I wrote a post in June of 2017 called, “why am I so angry?” I talked about how I began to notice my anger towards religion, Christianity in particular. I imagine it’s specifically projected towards Christianity because that is my background and here in the south, I’m surrounded by it at all times. I’ve noticed that I’m not as angry any more. I don’t really know if that’s better or worse or maybe just doesn’t matter? But, that seems to be the case. I didn’t say not angry at all, just not as much. 🙂
I still look at pages on social media like God on Facebook and Jesus on the Internet and stuff like that. Many of the posts make me laugh. But I’m sure that part of the reason I look is because I still have issues with religion. It might always be that way to some degree. Just stay away from the comment sections. Wow! I’m not sure why so many Christians comment on these sites? I’m not sure if they are trying to change people’s minds about God or get them “saved” or what? But very quickly, on both sides, they turn into arguments. And those arguments quickly get personal. It’s like sitting in a middle school cafeteria listening to students argue. “I don’t agree with what you said” “Oh yeah, well, you’re a jerk!” “Your mom’s a jerk!” And it just goes downhill from there. At this point, it’s obvious that no one is open to the other’s point of view. I’m not sure if atheists go to Christian sites and try to convert them, or troll them, or not? Probably.
For myself, I try to keep in mind something that Timber Hawkeye (author of Buddhist Boot Camp) wrote that I mentioned in the angry post:
You don’t have to agree with, only learn to peacefully live with, other people’s freedom of choice. This includes (but is not limited to) political views, religious beliefs, dietary restrictions, matters of the heart, career paths, and mental afflictions.
Our opinions and beliefs tend to change depending on time, place, and circumstance. And since we all experience life differently, there are multiple theories on what’s best, what’s moral, what’s right, and what’s wrong.
It is important to remember that other people’s perspective on reality is as valid as your own. This is why the first principle of Buddhist Boot Camp is that the opposite of what you know is also true.
No matter how certain we are of our version of the truth, we must humbly accept the possibility that someone who believes the exact opposite could also be right (according to their time, place, and circumstance). This is the key to forgiveness, patience, and understanding.
I often have to remind myself that my beliefs are not right and everyone who believes differently is wrong. Like Timber said, time, place, and circumstance. If I were born in Turkey instead of the US, my beliefs would probably be drastically different than they are now. If I was born 100 years ago anywhere in the world, my beliefs would probably be drastically different than they are now. And if I’m still alive in 30 years, my beliefs will probably be at least slightly different than they are now. And that’s ok. 🙂