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I am not a religious person. I cringe at the sound of Christian rock, think Broadway's The Book of Mormon is shamelessly hilarious, and am often scolded by my elders for flippantly exclaiming "Oh my God!" I find the following of dogmatic religious rules to be a waste of time - why does God care that I eat bacon?

I am not a religious person, but I serve on an Episcopalian vestry, sing in a church choir, and attend a monthly theology class.

My relationship with religion has not always been so complicated. I was once a model Episcopalian, attending Christian summer camps and keeping a prayer journal. My epiphany did not come until high school, when I devoured My Name is Asher Lev, The Kite Runner, and even Itzhak Bentov’s A Brief Tour of Higher Consciousness. With the help of Chaim Potok and John Steinbeck and Ian McEwan, I discovered that being good is not mutually exclusive with being religious. I was suddenly free to explore my own beliefs without fear of divine retribution, and I realized that I had never truly believed any part of the Christian tradition.

Instead of turning away from the church, I chose to preserve my relationship with the parish. In fact, the year I stopped identifying as Christian was the same year I became...

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