There is more to cover but it is time I cover how my actual beliefs have changed. If you were with me from the first chapter then you know how I started out. Christianity and it's cocneption of god fell apart for me at age 15 or so and this beagn my search for a new god.
There was a time when I didn't want to accept any god at all. I was still hurting from my last association with a god and I felt like nothing short of proof was going to make me want a new one. Afterall, it was nice enough that in death you simply cease. it sounded very restful. I was on board for this. This civilization is unfulfilling and painful as you know by now, and it wasn't long before I was hurting for something new. I have never had anything in the way of power over my life. Children with no power over thier lives inevitably turn to magic.
Nothing could be more thrilling then thinking there were forces and gods that could actually do things for me. Magic was as real for me then as god was for me when I was younger.
Of course I didn't know what sort of god I was asking for power from and I had limited sucess. The lack of sucess never made anyone give up magic. I pretty much just imagined a personal series of gods and felt it good enough that they existed if I said they did.
In the course of experimenting with magic I have seen proof. I have gotten results and I have gotten reactions from people who should have been oblivious to what I was doign as there were no outward signs. It's a settled matter for me that there is some kind of real magic. How it works is a point of great contention and I have at best a casual relationship with it these days.
The problem I had with the christian god in the first place was simple. He was an impersonal god. A entity far away in the sky or another dimension that condemns humanity and the earth. He's also a failure. he constantly pelads with humans and punishes them and tries to make them act right. There's some problem with humans he can't seem to solve. He's a snob too. He aparently had nothing to do with humans for millions of years of our evolution. Once I had learned how old humans really were and about our early forms, it begs the question 'What was god doing? Why was he ignoring us?'. the bible starts with agriculture already in place. Aparently god didn't want to do anything before then. Or maybe it's because he's obviously all made up by people who hadn't a clue that humans were as old as they are. It bothered me most of all that the christian god and most other religions both think humans are exceptional and condemn them as flawed. Neither was something I cared to think. As you know from earlier chapters I didn't care for my species very much.
Even though I always thought humans were nothing special, I held on to the diea that we were deeply flawed for long afetr I elft Christianity. This is a problem that took me some time to solve. To this end I tried some other variations. Ignoring the god question I adopted a sort of softened new age buddhism for a time. The king of Buddhism you'll find in India or China is not exactly like the reshaping it has gotten for the west. The variation on the noble truths I accepted was: "Life is disquietude, craving causes disquitude, the cessation of craving is the cessation of suffering." along with "Every emotion is the birth of a new diquited state. One must strive for peace like the surface of a polish mirror. undistrubed.". This might seem rather stoic but this was comforting for me and I carry a bit of the striving for peaceful emotional state with me still.
I spent a time thinking the earth itself was a sacred thing. I admit a certain amount of respect for how exo systems function, but that is really just efficiency through process of eilimination, something that seemed divine to me once. Rather then acceptign the rest of death I was conforted to know that the matter of my corpse would nourish new life and I would live on in a way within the community of life. This is a rather nice thing to believe, and though technically true it only comforted me through delusion a bit. This is not living on. It's nice that the community of life goes on, but consciousness is made of chemcials and neurons and it simply ceases. This is fine as you are in no situation to care when it happens. It should be comforting to you, as it is to me, that those you lose are not suffering anymore nor sitting something able to see or contemplate anything. They're just gone and so will you be. Life is only rendered beautiful by it's transience.
It's nice to have something to curse at in tragedy other then the alws of thermodynamics so everyone wants a god. I do not know the number of gods and this is not a knowable thing. Thier number doesn't exactly matter to me. If the snob god of christian faith is real then he's no one I want to have a relationship with. If I had a personal god it would be a god of this world, one that is down on this world with me. I don't attack the diea that there are gods or reject it. I simpl shrug. Some days I feel like there are and some days I feel like there aren't gods.
We all struggle with the idea of origin. Something has to be forever. Existence had to have been initiated from something. On it's most basic level, beneath elemtary particles, existence seems to be a vibrational frequency of energy (there is such a theory anyway with soem evidence to it's merit). This energy is all of a kind as if it were one single energy. It is possible that all of existence is the expansion of a single energy. We are all one single particle. A god particle that expanded and began reacting with itself. Of course this is somewhat silly but it produces an interesting feeling to imagine. There are days when I think this is so, though it doesn't change my actions. The idea first came to be several years into college in a biology office I used to study in where there was a text to this effect lying about.
I know only for sure that my perceptions ar elimited to my own senses and that the nuerons that draw conclusions outnumber the ones that bring in sense ten to one (this is true of all humans). Our lense is very very thick. I won't go in to every trick of perception and memory we are capable of, my point is just that what we think we know is unreliable. Everything could be wrong, but I work with what I have. This experience is real to me and that makes it real enough. If I were given the chance to see what is actually real rather then just what I percieve I would probably take it, even if what is true is awful. I have always prized knowledge over hapiness and I have suffered for it all my days.
This must seem rather inconclusive because it would seem as if I don't 'believe' anything. The fact is that I don't. It's better to have ideas to beliefs. I gather ideas from many diferent faiths, only keeping the ones that work for me at the time they work and discarded those that don't work or stop working. My ideas come down to this: We are basically selfish creatures and shouldn't strive not to be because we are what we are and we're not beyond it. We are not fundamentally flawed or in need of saving. This is not to say we are perfect. There is no one way to live and everyone should be cocnerned with thier own inner circle and let the rest of the world live. This is all we can ever actually care about. The only obligation or purpose in life is to amuse yourself. Find pleasure and fulfillment however you like. You have the right to do what you want, I have the right to kill you if I don't like what you do. The oposite is true as well. I personally strive to be indiferent and to maintain a peaceful mind state that is not distrubed. This helps me deal but I wouldn't suggest it to anyone else. There is no higher purpose to life and there never will be. No actions is any more right or wrong then any other, just diferently motivated. This doesn't mean I won't be an irrational prick about it anyway. I am just a bio machine afterall.
That's all for now, but I'm far from finished. There will be more chapters on the way. If you would like to ask me questions or suggest a new topic let me know.