Most religion gives power to irrelevant and ignorant people, this is why they cling to it so fiercely. I am not an atheist but I am not religious either because religion used to be a tool of mine to control, dominate and gain power. It seems i fell back on religion whenever i felt the most vulnerable and uncertain in my life so that I could get POWER. God was a tool that I wielded when I was disempowered. When I was a child and I was poor, fat and being made fun of I clung to God and decided that everyone was beneath me and I was righteous. I constructed a world in which I was better than all of my childhood tormentors and that without ME they would know the pain of hell. The power this world gave me was heady and addictive and as I went about growing up I wielded this power without discretion on my family and on my friends. I used God to feel superior, his bible to cut people down. I used God to put myself on a pedastal because it seemed as if everyone around me was trying to tear me down. Religion was my offensive strategy and for the most part it worked. I hurt people with my brand of God…all because I was a beaten down ignorant person who didnt know much about life or even much about my self.
I told my best friend in the 8th grade that she was an abomination and that she would burn in hell for being bisexual, I told her that I would not go to the locker room with her anymore because she was SICK. She was in the 8th grade! she was dealing with an identity crisis and her best and only friend decided to abandon her hatefully and publicily. I am ashamed of my behavior under the seductive power of religion. i didnt know then that I loved women just as much as my best friend did, I didnt know then that I was more queer than straight on the spectrum. All i knew is that it felt good to finally be better than someone. I felt that I needed it and that this was a gift from God. I fell away from religion for a while when I started making more friends, branching out and becoming popular in highschool, I had tons of friends, I didnt know every one but everyone knew me. I was one of the “faw sisters” talented fat women who could act and sing, who were hilarious black grils. Then I came to college where no one knew me, where no one spoke to me, where my world consisted of nothing but me, my sister and school, I was made fun of, started a job where i was hit on by men who were old and young men who were mean and I took up religion again. I started becoming holier than thou, trying to save souls because it gave me power. it wasnt until a big event in my life stole every pretense of power I ever had. I raged at God and my church “family” I was so angry, I’d thought my religion made me untouchable and here i was at my weakest point …raped with no religion to fall back on and no one i felt safe enough to tell. My power….the power I’d worked so hard to get by alienating, shaming and judging people was GONE, the superiority I had over being a virgin and not a “whore” ….GONE. i was left with nothing but the remnants of the false world I’d created.
I am no longer a christian or religious at all, i am an advocate for GLBTQ’s because I myself am bisexual, I go to bat for disempowered populations….people of color, women, children, the poor…i did none of these things as a christian because religion was about POWER not about service to the growth of humanity. This is why I despise Christianity now and most other religions because I can see the same use of religion that I partook in being replayed in women & men much older than me….and their children too. I think alot of religious individuals should re-evaluate why they go so hard for their brand of God. I shudder to think what kind of wretched human being I’d be if I still relied on the POWER of religions false superiority to make me feel better about my insecurities, faults, my ignorance, and the fact that no one knew me.