Learning to Be Skeptical

What is Confirmation Bias
Drawing by Adrian Serghie

Provided by MyStori from Believing & Learning

If you went back and read just what I have done on this blog, especially early. The main theme was inexplicably getting back to where I believed in God. It’s been something on my list of things for a while and is one of my new year’s resolutions this year. However, to be clear the me that wrote those early posts was still skeptical. I’ve mentioned my skeptical feelings for Christianity and religion in general in several places on this blog, but I feel like I need to define my ideas.

First off, my skepticality is not that I don’t believe in God. I have more agnostic tendencies than anything else really. However, I can tell you why I sometimes continue to be skeptical. Maybe you can relate.

Let’s Talk.

  1. The People – I can’t really say this just in the sense of religion. A lot of people are fake. Whether we are talking about friendships, connections, or religion. My proof? Well, I don’t have any, only examples. Consider the number of preachers, or church systems in general, that have had some kind of fraud involved. Why financial usually is the foremost problem there are others. Take the recent news of one of the cardinals and his alleged interactions with children in a sexual manner. Take my previous church from my childhood; the preacher there is somewhat of a distant relative. Apparently, the original group was a little chaotic and he broke off from the church and began to create his own church. It’s a simple concept in the business world yes but I really don’t understand how people brought together by Him to spread his word can decide they don’t want to do it with each other anymore. It amazes me people don’t ask “We are here to spread love and positivity, why are we dividing the word?” Then there is the congregation. Now by all means, most of us know someone a little on the older side that believes through thick and thin that God is speaking to them and that praising HIM is the only thing that is to be done on Sunday. I believe they think this way because, unlike me and the rest of the youth, they have gone through their battles and have reason to believe that He is looking over them. THEN, there is my generation. Now my generation is more or less guided in their religion by their parents and family. It is often likely that many young adults haven’t experienced anything other than what they have been told. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not a bad way to parent, but I do find some faults in it. One being that because they feel the need to go, they begin not to remember or care about why they go. To me, I realized far too late that there were so many ways to worship that I didn’t know. Not too long after making that discovery, I attempted to learn and try them all, except for one that I’ve been recently introduced to but plan on visiting sooner or later. So far, the best method of learning that I have found is just reading the bible and grasping my own understanding from it. Make note that my conclusion was reached after the research. So how as people, especially if you haven’t taken part of your own test, do we know if the connection we feel to a higher being is at its highest.
  2. The Media – *sigh* Well, I think this is self-explanatory, but I will explain nevertheless. First up, the presence of music. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love music with a passion. It often says and explains emotions I can’t myself. It also says and explains some things that would not find itself anywhere near the bible. Even rap has a different name of the “Devil’s music” sometimes. I want to bring attention to a one of my favorite rappers by the name of Hopsin. He has a song titled “Ill Mind of Hopsin 7” and… well I’m just going to let you go look it up. I will suggest looking up the lyrics as well, because it does have meaning. (Please Go Watch Before You Continue) Do I agree with everything he says in the song? Of course not, but I believe he brings a good amount of questions to the table that some others might have thought as well. I didn’t direct you to the song because he is skeptical. Instead, I wanted to highlight the fact that even music has the ability to make you think things about religion. In this case it questions and makes you think deeper but there are others that denounce it and others that promote it. What happens when a listening party only gets one of those avenues? Television is the other possible evil. Obviously, the news lets us in on the times where specific churches have been…less than holy. But a little lesser known problem is the History Channel but let me explain. As a kid, I watched some of the shows that would try to scientifically explain the miracles and stories of the bible. In all honesty, they make some very good cases and there are moments where I thought that maybe all of the stories really were just misunderstandings. At the same time however, some miracles just couldn’t be explained well, or at all really. I am still quite sure that those shows turned some people away from religion due to the possibility that it was all scientific.
  3. Life – I think this is the number one reason why I and many others resort to being skeptical sometimes. I mentioned earlier the ability for the older crowd to believe easier because of the experience they’ve garnered. It is a little different for me and being as young as I am. I have witnessed sometimes where life just wasn’t the nicest to very good people and I can’t stop myself from wondering why. Fortunately, there is another side to this equation where when things do begin to go bad it could lead you to religion. Unfortunately, that is a choice and sometimes it’s easier to abandon hope when things start going south.

Personally, my reasons go in more detail, but I kept them broad enough to show just how easy it is to relate. I have come to terms with the fact that I can become skeptical. In fact, I believe it somewhat necessary. Just how communication is essential in relationships, communication is vital with religion as well. Whether it be having a conversation with a friend about what you believe or having a conversation with yourself in the medium of research. When you begin to question things, you begin a search for answers. I continue to ask my questions with the return of growth in answers. Hopefully you find answers to the questions you have been asking as well. Now if you excuse me, I think I’m going to go read my bible.

Feel free to comment the questions you’ve had over your life and if you’ve found the answer to them. If you have yet to find an answer, I am sure I and many others in this overthinking society would love to try to find an answer with you.

6 thoughts on “Learning to Be Skeptical

  1. I definitely admire and respect your honesty about your skepticism. Please accept my apologies for the length of my comment.

    It certainly does become disheartening when we see so many religious leaders being exposed for their misdeeds.

    My personal thoughts about religion are these: Religion is about attempting to keep a list of rules and laws by our own human merit. This is impossible, and we see this countless times throughout the Bible where men and women fell short of keeping the Ten Commandments. Religion isn’t going to be enough for any of us, because people can easily use it as an outward mask to hide inward wickedness.

    Jesus also had to confront this hypocritical behavior within the Pharisees and other religious leaders, during His earthly ministry.

    I really like your comment below:

    “Just how communication is essential in relationships, communication is vital with religion as well.”

    God knows that we can’t merit Heaven by our own strength, so He came in the form of Jesus Christ to establish a relationship with mankind (John 3:16, Ephesians 2:8-9, Hebrews 4:14-16) A personal relationship with Jesus is what each of us truly needs.

    Just from my personal observations, when I look at the world around me(different types of plants & trees, types of animals, different landforms, etc…) an intelligent Creator is the only thing that made sense to me.

    One day, I realized that Jesus was Who was missing from my life, and I asked Him to save me. Now, I have a personal relationship with Him, in which I can talk with Him in prayer, and He gives me direction on my decisions and comforts me when I am sad. I know He will do the same for you, if you ask Him to.

    Again, I truly respect your honesty in this post; And my prayer is that you will continue to seek God through prayer and Bible Study. I know He will make Himself known to you in a special way.(Matthew 7:7-8)

    1. This is such a wonderful comment! Life is complex and people might take it the wrong way from time to time because that’s what people do. Religion shows a way… but it’s about us, humans, to choose how is our life going to be.

  2. The pastors are humans, too. They’re fallible like any other person. I’d suggest we don’t let them take us away from our belief in God.

  3. This will sound Banal but after many years of “life” a full and for the most part troubled life, I found Jesus and Faith with my relationship with Him gave me what deep down many people want. Answers to their questions about life and death. The worse death is the Spiritual one but in Jesus I know I have my only true God. I respect any opinion I just wish for everyone to find this answer that I truly believe to be the right one. I did read the full Bible a few times and I do read daily but I am not a Bible Stumper. I just love People and try to help whenever I can in different ways. I am not better than anyone just happier than many with the Joy of The Spirit Of God. often, in my daily life. Trials are still in this life but the FAITH is all I needed not my mind thinking I knew all the answers. I just got carried away LOL thank you for the opportunity to share my Faith in Jesus.

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