“I’m just a soul whose intentions are good.” — Nina Simone

This post took me much longer than I anticipated, to write, because of how much these words mean to me. I wrote, read then reread and wrote again. Finally, here it is…

I’ll never forget the moment that I dropped religion. It was two years ago, during my last year of my undergrad. I took an African studies class taught by a Ghanian professor who was retiring in the summer. That class was the last one he was teaching before his retirement so I believe it was meant for me to learn what I did, and from him. He’ll never know the impact his class had on me. It changed my life to learn the way religion was brought to Africa and used to enslave the population. My ancestors did not practise Christianity, why was I? I denounced Christianity from that point on. Although, I still believed in a higher power, I just no longer had any idea what I believed or thought I knew about the after life, heaven and hell? Death became even harder to fathom. What’s the meaning of life?

Not to mention I began to feel a distance between myself and God or this higher power because I no longer had religion to tell me how to have a relationship with a Supreme Being. I also felt disconnected from the general population. Some of my family, for the most part, probably thought I’d gone temporarily insane. None of these things compelled me to turn back to religion. It’s hard to learn what I learned in that African studies class and then go back to practising Christianity. It no longer felt authentic to me.

Now I’m aware of how sensitive of a topic religion is to some and I hope my post does not offend anyone; however, being that this is a lifestyle blog I think it was only a matter of time before we had the “talk”. If religion or Christianity is your thing, more power to you, we can still be friends. At this stage in my life I am in pursuit of a perfect harmony between my body, mind and spirit which I’ve learned can only be achieved through knowledge of self. Christianity could not do that for me. Searching within is what is working for me, in my search I am educating myself more on where I come from and things outside of Western culture. I’ve taken on a more spiritual approach and it feels the most natural. I’m redeveloping my connection to the divine spirit, turns out, spirit was inside me this entire time. I was just searching in the wrong places, through worldly things, once removed what’s left is infinite.

I have realized that when I lose touch with myself, it effects every aspect of my life and then nothing feels right. With that comes a feeling of alienation because you’re thinking there’s no way I could even put this into words for someone to understand. So you’re secretly dealing with these thoughts, in your head, about the meaning of life and the possibility of finding out is too much to bear. Mind you, I still have moments where I’m left in awe at how differently I view life and my existence, but this is understandable as I’m continuously learning about myself. This is my journey remember? Its okay to question your beliefs and I even encourage it, even if you end up right back at the same point, it will just reassure your initial point.

Let me know how its going for you.

Hetep.

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