How did you arrive at your beliefs?

Simple thread for a first thread.

How did you arrive at your beliefs? Were you raised? Did you convert?

Feel free to explain what exactly happened.

Kind regards,

I was raised with pretty much the beliefs I have now. However, I have tested and examined them many times, and the more they are tested, the stronger they become. But being raised with them is not enough. A conversion* is* necessary. God has no grandchildren. Your parents, no matter how they raise you, cannot choose the right for you. You have to choose it yourself. You have to have a personal encounter with God. I had that personal encounter with him in 1947, when I was 11 years old. Although I “stuck” with it, I went through long periods of doubting and questioning, but I eventually came to the place where I was absolutely certain of my salvation. I still have questions from time to time, and wonder how God did things the way He did - and why He allowed me to do stupid things. But then I remember that ultimately, He is in control, He knows all things, He knows what’s best for me, even if I can’t see it. And from time to time, He gives me a clear glimpse of His love, and His purpose.

I can tell you that I gave up my religious beliefs when doing more research into religion in my opinion it’s done more harm than good, but that’s just me, I just hate organized religion.

Now, for other 90% of my beliefs which is where I align myself with conservative republicans on. I actually do not know how I came to this point. I studied conspiracy theories at a very early age (13) and believed a lot of them. I was naive and young. I started watching the news a lot. Yes, Fox frankly because I cannot stand how the liberal media props Obama up on a pedestal. However, my favorite commentator on Fox News is Sheppard Smith. A liberal gay man.

So I was a moderate independent all of early my life. I registered republican in 2008 and voted for Mitt Romney in the primaries, frankly because I didn’t know who Ron Paul was. Keeping up with my somewhat waning conspiracy theory ways, I didn’t vote at all in the 2008 election. I had heard of Romney first! Go figure. I thought McCain was too military friendly for my liking and if he was in office right now we would be well on our way into WWIII. That’s inevitable tho and Obama is not doing a very good job at “diplomacy” as he likes to call it. It’s more avoiding war at all cost. And I would never vote for a democrat. Maybe a moderate democrat back then…

What got me first about Obama was when he did his First State of the Union(?) Speech at the Military base and the soldiers were falling asleep!!! I started seeing lies in the Obama administration everywhere and everything that he blames everyone else for. I was starting to feel some sympathy for Bush who I thought was a pretty good President and didn’t really understand or unconsciously care at that point in time why the liberal media bashed him for everything he said. To this day, they still do.

I was a strong supporter of both Herman Cain and Jon Huntsman. Huntsman filled the gaps of where Cain didn’t know crap about Foreign Affairs. When they dropped out I moved onto…Drum Roll Please…RON PAUL!!! I supported Ron Paul up until I actually talked to other Ron Paul supporters and realized what was happening in that camp was a lot of the same things that was happening in the Obama camp, which I outline on a thread here. Called Libertarians are not Republicans. Now remember this was 8 years after I had first researched and gave up on my research of crazy conspiracy theories. Talking to some of those people I realized how crazy I must have sounded to my tea party parents, talking about Big Brother and Aliens…

OWS came and I in so growing with my new founded Republican Centrist views I thought it was the most stupidest radical idea that didn’t accomplish anything! People all over this conspiracy message board that I belonged to, were saying this was IT!!! THIS IS WHEN WE WILL TAKE DOWN THE MAN!!! Remember, I had researched all of this stuff eight years ago, so I was quite well versed in what the conspiracy theorists were raving on about. I asked questions to my independent and liberal friends that they brushed off, like connections to KKK and NAZI parties and how come OWS couldn’t even handle $500,000 in a so called resource-based economy that they ran in their camps? Why could they claim public property as their own? You know simple questions like that. I think OWS really solidified my view points for me and really moved me farther right than I ever was before.

I don’t think the republicans have a strong enough contender to take on Obama’s money in 2012. But Romney will give him one heck of a fight, especially if he messes up a lot more until November. God Willing!!! So yes, I guess you can say my political compass was created out of extreme dislike of two other groups. I chose the lesser of two evils. And to me the republicans are more tolerant than the Obama people and definitely the Ron Paul people.

On another religion note, Do not get me wrong. I am eternally grateful for my parents for giving me a religious upbringing and I respect all religions, even Islam! I am even subject my kids to the same education (granted if it is still around). Because I want them to be able to decided for themselves if they believe it or not, just like I had the chance to do so.

