Much has been said lately about Chris Buttars comments about homosexuals recently in the media. It is slightly scary at what level of conviction he made those statements and at what level of conviction that those who think the same way agree. There is a certainty that their belief system is fact, supported by a sacred text that was inspired by god and that it is the absolute truth.
However this certainty is not reserved for homosexuals. We see it as the pious justify all of their policies and beliefs. Abortion is murder, god said...contraception is a sin, god said....the United States is a Christian Nation...god said. You get the picture. With this certainty comes a calling to wield a sword and to strike down all evil in the world. This power, given by god, results in oppression of minorities, women, homosexuals, non-believers, and those who are not of their faith.
When I was five there was certainty there was a Santa Claus, Tooth Fairy, and an Easter Bunny. When I was 11, I wanted so bad for those to be real but I started to ask questions and soon abandoned them as icons. When I was 12, a devout LDS boy living in a home with parents who were not active in the church, I started to see how poorly my family was treated and I started to ask questions. By the time, I was 14 I was having a "Crisis of Faith" and my attendance became sporadic. When I was 16, I was ordained a priest and within the year I was a self proclaimed atheist.
I didn't really know at 16 if I was an atheist or a Mormon. What I knew was I had doubt. That doubt led me on a journey. I questioned, read, asked questions and demanded answers....all led me to more doubt, more questions and a deeper search. Not one text but many. My journey was first a search for affirmation that the god I loved for the last 16 years was. It, over time, morphed into a journey to prove he was not. As I have aged and seasoned the message has tempered. I no longer quest to prove god does not exist but to ask hard questions. I do not find the old stand by "you have to have faith" to be good enough.
I recently watched the film "Religulous" by Bill Maher. Bill Maher is, by all accounts, an atheist. The film and the sarcasm contained within is my type of humor and I honestly enjoyed it from an entertainment standpoint. However, the message at the end of the film made me stop and really think. Maher discusses DOUBT! He discusses, as I did at the beginning of this post, that it is in certainty that we are called to action to forward our cause. However with a little doubt, a little humility, we pause. I am sure enough of the path I have chosen to continue my journey, I however have enough doubt that I am not going try to convince you that you should join me. I will however question your assertions not as a means to sway you from your belief but in an attempt to lessen my doubt!