From a former atheist

This is in response to my recent Sojo article, Is God Violent?

First, please forgive my error in grammar. I was an atheist for many years, and an especially die hard one at that. About two years ago I discovered God, not in rhetoric, lore, a captivating speaker, a passionate priest, or some sort of miracle saved for by fantasy writers. Am I a Christian? No. But does it really matter? I love God the way I believe he loves us in how we are suppose to love each other. I can only hope one day we evolve enough to get it right. I found God through that of human love. Ok, so what’s the point right? I recently read your article on “Is God Violent”. Thank You. Violence through the means of God has bothered me for months now. Estranging me from the worlds organized religions. If we love as our hearts have the ability to, then why do we take up arms, or blame disease, nature, and other unfortunate events as the “wrath” of God or to kill in Gods service? It just doesn’t compute. My idea of sin is whatever taints the love within. World religions can thrive, and be wonderfully connected if they fundamentally dive into true love as I know we are all capable of. I am of no particular religion, I instead live in the one great power we have, and that is to love. Your article gave me hope into what my idea of what Christians, Muslims, Jews, Hindus, Wiccans, and atheist should be. Without violence. Without hate. Without prejudice. Again, Thank You very much for a great and promising read.

Thanks for your note. I think when people talk about their frustration with “organized religion,” I don’t think the problem is being organized. Rather, just as you suggest, they’re concerned about religion that organizes an “us” against “them.” If our religious communities better organized against destruction of the planet, for service to and for and with people suffering in poverty, and for pre-emptive peace-making, I think more and more folks would be drawn to rather than away from “organized religion.” I wrote about this a good bit in a book called Everything Must Change. Since you enjoyed the article, I think you might find that book especially helpful … Again, thanks for your note.