I used to hold the same beliefs that Susanna does believe it or not. All of my family are Christians. Over time I became more and more fascinated with science and what it has accomplished and what it can accomplish. Its not that I stopped believing in God because I thought he is a fairy tale more so that I cannot accept blind faith. I neither believe nor disbelieve in the existence in a God. I think anything is possible so that there might be a entity like God in the Universe somewhere is completely plausible to me. As a result of my inability to take a chance on the existence of God I believe in evolution as it is the most logical explanation out there are to our beginnings. One thing that also puts a bit of a block in my path to believe in a God is that there are multiple religions in the world. For me to say that this one is right and that the rest are all wrong borders on the line of arrogance to me. I believe in “To each his own” so I won’t call anyone a arrogant know it all(unless they are lol)but for the world to have so many different religions it is hard to believe that only one is right.

Opps forgive me I thought this was about politics, but they are closely aligned anyway, and it all ties together in the end doesn’t it make you who you are?

JRED; An interesting question. For myself, I was raised in a Christian home, Mom being a Church and Concert organist, we went to the Churches she played at, singing in her junior choirs, and myself as a junior soloist. We participated in many Sunday Schools, went to many Church Socials, was confirmed in Presbyterian Churches [ learning the Westminster Confession and the Shorter Catechism. My dad was a Colonel in the corp of Engineers and as a result we moved a great deal.
It took a week at a Billy Graham Crusade in Madison Square Garden in 1957 to come to the Saving Grace of Jesus Christ. I went there as a Choir singer. and left there Redeemed.
Dad also went to a Seminary for 3 years and was a Military Chaplain as well as an engineer on the DEW line.
Being Christian is not an easy thing. We face all kinds of temptations, trials, and general weaknesses. We can and do fall away from the Faith from time to time, I have done so on numerous occasions. [ won’t go into that at this time] But Saving Grace is just that, Saving. When I accepted Christ as Savior, I was adopted into the Family of God, a Son if you will, with all the rights and inheritances. I sin, but I am forgiven. Grace is a wonderous thing. Grace means "Unmerited Favor. “It’s nothing I can earn, But comes only from God.
The whole idea of Salvation and the atonement of Christ comes from the beginning of Jewish History and the beginning of Israel itself, and God establishing His People as a nation. Central to the Nation of Israel was the law, [Torah or Pentatuch] which was accordingly the 'Constitution” of Israel. It gave the Laws, infractions, life principals, and history. Within the laws is the laws of judicial punishment. The severity of the infraction will equal the severity of the punishment. But where the infraction is severe enough to warrant death, God gave a substitutionary sacrifice. The most severe punishment would call for a lamb, young and unblemished.
Jesus was called the " Lamb of God Who Takes away the Sins of the world."
Any way this is part of my story, I hope you glean something from it.

Well, see…

My family is Catholic, but not the most active. I was never forced to go to church. Mom and Dad weren’t active attendees. Both sets of grandparents were though.

Anyhow, it was boot camp for me. Late I also looked back on life and figured that even though the Marine Corps did me some good, it didn’t do enough. I needed further straightening out. Still later, when we moved to Vicksburg, there was no way in hell that my daughter was going to attend one of their public schools. Bad, bad places. So, we started getting active at the Catholic Church there, and the discount on tuition was a great help.
Despite what all the folks that claim to do research on this and that say, I used to work for the Archdiocese. I’ve seen first hand that the church does a great deal of good for people from all walks of life.

Anyhow, I still go pretty much bi-weekly.

I was raised Catholic but my father never went to church as I remember. My mother would take me until I was old enough to go by myself. I went to Catholic school and was taught by Nuns. Although I was taught that attending church and receiving the sacraments was required, Nuns (and Priests) also taught me that IF God was not really in my heart, going to church and receiving the sacraments was a useless act.

I thought a great deal about the latter, and decided to try and have a personal relationship with God. I am not what most people would consider a “practicing Catholic” which most would define as, attending church regularly, and receiving the sacraments regularly. Instead, I pray and try to live my life in a way that I believe God would want me to live. I consider myself a Catholic anyway you want to look at it.

I once told a fellow I worked with (who was also a Christian but another denomination), that it was tough being a Christian in the world in which we currently live.

He agreed.

PS: I only give to two charities, Catholic Charities and the Salvation Army. The Salvation Army because; of all the charities, they are second only to the Catholic Charities in how they help people and their efficiency (overhead costs VS money and services dispersed) from what I have personally seen. Well, I also support a couple organizations that help wounded military and their families.


