Sunday, October 28, 2012

An Idea that Struck Me when I Went on a Short Walk Today

I was wondering what would happen if a pastor headed a church where people were not demanded to believe in god. The pastor would avoid sermons but rather read the bible from cover to cover over multiple church services and then people would comment on what they think about it. But each day, right before people exit the church, they'll gather into groups based on whether or not they're believers. Church services could be conducted on themes like: "Assuming god is real, is god just or not and why?". For those children whose parents don't want them to attend such a church of doubt, they could be encouraged to ask "Why not?"

My reasons for establishing such a church are because I don't believe in the bible, see no evidence for the existence of god, and want people to be able to think freely. No doubt that would be pointed against me if somebody went with my idea. But even so, the idea of a church of doubt exists regardless of my personal point of view. It doesn't matter whether it's an atheist suggesting it, an agnostic suggesting it, or a Christian fundamentalist doing it as a joke. The idea exists and it gives those who question their faith an option besides going to a normal church. It works both ways. It could encourage those who are religious to become doubters or those who are doubters and disbelievers to become religious.

So why not try it out? The ultimate question about the church of doubt is whether it exists to remove people's faith in a god that does exist or it allows people the freedom not to believe in a god that doesn't. But of course, this only focuses on one church and in an increasingly multicultural society, it would probably be better to have a Temple of Doubt where people are free to debate among many religions. If this happens, then there might be a cross cultural unity where people can look at many religions and decide what they believe. But most importantly, people won't feel that they have to be religious to be a part of a community and they will be able to examine religions without being socially coerced to join one or be isolated from other people. They won't have to preemptively make up their minds to be believers which is, let's face it, the force keeping the majority of people in mass religion.

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