Home > Ethics, Faith, morality, Religion > The Bible Set Me Free

The Bible Set Me Free

The Bible Set Me Free

Blame it on my parents.  They always told me to “think for yourself”.  I doubt they ever considered what would happen if I really did that.

Now, I suspect what they meant was, “Think what we tell you but do it in your own words.”  Too late.  When I was 13, I began to question everything and soon the total absurdity of religion became apparent.

Because I have been “encouraged” (forced) to read the bible several times, it was easy for me to see the contradictions in the book, what christians professed to believe, and how they really lived.

When I refused to go with them to their church, they said they would “Make me go.”

I asked them, “How are you going to make me? How will forcing me to attend church change my mind?”  Already, their attitude was starting to harden me against everything else they would tell me.

Their next idea was to have their minister talk to me.  I told them it was a waste of everyone’s time.  They persisted and had him come to the house to “Talk some sense into me.”  (as if they ever works for anyone)  After about 15 minutes of him quoting the bible to me and me pointing out that he was either wrong in his quotes or showing him how it said something else in another place, he became very angry and told me I was going to hell.  I suspect it was because I knew the bible better than he did and was, at age 13, able to prove how ridiculous his arguments were.

I told him, “If there is a Hell I’ll see you there.  Save me a nice place, OK?”  He said I was an impertinent, disrespectful child.  By then, I was angry myself and for the first time, I told a christian that he was a hypocrite, a liar, and a fool.  My parents insisted that I apologize.  I refused and left the room to a lot of yelling and threats.

For the next four years, I heard about this at least once a week.  So the night I graduated high school, I left my parent’s home and didn’t see them again for well over a year.  By then, with the credits I had accumulated in high school and summer school,  I had completed a couple of years of college.  Fortunately, I was able to pay for this myself.  I was entering the army and wanted to try to make peace with them, but had to listen to the same old recriminations and arguments again.

The next time I saw them was two years later when I was getting married.  After several years of an on-again, off-again relationship they finally agreed to just not discuss it any more.  I’d like to say that worked, but  subtle hints slowly became outright condemnation.  Then I took a job transfer from Ohio to Arizona, so family meetings were rare enough to become occasions for something other than contention.

I do have to say that I appreciate the other things they did for me, like encouraging my education and equipping me with the work ethic and attitudes I needed to survive and thrive at that early age.  In those areas, they were excellent parents and I am grateful for those things.

What did I learn?  Even your family can turn against you if you refuse to share in their illusions.  There are times, if you are to become your own person, you must stand firm in what you know to be true.

  1. May 9, 2012 at 2:24 am

    I’m sorry to hear that happened to you.

    • May 9, 2012 at 10:16 am

      As I mentioned, other than that, they were decent parents. At least for my mother, she never really got over that. To the day she died, she’d bring it up sometimes. She did learn that when she did, I’d soon be gone, so it didn’t happen nearly as often.

  2. May 9, 2012 at 10:13 am

    I admire you, you were a pretty tough minded kid!

    • May 9, 2012 at 10:24 am

      If I was tough-minded, that’s another credit to my parents. I’ve thought for years it was a character flaw. I’ve never had much patience for willful ignornance.

      • May 9, 2012 at 10:26 am

        If it’s a character flaw, I’ve got that one too.

  3. July 3, 2012 at 11:27 pm

    I enjoyed your story. I would have done the same in your situation. Actually I can not imagine growing up in that situation but I have said similar things to similar people at about that age. You can not choose where you are born but you can choose who you are.

    • July 4, 2012 at 12:04 am

      Thanks for your comment. As I said, in many other ways my parents were very good to me. They gave me the encouragement for learning (My mother taught me to read when I was three) and helped me to develop the skills and attitudes (mostly work ethic) to be able to take care of myself all of my life. For those things, I am very grateful and know I was fortunate to have parents who cared enough and took the time to help me with these things.

  4. July 30, 2012 at 4:07 pm

    It is very sad to me to hear another story of how detrimental religion can be to the upbringing of a child. Because you found truth at an early age, you seem to have had some love taken away from you. Although I do not know you well enough to truly believe such a bold statement, I just want you to know I feel for you.

    Just how I feel, you may not feel as strongly about such things.

    • July 30, 2012 at 5:08 pm

      I really don’t feel I lost much love. I never doubted that about my parents. It is sad that there was enough conflict to keep us apart for years at a time. But others have had it far worse, I know. What I didn’t mention is I endured a lot worse from peers and others than I did from my parents. But that’s another story.

