Atheist skeptics: do you think you still would have ended up an atheist skeptic if religion had NEVER been forced on you?

Say.. if Abrahamic religion did not exist. And you'd been born into a world where everyone was really spiritually open and accepting. Kind of like most current-day Pagans, Buddhists, New Agers, etc, are. And basically their whole deal was: "there are many different ways of doing this, and trying to connect with the Beyond. You've just got to find what works for you.. Feel free to try out a bunch of different things, to see what that is! Or.. none. If you're not interested. Whatever. It's all up to you."

If you'd grown up in that kind of society, do you STILL think you would have ended up a hardline skeptic in the end? Why, or why not? I guess basically what I'm asking is: do you think you've rejected spirituality because your brain is just so damn exclusively rational and objective, it just plain doesn't jibe with it? Or do you think you've rejected it because you f*cking hate dogmatic mainstream religion, in the guise of Christianity or Islam, and all it stands for? So you've decided: "screw ALL of this, then!!"

Speaking as someone who used to think it was the former, but it ultimately turned out to be a strong case of the latter... And, I'm not saying that's everyone else's story! Perhaps it's not your story at ALL. But.. I still wonder how common or uncommon it is. And if anyone on here has experienced something similar.

17 Answers

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  • Tony B
    Lv 7
    6 months ago

    I couldn't honestly say that religion was ever forced upon me. My family were “Christians” I guess but not religious and not “practicing” Christians.

    As an atheist i'm not rejecting or rebelling against anything. It's just as I grew up I realised how ridiculous the idea of there being a “God” was and how most of what was in The Bible was obviously not literally true.

  • 6 months ago

    We are still atheists, because our parents respected us and so, never tried to condition / brainwash us for force us to believe in a religion and a guy living on a cloud ( whatever it is).

  • 6 months ago

    Religion was not forced on me.

    So yes.

  • Cowboy
    Lv 6
    6 months ago

    Nobody forced things on me. I figured this god thing was as important an issue as it gets, so I set out to find god - and I did!! god does exist - it's a feeling in your mind and all references to gods outside of yourself and free living are all false - just like all religions - they talk around the issue but they all get it wrong, which is very easy to do, finding god is something almost nobody does.....

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  • poldi2
    Lv 7
    6 months ago

    Religion was not forced on me, I was quite happy being a Christian for over 20 years.

  • 6 months ago

    I was raised by a mormon mother and a catholic father - having two mutually exclusive sets of dogma (both claiming to be 'the only true one') made it pretty easy to figure out that neither had any basis in reality.

    As I was exposed to other religious belief systems (including other christian sects), none of them had anything compelling to offer that I hadn't already seen (and rejected).

    I don't claim to know whether or not 'god(s)' exist - but I do know I lack belief in them.

  • 6 months ago

    While I grew up in the church, I didn't feel that it was forced on me and while there were examples of dogmatic people, there were also examples of people with broader acceptance. What made me become an atheist is that I started to objectively research the claims of creationism and evolution and found to my suprise that not only was evolution well supported by solid evidence but creationism wasn't and many those that publish books and/or videos supporting it were con-artists.

  • 6 months ago

    Hypothetical, alternate realities

    are hard to make guesses about.

    That is a bit like asking,

    "If you weren't you,

    how would you be different?"

    --

    Regards,

    John Popelish

    • jpopelish
      Lv 7
      6 months agoReport

      Strands of your web are shot all through my web, now,
      pulling my strands, a bit,
      in many new and different directions.

      The adventure continues.

  • Jeremy
    Lv 6
    6 months ago

    I really couldn't say for sure. I think so. I can say I didn't come to where I am because I, as you put it, "hate dogmatic mainstream religion." Mine wasn't a "screw ALL of this, then!!" sort of response. Some of the ideas leading me to start to question were the competing ideas within different sects of Christianity itself. It really led me to question if any one of them were more reliable, and that led me to finding that they were all equally unreliable. I think in a world where I would have just had a buffet of competing claims from pagans, new agers, et. al., I could imagine the same sort of search for reliability and finding them lacking.

  • Anonymous
    6 months ago

    My family was not religious. My friends were, when I saw the ridiculous things my friends believed I laughed incessantly.

    • ღAmayAღ (Pond)
      Lv 7
      6 months agoReport

      Guess you're maybe a genuine case of: "none of this makes any sense", then. I was also raised secular, and remember still always being a bit of a seeker, and having spiritual-ish type experiences, from an early age on. So I suppose our childhoods may serve as an indication of something..? Maybe. ;)

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