Hunger Games! If I see a post tomorrow about religion (for or against) I think I’ll just cry!

    Let’s try something new: why don’t you guys do that thing you did one time where you auctioned out your writers, but this time you auction out commenters….so I can win Od and finally get to meet him in a non-stalkerish way! Thank you!

    February 24, 2016
    • Avatar

      But… But… :(… The religious people were tired of the sex posts that came before this…

      Seriously though, we’ve just had to publish most because they tie in with recently published stuff. But if you check, we’ve balanced that with so many different posts. It’s just a phase… Keep reading ?

      February 25, 2016
  • Avatar
    joe

    ” that sound like so
    much hogwash to someone who just lost a
    child in a car accident, or lost a mother to
    cancer”

    it must not always be cancer.

    i lost my dad last year after battling for months with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. when people ask and i tell them its a disease of the lungs they ask the most stupid question ever “does he smoke” but NO he never smoked ,he was a preacher since before he got married, he was a devout and righteous christian to the letter.

    people start consoling You with “we all know he is resting now” and all those craps to pacify you but seriously none worked because i’m not sure of that place they are talking about. All those nonsense theory that if you are an evangelist God will preserve you cos you are doing his work did not work.

    fast forward december, i lost another close friend .lizzie just completed her NYSC then got a job, she was on training then woke up one morning and she fell, hit her head and lost alot of blood, a week later she died. I just made up my mind after then to make every second of my life count.

    Those flowery words didnt work because Christmas will never be the same again.

    Finally….”there is no right or wrong, thinking makes it so”

    February 24, 2016
    • Avatar
      NO2_EFX

      Ahh….The death marathon thing. Yeah. I know how that feels all to well.
      Imagine burying a dad on your birthday.
      I will admit I was too astonished at the raw poetry of the entire thing to find it sad.

      February 25, 2016
  • Avatar
    Ibiela

    I’m truly tired of all this religious talk… can we talk about other things? Like the fact that the walking dead’s back!!! 😀

    February 24, 2016
    • Avatar

      Smh. All you Walking Dead addicts. Anyways, keep reading, always something new coming.

      February 25, 2016
      • Avatar
        Ibiela

        Issokay… I’ll keep reading

        February 25, 2016
  • Avatar
    Afroflare

    I follow the perennial philosophy, that is there is one underlying theological truth, of which all religions express a partial understanding, and as to which “the devout in the various great world religions are in fact worshiping that one God, but through different, overlapping concepts or mental images of Him.”(from Wikipedia).
    I choose this path because the religions or lack of religions I have come across at heart are more or less the same but we focus on the differences more and feel our chosen path is the right one.

    Monotheistic and some polytheistic believe in a creator, we die we go back to the creator and are judged.
    Pantheistic and some polytheistic believe the universe or the earth is the all encompassing divinity, where we all come from, we die and our spirits go back to the universe.
    Atheists everything started from nothing, we die we go back to nothing.
    Irrespective of belief the beginning is also the end.

    Monotheistic believe in one God with varying sides and aspects depending on our needs at a particular time, say your ill you pray to him to heal you, at that point you see him as a healer.
    Polytheistic on the other hand have a God at the top of a pantheon with the lesser gods being either one or a group of individual aspects, when ill you pray to the god/goddess of health.

    Pantheism believe the universe in omnipresent, Monotheism God is omnipresent, Science energy is omnipresent.

    The best definition for God I have come across is “I AM”. Even atheist who don’t believe in God, believe they control their every decisions, hence putting themselves in the place of God.

    Religions or non-religions I have come in contact with through personal experience, acquaintances and friends are: Christianity, Islam, Eckankar, Judaism, Hinduism, 2 different forms of African traditional religion, agnostics and atheists

    February 24, 2016
  • Avatar
    DEJIDOPE

    I actually enjoyed this(in a weird way), it was everything i thought it would be and more as soon as i saw the title,loved the way you bared yourself and spoke the truth. I just want to tell you a lot of born again christians have felt this exact way before, some have even stopped believing in GOD only to find HIM again and come back.

    This is exactly why we need to find and get to know GOD for ourselves and not because we follow our parents to church or because we were born in christian families. I was not a born-again until about 3 years ago, i used to go to church every sunday before that, but that was because i thought it was the right thing to do since i have been doing it since i was born, i never actually knew GOD for myself.

