My mother, like her parents and no doubt their parents, is a church-goer of the Anglican faith, so it was a given that I went to Sunday school and joined the Girl Guides For a while, like many little girls, I bought the sweet Jesus thing. By the time I was fifteen I was a Punk rock anarchist, much to my mother’s embarrassment.
My father, a non-believer until middle age, eventually got drawn into it, but became the token sceptic at meetings.
My brother also went to church and took part in its activities but told me he didn’t believe in God, he just liked the social scene. Later he married a difficult woman and together they were ‘saved’ and became quite unbearable.
In my twenties I flirted with Wicca, I believe as a bid for empowerment during an uncertain and anxious time. For a while it sustained me, but real faith in the supernatural remained shaky. Whilst I liked the paraphenalia and the refreshingly feminist angle I was ultimately left unconvinced.
Only recently, with threat of the Creationist agenda and Islamic extremism, have I converted to full-blown atheism. Athiesm reconciles my loathing of regressive thinking and fundamentalism, which I see as a very real threat to democracy and hard-won freedoms, and my inclination toward liberal tolerance. Coming out as an atheist enables me to decry these hideous people without breaking ‘the rules’. I am at last able to say that here, my tolerance ends.
Science, about which I knew little but am now in a feeding frenzy upon, is my new best friend. I am reconciled with Nature, as its own creator.
As well, I have come to realise that all the really cool, funny people on the internet, the ones who probably have the best parties, are rationalists.