What’s your story? This is a typical greeting/getting to know you better question in the atheist community. Almost as common as “What church do you attend,” in religious communities!
Seems that most have a story of shedding their belief. Of their journey to atheism. Of their epiphany. Typically, there is a period of belief, followed by a period of questioning, followed by a recognition that they no longer have a belief in God. Occasionally, there is an additional moment when the person realizes they are an ATHEIST.
I love these stories. I think there is a tremendous struggle played out; internal, external, and community-wise. People have to come to their own internal decision. Then they both shed and taken on new behaviors. Finally, this process forces many to lose their community, support system, and family. That is a lot to go through regarding a belief!
These all have the characteristics of a great story: emotional, journey to fulfillment, heroes, and more. Also, many people in the community can readily identify with the journey. Another important reason to share these stories is for those that are currently on the journey. These stories help pave the way to atheism.
I want to talk about another sort of story. The boring ones. The ones where the person never believed, never had an issue, never though twice about it. That is my story. I have always been an atheist and no one cared. I have no story.
On one hand, I am lucky! I recognize that. I have lived the life that atheist and secularists want to create for everyone. My atheism has been irrelevant to my life.
On the other hand, I am envious. Because of my lack of story, there will always be something I cannot grasp about how people are devoted to being atheists. About how they have struggled to claim atheist as a label.
For me, atheism is more of an orientation than a preference or choice. I am lucky that I can say that without being burned as a witch, stoned to death, or exiled from my family. Not all are able to say that.
I know I am lucky.
Still, some days I wish I had a story.
© 2012, KHR. All rights reserved.Just so you know, I HATE these messages . . . and now I have one! Rippere.com is only about my experience of the world. It is not related to any organization with which I am associated.