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Introducing myself and my story.

Discussion in 'Are you new to ReligiousForums.com?' started by Lorgar-Aurelian, Mar 13, 2017.

  1. Lorgar-Aurelian

    Lorgar-Aurelian Active Member

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    Hi, I’m new around here and i’ve decided I would share my story with you all. If you don’t want to read the whole thing and just say hello that works as well. I’ve chosen this site to share my story and hopefully engage in some interesting discussion.



    My religious history is a bit of an odd one. I’ve been religious for most of my years in some form or another but these days I must confess that it is rather difficult to believe in much of anything for me. If I had to pick a place to start I guess my years in germany would be a good place to begin.



    I was not raised in anyone religion. My parents are not now nor have they ever been very religious. My father is a lapsed catholic who once told me “ You know another way to spell religion? C-U-L-T.” My mother told me she was tired of hearing people get called heathens. My grandmother and grandfather stopped going to church because she was tired of the division. She told me “ I just wanted to go and worship but they never stopped fighting each other.” I don’t think my grandmother on my father’s side was ever very religious. My aunt is an atheist.



    This is all just to give you an idea of where I was starting from.



    This being said I never had much of an opinion on religion until I was in my teens. My earliest exposure to religious ideals actually came from anime. You see my brother liked this anime called hellsing. One of the characters was a superhuman catholic priest who would regularly quote bible verses and shout “AMEN!” at pretty much every opportunity.



    We lived in Germany for a number of years as well and would visit castles, churches, knight’s graves and numerous other religious sites. Combine these two together and this would get me interested in knights,crusades, the church and eventually Christianity itself.



    I still wasn’t really interested in practicing yet mind you. Just interested in the concept of religion as a whole. It should also be noted I was around 9 years old so a lot of the wider concepts didn’t really click with me yet.



    Someone was handing out little orange bibles to the kids outside of school. I don’t know if they should have been doing this but they were. I took it and admired the lovely print inside. There was a space for writing who had given the bible out and who had received it. The lords prayer was written in about 20 languages. Even though i’m not religious I place a large amount of sentimental value on that little bible. Even after owning it for nearly 13 years now I’ve never been able to part with it. I guess I view it as my gateway into the spiritual.



    I read through the whole little thing about 3 and a half times. I greatly enjoyed the stories inside, the various letters of paul were my favorite. Though something kind of funny about the whole situation was my feelings towards Jesus. I never liked him.



    Something about Jesus and I just didn’t click. Saints, people like Paul were by far more interesting than Jesus. I could listen to stories about knights turned saints and Paul’s teaching for hours but everytime I got to Jesus I was just unimpressed. I didn’t think Jesus was a bad guy mind you. Some of his teachings made sense at least but there was something else in the little new testament book that got me interested in something very different.



    The Pharisees.



    I couldn’t tell you exactly how I ended up reading the new testament and deciding the Pharisees were some of my favorite characters but I did. I wanted to learn more about these men who were supposed to be so learned and especially about their religion. How had they come to such a different conclusion to Jesus when they had been reading the same book?



    It would take some doing but almost a year later I had managed to find a copy of the Torah. To this day I don’t know where it came from. It was just laying in a park near my house. It wasn’t exactly a nice copy either, the binding was almost worn out and the only indication it was in fact a Torah were the words “The five books of Moses : The Torah” written in golden letters on the front.



    Some would call this a sign, others would say it was just an odd coincidence. I tend to lean towards the latter. Maybe I shouldn’t of taken it but I did. I hid it from my parents. Don’t ask me why but early on I felt strangely weary of letting my parents know about my interest in religion at all.



    I spent a good deal of time reading through my new copy of the Torah. Almost immediately I decided I liked the Torah more than I liked the new testament. Something about the characters just resonated with me far more. I developed a particular liking to the story of Lot and Noah. The way Noah was sort of a symbol of redeemed humanity just struck me as beautiful. Which is funny because in a lot of ways that is what the story of Christ is about.



    The thing that put me off were the rules. I wondered even back then why God would create so many rules for people to follow instead of just having them do the right thing.





