I'm not a Christian, but I was married to one. The marriage was hell on earth, but my ex-wife had a lasting influence on me, not all bad.
We have an 18-year-old daughter, whose middle name is Marie (for religious reasons). She is taking philosophy as one of her A level courses this year.
I received another push in the direction of belief in God from a Muslim cleric who had lost his own faith. It was as if he was being burned alive, and as if he passed a little bit of that fire on to me, as he did to many other people, before it all got too much for him, and he killed himself in 2007. I only found this out yesterday (after trying to contact him again to discuss religion and philosophy). So, I'm sort of wearing a virtual black armband for him at the moment, trying to keep a bit of his flame alive.
Round about the time I knew him, I wrote a kind of little religious poem, which was also about fire. Fire seems to be my favourite metaphor for spirit.
I'm less hostile to Christianity than I used to be. I'm even contemplating acquiring a Bible. I'm not promising, though. Philosophy is my interest.
I often find myself more on the side of Christians than atheists, in those ding-dong arguments they tend to have (partly thanks to Bush, Blair, bin Laden, and friends, and partly also thanks to Dawkins, Harris, Hitchens, and friends).
Those tend to be flaming arguments, which generate heat and no light, no spiritual fire. However, it was one of those (over on the BBC Radio 4 message boards), which came to a premature end (like my friend on the Internet) just as it seemed to be going somewhere, that gave me the final push to try to find a better Internet forum for philosophical and religious discussion than the BBC could offer. So there may have been a spark of spiritual fire in that particular argument.
I do go on a bit!:whistling: But I hope you will find me to be not too hostile, for a non-Christian.