Criticism of Religion · Kemeticism

The power of religion

Warning: strong language.

I have a website, or I should say I’m maintaining a website. Only I do a bad job at it. It’s been two years since I even touched it, and even longer since I uploaded changes. The creator died and I took over the site, and I have all kinds of excuses for why I’m not doing the job I should be doing, which we won’t get into here.

So yesterday I’m contemplating my brand-new blog, and I thought, “If I update the website, I’ll have another place to include the link to my blog.”

That’s how much I suck. Because only when I have something to gain from it do I actually consider working on the site. Not one of my proudest moments.

I went to bed shortly after 9 pm last night, but that didn’t last long, because about twenty minutes later, I got up to write in my diary about what a horrible person I am, using language like “I suck.”

Can you tell I was raised Catholic?

Religion has such power over people’s lives – even religions you don’t have anymore, apparently. People should not take this power for granted.

My mother said the names Jesus, Mary and Joseph to me when I was still in her womb. She is proud of this. On my less-than-charitable days, I call this brainwashing. Because it worked: I remember being in my crib – my oldest memory – asking about a medal hanging on the rail. My mother told me it was a picture of Jesus, Mary and Joseph, and I knew who they were.

Of course, despite the teachings and 12 years of Catholic school, I still went wrong (in her view). In high school I gave serious consideration to becoming a nun. For real. I was researching various orders at one point.

So what happened? That’s kind of a long story.

First, I went to college. I spent a year at Oberlin College in Ohio, where i took a class called Christian Spirituality. During the course of that month – I was an all-or-nothing person back then – I decided that it just wasn’t in me to give religion my all. So I decided to give it nothing.

Which was harder than it seemed, actually. In truth I went back and forth for a while, losing my sobriety – I was going to Overeaters Anonymous meetings at the time – failing school, and getting depressed overall. The next year, I would get married in a Catholic church, although it wasn’t a full Mass because I wasn’t comfortable with the idea of a full Mass by then. I did go to church a few more times, but basically I was becoming an atheist, although I wouldn’t have used that word at the time.

And so I stayed until 2006.

One night in late January, I went through the worst night of my life. I have OCD, which can either be compulsive behaviors or obsessive thoughts. My version is obsessive thoughts. I won’t get into the details, but it was bad enough that I was driven back to religion. I saw no way out; crying, I called out for help “to anyone who felt like helping.”

And Isis answered.

Was it real? I don’t know. Does it matter? She helped me through that night, and I became Kemetic.

Which is something that my intellectual pride has a real problem with sometimes, but that’s another story. I feel like I owe Isis (Aset in my religion) a debt. And the truth is that I’d felt like I’d had a personal relationship with a deity before, as a Catholic, and I had missed that.

But Kemeticism is so vastly different from Catholicism. I can become a priest if I want. And stay married.

Plus, the whole guilt thing isn’t there. The ancient Egyptians got their beliefs from their surroundings. They looked at the Nile, which flooded every year. When the waters receded, there was a layer of fertile mud which the farmers used to plant their crops. So to the ancient Egyptians, the primordial mound, the benben, was the beginning of creation. Creation is happening all the time, at every moment. You can have a second chance anytime you want it.

Powerful stuff. But tell that to my subconscious, which is still recovering from my days as a Catholic.

I don’t suck. I made a mistake, and now I’m correcting it. Maybe my motives aren’t the best, but I’m working on it.

Thanks for reading. I would love to hear your thoughts. Please leave them below.

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