I was raised as a protestant pentecostal by Christian parents. I guess two events really solidified my belief in Jesus Christ. The first was an unmistakable encounter with an evil spirit, which fled after I called out to Jesus. The latter was during a mass service, where I was filled with the Holy Spirit.

Well, might as well state mine.

I was raised a Catholic, and attended church For over a decade. Nonetheless, I never really got involved with the church. My interests were to that of science and knowledge, rather than theology. I
Eft the church, and ceased all religious affiliations. This didn’t sit well with my parents, who demanded my return. When I revealed I had abandoned all things religious, they resigned their efforts. I haven’t attended church for over a decade.

The two aren’t mutually exclusive you know? Granted I am no man of faith also but one can still be a man of the Word and Science.

Absolutely! Many of the most famous scientists have been Christians, and their science has done more to affirm their faith than to weaken it.

I’m aware, I guess it’s more along the lines of physics and biology were more my path, rather than scripture.

I forget how I got a hold of it, but I read Goldwater’s Conscience of a Conservative when I was around 13 or so. Made perfect sense to me. Been a student of conservatism ever since. My family never encouraged nor discouraged me in forming my political beliefs. My mother, who died much too young, made sure to raise me with a fierce will to resist prejudice and prejudgment. It is the greatest gift a mother can bestow, IMO.

[quote=“Jazzhead, post:15, topic:34299”]
I forget how I got a hold of it, but I read Goldwater’s Conscience of a Conservative when I was around 13 or so. Made perfect sense to me. Been a student of conservatism ever since. My family never encouraged nor discouraged me in forming my political beliefs. My mother, who died much too young, made sure to raise me with a fierce will to resist prejudice and prejudgment. It is the greatest gift a mother can bestow, IMO.
[/quote]Okay…So your political influences your spiritual?

I guess what I am saying is you can still believe in God and the various sciences. They do not conflict much at all. They only conflict when one tries to disprove the other.

A man named Bertnard Russel once said,“when you are studying any matter, look only at the facts, and what truths the facts bear out.”

I guess that stuck with me. I saw plenty of evidence for one and little for the other. Maybe I was being too materialistic, but hey, watcha gonna do?

I was raised nominally Christian by parents who were also nominally Christian. I was baptized at birth at an Episcopalian church and sent to Sunday school every now and again but my family never went to church unless we were going to a wedding or a funeral. I was sent to an Episcopalian high school but went through the twice weekly religious services with a yawn, never feeling involved or interested. It all seemed like a bunch of spiritual mumbo jumbo that had no meaning or relevance to me.

As an adult, I rejected all religion completely. Having never felt “spiritual” and never having had a “spiritual experience” I rejected any concept of the supernatural simply because there was no evidence for it and I had never experienced it. Religion seemed to me like something people believed in to help them deal with their own mortality. Looking at the way different religions were centered around particular cultures and regions of the world it seemed to me to be culturally and geographically determined. All religions seemed to serve the same psychological purpose: to give people meaning to their lives and to give them hope that some happy place existed on the other side of death. I knew so many people who were unhappy and led miserable lives, heaven seemed like the only thing they had to look forward to. I didn’t want to live like this. I decided that I had to find meaning in my own life and eventually discovered travel, which I have embraced with a passion and never looked back.

These days I do my best to help spread the cause of secularism because I fear theocracy as much as I fear other kinds of totalitarianism. I do not wish to see people’s right to believe what they want or worship how they please taken away (unless someone else’s rights are being violated in the process) but I want to see all religions treated equally under the law and none favored over any other. I see this as a way of ensuring that no particular religion can gain a theocratic foothold in government. I want them all where I feel where they belong, in the church and in the home. I feel only a secular government with an indestructible wall of separation between church and state can guarantee freedom for all, both the religious and the irreligious.

Hah! I saw your opening post and thought you were asking about how I formed my political beliefs! Everyone else is answering about their spiritual beliefs. Shoulda read the whole thread.

My parents raised me in the Congregational church, perfectly mainsteam Protestant upbringing. I am a non-denominational Christian, though, because I am sick of man’s history of conflict over the matter of religious dogma.

I have never rejected the idea of spirituality. There is just so much evidence of it, it is impossible to deny. “God” may be a theory, a belief. But the spiritual nature of a a mother’s selflessness, an unsolicited act of charity, a Van Gogh painting, a John Coltrane solo, are evident to anyone who cares to reflect.