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My Issues with Religion

As a young boy I went to the Catholic school and served as an altar boy in our community’s church. My father, an E-7 registered nurse, was shipped off to Iraq during the first Gulf War in 1991. My mother, also a nurse, was stationed at the Walter Reed hospital in Maryland.

It was not until my high school years that I came to the realization that something was not right in regards to religion, although I still felt guilty for not believing in the modern church or in a higher being. My parents were often frustrated with me for not wanting to attend mass. I told them that it did not make sense for me to see people walk into church, pretend to be holy and righteous, only to walk out and become morally destructive. What I did and still believe in are the messages of universal respect for one another. For me, it was a turning point in my life when I realized that there are times when you and I need to take second look at life and try to make real sense of it. In addition, I also did not feel comfortable losing personal control or placing my fate in the hands of another imaginary being.

Too often people take the bible and its stories literally. We need to realize that these stories were told to make moral points. How many times have you played telephone with say 10 people only to have your message completely mixed up? Probabaly quite often. If i was telling the story of Jesus and it lasted over 2000 years, I would have him walking on water too!

So, it is with this understanding that I have come to believe that the church was created in order to give us civilized meaning, or a way to control the masses by mutual respect and basic understanding of the human psyche. Faith contributes in giving people hope, humility, and the courage to take risks. However, If we lose our ability to ponder logically and fall behind in the ways of science and research, our progressive roots will struggle to advance human progress.

Stephen Oakes www.Jutiagroup.com

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