My Religion | Teen Ink

My Religion MAG

By Sarah Milmoe, Lakewood, CO

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?



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This article has 762 comments.


on Jun. 25 2012 at 9:53 am
BlueRain BRONZE, Clarkston, Michigan
2 articles 5 photos 254 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Meeting you was fate, becoming your friend was a choice, but falling in love with you was beyond my control."

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 with test tubes and microscopes. 


on Jun. 25 2012 at 9:43 am
BlueRain BRONZE, Clarkston, Michigan
2 articles 5 photos 254 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Meeting you was fate, becoming your friend was a choice, but falling in love with you was beyond my control."

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 that it has expanded to more subjects than previously believed, then yes, it has "changed".

You know what's also "Just a theory?" Gravity. You believe in gravity? Yes? Why? It's just a theory after all... it's only been tested who knows how many times and has remained consistant.. but why should we give any though to theories?...

"The Book never changes". It has changed like you wouldn't believe...


on Jun. 25 2012 at 9:23 am
BlueRain BRONZE, Clarkston, Michigan
2 articles 5 photos 254 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Meeting you was fate, becoming your friend was a choice, but falling in love with you was beyond my control."

"I would rather live my life believing that there is a god, and die to find out that there isn't, than to live my life believing in no god, and die to find out that there is."

So basically you would rather live a lie then die with the truth? Pascal's Wager? Lovely. You don't think a God can't see past your bets? That your faith is only based on "What is the best option, what benefits me the most, what can I do to ensure I won't lose"?

And don't think that belief either way is the better option. "Best bets" like these are not that simple. If you do happen to believe and it turns out there is no god/ gods/ supernatural entities that will grant you eternal bliss just for "getting on their bandwagon", that you have been living for x number of years in something that wasn't real, thereby part of your life was a lie.

On the other hand, if the God you believe in (I assume the one of the New and Old Testament scriptures) is real, then of course that is a plus for anyone who does (that is, as long as they believe in the right Faction of the Christian religion). But then, I don't know how any caring person could enjoy eternal bliss knowing that this same deity that just granted them such a great gift has at the same time allowed the eternal TORTURE of billions who did not adhere exactly to his/ her/ its plans, knowing FULLY that when they created these people that they would end up there (your god is omnicient, is he not?).

And that is only assuming that you chose the right god out of thousands that could also be real. See what I mean? There is no calculable probablilty for this bet, because none of it is measurable in the first place.

Personally, I would rather have the opposite. I would rather be proved wrong than disappointed.

Word of advice; "jumped on the bandwagon" is not a good way to describe it. It might give some the impression that you only joined because it was popular and you didn't put enough thought into your options...


on Jun. 25 2012 at 8:56 am
BlueRain BRONZE, Clarkston, Michigan
2 articles 5 photos 254 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Meeting you was fate, becoming your friend was a choice, but falling in love with you was beyond my control."

Do you want to find the truth: Don't most people?

Do you think you can uphold yourself: Yes, we have skeletal structures that are held together by joints and lined with muscles, we could hold ourselves up since we learned to walk. When we fall, we stand up.

Are you really strong enough: That's ever person's own battle. It's a choice.

Is it all about you: Well, her perspective, her view, is the only view she will ever know. She knows only what she's seen, thought orheard, just like you. It is all about her when it comes to what she chooses to believe or not to believe. That is her choice, and no one can make that for her. No one Should make that for her, or for anyone.


on Jun. 13 2012 at 8:59 pm
believe@faith BRONZE, RosharonTexas, Texas
2 articles 0 photos 7 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Time is like a river.
You cannot touch the same water twice,
because the flow that has passed will never pass again....
enjoy everyday of life"

God does not force us to believe (I am a Christian, I believe) God does not agree with what their doing, but God Respects :)

on Jun. 11 2012 at 11:13 pm
ChristianTeen, Evans, Georgia
0 articles 0 photos 4 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Thank god, I'm an atheist"-I don't agree with atheist's but that's still hilarious.

