I became an atheist when I was 14. I remember writing something on both sides of a piece of notebook paper explaining why I lost faith in a god — the first time I had written those thoughts down anywhere — and then asking a friend to read it while we sat in the Green Room during one of our school’s plays. I don’t have that piece of paper anymore (maybe it’s hiding somewhere in my old room), but I think it was some random stream-of-consciousness explanation about why religion just didn’t make any sense. I don’t even remember the friend’s reaction, only that it wasn’t as scary as I expected it would be. I was relieved.
You can imagine how impressed I am after reading an essay that Reilly, a home-schooled 13-year-old, wrote about why he, too, doesn’t believe in a god:
… We all got up, one at a time, and recited our verse. I was getting a little weirded out, when the first man came around and started answering our questions about God. When it was my friend’s turn for question time, his one question was “Where is the proof?”. I gave a little smile when I heard this, but that smile quickly faded at the response. “The proof is the Bible, the word of God” So the proof of God, is something God said? That was the moment when I fully became an atheist.…
So, in conclusion, Atheism really doesn’t affect my life that much. Many people talk about how depressed they would be if they were an atheist, but I feel quite the opposite. I feel like I lead a great life. And I do lead a great life, because I feel like I do (This, unlike proof of god, is an acceptable use of circular logic). I don’t lead a good life because of what I believe, but because of my actions.
It’s an excellent piece for someone so young, but the last sentence is really the kicker (There’s also an entertaining excerpt dealing with zombies.)
To those of you who became atheists at a young age, do you have any of artifacts from that time? A diary entry? A note? An email?
If you don’t mind sharing, it’d be interesting to hear your thoughts from that time!