My Biblical Experiment

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I personally believe everything happens for a reason and that fate plays a major role in our daily lives. I also think that Karma applies to everyone! If you treat people like crap, tell lies, cheat, steal or just be an asshole; it will come back and bite you in the ass. Maybe not today, but inescapably it will hunt you down and get retribution.

My parents always taught us right from wrong, to be respectful, and obey the golden rule; “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” At the time I had no idea the “golden rule” was a well-known principle of Christian living. I did my homework without being told, helped around the house constantly with chores and my mum said I was always 10 going on 40 years old.

One of her fondest memories is of me when I was about five. We were in the supermarket and there was a child lying on the floor having an emotional meltdown thrashing around and screaming at the top of his lungs. Apparently his mother wouldn’t buy him some candy, big surprise! I just stood and silently watched in fascination as this child shrieked without an end in sight. His poor mother was embarrassed beyond belief and trying desperately to get him to calm down. After a few minutes I walked away and asked my mum what he was doing and why? I couldn’t understand what was going on because I had never had a temper tantrum according to her. I couldn’t wrap my head around the idea of why he was doing it and what he hoped to accomplish. Yes, I know now I was an unusual child.

When I was growing up my parents divorced when I was about eleven and my father moved out so my teen years were mainly influenced by my mother, grandmother and grandfather. We were never introduced to religion or taken to church ever! Hell I never set foot in an actual church until I went on vacation to a small town in Crediton located in Devon, England. The church is called Crediton Parish Church and dates back to 1230s. When we walked by what initially intrigued me was the ancient graveyard beautifying the front lawn with crumbling gravestones dating back centuries. It was mid-afternoon and the place was empty. When we entered, it took my breath away! How could a building this old, still be standing and yet retain its original beauty? Keep in mind Vancouver is a modern city and we have nothing that even slightly compares to this.

At this point in my life my only religious sources have been an introductory art history class in college and watching the television show Supernatural. Yes feel free to giggle, I totally give you permission to! It has been something that never really crossed my mind until my friend Anthony and I ended up chatting about religion one night. I think it is accurate to say he was flabbergasted I had zero religious influences in my life! I joked saying I am a “religion virgin” and untainted by any religious beliefs, making me a little unique.

One thing led to another and I was totally shocked to find out the “Golden Rule” actually had a Christian association; I just figured my parents were attempting to raise their children with values into proper adults. I basically interrogated him on all aspects of his Christian faith and bless his heart he was patient and answered all my questions, no matter how stupid I felt they were. I remember asking him if he prayed each day and how do you pray; did he go to church; has he ever received a sign from God; and my personal favorite, how does Christianity feel about tattoos as piercings. The last question had personal meaning for me since I have numerous piercings and tattoos, which have always held great significance to me. I love being distinctive and not fitting the standard mould. He sent me a helpful link that answered the 20 most popular religious questions as a starting point.

My next question blew my mind! I always assumed there was only one bible, one grand book that all religions referenced. Again I know you are smirking to yourself. What can I say? This is something I am totally ignorant about. He enlightened me and said the bible is composed of 66 books! He explained about the Old Testament and the New Testament, which I interpreted as an original movie with a sequel. Relate to what you know folks! It was safe to say at this point my curiosity was peaked and I could feel another experiment brewing in my mind.

My train of thought when I want to learn something totally foreign to me is to buy or download a book, so my next step seemed like an obvious one. To ITunes I went in search of a Bible App! Why the hell not? ITunes has everything else so a bible should be a no brainer. To my pleasant surprise I found a great one called “Bible Gateway.” It was like a new found toy for me. I told Anthony I was actually excited to read the Bible! Yes you heard me right! I know I sound like a geek, but I don’t care.

I doubt any of you are, but if you are looking for a top notch Bible App I highly recommend it! You can read ANY of the 66 books, gives a verse of the day, can write notes, highlight and favorite sections with meaning, navigate through chapters and verses and even use an audio option. Look at me I sound like I know what I am talking about! Depending on my time constraints, I have been doing my best to read a chapter each day and I have to say I am not turned off by it and I am actually enjoying the story. It’s like all these little snippets of religion I have heard referenced in my life are coming together and making sense, instead of just being random gibberish to me.

In regards to praying, if I am being honest with everyone, I think it is safe to say I have actually prayed before. Maybe indirectly to God, but since I had no idea how to pray I never recognized or acknowledged it before. Who was I praying to then; I have no idea because I never really thought about it. If I analyse it now, I must on some level believe in something or someone, otherwise I wouldn’t have done it. Perhaps deep down, I want to believe in something, I just didn’t have the knowledge before? I think it is safe to say I am officially freaking myself out right now!

The next phase of the experiment is to go on a field trip and check out an actual church. My mum suggested Easter would be a prime time to do this and see everything in all its glory and get the full experience. I think she is probably right, so planning is in the works as we speak. I was just advised to do some research first to find the right fit.

Through all my lengthy discussions with Anthony he said to take away the following, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength and with all your mind; and love your neighbor as yourself.” He said to love God, and your fellow man and it all resonates there. According to him everything flows from love, which to me is beautiful in itself!

“Were the Beatles onto something profound – and biblical – in 1967 when they sang “All You Need Is Love”?