    While you might not need ”organised religion”, we still need GOD in our lives(for those of us that believe in HIM), even if you don’t go to church on sunday, that doesn’t stop us from praying in our rooms in our own homes, reading the bibe and spending time in GOD’S presence. So as much as you might not want organised religion, we still need GOD, but Fellowshipping with other christians is very essential, ”as iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another”, ”where two or more are gathered in my name, i am there with them”

    ”As a Christian I found that I would repeatedly do things that Christianity frowns upon, feel bad for doing them, and apologize to God, only to go back and do them again. Basically I was a hypocrite, telling God I was sorry for doing things that I knew I would most definitely do again” – You were not a hypocrite for doing this, i felt this exact way when i was dealing with my porn addiction, i would always go back after some time and end up feeling bad and dirty, but GOD’S Grace is sufficient, and HIS Strength is made known in our weakness,nobody is perfect, even as christian you will ”fall(sin)” from time to time,that is why Ephesians 2; 8-9 says For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of GOD, not by works, so that no one can boast.

    I have to tell you, my life has been so much better since i gave my life to christ, i have never felt so alive before in my entire life, i see GOD’S favour in my life everyday and i am so grateful/thankful for it. I just would like us to know that GOD loves everybody and if you seek him with a true heart, you will find him, never fee you have sinned too much to look for GOD, no matter how dirty you feel, HE will still accept you and change you from within.

    SIDENOTE: I have really been enjoying these church/christianity centered post on TNC, even the ones that are not in support of christianity, just glad we are having these conversations.

    February 24, 2016
    • Avatar

      Thanks for reading and contributing Deji.

      February 25, 2016
  • Avatar
    Od

    @Miz, lol. I blusheth.

    February 25, 2016
  • Avatar

    Well,remember that somethings are just beyond comprehension,u can’t understand everything and it’s a fact.life itself has a sort of code of conduct.someone greater than us is certain, bt who is He.I will rather take a risk and have faith in one of these GODs than on myself or none at all.kamkam is a christian and my God and I are friends ragardless cos he knws I’m feeble.

    February 25, 2016
  • February 26, 2016
  • Avatar
    Jude

    Phew! I always want to comment but before I finish reading the comment, my thoughts would have slipped away but not today. Nice write up Ruk.
    For those of you complaining about feeling bad after asking for forgiveness for the same sin over and over again, well try being a catholic where you have to go to confession then you will really feel the burden. I have thought about giving Christianity a break, but sincerely the fear of the bad thing happening in the world these days like the accidents, bomb explosions, shootings and all manner of horrific death draws me back to the church. But on a second thought, all those that lose their life in all manner of horrific death, are they not Christians, are they not even better christian than me myself?.Infact all of the 12 disciples of Christ died a horrific death except John. In other words whether am in or out of Christianity is not a guarantee of escaping such fate. I guess my guarantee is in the after life right? yes if you are really dedicated and serve him in truth and in spirit(hmm no be beans o). But wait, is their no salvation out side the church?. Their is salvation out side the church, the Pope said it(sorry for being so Catholic sided). So which way? well I have not truly metamorphosed, am still in the making. I guess its up to us to draft our path.

    February 26, 2016
    • Avatar
      K. Rukia

      Hey Jude, thanks for commenting! That’s a good question – is there no salvation outside the church?
      Good luck finding the answers you’re searching for! 🙂

      March 7, 2016
  • Avatar
    Orochi

    Whoa! Dope write-up, well done Ruk!
    Happy to see people, Nigerians especially, breaking out of the terrible hold of religion, and taking control of their lives.

    Argh! I have to meet youuu.

    October 1, 2016
  • Avatar
    Toni

    I didn’t read through all the comments because *whew* religion (and sex) is always a hot topic. @od said most of what I’d have said but I want to add a few things. My comment would be long but please do read till the end (I take a lot of liberties to make certain assumptions which may or may not be entirely correct; the fault is mine, and with my argument, not with the truth of the gospel).

    I’m trying not to sound judgemental or confrontational but I believe your first problem was that you TRIED to be a good person/christian. For thousands of years before Christ came, humans of all races, all classes, all ages, had failed at trying to be good followers of God. From Adam, to the Israelites, the Old Testament is a record of human failure to live up to God’s expectations. We just can’t make it on our own. So, your whole attempt at being a good Christian was doomed to fail, like all the others before you and after you.

