My Religion This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

I have a magnet on my mirror stating, “Life is not about finding yourself – life is about creating yourself.” This is the statement I live by.

Many people do not believe me when I say I am an atheist. They don’t understand that I simply do not believe in any sort of god or afterlife. I also do not believe in the devil, in angels, or in souls. I believe in myself and the strength I have gained through the help of my parents, teachers, and friends – and my own hard work.

I am not going to try to dissuade anyone from his or her own opinions either. I know that people enjoy having religion in their lives; some need their faith to help them through hard times. And some do not want the responsibility of their misfortunes weighing down on their shoulders.

I do. I abhor the idea of fate – that everything is already planned out and you have no control to change anything. If you believe in fate, when bad things happen, it is not your fault; it’s just fate. When my life is not going well, I know that it is no one’s fault but my own. When I do well in school, when I fall in love, it is not fate and we are not soul mates. I worked hard and paid attention and did the homework. My love and I simply love each other – that is all it is, and for me that is all it needs to be.

For some, life is overwhelming. How can anyone be successful and happy in such a difficult, horrible world? They need someone to help them, someone to guide them, and someone to have faith in to make sure things get better. Placing my success and happiness in another’s hands breaks my heart. I need to be successful because of my efforts. I must be responsible for my own happiness. That is what I need from my religion.

Who will ever know what the truth really is? All I know is in the same way that some have full faith and trust in God to give them hope, I need to believe I am on my own to be truly happy – for how can I create myself if I spend my entire life just looking?

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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ambnyc This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 12:30 am

Please, one of you Christians, prove your God exists to me.

Oh, can't. :)

I'm a fan of this article.

daughterofeve14 replied...
Oct. 11, 2011 at 6:43 pm
Hes not just our God hes your God too. He created you just as he did me.
Steph0804 said...
Aug. 10, 2011 at 3:28 am
I am sick of all these commentors trying to convert others. I don't mind stating your opinion, but telling others "Save yourself! Satan is lying to you!" or "God doesn't exist! Snap out of it!" is just stupid. Can't we just respect each other and agree to disagree? (I'm sorry, I'm a hypocrite. I made a few conversionalistic atheist comments on this page, but I can't find them.)
Steph0804 said...
Aug. 10, 2011 at 2:51 am

Well, I think that destiny itself is the choices we make. Like, if I lose my job (I don't have one), I can't say, "fate says I can't have a job, so I won't go looking for another one." For all I know, Fate could go in millions of directions. If I give up, I'll end up homeless and miserable. If I go find another job, I'll become happy again... and so on.

I read a series called the Alvin Maker series. I didn't really enjoy the story, but one character is a "torch"; a person with the abil... (more »)

BorderlineGenius777 said...
Aug. 10, 2011 at 1:37 am
also, i believe that if you put too much into your religion, it can poison your thoughts and destroy relationships and other things in your life
itchyriver said...
Aug. 7, 2011 at 2:03 pm
If you don't believe in evolution, would you care to explain dinosaurs, and pretty much all of prehistoric life? I respect your opinion but you can't discredit the fact that science has actual evidence while faith has an old book. You would consider me mad to worship a fairytale such as Snow White and take it literally, but that's exactly what you're doing. I feel if anything should be taken from the Bible etc it should be morals and ethics. Of course, so many of those are horribly warped simply... (more »)
alexandria1124 replied...
Sept. 14, 2011 at 8:18 pm
Scientist recently found a dinosaur fossil that still had bone marrow in it, which proves that it is more along the lines of 3000 years old instead of 30 billion. In Job 41, a beast is described that resembles a dinosaur and could very well be one. If you're wandering when they died out, it could have possibly been the flood. To understand the Christian point of view, start with Genesis 1:1, and the rest will make more since than most evolution theories.
Heather C. replied...
Sept. 23, 2011 at 8:39 pm
I don't understand how evolution makes any sense. I mean, if dinosaurs died out before humans walked the earth, how did we know? We weren't there yet. Who recorded it? And why does the theory, and I repeat, "Theory" of evolution keep changing? I'm glad the Book never changes.
ambnyc This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Sept. 30, 2011 at 4:17 pm

Heather, carbon dating and other scientific methods account for us knowing about fossils. Pick up a Biology textbook and you will see why evolution makes sense.

You're using the word "theory" wrong. Evolution is not a theory in the colloquial sense of the word. In the scientific world, a theory is not the same as it is in our vernacular. It means a claim supported by a VAST body of evidence, which lends itself to many experiments and hypotheses that prove or falsify it (in evolution's ... (more »)

Breece6 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Nov. 10, 2011 at 5:33 am
I understand about evidence for evolution (fossils and carbon dating) but what I don't understand is the experiment part.  How do we perform an experiment on evolution?  We can perform experiments on evidence in an attempt to prove the evidence is reliable, but there's no way outside of unreliable computer simulations to experiment with evolution, so it really honestly is a "theory" much in the vernacular sense.
BlueRain replied...
Jun. 25, 2012 at 9:43 am

I take it fossil records mean nothing to you? Am I really arguing with a person who thinks we rode dinosaurs?? -_-

Alexandria1124- No, that does not prove 3000 years. It proves that it was preserved extremely well. Think mummification almost. And the "scientist" who did that study doesn't have much credibility anyway.

Heather C.- The theory of evolution hasn't really changed. If by changed, you mean accumulated more evidence to support it, that it has become more complex, or tha... (more »)

BlueRain replied...
Jun. 25, 2012 at 9:53 am

Breece6- They've done it in controlled circumstances with bacteria/ viruses (evolution plays a huge part in how we make medicines to combat diseases or viruses), and through observation of animal breeding (like the history of dog breeds or the Russian foxes, which led to a pretty successful domestication of foxes and even changed their appearance, just by inputing human contact over several generations).

I can see why it may be difficult, but not everything is a clear cut experiment wi... (more »)

Emmy88 said...
Aug. 1, 2011 at 8:07 pm
This was a lovely article. I'm glad you don't put down people when you wrote it. I am an atheist and I always get weird looks. This article is sheds light on a subject that is controversial to some.
SammyGirl said...
Jul. 19, 2011 at 9:25 pm
just wondering.... if there is no afterlife then do we just evaporate when we die?
ZeeBYoung replied...
Jul. 20, 2011 at 12:50 am
No, our body rots and decomposes into the ground.
SammyGirl replied...
Jul. 20, 2011 at 8:07 am
So what's the point of life then?
Nathaniel replied...
Jul. 21, 2011 at 9:56 am

The point of life if indeed there is no afterlife is to live each day like it's your last. In consequence, you have a greater appreciation for the things around you and the people in your life knowing that nothing is forever: life--a one time occurance-- is but temporary. Ironically, I believe in the book of James it states, "Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth... (more »)

ambnyc This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 12:27 am

The point of life is to advance the human race.

As we have been doing for millions of years.

pulsusego replied...
Aug. 31, 2011 at 9:05 pm
The point of life? To find out what happens next.
iW0ntRunThisTime replied...
Sept. 1, 2011 at 2:39 pm
Who says there is a point of life at all?
Hejlna replied...
Sept. 1, 2011 at 4:06 pm
that is a very good point
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