The Secular Humanists of the Lowcountry

Join / Donate

All Forums > How did you become non-religious? >

How did you become non-religious?

Aug 23 2004
on becoming non-religious

I came up during the late 40's, 50's and early 60's at a time when the Roman Catholic church was much more powerful in people's lives than it is today. Even being beaten silly at age seven by our "pastor" for poking a hole in his asphalt parking lot didn't dissuade me from becoming an altar boy and even--at age 13--entering the seminary. I left the seminary at 20, academically head and shoulders above my public school-educated peers, but socially, emotionally and psychologically still 13--a situation that created innumerable problems for me as you can imagine. At least by that time, religion had become irrelevant to me. It wasn't until about 20 years ago, when I discovered the thinking of the late Joseph Campbell, mythologist and professor of comparative religion that I realized how we were snookered by our teachers into believing the insidious nonsense they were spewing without any reference to humanist or secularist counterpoint--ideas that went back thousands of years--and were well known to our teachers, but conveniently denied to us, their students. So it was Joseph Campbell, thank god, who made me an atheist.

Aug 23 2004
on becoming non-religious

Upon rereading my e-mail, I fear that some readers may misinterpret my reference to Joseph Campbell. Campbell, himself a recovered Catholic, was probably the least religious, but most spiritual, thinker I have ever read who through his life-long study of mythology came to the conclusion that a true understanding of "god" resulted in an inner transformation from our animal nature to our human nature. There is no god out there; "god" is within each of us. So, I should probably add "I recommend Joseph Campbell to anyone who seeks to understand what it means to be truly human; without the crutch of religious claptrap." - Hank

Return to How did you become non-religious? Forum
Return to Discussion Home

Webmaster: Alex Kasman 2016