Posts Tagged ‘Baptized’

My theory and many others on why religion was created is because the fear of death and the unknown. Ever since man developed complex emotions, and were then confronted with the realization of death and the knowledge of what a hardship is; they needed to construct something that would ease their fears and give them peace of mind in a chaotic world. These forefathers of religion created sun gods and moon gods. They worshipped these things because they had no concept of what they were; all they knew is somehow these two things had massive affects on their daily lives. I would also like to quickly point out that many civilizations did rituals and prayed for rain. They had no concept of how rain worked so they tacked it on to their religious beliefs. Not only did the earliest man need explanations for things they didn’t understand; they also needed to find something to ease their fears of what happens to you when you die. This fear of the ultimate unknown is the sole reason we have religion today.

It takes a strong individual to live their lives knowing they will somehow cease to exist. I know all to well this is a heavy burden to bear. We all want something more to believe in. We all want to somehow feel special. We all want to know somehow we will live on. These are the key driving points for the construction of faith. To illustrate this point I would like to quote a comment from my post “Religion and Anxiety-Reduction Theories.”

“If God and religion are all man-made constructs and there is nothing after this life, then why bother?”

I think this comment illustrates my point perfectly. I have grown to admire this reader’s thoughts and opinions and in no way am I saying she is weak. She was most likely raised to believe this. I do however think this shows a small chip in the armor of her faith. I have heard this comment before, and usually follow with “Is this your driving force to believe?” I tend to stump people on this point because it forces them to re-evaluate their beliefs. If they believe simply because this is the only way to give life meaning, or the only way to quell their fears of death then their faith is flawed. In essence their belief acts as a band-aid to cover up the deeper fears they have inside. We bother because it is our moral and ethical duty to improve the lives of our fellow man. We are here to cultivate a positive way of life for other generations to come. We do not need religion to dictate us to achieve these things; we only need to look into our hearts.

Religion has evolved over time, but every religion is built upon one another. With each new version declaring they are the only version. The concept of a virgin birth was described well before Christianity was created. For example the birth of Buddha was described as a virgin birth in the “Nidanakatha”

“The Brahmans said, ‘Be not anxious, O king! Your queen has conceived: and the fruit of her womb will be a man-child; it will not be a woman-child. You will have a son. And he, if he adopts a householder’s life, will become a king, a Universal Monarch; but if, leaving his home, he adopt the religious life, he will become a Buddha, who will remove from the world the veils of ignorance and sin.'”

This is but one example;virgin births were also described in Assyrian, Babylonian, Egyptian, Mithra, Mithras, and the Greco-Roman Mythology. This is by no means the complete list I am sure it goes on and on. In addition to this Muslim, Hinduism, and Taoism also have stories of a miraculous births. The one I find most interesting is one that precedes Christianity and Judaism the ancient religion of Persia “Zoroastrianism.” In this religion it not only describes a virgin birth, but it also has the messiah, death and resurrection, a final battle between good and evil, and the resurrection of the dead to stand judgment. This and others are perfect examples to describe the evolution of religion.

Creation stories, miraculous births, the death and resurrection of a messiah, and end times are all parts of every religion past and present. Each and every religion is just built upon one another. With each new edition religion evolves into something different than what it was before. Religion is like a fable passed on from generation to generation. In a sense it is like playing telephone, with each new generation the original concept gets changed and turned into what we have today. I feel there have been no new changes to religion because we live in a society that does not allow a change to happen. Everything is set as is, and everyone knows what is on the table. Trying to change a religious concept via word of mouth is simply just not possible. Those who try ultimately end up being defined as cults. In the end the purposes to believe in religion are all the same. We ask the exact same questions are ancestors asked, and we share their same fears. We cling onto religion because it just makes sense. We tend to look at other religions and judge them compared to our beliefs. We turn our nose to them claiming we are right, and their beliefs are silly. I am just as guilty of this as they are.

