02 May, 2010

Some things should not be sold door-to-door

and just to name a few...

1. children
2. medical advice
3. sex
4. false teeth
5. religion

I returned home one day a few weeks back to find this little booklet rubber-banded to my doorknob. I have become accustomed to all sorts of junk mail being left at my door, but this was a whole different type of ridiculous advertising. I opened the book to find this picture/story:

Some of you may find what I have to say next offensive. I will say in advance that I'm sorry that you feel that way, but I'm entitled to my opinion too.

I have yet to be convinced by the fliers left on my door and on my car to hire a cleaning service. I have not used any of the menus that have been left for me to order dinner. I am certainly not going to suddenly turn to new religious beliefs because a book about God loving me was left on my door.

I'm not saying that I have anything against the followers of the King James Version of the Bible who published the book, nor do I have anything against people who practice an organized religion. I'm not even against people trying to spread their religious beliefs, but how many people become religious converts based on a book on a door? Especially one with such horrendous pictures.

Those who sort of know me know that I don't attend church, I don't own a Bible, and I celebrate Christmas in the purely American sense that I give and receive presents.

Those who know me well know that I am often curious about religion, that I talk tough things out with a "higher being", and that I'm still undecided on what, if any, sort of afterlife exists. Like many other people growing up in our country in this time period, differences in religious backgrounds in my family history made way for a lack of formal religious following. My grandfather was raised Muslim, my grandmother was raised Catholic, and my other grandparents were brought up in other sects of Christianity; without one clear-cut answer as to which religion to follow, I grew up in a family with no conventional religious practices.

I was still raised in a family with strong moral beliefs, I was still taught to always try to do what is right, and I learned the importance of helping those who are less fortunate.

I have largely been satisfied with my freedom to research various religions on my own and to choose my own beliefs. I'm sure some situations would have been easier had I had a strong religious connection to believe in, but I also think that I am stronger because I've found things that work for me. As confused as I have been about religion, and I'm sure there will continue to be moments in my future where I'm not sure where I'm going or who I am or what I believe in, I doubt that I will at any point make these sorts of decisions based on a pamphlet left on my door.

and to those of you that finish this and think "she's going to hell", just so you know, according to my "religion" I have to believe in such a place to be able to go there :)