Religion or spiritual practice should be FREE

I find religion fascinating. The most interesting thing about it is that somewhere down the line there is an expectation that you should give money to the church or organisation. This is usually disguised as “paying for upkeep” or “money to attract new people”. More often than not, you’ll notice that the people who give the most money are somehow rewarded more with roles (although I would argue that someone “well off” can easily give up 10% of their earnings and not really notice. The poorer members will find it more of a struggle to give 10% yet they’re frowned upon because they can’t give much, even though it’s relative. For the poorer members it’s much more of a sacrifice).

I can remember once that there was a movement in London that would hire out a hall and have a church gathering. There would be inspirational talks and karaoke singing. The idea was “church without the religion”. Whilst this sounds like fantastic fun, they also wanted people to give money to put these things on. I understand it costs money to run but if someone is making profit from this it’s questionable.

I went to a “Buddhist Meditation” class once and they charged me money to attend. They needed money to rent the space and to pay the person teaching the class. It bugged me. There are places that are free to go to (beaches, woods etc which might actually be a better fit) and the person teaching could surely give that time for free as it didn’t really cost them money to be there.

I may be completely out of order to say these things but it’s something that I hate about religion.

It’s my goal through these posts to spread the word of Buddhism and Mindfulness for free.

The internet can be used to spread a message for nothing. You can be alone in a room and still be part of a community.

For clarification I want to say that I don’t see mindfulness or Buddhism to be spiritual or religious in any way. It’s a belief system. Meditation practice isn’t a religious practice either.


I like to be ambiguous

When I meet people I make sure that I’m as ambiguous as I can be about things. I often refer to my wife as a non-gendered “partner”, I stay quiet about my political views and let the other person do all the talking and when religion is concerned I let people do the talking and chip in the bits of my knowledge that I have. I’m like white noise and it goes some way for people not being sure how to take me. I like to have some mystery about who I am (having said that, I’m always very open on my blog).

Tomorrow is Easter. As an atheist I’m having an Easter egg and then I’m going to my wife’s mother’s house for roast lamb.

I do feel weird about eating lamb. They’re babies.