I Just Want the World to Care

We had an impromptu revival at church today. I saw a lot of people cry. Everyone got to come up to the pulpit and say their piece. It was somewhat entertaining until I started to get hungry.

Oh and someone got saved.

I genuinely wonder what it’s like to be a fervent believer in Christianity. I’ve seen them and grown up around them my entire life. I wonder what it’s like to feel so moved by “god” that you cry and shake and shout like some people did today.

For someone who got saved and baptized in elementary school, I can only ever remember being “moved” once in my life by “god”. And it still wasn’t anywhere close to how people were acting today.

I think back on my childhood, and while I don’t remember any of it very well, I also don’t ever remember truly believing in god. I remember proclaiming to be a Christian and being proud I was baptist. I remember thinking it was strange how anyone could grow up not going to church and not knowing who Jesus was.

I remember saying “the prayer” to accept god into my heart, but I don’t remember believing it. Maybe the memory is tainted by my current non-belief, but I don’t remember ever believing in god the way the adults do at my church.

Have I always been a closet non-believer?? Did it just take me until high school to figure it out?? I don’t know. Is it possible for a small child to believe something opposite from what they’ve been taught their whole life without having been exposed to it first??

I mean, I was raised to believe only one thing, to understand the world only one way. If I really was a closet non-believer my entire life, how did I get that way if it’s the opposite of what my environment taught me??

Anyways. I’m still curious what it feels like to be a devout Christian. What’s it like to live your life believing there is this omnipotent man in the sky?? I remember believing in god as a child…but I dont remember really believing.

I don’t know. Like I said, it could be that my memories have been tainted with my current non-belief.

None of this is to say I’m not happy being Buddhist. I love being Buddhist (as I’ve said in previous posts). Buddhism is my home. I just wonder what life would be like, what I would be like, if that weren’t the case. What if I’d never strayed from Christianity?? What if I’d grown more devout as I grew older?? Where would I be now??

And I sometimes wonder, if I hadn’t been raised in such a predominantly Christian environment, an environment that taught there is something more than us in this universe, if maybe I’d be an atheist. I was atheist for like, a month, during my spiritual search for a “home”. But I didn’t stick with it because of the prevailing sense I had that there was something more. What if I’d been raised in one of these households that doesn’t go to church every Sunday?? Maybe I’d have stayed atheist.

It’s something interesting to think about.
I love Buddhism because it teaches one to question, teaches you to find the answers for yourself. Christianity doesn’t really teach that….well, at least my church doesn’t teach that. In the Christianity I was raised in, the bible is the 100% inerrant word of god. It’s not open to interpretation – and of course the pastor’s interpretation is the “right” one.

I sometimes wonder if I hadn’t been raised in such an….idiotic?? unaccepting?? church if I’d maybe still be a Christian as well.

Eh. It’s not important. I’m not Christian now, not do I ever plan to re-convert. I’m happy being Buddhist. To me it’s the most logical choice. Of course if people knew I was a Buddhist at my church, they’d tell me I was going to hell if I didn’t repent and turn to god. And then they’d pray for me whether I liked it or not.

So I’ll admit, I rolled my eyes at the “revival” today. I roll my eyes when the people in my Sunday school class talk about how “god’s hand has been removed from america”. I roll my eyes when my parents talk about the “secret liberal agenda” in this country. I roll my eyes when the church claims “evolution is wrong”.

But I’m the enemy to them. I haven’t even told my own mother I’m Buddhist because I fear the repercussions. I’m afraid to even mention that I’m a libertarian in my church because the people in my church seem to associate anything not republican with Satan.

My church loves to talk about the sad state that America is in now. I think it’s sad that in America, churches like mine are still attracting new members.

I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to turn this post into a rant about my church. I could go on and on. And I could say some really nasty things. I’m not afraid to admit that I still have lingering hatred towards my church. Buddhism is helping me to get rid of it. But it’s still there.

I wish there was a way I could magically make the whole world understand my point of view. I know it’s not very Buddhist to want to impose your beliefs on other people, but sometimes I really wish I could make the world “see the light”.

