My name is Bradley (but you can call me Zeviander), and I am from Winnipeg, Canada. I decided to join this site mostly out of a desire to meet new people and interact with a community that has slightly higher standards than most internet forums. I came from a largely non-religious household, despite being baptized as a Protestant. I grew up with no real religious affiliations or leanings. Until late high school, I concentrated most of my academic efforts in mathematics and science.
Things started to change once I began asking existential questions and needed to find the perennial "answer". Long story short, I spent the next several years, including several in university, devoted to learning about religion. Now, I will fully admit that any knowledge gained is good, but now, after having graduated with a B.A. in Religious Studies and working two and a half years as a security guard, I regret not pursuing my original passion in physics and astronomy. Hindsight, unfortunately, is always 20/20, and I have deduced that it was a result of laziness, and no drive to really achieve anything (I picked what I picked because I already had a bunch of credits and wanted to finish).
Most of my time spent studying religion was largely from an apologist's perspective. I went through practically every major world religion, attempted to ascribe to the dogma and faith, defended them all against criticism, but failed on every attempt to make the "leap" (several were made with Buddhism). I discovered LaVeyan Satanism in high school, but gave it no real consideration. Earlier this year I had what could be considered a "religious experience" (but I'm not religious, so it was merely an awe-inspiring contemplation of the universe and my utter insignificance).
It was eye-opening to say the least. Shortly after this point, I grew interested in more secular and non-theistic forms of contemplation and philosophy. I decided to read The Satanic Bible and it struck a fairly large chord with how I feel I should live my life. Sure, it isn't perfect, and I find the idea of labeling myself a "Satanist", or anything at all, even "atheist" really sevres no purpose but to allow people to judge me based on their preconceptions before getting to know me.
So, in conclusion, I hope that I can become a welcomed member of this community and contribute to the growth of knowledge among those worthy to possess it. Hell, it'll make that $10K I spent on my degree actually worth something.
"Man can focus his mind to a full, active, purposefully directed awareness of reality - or he can unfocus it and let himself drift in a semiconscious daze..." ~ Ayn Rand