Wednesday, January 22, 2014

News, Math and Science Over Prayers

Please tell me how this prayer thing works. I've been turned off by non-stop prayer requests from the social media like it's gonna make a difference. Prayer doesn't do anything to you or anyone around you; what it does is it makes you believe that you are doing something, for yourself or for others.

And so I have only been sharing news articles, studies, scientific and mathematical facts on social media. Because if you ask me, I'll take news, math and science over prayers any day.

* * *

I hated math, if its expressed in an abstract form that wouldn't benefit me in the practical, real world -- like numbers and letters combined; I can't solve it. Put it in a form of money, of days, of time, then I'll get a better grasp of it. I function better if given a context. This problem must be solved because that's the only way I can determine if the salary I earned will be able to pay for all my expenses, or if the rate I'm doing this thing is enough for me to finish it by Friday morning.

* * *

I tried praying in a especially difficult exam back in college, but it didn't help. Sure I was studying, trying to solve the equations, then by the end of review time, I pray. When I retook the subject, I tried praying again. No luck. By the third time, I lost faith and decided to work my ass off solving the problems -- over and over again. Memorizing the formulas. Understanding mathematical concepts. Then I passed. No prayers involved.

I guess this is one of the reason my faith fell between 2004 and 2008. But the process wasn't easy. Just like finding faith, losing faith doesn't happen overnight. It involves a series of events that would transpire and make you question your values, logic, politics and the people around you.

Like how could this guy be so religious and yet is a retarded cheater who seemed not to uphold any values or moral code in their body? Or why do the archbishops get big-pimpin' cars from politicians? Why do priests and religious leaders endorse a candidate for public office? Why is the Philippine legislature a  helpless victim of the scriptures? Why can't I find REAL separation of church and State? Why are 'celibate' priests meddling with people's sex lives, if they chose to be chaste, why force everyone else to be chaste as well? Fuck, it's not like we're forcing them to fornicate. Why is the Vatican so god-damned wealthy? Why are our holidays all after Catholicism? Isn't it a form of discrimination? If I were in Buddhist/ Jew/ Hindu/ Pagan's shoes, wouldn't I be offended or confused why are we always saying "the Philippines is a Catholic country"? Why are wars fought in the name of religion? Why are religious groups tax-exempt? When I get really broke, should I start a religion to cash in on 'offerings' and tithes? Could it be that Jesus and the disciples are just stoned when they were saying Jesus walked on water, or the Israelites were high as fuck as well when they said manna fell from heaven? If I'm an all-powerful being, would I waste my time taking note of sins committed and listening to people whine about their stupid choices? Why are the LGBTs being discriminated when it clearly said "Love thy neighbor as thou love thyself"? Why is there too much hypocrisy, too much double standards? Why should I run my life based on one book, when there's millions others to be read?

There are even more questions that I asked. Though I don't real wanna bother you with it.

And this led me to some conclusions. 1) Faith does not equate with religion; 2) Having a moral compass is not directly proportional to practicing a religion; 3) Religions divide mankind; and 4) I can't find myself confined by ancient rules when the whole world is moving forward

So I became agnostic. But I realized that's just me being chicken in calling myself an atheist. I guess I'm an atheist. But I'd rather call it humanist. It was a bumpy set of years following 2008 with me out of faith, a little apathetic and stoic, searching -- researching on what I really am.

Until I discovered Buddhism, which is frankly, the only 'religion' which appealed to me. Though I'd rather call it philosophy. There is no immortal, omnipotent higher power in Buddhism, just a bunch of people deciding on their actions, how they live their life and following a path to enlightenment.

* * *

I hated math, but I love how with math, there is always a method to verify if something is correct. I love science and how we can test hypothesis until we come up with a conclusion. Only Buddhism encouraged that, you don't just follow dogma, you are given a deeper understanding, not spoonfeeding; you are taught Newton's law: For every action, there is equal and opposite reaction -- Karma.

I don't apologize if my choice to be logical and rational is not in congruence with anyone else's. I don't pray, I'd rather read the facts.

“Buddhism has the characteristics of what would be expected in a cosmic religion for the future:
It transcends a personal God, avoids dogmas and theology;
it covers both the natural and spiritual; 
and it is based on a religious sense
aspiring from the experience of all things, natural and spiritual, as a meaningful unity."
“If there is any religion that would cope with modern scientific needs it would be Buddhism."
- Albert Einstein

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