Maybe you are looking for differences in my life sense I became an atheist. I never felt comfortable bowing down in front of a group of people, listening to voices in my head, and repeating a mantra that I never received a response from other than my own thoughts in my own head. Nothing about prayer, religion, or worship made sense to me BUT, I felt guilty if I did not continue the rituals. I felt guilty if I used foul language. I felt guilty if I did what I wanted to do instead of going to church on Sundays. There are many many things that I would feel gulity about because in the "eyes of God" I should be doing something else instead of what I wanted to do or what seemed natural for me to do.
Worrying and depression used to be a huge problem for me. I used to be a heavy drinker and I'm convinced that I drank so much to keep myself from dealing with reality. Again, the world did not make sense to me and when I drank, I no longer cared. If I was drunk I could pass out at night whereas if I was sober I would stay awake at night worrying about everything under the sun, including the death of my daughter in some horrible accident. These worries never stopped. No matter how often I prayed about them...nothing would cause all the worry and non-stop "mind-chatter" from going on inside my head.
When I let go of God and started applying logic and reason to my life it only took a few months before my rational thinking took control of my irrational thoughts. I started applying statastics to things I worried about. What are the changes that my daughter is going to get raped or murdered? What can I do about it if it happened? etc.
I stopped drinking completely for almost 3 years. (I've recently began having a beer or two when I'm out at dinner with the people I work with but I no longer have the habit of drinking like I used to) And let me tell you, I had prayed to have God help me stop drinking since I was 17. "God" never helped at all. It was only when I took personal responsibility for my own behaviors that I was able to take control of my drinking.
If you envision someone living on the beach, you are mistaken. I've never lived ON the beach, just 5 miles from it. In 2007 I lived in an upper middle class home with all the toys and crap that you might expect from a happy, brainwashed, consumer. However, in 2008-2009 I lost my job as a computer systems administrator, I lost my home, and sold everything we owned of value to keep a roof over our head and food on the table. My wife and I currently live in an efficeny apt that is essentially an extended stay hotel. We litterally have nothing of (monotary) value left. We have 1 car that is 10 years old and we have no money or investments. I do a job that any teenage drop out could do but it pays the bills.
I could go into more detail but if you are like I was...it will just cause you to dig in more and tell me things like my Mom did..."oh isn't it wonderful how God helped you stop drinking", um bullshit Mom, that was ME that stopped drinking..."God" dropped the ball on that for years!
Relationship with wife and daughter (both who are now also atheists) EXCELLENT! BTW, I used to fear the death of not only myself but my sisters, parents, wife, daughter, etc constantly. No more. Life MAKES SENSE to me now. Illogical thoughts get tossed out of my conscienceness in a split second instead of feeling like a splinter in my brain.
I never expericenced complete relaxation and happiness until I realized that it was not ME that was missing something...that there wasn't something wrong with ME and my ability to "connect" with a highter power. No, my mind was cramped from trying to square a circle. My mind was cramped from trying to telepathically communicate with some other world being that seemed competely illogical to me. My mind was working for years to try and steer me into the right dirction but I kept forcing it to bend in dirctions that never did and never would make sense to me.
Oh the pleasure of just letting life be. It is what it is and I don't have to have anyone's permission or be scared I'm going to burn in a fire pit for the rest of eternity. It's all a ruse and it's sad for me to see so many people wasting a signifgant portion of their time, energy, and money on what may be the greatest scam of all.
Religion, Government, & Money and Banking. Those three things all have one BIG thing in common. They are illusions to fool the masses. You have probably accepted that Government & Money and Banking are illusions, what is it that keeps the most obvious of those 3 things kept in a box locked away where it cannot be questioned or picked apart like the other 2? It's faith...or like some say...The faith Virus. Get cured of the faith virus and life really begins.
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