I can sense your reaction to the title of this article before even having finished this first sentence. I can sense your reaction to the article as a whole as well. This is not because I am psychic. It’s because you fit into one of two categories. Yes, that’s right, two categories. Those who live their lives with good, old fashioned Christian faith and those who care not to. I have been both. I am currently the latter.

Let me make this clear. I also care not to smoke cannabis leaves anymore–I simply don’t need them. Just as a schizophrenic simply does not need old-time religion. Nor does a schizophrenic need this new-fangled, bury-your-head-in-the-sand, unless-you’re-worrying-about-the-end-times, religion. In fact, skip the fact that I’ve been an impressionable schizophrenic for over eight years. Nobody needs a head full of armageddon. Thankfully, the cannabis flowers saved me from waiting for the afterlife to have a life.

I was, for close to a year, duped into believing a multitude of things. I invented some other things based on these new concepts that I had carried home from the sanctuary. I was told that it is normal to hear the voice of God speaking to you. Perhaps it is in this brave new world of ours. Or, maybe, just maybe–wait for it–this version of God is what parents refer to as an imaginary friend when it speaks to children. Despite the assurances of my pastor that this inner monologue was so ordinarily normal, I began to suspect things when my mind kicked in again.

This is not meant to be an assault on the Christian Tradition of Worship. Instead, take it as something to think about. Let me say this much to all of the Christians of the world: You may be right. The converse is that you may be wrong. I assume neither side. The mathematician Blaise Pascal came up with a logical proposition to support an otherwise unsupportable absolute belief. You’ve probably heard it.

Paraphrased, it reads a little like this: If you believe in God and accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, and you turn out to be right, then you stand to gain everything in the afterlife. However, logic does not stop there. Pascal also posited that if you choose not to believe in the Christian version of God, you stand to lose everything–in Hell. Modern Christians have adapted this seventeenth-century gambit to apply to their god because it is a convenient way of explaining faith.

If only they all understood the implications of the gambit–Pascal left room for the possibility that their IS NO GOD. Most people seem to overlook this–much as they almost always seem to misinterpret Occam’s Razor–that the simplest solution is most often the correct one–to benefit whatever impossible point they are arguing.

I know this is beginning to seem like a crash-course in logic. Sometimes that’s what it takes to live life, however. Everyone uses some form of logic to interpret sensory data and make decisions upon which to act. For example, if you told me that we were living in a dream, and seriously meant it, I might punch you in the face, not because I am violent, but because my personal conclusion to this logical conundrum is to prove that, if we’re all living in a dream, then at least we’re in it together. Actions still have consequences. Therefore, if we are dreaming, it’s a dream in which it hurts to be punched in the face.

Christianity has adopted the philosophy that we live in a world subordinate to the real world. I call that a dream. However, in this dream, a consequence exists. So, what you do actually matters in this life. Keep that in mind, if for no other reason than to avoid punching people in the face.

You’re probably wondering how a guy who knows what a Narthex is (yes, I was a Lutheran for a short time) has come to a pass in his life where he actually has begun to evaluate things based on their tangible attributes.

This is of course in contrast to evaluating things based on what they will do with regard to an afterlife. The afterlife, of course, being the life after you’re dead. Think about that for a moment. When does life become afterlife? Shouldn’t they just call it life? If you never die, then why all this semantic hullabaloo? It would appear that someone, at some time, decided to delineate the two stages of life. The short life and eternal life. But even they must have had their doubts, as they would not have called it an ‘afterlife’ if they did not believe that they were living life.

So, here’s the point. Altering your mind does not necessarily require chemical additives. It can be achieved by a person, or persons, feeding you ideas on a consistent timeline bounded only by the bookends we call birth and death. And even drug detox pills don’t work…cannabis is different.

I recall the progression from agnostic to Christian vividly. I will not discuss this in this particular article. Suffice to say, for me, it was akin to brainwashing–especially with my being a paranoid schizophrenic. This, however, is not a requirement for brainwashing–it just makes it a little easier and less time-consuming. I have lived the accelerated model of conversion to Christianity. I have also chucked it aside. What caused this. Did you get it? Mind alteration. Because, that, my friends, it what it is all about.