quinta-feira, 7 de março de 2013

Saturday Morning (foreword to the weekend)

Last Saturday I woke up early in the morning and left bed to live my weekend. And the thoughts came to me like this:
It's Saturday morning and most people see it as a good day. Why's that? Because we have two whole work-free days on which to do whatever we please. Well I must confess I don't like my job much. I guess this is one of the biggest trouble in one's life if one is not enthusiastic about his/her job. I mean: waking-up sleepy and lethargic every morning early, to go where you don't want to and do something you don't really enjoy doing. Ok friends, that all may be sort of childish from me, I admit that. But I can't help wondering how great must it be for someone to wake-up every Monday morning to start a new week and feeling glad by knowing he/she's going to spend the next 8 hours in a place he/she finds pleasant and doing something he/she likes. Yeah, maybe I'm just being childish... Does this life even exist for anyone? For many people I believe it does, but do they represent most people? I'll keep the faith that someday my daily life will be like that, and I struggle hard for it to happen, you bet people. In my free time I study a lot and do whatever's at my reach to be working someday at something fulfilling to me. I do what's possible for me to do, but who knows? Well... Maybe "working" doesn't necessarily have to go along with "enjoying". But I'm trying hard, folks. Is it possible to make such a huge change in your life when you're almost 40? Will there be time for that yet?

Then I suddenly remembered a brother of mine telling me that changing our lives is possible when we believe it.  That’s a very attractive statement, I agree. But still, I think some facts in life operate in a random and chaotic way so to speak. There's nothing certain and no guarantees at all. Well, almost nothing. For instance, if I work hard and drive all my energy and effort to some objective, it's certain that the chances for it to happen will increase. That's guaranteed: the more I work towards getting something, the more likely I am to get it. But that's the whole point: if the possibility for something to happen is increased, it doesn't mean that it will happen.
So we must fight and try hard at all times. But we don't fight with grounds that we know we'll get to victory. We fight just to expand our possibilities of a non-guaranteed future victory. That said, it's not necessarily about victory. It's all about fighting. So perhaps the focus shoudn't be aimed to victory but to the process of fighting itself.

segunda-feira, 4 de março de 2013

Talking to Casey (Neo-Zelander friend from FB)

Casey: Listening to my old Christian CDs, and one thing that occurs to me, even as an Atheist: there is a certain transcendence and raw integrity in Christian music, be it the modern "Christian rock" or old hymns, something that secular music hasn't even begun to reach. Francis Spufford is well known as saying that Christianity makes a certain "emotional sense", even if it does not make sense to rationality.

Me: Whenever I listen to Christian CDs from years ago, it brings me some feeling of mourning, as if I had lost a very close and precious friend years ago, someone I used to say a few words every night before sleeping. Like when you listen to a song that reminds you someone who died and then you feel blue. I guess that's what happened after all in a sense. Sometimes I compare God to drugs: you're not born addicted to anything. But if other people start giving you heroine since your early childhood and then you just drop it at some moment, you'll surely go through withdraw symptons. That means, if I'd never been given the drug, I would have no idea what such feeling is about. By talking to people born in secular/atheist families it seems to me like that.

Casey: Thats nteresting about your observation about secular/atheist families. For me it felt so natural to believe...I wasn't born Christian. but it was like I was searching for deeper meaning...and once I found Jesus it was kind of like finding the women you are going to marry. No one told me to believe, but I found it out for myself and it felt so right. I found the emotional rollercoaster when i deconverted really difficult...as you say, it feels as if your best friend just died. I wouldn't call it an addiction...I think is like the imaginary friends you have as a kid, that it is quite normal.

I dont feel mourning when I listen to christian music...at least i only feel a little mourning now.

Me: Well Casey in my point of view it's really natural for us (as thinking beings) to ask questions like "where did I come from?" or "what's happening after I die?" even for people raised in non-religious families. From your experience I deduce everybody can reach a point in life at which such questioning get to its height, that is, "what do all this mean? There must be something and I want to know at any cost!". I believe I got your point, that is, it's something one may naturally ask himself someday (my secular friends included). Anyway, giving a deeper thought to it, maybe the mourning is not just because "god is dead", but mainly because of the religious community. I mean, as a believer I knew that if I moved to any city in any State I'd find "friends" and "brothers" at a local church there. After all "faith unites people from the same flock" (at least that's how I used to see it in my past Christian life). You know, a big family all over the world under the same father. It's a human need to feel part of some group and that's something I lost forever (unless I disguise my disbelief, but that would be just meaningless as well). It would be like having a wife and lose all love and affinity for her, but faking it just to keep together... What for? Impossible.
Back to Christian music and thinking of it again, I suppose it's not God I miss more. I was very strongly tied to the Christian community in all aspects, since they were the only people I was allowed to be tied to. Seriously. And I wasn't raised in a Jehova's Witnesses environment, it was Baptist. The music reminds me of that time. But one thing is to be said: some Christian songs I used to listen were just great, the arrangements, harmony, the way they sang and played and everything. I myself can play a lot of them in the guitar as I played in the church for years.