  5. September 10, 2012 at 1:56 am

    Ah, how i revel in this story since it’s a familiar one to me. What gets to me is when parents use the bible to teach when they should be using their own life experience; I don’t want to hear a quote from Matthew, i want to hear about your life and how it relates to mine! I want to hear about your mistakes and your solutions not some thousand year old maybe-fictional dead guys one. A child growing up in these conditions can some times feel isolated from the family because the family becomes a church, not a family. But still family is family and you and them might have your differences you’d still die for each other, and that counts as something special.

    • September 10, 2012 at 10:07 am

      Thank you for your comment. It is well-expresed and very thoughtful. It certainly adds to the essay.

  6. September 18, 2012 at 11:45 pm

    Beautiful, welcome

  7. January 13, 2013 at 4:26 am

    This is a really sad post. It’s sad not just because of how they treated you, but also, because they clearly believe they are trying to save you from hell. It upsets me to see these lies just tear your family apart, to see them worry so much about something that just does not matter.

    • January 13, 2013 at 12:25 pm

      In a way, it is sad. But remember, I also said that in other ways they were excellent parents. It’s sad that their own upbringing was such that they were mentally blinded to what they were doing. It was their encouragement to “think for yourself” that spared me from the same blindness. I will always be grateful to tem for encouraging me that way even though it did not turn out the way they had expected. 🙂

      Things did get better after I moved far enough away that visits became an occasion for joy and not recrimination.

  8. Bjorn Haas
    April 10, 2014 at 6:25 am

    Your parents must have been very disappointed in you. How did you deal with their constant disappointment?

    • April 10, 2014 at 7:11 am

      Dean, you stupid SOB. You are so dumb anyone could always recognize your posts. You aren’t even smart enough to use a believable fake email. Your spoofed IP addresses are so pathetically transparent a child could detect them.

      Your parents will be so disgraced by your being a stalker, troll, plagiarist, coward, slanderer, and total fool, they will probably deny knowing you. Yes, I will find you and I will expose you publicly and in open court.

  9. Bjorn Haas
    April 10, 2014 at 9:15 am

    This isn’t Dean. Exposed for what? Don’t be so silly, James.

  10. Bjorn Haas
    April 10, 2014 at 9:31 am

    I said exposed for what?

    • April 10, 2014 at 10:54 am

      Being a stalker, liar, troll, plagiarist, coward, and absolute fool. Yes, you are Dean Fiddle and you are a stupid PoS if you think that you can fool me.

      If you are not, why do you have to hide behind a fake ID and IP address? Only cowards and trolls have to do that/

  11. May 28, 2014 at 7:27 pm

    I remember the day I told my family I was an atheist homosexual, just like you. My parents were angry too. And they were right to be! I learned that Jesus died for our sins and so my sins were absolved in His death! I was then able to free myself from the slavery of man-love and find real love in Jesus, the Lord, our God.

    Praise, the Lord!

    • May 28, 2014 at 8:04 pm

      First, I am not a homosexual. I have no problem with those who are. They were born that way the same as if they have red hair and green eyes. It really has nothing to do with me, though.

      It is sad that you have rejected reason and intelligence in favor of the lies, myths, and deceptions of religion. I do understand that you might be lying about ever having been atheist/ There is nothing too untrue, absurd, or lacking in commonsense and human decency that religion will not use in striving to impose its sick, evil beliefs upon everyone else.

      The fact that you are hiding behind an obviously fake email and ID tells me that you know what you are dong is wrong and therefore must conceal your identity.

      In my personal experience, the religious are cowards at heart. I have been physically threatened and assaulted by those claiming they were gong to “teach this atheist a lesson”. Never has any of them had the courage to try it alone. It has always been three or more. So much for “the power of the lord. That’s rather ironic considering that I am not a large, dangerous-looking person. The difference seems to be I know I am right and they know they are wrong.

      • May 30, 2014 at 10:26 am

        slrman, you should not have been so harsh withForever In Christ even if he is a homosexual. I appreciate that you are not a homosexual but I do not see why you try to draw a parallel between homosexuals and the Scottish or did you mean another race of red-haired, green-eyed northern Europeans?

        In any case, Forever In Christ, which is unlikely his name was attempting to share a story of ‘coming out’ just as you had and you should have shown more respect to his feelings and his faith.