I don't really agree with you, I believe in God. But good job.

on May. 8 2012 at 3:45 pm
xflighty_firex BRONZE, Clarity, Other
3 articles 1 photo 6 comments
Basically, yes.

on Apr. 23 2012 at 2:08 am
i_am_so_very_large_and_towering SILVER, Mililani, Hawaii
5 articles 1 photo 114 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Yet what is any ocean but a multitude of drops?"

even though i believe in God, i loved this article. great job - 5/5!

elizamc83 GOLD said...
on Apr. 16 2012 at 8:06 pm
elizamc83 GOLD, Concord, Massachusetts
17 articles 0 photos 84 comments

Favorite Quote:
"From now on, I don't care if my tea leaves spell 'Die, Ron, die,' I'm chucking them in the bin where they belong." -Ron Weasley

i totally agree with this! this is really well said

on Apr. 8 2012 at 7:10 pm
FlyByNight BRONZE, Spokane, Washington
3 articles 8 photos 5 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Be not foolish, O my soul, and do not let the tumult of your vanity deafen the ear of your heart. Be attentive, O sons of men, how long will you be so slow of heart? Even now, after Life itself has come down to you, will you not ascend and live?..."

Do you not want to find the Truth? Do you think you can uphold yourself? Are you really strong enough? Is it all about YOU?

on Mar. 29 2012 at 2:50 pm
dancegirl13 BRONZE, Roslyn, Washington
1 article 0 photos 26 comments
Last time I checked, apes were the ones that 'made' all of us.

keturha24 said...
on Mar. 5 2012 at 1:39 pm
keturha24, South Bend, Indiana
0 articles 0 photos 5 comments

Favorite Quote:
Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery but today is a gift that is why it is called the present.

i respect your opinion even though i don't agree with it...science doesn't explain everything. Even Stephen Hawkings beleived in a higher power.

on Mar. 4 2012 at 5:20 pm
Great_Dane SILVER, Templeton, California
8 articles 9 photos 2 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

I don't understand why you have to include your opinion in this discussion. It seems as though you are trying to disprove what she believes in.

on Feb. 14 2012 at 3:23 pm
THANK YOU. I agree with this so much. I feel like I am constantly being judged by my friends and their families because I am an atheist. I wish I could share this article with everyone in the whole world. You are the best!!!

torteola said...
on Feb. 3 2012 at 2:55 pm
man i konow you don't belive and religion but who make you and who make you family

on Jan. 13 2012 at 3:15 pm
BlueRain BRONZE, Clarkston, Michigan
2 articles 5 photos 254 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Meeting you was fate, becoming your friend was a choice, but falling in love with you was beyond my control."

I'm not either, I'd think I'm considered agnostic. My christian friends scared me away a long time ago.

disagree said...
on Jan. 11 2012 at 2:44 pm
your statement "People were made to worship and therefore must worship something." really does not make any sort of sense to me. religion was first thought up, no matter how many millions of years ago it may have been, by a person or group of people contemplating the meaning and origin of life. before modern science, there simply was no explanation for the creation of the world. so, religions and holy beings and "gods" were formed. now, god and angels and such may indeed have definetly created the words and been in existence before people actually knew about them and religion was established. however, they may not have. and also, judging by your statements in your comments, you dont really seem to have a firm belief in Christianity. thats all

agree said...
on Jan. 11 2012 at 2:36 pm
agreed. you said exactly what i thought, except im not a christian

Sara K said...
on Jan. 11 2012 at 12:27 pm
Hello! Wow! Looks like you hit on a hot topic - 703 (now 704 ;) comments! You really make a poignant argument - would I be correct in thinking that you're a political libertarian? I lean towards that myself, so I thought I'd ask. ;) (I also use way too many smilie faces...) You seemed to be suggesting in your article that God tries to force people to believe a certain thing or do certain things, so I just figured I'd point out that God (as Christians see Him) in no way tries to take away anyone's right to chose. He gave us our rights (Thomas Jefferson got it right ;)! I think God finds it just as abhorrent as you do the idea that anyone be forced to do anything. So He gives us absolute free will - free will to believe in Him (as I do) or not (as you), free will to depend on Him and depend on yourself. He created this world so that nothing forces you to do anything (so that you can be that rugged individual you yearn to be). Of course, He wants you to chose Him, like the father of a runaway child aches for his child to return; but he won't force you. He decided in the beginning that you could have your way (though, as you said, you have to face the consequences). I (firmly believing as I do) would love to see you come to Christ, as He waits for you to CHOSE Him, but regardless of whether you do or not, just thought I'd point that out ;) Great essay, though. ~ Sara

on Jan. 2 2012 at 10:08 pm
A_Fate_Unknown BRONZE, Enumclaw, Washington
2 articles 0 photos 157 comments

Favorite Quote:
Those who make peacefull revolution impossible, Will make violent Revolution inevitable.

God, by respecting others beliefs, you prove you are not radical. And you prove yourself worthy of respect.