    I looked into numerous different faiths really, even going so far as to actually practice some for awhile. Sikhism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Vodun, confucianism, daoism, ect. I would actually attempt to practice Buddhism, Hinduism, Christianity, Sikhism and even some pagan rites but being that I was only a young boy at the time I really didn’t get a lot of it. You can practice the rituals but without the conviction behind it they are all meaningless.



    It should also be noted that I had rather limited knowledge on a lot of these subjects because the material wasn’t really available. Sure you could get a ton of information on Christianity but just about anything else could be exceptionally difficult. Funny thing is I almost always managed to get information on various religions though. The frequency of my luck when it came to this subject would lead me to believe there was a purpose behind it.



    As time went on my intent to practice became much more serious. It went from the most basic practices to things that took real time and energy. And of course I did all this in secret. I’m not sure if my parents ever suspected anything though events later in life would lead me to believe they hadn’t.



    We would end up moving again, this time to Colorado. My father was military so we had ended up moving a lot.



    Finally I found a religion I would end up taking very seriously. When I was around 12, almost turning 13 I was browsing the internet and I found this series of videos about learning to speak Arabic. These videos would end up introducing me to a man named Yusuf Estes.



    Yusuf Estes was this rather sweet old man who had converted to Islam later in life. He had a series called the beauties of Islam. This series on youtube would present a rather lovely picture of Islam and I couldn’t get enough. I watched nearly the whole series over the weekend after I discovered them. I was madly in love with what I was hearing and it had me considering converting.



    After some thought I decided to take shahada not long after my 13th birthday. I remember feeling elated beyond belief. I suddenly felt such heights of ecstasy that I can hardly describe it. Why you might ask? Because it felt like my quest to find someplace I belonged in the spiritual world had finally come to a close. I had finally found the place that would allow me to explore the mysteries of God and discover something new and beautiful.



    Upon entering highschool something happened which would help me develop as a muslim for almost 4 years. There was another Muslim convert in my school.



    The odds of this happening in a school in the middle of Colorado Springs seemed astronomical to me at the time. Better yet he had more information on Islam than I did. His father was deployed in Qatar and had brought back a rather large amount of material on Islam. My friend and I would end up devouring every drop of information we could get.



    When I was 14 I read the Quran in english for the first time. I read so much that I ended up completing my first read in roughly 4 days. When I should have been studying in class you could find me reading my Quran. When I should have been paying attention I was trying to get outside of class to pray on time.



    I actually turned into quite the little troublemaker. I was always fighting against what I thought was an oppressive system for what I viewed as my right to religious freedom. I would turn surprisingly violent whenever someone said something disparaging about Islam or Muhammad. I was constantly getting into trouble for missing class to pray.



    Of course at home I was no better. I would fight with my parents whenever they would try to feed me pork. I would argue with them about everything when it came to religion. I would often go to christian chat sites and try to convert them to Islam. I was actually fairly successful. I managed to get a little over 20 people to convert over my 4 years as a muslim. At least that is how many I can confirmed took shahada.



    This continued for two years. At which point I had managed to convince my parents to let me attend the rest of highschool online. The biggest reason I tried to use was the idea that I would have plenty of time to study and work on my schoolwork. Truth is I mostly just wanted this so I could have plenty of free time to study the Quran and pray.



    I should also add during all this time I was struggling with my own sexuality. I liked both males and females and the simply truth was liking any male like that was driving me insane. I’m sure some of you can relate to the levels of self hatred I had. I would frequently berate myself and call myself worthless ect.



    Around this time my Islam started to evolve. My friend had begun studying the works of Al Ghazali and various sufis. This version of Islam was so very different from what I had been practicing. The Islam I was practicing was so concerned with rules and sinners. This version of Islam though was focused almost purely on the soul of Islam. Why did we do the things we did? Are rules really all that matter? Is this really what Muhammad taught?



    The funny thing was being introduced to this other form of Islam actually put a lot of what had come to be so close to my heart in question. I was convinced that the version of Islam I was practicing was the right one but now I saw how different Islam can really be.



    This actually made me start taking a more critical look at Islam as a whole. I started to see little issues all through the Quran. I would look to my friend who would excuse away any objection I brought forward. The more I studied now the more I found Islam was getting hard to believe.