      • May 30, 2014 at 10:43 am

        I don’t care if he is gay or not. It was his unwarranted assumption that I am gay that was irritating.

        Also, I was not referring to the Scots. I was comparing one genetic train to another. I am of Scottish ancestry myself and there are no red-haired green-eyed people in my family You also make unwarranted assumptions. That’s much easier than thinking, isn’t it?

        Forever In Christ is a typical christian, smug and cowardly. He uses a fake email and ID to perform what I call a “drive-by” posting. He slides in, makes an insulting, preachy comment then slithers back to hide behind his keyboard because he is not interested in honest debate but in lecturing from his imagined moral superiority.

        He did not share anything, he is probably lying about all of it so he can use it as an excuse to point out how superior he is and state that I, and everyone else, should follow his example.

        Furthermore, respect must be earned, not demanded. Neither this cowardly poster nor his sick religion has earned anything other than contempt, disgust, and derision.

        Aha! I see you have also used a fake email. You are as cowardly and as undeserving of respect as Forever Cowardly In Christ.

  12. May 30, 2014 at 11:20 am

    I would much prefer to exchange emails with Forever In Christ than with your slrman, as you have nil manners and and only a high opinion of yourself to discuss. Your opinion of yourself is incorrect and your blog is nothing more than an attempt to troll is it?

    I have no interest in whether you are Scottish or Chinese or whether your family have red hair. Likewise, whether you are a homosexual is of no concern to me, although I think you do protest too much!

    As for giving you my real email address, why would I do that? I can see from other posters that you ignore the “Address will never be made public” notice and print it on online. You have certainly not earned anyone’s respect here because you are a truly pathetic man.

    • May 30, 2014 at 11:38 am

      Of course you would. You’re as cowardly as he is. Also, you do not like it when people tell the truth because truth never supports your delusions.

      You are the one that brought up the Scottish issue, something you conveniently ignore.

      My opinions are based upon facts, not the wishful thinking and gratuitous insults that you like to use.

      I protest too much? I was only responding the the juvenile sexual insults of Forever Lying In Christ and your support of them.

      Naturally, you do not want to use your real email. That would further expose you to factual statements. Can’t stand that, can you?

      You also lie about me publishing email addresses. I only publish the fake ones so anyone can see for themselves what cowards you are. Note that I didn’t publish your phony email so you seem to be the one that “doth protest too much.”

      You are a deeply stupid person that has earned the total contempt of any rational individual. I can promise you that any further posting from you will not be inflicted upon anyone else.

      Show some testicular fortitude and engage me directly via email. I’ll not insult anyone else with your willful ignorance and stubborn stupidity. You prefer to hide behind your keyboard and fake IDs to say things that you would never dare say to my face, don’t you?

  13. May 30, 2014 at 11:45 am

    Cowardly? I fear no man. Your face is not something I ever wish to speak to. I am actually surprised as how old you are. You should know better. And yes, I could beat you, very easily. What is your email address?

    • May 30, 2014 at 11:54 am

      You can reach me at slrman@zoho.com for the next few weeks. I am changing to a different email service so that one will expire after a time.

      You could beat me? OK, I’ll pay your way here or anywhere else for you to have the opportunity. That ball is now in the coward’s court. Come on craven cockroach, I am waiting, but not holding my breath. You clearly only talk bravely while you are safely hiding.

    • May 31, 2014 at 12:13 pm

      Apparently, Anders has slithered back under his rock as no response has been made, either here on on my email.

      Perhaps my instant acceptance of his threat to beat me and offer to pay his way anywhere in the world to carry out that threat has frightened him so much so, as expected, he’s returned to hiding behind his keyboard. I am not even remotely surprised. These keyboard kommandos are only brave when they can toss out threats and insults with no fear of taking responsibility for their actions. Case closed.

      • pierre
        June 2, 2014 at 5:30 am

        i thnk aanders likely not want meet mean and ugly old man and not want kill him with one hit more like. he pointed out you a unpleasant old man and you prove he is right. in france they close this site down for being un trollsite

      • June 3, 2014 at 11:58 am

        I think you are Aanders hiding behind another fake ID. Even if you are not Aanders, you behave exactly like the cowardly, worthless wimp he is. Also like hi, you would never face me personally.

        Yes, I am unpleasant to disgusting people like you because I tell the truth.