About Erin Chapman (32 Articles)
<p>Erin is a writer and co-admin for the online vampire magazine Vamped. She is owner of Vampire Classifieds and Horror Classifieds. Her background is marketing and sales and has been in the industry for over 12 years. She lives in Vancouver, Canada.</p>

13 Comments on My Biblical Experiment

  1. indiejudge.com // January 29, 2014 at 07:10 //

    I really enjoyed reading your experiment and your adventure into the world of religion. Religious people believe in submission both mentally and physically in order to become closer to God, but this submission is more of a submission, or transference of yourself to another person who acts as a medium to God (i.e. a priest). In some ways, Islam is also the same. They don’t really teach you to find yourself, because there’s nothing to find (in their eyes), it’s more like letting go. If you do visit that Church, when you’re psychologically unequipped to understand your feelings and with limited knowledge about religion and God, you will be overwhelmed—the Church will cast its first spell and you will submit. This goes for any faith, or religion. The remnants of history and struggle live inside their respective structures. Read the Bible, The Qu’ran, The Torah, Hinduism, Taoism, Daoism, and then you’ll be ready to go to the Church. You can then go to a Mosque, a Synagogue, a Temple. The Hinduists and Chinese philosophers have history dating back before the spawn of the Bible, The Qu’ran, and the Torah. If anything, they have the key to understanding God–anything that came after their literature is merely a manifestation of their spiritual discoveries. Don’t forget that!

  2. It seems I have been surrounded by people lately who have been finding or re-finding their religion. I personally describe myself as spiritual, rather than religious, but my only advice on the subject is to find in it what it means to you. You may find the answer your first time at church, you may not, it may take several types of churches or religious facilities to find your niche, or you may even find other ways to express your joy in “God”. It is YOUR religion, not anyone else’s….own your choice and love it! Good luck!

  3. curylsuze // January 29, 2014 at 18:08 //

    Every religion has it’s lovers/haters, but one thing I know for sure is that I live my life as a “Mormon” now and I have never doubted it for a second. I was raised in the LDS church, but throughout HS, when you knew me, I wasn’t a stellar member 😉 Years of smoking, drinking, drugs, tattoos, piercings etc…However when I was about 19, I revisited the idea of religion in my life and I’ve never looked back. I would love to share my experience with you, but I won’t clog this comments section with it. But here’s a great site to get some answers to questions you might have. http://mormon.org/
    Great blog post! I didn’t even know you had one. I will be following 😉 Thanks for sharing!

  4. erinmchapman // January 30, 2014 at 00:29 //

    Thanks for the website, I will check it out! I remember back in HS with the tattoos, piercings and other fun stuff. Thank you for your kind words and connect anytime you want. Feel free to sign up with your email address for updates.

  5. anthonyhogg // January 30, 2014 at 04:06 //

    I disagree with the notion that “but this submission is more of a submission, or transference of yourself
    to another person who acts as a medium to God (i.e. a priest)” – even if there’s no disputing what happens.

    As “They don’t really teach you to find yourself, because there’s nothing to find (in their eyes), it’s more like letting go” – well, yeah. That’s kinda the point. They’re not self-empowerment speakers, at least, not in the way we perceive them. The basic concept involves surrender to the divine, which liberates one from the “world,” i.e. sin, etc. The two commandments Erin covered in her article convey that.

    I’ll also add that the notion of surrender doesn’t just apply to religion, but any institutional body or person. Ultimately, it falls on the individual as to whether it’s right or wrong for them. It’s not something that can be forced, because it ultimately comes down to a personal belief – faith. A collective can not override one’s private thoughts and feelings.

  6. Paula-Maree Cavenett // January 30, 2014 at 10:21 //

    Great post. Glad you are experimenting.

  7. erinmchapman // January 30, 2014 at 20:55 //

    Thanks Anthony 🙂

  8. erinmchapman // January 30, 2014 at 20:59 //

    Thanks Sufi! I enjoyed reading the Tao of Forgiveness. The potato analogy was thought provoking. 🙂

  9. erinmchapman // January 30, 2014 at 21:09 //

    Thanks CW! I agree own your choice and love it! Whether you are spiritual or religious, to each their own. This made me think of what a wise woman I know told me a while ago, “Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming “Wow! What a Ride!” Nothing to do with religion, but I had to share it. 🙂

  10. erinmchapman // January 30, 2014 at 21:11 //

    Thanks Paula! Our discussion was very enlightening as well.

  11. erinmchapman // January 30, 2014 at 21:17 //

    What made you decide to revisit it when you were 19 out of curiosity? Also what has helped and inspired you stay with it all these years?

  12. Paula-Maree Cavenett // January 31, 2014 at 05:03 //

    Nah the stuff I said doesn’t warrant a mention.

  13. curylsuze // February 5, 2014 at 05:34 //

    In short, I wasn’t happy with the choices I was making, (drinking, drugs etc…) and hanging out with my “crowd” wasn’t fun anymore. I’d grown out of it. As I was toying with the idea of going back to church, I was visited by two Mormon Missionaries and they shared a video about Families. It was an answer to my prayer. From then on I started attending the LDS church again and found peace in my heart. The course from then on, although personally hard at times, I’ve found nothing but comfort and true joy in my life. I know who I am; I know where I came from and I know where I’m going through this life. That’s what drives my faith and why I’m a religious person.

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