I came up with the quote “conceived in the weak” not because I am calling the religious weak. I am illustrating how our beliefs at their core are because of our fears. I think I am the perfect example of this. Right now I consider myself as being weak, because I have lost the strength to accept the reality of nothingness. Once this fear crept into my conscience I immediately sought out religion to ease my fears. I am searching for answers to questions which cannot be answered. If I were to latch on to Christianity to make myself feel better I really wouldn’t be a Christian because the only reason I am a Christian is because I fear the great unknown. I would be a fake; a liar, and a coward. I desperately need to find faith, but I am hindered by my reasoning and logic. Perhaps all my new religious readers who have offered me guidance are the sign from God I have always asked for, but perhaps it is all just a coincidence. These are the questions I ask myself. I ask them because of the intense fear inside of me. Perhaps God is placing this fear inside of me, and delivered me my readers to bring me to God, but perhaps the fear is there because death is really f’ing scary.

If we did not fear death, if we did not fear the unknown, if we didn’t need to see the light within chaos there would be no need for religion.

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The question that I am going to ask, I’m hoping to get a 3rd party outside opinion on and it is a very religious based question which hopefully you won’t mind but I have noticed with the blog you have touched on different aspects of religion, so here it goes….

I have two girls. One is almost two and the other was born almost a week ago. It was brought to my attention at the birth of my second daughter by my eventually to be mother in-law that I need to get her and her older sister baptized and I need to get them both baptized right away because I waited too long to baptized my older daughter and if anything happens to her she will go to hell. Obviously the remedy would be to baptize. (I kept putting it off with the first child unfortunately) The only issue is that my mother in-law and the father of my children are raging Catholics. I am Lutheran. I don’t really belong to a church though but I was a raised a Lutheran. They want me to baptize my girls Catholic and my mother in-law even has the godparents picked out and the church and probably everything else down to the napkins that will be used at the reception. Ideally I would like my children to be able to choose what religion they would like to practice and I think that with how strict Catholicism seems to be I don’t really want to baptize them in a Catholic church with two strangers acting as their god-parents just because they are friends with my mother in-law unless it was something that I knew that they would want. I have been researching baptism and a lot of the churches want you to be registered as an active church member as well as to take a pre-baptism class and so on and so forth. 

What would your advice be to my situation? Do you think that I should just back up and set my beliefs aside for right now and get the girls baptized as Catholics? Should I maybe do an elope type of thing and go to the local Lutheran Church with some witnesses and baptize them as Lutherans? I have no idea what to do and I am feeling very forced into something that should be a joyous occasion.

Thank you very much for taking the time to read my situation/question!

Sincerely,

Monica

Monica,

Thank you for the question Monica. I will attempt to answer this question in a non-biased way. First I will start with; no one no matter how old they are should have religious believes forced upon them. Your future mother in-law should not attempt to steamroll you into making a decision you do not feel comfortable with. The fact she is your “future” mother in-law only increases the pressure you are feeling. If you look at the many inquisitions throughout history; you will discover Catholics tend to be a tad bit more forceful when pushing their beliefs on other people. Your future mother in-law should respect your given right of freedom of religion. 

I do not believe having your children baptized in any faith; will matter either way. To me it is a ritualistic act, and has no barring on where your children’s souls would go if they were to pass today. It is my understanding the God of the Bible is a jealous and vengeful God, who prefers us to fear Him. With that being said; I have a hard time believing the concept of Him denying your innocent child a ticket into heaven based on whether you did or did not have holy water on their body. This concept is absurd and if I was hearing this for the first time I would not want anything to do with a God so spiteful. I am not 100% on this but I believe it says your children can suffer based off the sins of their parents. I am of the belief these concepts were added to the Bible for purposes of fear mongering and are used in the form of re-education.

I do not believe children should be subjected to religion, I believe this is a deeply personal and life altering decision. This decision should be mad when they are at the age of reason. This goes back to fear mongering tactics aimed at scaring them into believing based on the possibility of whether their soul will be sent to a permanent time-out in hell. I have heard from many people who say “I would rather believe and be wrong, then to not believe and be wrong.” This comment has come out from far to many people and is evident of a forced foundation of belief. When we believe based off this assumption is when we live a life of consistently lying to ourselves.

The question I have for you is what do you believe? They are your children, and as their mother you need to follow is in their best interest. Do not make a decision based off appeasing your future in-laws. Being baptized is an intimate and big religious step, and your children deserve the right to make that decision on their own.