Truth Quest


In 1995, after losing my soul mate of sixteen years, and rather pathetically searching for a replacement, I wrote a twelve-page epistle entitled “Lady Quest,” which described exactly who I was, and what I was then looking for in a mate.  It included this page on religion, which is a quick synopsis of how I got to Agnostic.

Please give me a little slack on the fuzzy thinking.  This was written twelve years ago before I had really given enough thought to the subject of atheism and apparently not yet through with mysticism… or at least not ready to exclude New-Age ladies from my prospects.


I consider myself spiritually enlightened, of good character, and high moral principals, but I am not religious.  As a moral compass, and assurance of a favorable place in the "hereafter," some folks need organized religion in their lives.  I do not.  Although not in serious conflict with most Judeo-Christian values, I have carefully developed my own moral code.

It is in resonance with my own nature, not designed by someone else.  Living by my own rules, I can, and do, accept responsibility for my own actions.  One of my strongest values is that I have no right to impose my standards of morality on anyone else, and visa-versa.  This puts me at odds with the missionary zeal of most fundamentalists.

Please do not bother preaching, "witnessing,” or quoting scripture to me.  In my youth, I attended many different churches.  At twenty, I answered the altar call at a "revival," and honestly experienced a spiritual awakening.  I felt a calling to the ministry, and wanted to become an evangelist.  I started studying the bible, and have read both the King James and Revised Standard versions cover to cover.

Alas, the more I studied, the less I believed the dogma.  The angry, vengeful, demanding, and downright mean god of the Old Testament, could not possibly be one and the same as the Jesus of the New Testament.  The guy who wrote Revelations had to be on an acid trip.  Either Mary's Joseph was the most naive man in history, or he got a bad rap.

Who revised history by changing Jesus from the armed Messiah, born to drive the Romans out of Palestine, to an unarmed pacifist, and why?  The brief resurrection makes about as much sense as the virgin birth.  Every question my inquiring mind posed to the elders was answered with: "You have to take it on faith."  I guess I am too much of a scientist to buy all the unsubstantiated miracles that mysteriously stopped happening about two thousand years ago.

Embarking on a wider search for "truth," I studied Eastern religions and other philosophies.  I found the concept of "reincarnation" and "karma" to make as much sense as anything else.  At least they support my conviction that people should be held accountable for their own actions.  It beats trying to reconcile the absurdity of a vile child molester, or evil serial murderer, going to "heaven.”  If "repenting," with a last minute "confession" and "salvation" just before execution really works, there is no "justice," and the whole scheme is a joke on mankind.

I choose to live by what I call the Negative Golden Rule.  "Do NOT unto others what you would NOT have them do unto you."  I state it negatively for a simple reason.  I have lived too long to naively presume that if I do another a kindness, they will automatically reciprocate.  If, however, I do others no harm, they have no cause to interfere in my enjoyment of life.

Similarly, those who do choose to poke it in my business, have no automatic insurance policy for their nose.  With legendary self-control, I will go a long way to avoid conflict.  I eschew violence, but I am no pacifist.  Strike a cheek of mine, and one would be too busy clutching his balls to even think about swinging at the other one.

After years of searching, I have reached the conclusion that my god is somehow me.  I think it is OK to be fuzzy on the details, and no longer have a burning desire to fully understand it all.  I just live responsibly, and interfere as little as possible in the lives of others.  "Do right, and leave others be" might sum up the gospel according to Dave.


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