    The second thing I feel was wrong in your approach was that you sought Your Own pleasure (guiltless sex, wearing whatever you liked, sleeping in church if you so felt) above God’s pleasure. Perhaps, God doesn’t want us to treat sex as casually as we do, because sex is the continuation of the creation process, something God takes very seriously by the way. Or He wants us to dress modestly so that we are not more concerned about what to wear than we are about more important and pressing issues, like, say, telling people about God’s plan for humanity. Maybe, He doesn’t want us sleeping in church because, I mean, He’s trying to teach us certain things through His servant, the preacher. Maybe. Just, maybe.

    Now Jesus comes to earth to show us how to live right, how to live like we were originally supposed to; and that’s to stop focusing on you, and start focusing on God. Stop thinking about your pleasure, and start thinking of God’s. Because, God made us to serve Him, so the only true and lasting pleasure us servants can know is to serve, as we are created to. But there’s a lot in the way of us humbling ourselves to serve. Satan had told our forebears that they could be like God and no longer be servants if they did what they liked and not what God liked. He told them they could be Master’s of their own destiny and be gods unto themselves. So they tried it. They failed. Satan lied. And till this day, somewhere in our heads, we still believe we shouldn’t be servants to God, that we’re bigger than that. That we can be gods and take matters into our own hands, and live for own reasons, satisfying our desires only. But we are never truly satisfied, are we? No matter how much guiltless premarital sex, how much ill gotten wealth, how much unnecessary power, we still feel the very intense desire to get more. That MORE we desire is actually not here on earth; it’s up in heaven. And it’s service to God. We long to find meaning and relevance in life but we spend all our years discovering that no matter how relevant we become, someone better always comes along to steal the show. No matter what meaning we think we’ve found, another scientist or philosopher comes along to disprove all we previously held to be true. Just look at how many times we change our minds on what the best diet is, or what the trendiest clothes are, or whether democracy is better than military rule. Your life wasn’t created by you, you don’t own it. No be you get yourself. God, our Creator, owns us. So only He can tell us what’s best for us.

    I’m not a model of Christianity; I struggled, and still do, with ALL of what you described. I abandoned God, MANY times. But I always came back. Because I couldn’t ever make sense of the world without Him (note the emphasis on God, and not church). I mean, WHO created the billions of stars, the planets, us? Whoever, it/she/he is, I want to know them. And the Christian Bible says it’s God, with a lot of evidence to prove the claim. So if He created the world, and me, and has told me how to live my life, I sure as anything would listen to Him no matter how hard it is for me. Remember how hard it was for some of us to do basic arithmetic in primary school? Are those things still difficult today? Imagine if we’d given up trying to do BODMAS at, say, Primary 2? 15 years later we’d still be stuck there! Trying to solve BODMAS. But with help, and persistence, many of us learn how to get past a seeming impassable problem. So it is with Christianity, we need help, and persistence.

    Again, Christianity isn’t a religion, in the sense of following a set of rules. No. Christianity is following a Man, the Son of God, and reaping the reward He promises His followers. Heaven. And He summed up the “rules” in one expression, “love God; love your neighbour.” So Christianity is more about loving God, and our neighbours, than it is about not having or having premarital sex. Think of this: all human beings, including unborn children, are our “neighbours.” If we loved ALL our neighbours, then we may not want to deny them a chance at existence by aborting foetuses because we’re not ready for childbirth. If we loved our neighbours, we wouldn’t bring a baby into the world we don’t have the means to cater for, because that would be downright cruel. And how best can we avoid scenarios like these and more? Have sex only when you’re ready and equipped to take care of the children that are a natural consequence of intercourse. It’s not really about us being married at a ceremony before we can have sex. It’s about us accepting and acknowledging the responsibility and commitment of starting a family and raising children, thereby being ready to have sex for what it was meant for (with the added bonus of the pleasure it gives).

