I share my ideas and insights about my life on this blog and mostly it’s about my family and my hiatus of teaching. Today I am going to talk about religion because it seems everyone else in the US is talking about it lately.
I saw an article on Thought Catalog today that gave me pause. Thought Catalog is a blog that posts rants, poetry, insights and a bunch of other stuff by ordinary people like you and me. Most of the articles are by the more tech savvy 20-somethings of our world and being a happily married 40-something the articles regarding dating, relationships, and love, don’t really speak to me but this one article “I’m a Liberal Who Believes in God” made me pause and think.
Many of my friends, conservative and liberal, (Yes, you can have both!) think I am agnostic or atheist because I would identify as liberal, believe in marriage equality, and think a woman’s right to choose is just that, her choice. Also I don’t really talk about God and praying and religion that much. My mother was brought up Lutheran but growing up, didn’t really attend church that often. My father was raised a strict Catholic, however, when he came to the US he did not attend church and actually married a Jewish woman in his first marriage. His second marriage was to my mother. My brother and I were not raised “anything” but my mother did send us down to the local community church on Sunday once in a while to go to the Bible School. Here is where I learned about Jesus, Noah, and David and Goliath. I also learned that stuff from the only cartoon on Sunday, Davey and Goliath*.
Growing up, religion wasn’t a big part of my life, but I believed in God and Jesus and Santa Claus. We hunted for colored eggs during Easter not really realizing it was celebrating the death and rebirth of a savior. Back then, I remember only one Jewish kid in my elementary class and we sang Christmas songs and Hanukkah songs. I never really thought about the religion of any of my friends, even in high school.
Nowadays it seems you need to be labeled and fit into a category and have a very strong opinion about politics, sex, and religion. Maybe it’s because of the access of instant information and putting those categories of sexual preference, religion, and more, on our facebook profiles. We look up information about someone on the internet, instead of getting to know them in real life, and we have them “all figured out”.
Well here’s the hard part. People change throughout their lives. Life events both good and bad affect what kind of a person we are at any given moment in our lives. If I had a facebook in high school, you would have seen a very different person than what the Big Green Meanie is today. Even my name Big Grean Meanie, doesn’t really reflect the real me today. Being a SAHM this year I’m gotten a little nicer and more patient with people. It’s weird. Things that use to get me angry I can honestly say – I just let it go.
But on the other hand, I am more sensitive to all the sadness and unhappiness that I see and hear on the internet. People are fighting, FIGHTING! about stuff that before all this social media they would have just Let it Go. Sometimes I think about ending this blog because it makes me use the internet more and seeing all the negativity out there kinda stinks. What do you think?
So in the end I believe in God, but don’t go to church. I believe in Buddha and Jesus and Muhammad too because as an Ancient History teacher I know they were all real people. I believe faith and hope can help people through struggles, hardships, and sacrifice. So yeah, I believe, just don’t go around telling everybody…
*So I never realized this but Davey and Goliath is associated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church – guess I’m Lutheran!