Hey guys. It's Zeke from Texas. Pretty excited to check this message board out, but I guess an introduction is in order, right?
I come from what Bishop Spong might call a "Fundamentalist" Christian home. I was raised to believe in the literalness of the Bible, the omniscient, omnipresent benevolent power of God as Creator and Judge, and the perfect, sacrificial life of Jesus Christ, his Crucifixion, his subsequent Resurrection, and the Salvation ultimately found in Him, since Jesus is (as I was led to believe) one part of the Triune God: Father, SON, and Holy Spirit.
Now, as an 18-year-old male, college sophomore living at home, I have found these principles increasingly indefensible and vaguely thought out, especially in the megachurch I attend and all the other churches I've attended (my family moved around a lot). These stolid, closed-minded ideals do not hold up in a world that is so much more complex, so much richer than what I'd been told.
This is a fairly recent development for me. The switch of gears took place in the space of one month, propelled by the work of archaeologist and naturalist writer Loren Eiseley, various artistic/philosophical websites, and, finally, the ideas of Ret. Bishop John Shelby Spong, who I first encountered on a video interview conducted by Dan Schneider of Cosmoetica. My whole life changed after that.
That is not to say that I am now a ridiculously enlightened guy. If anything the world has become staggeringly complicated and terrifyingly daunting. I, and no ideology created by man, holds all the answers. Including the Christian faith. But, to "walk into the mystery", as Spong puts it, has become a dear and profound goal in my life. That said, I do not blindly follow the teachings of anyone, even Spong, whose outright denial of the supernatural somewhat puzzles me, as I have had personal experiences with events of, admittedly, hearsay of events (told by close friends who would have no reason to lie to me!) that can be described as "supernatural". Who knows? Guess that's for me to figure out (or not?).
So why join the site? Like-minded individuals are hard to come by these days. Plus, my father has decided on kicking me out due to my "disrespectful" and "harmful" beliefs (no resentment; it's his house) so a community is something I need right now. Life happens, it's a little scary, but hopefully I don't have to live it completely alone!