    Furthermore, It’s not really a “big deal” (though you didn’t say that it is) to not believe in or follow Christ; He already said it thousands of years ago that MANY won’t believe in or follow Him. Many would be more comfortable leading their lives as they please rather than following Him, and that’s because following Him is hard, while being in control of one’s life seems like it is easy. What Adam did was indirectly say to God, “don’t bother me, I can take of myself. I don’t need you. I can and I will do what I want. I can become You.” Even though God knew Adam was terribly mistaken and had made a terrible mistake, He honoured His gift of free will to Adam and let him have his way. He let Adam’s descendants have their way for thousands of years too, to prove the devil wrong and show Adam, and his descendants, that humans can’t do without God. The resultant mess in the world is from man trying to run the show, and the devil trying to control man so he can indirectly control the kingdom of the earth, and God has stood by, most likely enduring great grief at loss and wasted opportunity, watching us make a mess of the beautiful world He created, but being too honourable and just to take the most precious gift He had given us then, free will, He never once interfered. Our “free will” wanted to rule the world; He let us have our way even if it meant He wouldn’t be in the picture. When it was clear to anyone who was watching that we couldn’t handle things, neither could the devil, God stepped in to save us from ourselves. So should you believe God when He says you need to follow Jesus to live your life the way you are supposed to? He has thousands of years of history to prove Him right, though He doesn’t really need that, but if you need convincing, there’s the evidence.

    From the start, Jesus likened following Him to a “yoke;” He tells His followers to drop one yoke (the burden of life in a fallen world that we messed up) for another (the burden of trying to live right in a world that’s so wrong, which we messed up, by the way). No promises of an easy life all the way. He went on to say that for everything you give up for His sake, to follow Him, you’ll receive more, perhaps double of what you lost, but ALSO you’ll receive persecution; if He, your master, was persecuted by this fallen world, you should naturally expect the same treatment. Difficulty was part of the Christian equation from day one, but it is less difficult to follow Him than it is to lead yourself. Choose your struggle; the world is already messed up so no escaping that.

    So, if from the onset you feel stressed following Christ, don’t be alarmed. He said it would happen. If you face difficulty trying to live up to His expectations, don’t beat yourself up; He said the Way is narrow and only few would pass through. And the few who would eventually pass through? They can’t do it by themselves. In fact, He says that without His help, by trying on our strength, we would surely, most definitely, not meet His expectations. All have sinned, and likely would continue to sin. He knows we are weak, we would likely continue to disobey Him, so God gave Jesus up that we be forgiven of all sin before we even commit them! He knew we’d have a problem with obeying, He’s known it all along, and He gave you the solution before you were even born: make a decision to trust and obey Him and He’ll hold your hand while you learn to walk on your own. Like the prodigal son, we need only take the first step, make that one decision, then He’ll do the rest. We may even stumble while He’s holding our hand. That doesn’t mean He’s not by our side, it just means we aren’t strong enough yet. Instead of lying in the dust and quitting, we must DECIDE to try one more time and reach out for His hand of forgiveness that He has stretched through out the ages, from the day Christ died until the end of time. No matter how hard it gets, forget what you don’t understand, what you can’t do, and just decide to give it one more shot. Remember when your parents told you not to put your fingers in the candle flame no matter how enticing it looked? Curiosity probably got the better of you and you probably tried it when they weren’t there. You got burnt, you cried. Then your parents came, lovingly soothed your pain, and gave you the same advice again: don’t touch the flame. Were your parents bad for not doing all they could to stop you? Are they to blame for your hurting fingers? Should you runaway from home because they put that stupid candle there that burned you?

    1/2

    November 7, 2016
  • Avatar
    Toni

    2/2

    Jesus already told us the journey with Him would be rough, and God already provided a way out for us when we fall. So when you faced difficulty following Jesus, you should have realised that He’d already told you to expect setbacks AND He had told you what to do when you fail. He says stop trying to fix yourself! Let go of the situation! HE will fix you. HE will make the situation better. Not you. You can’t do it, so stop trying.

    He says that He is going to prepare a better place where all the messed up stuff you can’t explain (like babies dying, wars, corruption) won’t exist anymore; heaven. So stop trying to explain to people or to yourself why bad stuff happens. God has let it happen because He has another place for us to be, it’s up to us if we want to be there with him. But He wants to make sure everyone who gets there is of exceptional character, that’s why He sets the bar so high for us here. It’s a test, to see if we would be good fits in heaven and not mess up paradise, again, once we get it. Are tests easy? No way! Yet, He’s told you what to do when you face that hard test; trust Him. Ask Him for help. Even when it seems like no one is answering, keep asking. And He’ll answer. I’ve asked for help, wept for help, for many years, over seeming small sins, and I’m still struggling with some of them. But I remember that He said if we fall seven times, we should get up eight. So I get up. It’s exhausting, frustrating, and sometimes almost depressing, but because He already told me it would happen, and He also told me to expect His help if I keep getting up no matter how hard or how many times I fall, I’ll keep getting up even if it’s with my last breath.