    One night at a Hookah bar after we were getting ready to graduate my friend and I joined one of the brothers from the mosque. He tossed out little nuggets that would end up annoying me. “ If evolution is true how come there are still monkeys!” I had gotten impatient and felt like voicing my own opinion but decided against it. This friend of ours wasn’t exactly a peaceful man. Eventually I even told him “ If I wasn’t a muslim I don’t think I could believe in Jesus.”



    After hearing myself say that it became all too clear to me. I had lost my belief in parts of Islam.



    For awhile I simply had no religion. I still believed in god but couldn’t give god a name. I would end up resuming my studies in Judaism after awhile.I tried giving my life to Christ though that would end up not working out. Buddhism brought me no joy.



    So essentially I was back to square one. No faith, no spirituality, no nothing. I even tried to fake it until I made it with mormons and some other christians but that ended up not going anywhere. I tried to believe but I just realized I was lying to myself and everyone around me.

    To be honest I can’t say I’ve regretted what i’ve gone through to get here.
     
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  2. David1967

    David1967 Well-Known Member
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  3. Rival

    Rival Noachide Counter-Revolutionary
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    Shalom.

    That is quite a story, Aurelian, thanks for sharing.
     
  4. Revoltingest

    Revoltingest Libertarian Capitalist Atheist Bokononist
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    Greetings, fellow godless heathen!

    Join us for a free dinner in the RF cafeteria.....
    [​IMG]
     
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  5. The Emperor of Mankind

    The Emperor of Mankind Currently the galaxy's spookiest paraplegic

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    We heed the Word of Lorgar! Oh dang it, I don't have the right avatar for this... :D

    Welcome to the forum! I hope you can find whatever it is you seek here (if you're seeking anything) and have a good time with good people.
     
  6. Lorgar-Aurelian

    Lorgar-Aurelian Active Member

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    I'm suddenly hungry and I just ate. That is the magic of reading this in a groundskeeper Willie voice.
     
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  7. Lorgar-Aurelian

    Lorgar-Aurelian Active Member

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    See I would like to get a bunch of friends to log onto here and each take the name of a primarch because I like 40k far too much. I figured Lorgar would make the most sense when posting on a religious forum. I also rather like your religious identification. Perhaps sometime we could discuss this further.
     
  8. psychoslice

    psychoslice Veteran Member

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    Oh my god all that meat.:eek:
     
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  9. psychoslice

    psychoslice Veteran Member

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    Welcome, you don't need follow a religion, I have my own, its mine and no one else's yea yea.:)
     
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  10. Valjean

    Valjean Veteran Member
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    Welcome, L-A.
     
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  11. adrian009

    adrian009 Well-Known Member
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    Welcome to RF

    [​IMG]
     
  12. ADigitalArtist

    ADigitalArtist Well-Known Member
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    Welcome! If you are very well behaved after a year or two I may let you have a 15 minute peek inside the black library. ;)
     
  13. sun rise

    sun rise "Let there be peace and love among all"
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    Welcome to RF. Enjoy the site but watch out for @Revoltingest served food. He likes to tempt every newcomer into culinary sin.
     
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  14. Lorgar-Aurelian

    Lorgar-Aurelian Active Member

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    Yes! Then I can laugh at Ahriman after I beat him to it :D
     
  15. loverofhumanity

    loverofhumanity Well-Known Member
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    Thanks for sharing that story.

    "Live long and prosper."
     
  16. Terese

    Terese Mangalam Pundarikakshah
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    Namaste and welcome! :D
     
  17. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    Wow!....that is quite a journey to arrive at......umm, where did you say you were now? [​IMG]
    Anyhow, please don't stuff yourself at Revoltingest's table, he is in 'bacon rehab' but obviously still has culinary issues. [​IMG]

    Welcome to RF. [​IMG]
     
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  18. Rival

    Rival Noachide Counter-Revolutionary
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    *Giggles into uncontrollable fits*

    I love it.

    Hehehehehehe :tearsofjoy:
     
  19. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    He has a cousin....[​IMG]
     
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  20. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    Don't know if this guy is related....[​IMG] So cheesy. [​IMG]
     
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