        BTW, in France they have not “closed down” this site. They do not have the ability to do that just as you do not have the ability to think. Nor can they block it as I am going to do to you and your alternate ID, Aanders.

  14. Aanders Felig
    June 3, 2014 at 11:42 am

    Are you gay or are you not gay? WHICH IS IT?

    • June 3, 2014 at 11:52 am

      WHat does it matter? “Gay” is the worst insult your feeble mind can think of. What you are is a trolling coward. You are still hiding behind a fake email. This time, aanders@oldenoughtoknonwbetter.com

      If you were not such a craven worthless, PoS, you’d face me personally with your insults. But you are exactly what I say. So slither back under your rock and hope I never find you.

  15. Aanders Felig
    June 3, 2014 at 6:50 pm

    Good to see you violating own policies!


    You hide this commet because you a liar.

    Why you a liar?

    I find you you gay hater.

    • June 3, 2014 at 7:06 pm

      If you were not so stubbornly stupid, you would note I said I only publish fake addresses (Aanders@fuckyoufelig.com) so anyone can see what a liar and coward those that use them and you are.

      Thank you for demonstrating again that you are a cowardly piece of shit and that you will forever hide from me and every decent human being on earth.

      How am I a gay hater? Show me one thing I have ever posted to even hint at that. It’s you and other assholes like you that bring up gay. It such a pathetically obvious instance of the Reaction Formation that it would be laughable if you were not such a horror of a human being.

      This is the classical “reaction formation” from Freudian psychoanalysis. The people most threatened by homosexuality are the ones who are reacting to what they hate most in themselves.

      For the rest of us who are not gay, we might be appalled when we are hit on by someone of the same sex, otherwise it just doesn’t matter. This is why I support gay rights – I am comfortable in my heterosexuality and don’t view gay people as threats to me or mine. People are people. Who they sleep with is not my business if the act is between consenting adults.

      Come out from under your septic tank home and try facing me personally. I’ll pay your way anywhere in the world to give you the opportunity to prove you are not the despicable worm you have shown yourself to be. You can spout your insults and hate to my face – if you dare.

  16. June 16, 2014 at 8:47 pm

    This is perhaps the most academic response to a troll I have seen. Researching the Freudian concept now. Great article by the way.

    • June 16, 2014 at 9:11 pm

      Here it is.

      “This is classical “reaction formation” from Freudian psychoanalysis. The people most threatened by homosexuality are the ones who are reacting to what they hate most in themselves.

      For the rest of us who are not gay, we might be appalled when we are hit on by someone of the same sex, otherwise it just doesn’t matter. This is why I support gay rights – I am comfortable in my heterosexuality and don’t view gay people as threats to me or mine. People are people. Who they sleep with is not my business if the act is between consenting adults.”

      This person is a stalker, troll, liar, and coward that has been following me by using various fake IDs for some time. He most often goes under the ID of Dean Fiddler or a pitiful variation of that in an attempt to conceal who he is. He has consistently engaged in libel and insults. One of his favorites is stating that I am bald. He is too dumb to know that’s a description, not an insult. The other is that he’s obsessed with homosexuality and “gay” is, for his limited mentality, the ultimate insult.

      I have called him on this many times and even offered to pay his way anywhere in the world so he can spout his vitriol to my face. He usually pretends that offer was never made as he is terrified of even being within a thousand miles of me. That. at least, shows some good sense.

      Thanks for the comment. I appreciate it.

  17. susanbotchie
    September 25, 2014 at 11:06 am

    Throughout the previous centuries, many intellectually gifted men have also read the Scriptures several times over, and have chosen to believe. In addition, evolutionary theory goes back to Roman days. While ancient.men did not have computers or microscopes, to dismiss their thinking is mere chronological snobbery. Yep, nothing new under the sun. 😉

    • September 25, 2014 at 11:19 am

      The key word in your post is “chosen.” They have chosen to believe despite the total lack of evidence of any god at any time. A comforting lie is easier to accept than a truth that never supports your favored delusions.

      Exactly who are these “gifted men” that “chose to believe?” Are you sneaking Pascal’s wager into your post?

      Nope, there isn’t much new, including your absurd thinking.

      Pascal’s wager basically says, “God is so stupid he will accept pretend belief over a life well-lived with kindness and compassion for all.”

      What does evolutionary truths, not theory, have to do with this post of mine? I never mentioned evolution. That type of red herring is typical of those with nothing worthwhile to say.

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