    This is basically what many motivational and success coaches tell us, but taking God out of the equation. “Work hard even when you don’t see the results; the night is darkest before the dawn. Fake it, till you make it. Don’t give up on your dreams because of one setback. Rome wasn’t built in a day.” So, if we believe these coaches when they tell us how to persist in pursuit of earthly success, why can’t we persist with the same measure in following Christ? When He was here, His followers were basically misfits: Peter the hot tempered liar, Matthew the probably corrupt tax collecter, Judas the money hungry betrayer, James and John the politicking power hungry followers, Zaccheus (doesn’t really need a description, does he?), Mary the prostitute, and so on. I think what Jesus wanted to show us is that the people many would consider the worst of society, people who we are likely to believe can’t amount to anything can actually change completely, if they follow Him. So if these people changed because they followed Jesus, then you can, too. Remember, Peter still struggled with sin right up to Jesus’ crucifixion, and He was supposed to be the chief apostle! This man LIVED with Christ, he ate with Him, he probably slept under the same tree with Him, was held in His hands, heard Him teach for THREE years, YET, Peter fell hard, failed woefully when he denied knowing Jesus. He sought his own safety over Christ’s; the same thing we are guilty of till today. But the true lesson there is that Peter didn’t run into the night moaning; he didn’t give up and lie down in the mud of sin because it was just so hard to follow this Jesus who had the Roman army after Him, the Sanhedrin and most of the Jewish public hating Him, and made all the apostles live in poverty and hardship and fear for their lives, leaving their families behind and all what not, only for Him to die and leave them alone to face the world that hated them and wanted them dead. He instead continued believing in Christ’s promises and after many many more trials and many more falls he eventually became a great force in the early church. If Peter, a cowardly, lying fisherman, who even spent real face time with Jesus firsthand, could fall and rise again, then my dear you can, too. And you should.

    I’m glad you have heard the gospel, you’ve been to church, you know of Jesus. What you need to do now is decide if you like your life the way it is or if you want a better one. Note that the better life promised by God is not really here on earth. True, He’d make earthly life a bit more bearable for the Christian but that fortitude to bear life’s hardship is rooted in the promise of heaven. That hope that one day all this rubbish would be over. No more queuing for fuel, no more mosquitoes at night with no light, no struggling to pay the rent, no more lying to mommy about who that girl or that boy truly is, no more feeling guilty about sex, no more checking your bank balance before you buy the basics of life, no dealing with unneccesary drama! I’d take the promise of a better life, even if it’s not here and now, over trying to make the best of this one on my own. Maybe I’m just too lazy and I’m taking the easy way out… lol 🙂

    November 7, 2016
  • Avatar
    Glow

    It’s so obvious even from the title that what the reader practiced previously was religion and not Christianity! I’m a Christian and I don’t think Jesus came and died just to give me another set of rules(to live by), He came so I can have a relationship with the Father i.e God Almighty. I have that relationship now, i cherish it and when I do/don’t do some certain things it’s not out of compulsion or because I’m gonna be punished…… Whatever I do/don’t do stems out of my love for God.

    November 8, 2016
  • Avatar
    Sammy

    Point of correction please !!!. Having Christ in your life, is not having a religion . You don’t need religion but you need Christ. I can decide not to go church if I like but, I see it something of importance for me to be in the church, that’s why am there. Going to church and having Jesus in your heart are two different thing. First you have accept Jesus into your heart, then if you think going to church is important, then do.

    August 18, 2017
  • Avatar
    Olatoye

    I have to say that we, everyone has to decide what works for them, and this is why we say that we all have free will to choose.
    You claim to have not really studied the Bible, which is what serves as the base for the Christian worldview, I feel like you can’t claim to understand Christianity if you never really took the time to study the Bible for yourself.
    I find that there are a lot of people who say that they can’t be Christain who make this claim, and I can’t take them seriously – you can’t take a class in school and say you truly understood the subject without doing a lot of studying of the texts. I find there are a lot of people who get their teachings from just what a pastor says, and that is intellectually lazy.
    I think you should spend time reading the Bible (with context) and try meditating on what you read; you just may find that it is rational.

    May 1, 2018
Post a Comment