I feel the need to clarify something.
I’ve gotten a lot of questions regarding my views on faith since my book was released. I don’t suppose this should come as a surprise, considering the prologue. And although spirituality is one thing I was referring to when I mentioned I think we should all question our ideals, I was really referring more to a social point of view rather than a religious one. I don’t particularly think questioning one’s faith is necessary, assuming one has a sense of fulfillment in regard to their beliefs. The prologue was more or less referring to our ideas of social norms – i.e. how we’re accustomed to a ruling class, middle, and working class. Questioning that status quo and really considering why we conform to societal norms was what I was going for in the prologue. Now that being said, the book certainly does delve into spirituality. So I suppose it makes sense to clarify my own perspective since I’ve been asked (I’ve written about this extensively before).
Here’s the truth: I can’t decide what I believe.
If there’s one thing I can relate to as far as my characters, it’s Carson’s struggle with religion. I want to believe there’s a God. More than anything, I truly do. I want more than anything to know that my mother still exists and is with me every day.
But it’s hard. It’s hard for me to believe in something when there’s no tangible, logical explanation. Is this frowned upon in our society? Well yeah, unfortunately it is. People that question the existence of a God are labeled, shunned, and judged by those that do. And truthfully, I don’t think that’s fair. I don’t want people to think I’m a bad person for being skeptical. I still care about others. I still have a moral compass. And I respect that others do, in fact, believe in God. After all, I want to be one of them.
I admit that I don’t know what’s real and what isnt. That’s one of the privileges of being a human. We can question things and find higher truths. But being honest with ourselves is the most difficult task we face in life. The idea of mortality is horrifying. Really, it is. But that fear shouldn’t have to result in adopting (what might be) a false reality. By definition, that would be dilusion. An explanation to justify the impossible simply for the sake of having an explanation.
I’ve gone to church for most of my life – Catholic, church of Christ, southern baptist, Methodist, so I’ve experienced many different Christian perspectives. And I’ve met some of the best people I know in said churches. Regardless of what the truth is, I think there is always going to be a place in the world for faith, because of all the good it brings. I guess I’m just going through what most people go through when they lose someone – an existential struggle with a higher power. Believe me, I hate it.
In any case, I had to get this off my chest. I’m at a point where I feel somewhat lost in terms of my place in the world. All I know is that I want to do this for Mom. That’s really the only thing keeping my head on straight at the moment – the only thing I feel gives me a purpose for existing.
And as far as the story goes, I wanted to illustrate a transformation from Carson’s perspective. I wanted to paint a picture of how he goes from being a somewhat shallow, ego-centric person to a more considerate, humanitarian after being exposed to Jennifer. Because quite honestly, that’s how Mom influenced me. There’s a much longer backstory there which I won’t get into for now, but I was raised in an extremely polarized household. I had very conflicting ideals being projected onto me when it came to one side of the family versus the other. Needless to say, I want to become the person my mother would have wanted me to be. I understand that more than ever now, and my biggest regret is that it took me so long to figure that out.
That’s it for now. Hopefully this will all work out in the end. Thank you again to everyone who’s purchased the book, and even if you haven’t but have supported me. It truly does mean a lot to me.