Yes, my dismay was authentic in my earlier life, because I have seen so much suffering in the wake of such a tyrannical dogma, based upon a hardhearted and punishing God.
But let me explain myself a little further, if I may. I am neither a theist, nor an atheist, and I am definitely not an agnostic. I am what some people call a mystic.
I guess at first sight, I would certainly appear to be fighting against both sides of this issue. You are very astute to notice this. Perhaps this is because, there are not just two sides, and therefore I am able to holding a third way of looking at it, a whole other perspective. So yes, I want immunity from all punishment, and yes at the very same time, I want freedom.
What I want is freedom from both good and evil, and that whole paradigm. I want rather a journey of discovery into what the Ultimate actually is. I am not going to buy any story line in this area. I am going to look directly, some say into my heart (that's close, maybe intuition is closer) and also into my life, and in this way find out for myself.
When I started out, all that I had was this genuine longing to know. It has served me well, and it has never left me. It is a loving umbilical between me, and the source, of this I am quite sure.
As is said in Islam, "It (God/Ultimate) longs for me, even more than I long for It."
No, I am not majorly into Islam either. I am closer to Huxley’s Perennial Philosophy, if anything.
So what is this suffering that you claim will teach us lessons? It is simply confusion IMO. We are trained up in an error and buy into an untruth, and we suffer these very thoughts.
We are so steeped in habitual thinking, that it is difficult to see the truth that is right in front of our face, all of the time.