I’m tired of the ignorance and intolerance.
I shouldn’t have to fear voicing my opinion in a religious institution. Sikhs should be able to worship without someone coming in and shooting them up. Pagans should be able to practice proudly without fear of being called Satan worshippers. Gay people shouldn’t be exiled from their families because of their parents’ religion.

But yeah, I’m done.

Except that I’m slightly annoyed by the fact that a Sikh temple was shot up today and no one seems to care. The Colorado shootings received world wide attention. I know that the Colorado shooting resulted in more deaths and injuries, but a Sikh temple was attacked today!! People were killed!! They said on the news this is being considered an act of domestic terrorism!! And no one seems to care….

I saw countless Facebook posts the day of the Colorado shooting expressing sympathies and concerns. Today – nothing. It seems like no one cares that there was a most likely religiously motivated act of terrorism on our home soil today.

Is it because the Sikhs had brown skin?? Is it because they’re not a “mainstream” religion?? If a Christian church got shot up like the Sikhs’s did, you can sure as hell bet there would’ve been a giant media frenzy.

And I’m stepping off the soap box now.


About emilleejoyce

I am a yoga alliance 200 hour certified yoga teacher whose hobbies include growing cacti and succulents, cooking vegan food, and bicycling. My day job is in academic publishing.

3 responses to “I Just Want the World to Care

  1. Dylan

    So…sorry i’m creeping again lol, whenever i see your posts no the spark page i go, oh yeah that’s the girl with the neat blog. but i really liked this post. I really like how introspective you are about most things. I really liked the title of this post, I really liked your comment about rolling your eyes at “revival”, and I really liked what you had to say about the Sikh temple hate crime not getting nearly as much nationwide recognition as the Colorado shooting did. People care about what’s relatable to them. A shooting at the premiere of Batman is relatable, and had it been a Christian church, people would be flipping shit. What annoys me even more is that the certain semi-christians (You know, the kind who don’t go to church except for easter, and don’t really know anything the bible says really or have any idea of what “Christianity” means but just say they believe in jesus and are christian because it makes their life easier) would also be just as much in an uproar about being christian after a tragedy were to happen.

    & then they would all be posting loudly how proud they are that they’re christian, and ‘maybe’ even go to church as that boom was still in them. And that annoys me too. I remember a girl in my social studies class back in high school, exclaiming how if she lived back when women were supposed to be more silent, she would have smacked her husband, and been in charge, blah blah blah. It annoys me because she didn’t begin to attempt to grasp the fear of the concept at the time. Since Christianity is so “mainstream”, I doubt Christians would attempt to fully understand the fear of their own church being shot up, because they’re used to chrstianity being the norm, and not having many hate crimes against it. Boastful and proud, because they wouldn’t understand the fear that comes with the constant racism that muslims, and anyone who wears a turban, would get.

    Err. so yeah, i enjoyed your post lol. I woudl have added you on fb, but yours is ton like super lock and there isn’t even an add friend option.

    • I didn’t know my facebook was so locked up haha. But it should be fixed now if you still want to add me. :)

      But yeah, the people in my church loooove to talk about how “discriminated against” christianity is in America, and I just think to myself, they just have no idea what discrimination really is. Living in the south, being a christian is basically assumed of everyone. They really have no idea what it’s like to be another religion that isn’t “mainstream” and they’re so ignorant about what other religions teach, they gladly hop onto the discrimination train with everybody else. A while back, the people in my sunday school class couldn’t even name the 5 major world religions, and I have basically heard my pastor declare that all muslims are trying to take over the world and eradicate christianity (basically implying muslims “work for the devil”)…And my church wants to complain about discrimination against christians?!?

      I can pretty much bet that the Sikh shooting won’t even be addressed in church this sunday (which is the one place where I feel it should be).

      But yeah…there’s my little rant. haha. I’m glad you my post.

  2. Dylan

    Rants like this are one of my favorite.

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