Hi all! In reading and responding to the "Why do you reject Christianity?" thread, I thought it would be interesting to hear the stories of former believers in any religion who have since left. Here's the story I posted in that thread: I'm a former Evangelical Christian. I left my faith in 2016 after I spent the first 24 years of my life in the Church. I was heavily involved in ministry, including worship team and youth ministry. (My avatar is me with our youth pastor at a High School Christmas party!) I reject God because I haven't found substantial proof that he's real. People always pointed me to the same resources: More Than a Carpenter, The Case for Christ, Ravi books. I've even seen Ravi live! In 2015, I watched a Bill Burr special, "I'm Sorry You Feel That Way," in which he talked about how he left his faith behind. He spoke about how he always criticized other religions, never realizing that people from other religions were asking the same thing about his religion. It was something to chew on. Around the same time, I became heavily interested in reading about the church of Scientology. It was around the time Going Clear (book and documentary) came out, as well as when Leah Remini left the Church. The story of Scientology is fascinating, and their actions evil. When I would read about these horrible atrocities being committed by the church, I began to wonder why these people stayed. "Don't they see that this is nuts?! How can they believe something like that?" It was then I made the connection between my thoughts and those of Bill Burr. I realized in that moment that the only reason I believed what I believed was because I grew up with it. I had no other explanation. I know the apologetics, but at the end of the day, every apologetics argument comes down to having faith. I've never heard a convincing argument as to why I should take that leap. Honestly, it's been quite painful since leaving. My identity was fully wrapped up in the Church world and in my faith. But now that I understand the amount of brainwashing I was subjected to, whether intentional or not. I can't "un-understand" what I now understand about the absence of God. So that's why.