Early when I was leaving the faith, while the faithful were still leaving me, I wrote this as an explanation and apology for my actions.
I've come a long way since that time, but it has a burn to it that I don't feel anymore. I'm glad it isn't burning anymore.
From the past....
I didn't fall from grace. I did a 10.0 triple back-flip off the high dive.
Becoming an Atheist was the most difficult and painful thing I've ever done in my life. I didn't get pissed off one day and tell god to go to hell. It was years of using a jagged pruning saw to rip away bits of my heart ... becoming the worst thing a human can be, and realizing that is me, an Atheist.
An atheist who never raped a boy (or girl for that matter) like priests routinely do.
An Atheist who's truly not arrogant, who realizes he doesn't know anything about anything, so unlike his former christian self, he doesn't have the message to save the world.
An Atheist who won't say with a beyond-haughty smirk that he has a direct line (I was a prophet, you know, told people things I couldn't know, healed cancers, yeah, that WAS me.) to some spirit that knows all and has all power and IS love itself, yet cares more about a white American's nasal irritation than he does about millions of nonbelieving Africans dying of AIDS.
An Atheist who's an awful father but still a better father than The Father. You see, I never tortured my daughter one minute. But "god is love" created a world knowing (all knowing!) he would get to torture billions of souls - his children - for EVER. So I live a few thousand miles from my daughter and we speak occasionally, so yeah, I'm a piss-poor dad and a son-of-a-bitch.
But I won't burn a single soul in hell forever.
And I promise I won't kill my only begotten daughter to help me get over the fact that someone ate an apple from my tree. But if I did brutally murder a child because someone ate my apple, how would a jury take that? Would they call me a good father? But that's what your book says your father did to his only begotten son.
No, I'm not the least bit interested in talking with religious "connected" gurus who think that father is good. That father's only excuse is that he doesn't exist.
I know this sounds bitter. I'm really not.
I've had some ugly things happen in my life, some my fault, some beyond my control, but my life is beautiful. I love life. when I turn on a fan or light, I realize someone had an idea, worked hard to invent it, got it into production and sold it to me to make life better.
I too, owe my best to make life better for others.
When buy a homeless guy a room for the night, give him a meal and laundry money, I feel good. I feel bad when I can't help.
I'm an Atheist.
But maybe I'm not such a horrible human after all. Because I'm not waiting for god to fix it, or take us out on doomsday, I'm more active in making the world a better place, in an insignificant way, certainly... but I'm just getting started.
Please don't be offended. Real friends can have differing views, and remain friends. If not, I understand. My wife, her whole family, two "soul mates" and a heavenly host of others have chosen to forget me because I dove into forbidden waters.
But the water is cool, still and peaceful.
And I can swim alone if I need to.