Does religion choose you or do you choose religion?

When I was a senior in high school I was often told that my college years where going to be ones in which I will grow into the adult I want to become. Now that I am here and embarking on my second year I could not have agreed more. Religious affiliation and belonging to a religious institution like many of my classmates has been a monumental aspect of my upbringing. I was taught what God thought was right and what was wrong and how I should always go to church. Religion is so intertwined with my Hispanic culture and my family that it feels like a sin when I question it.  Coming to college gives me space from the expectations of my parent’s and family to really choose which religion if any I would like to practice.

In Chapter three of McGuire’s “Religion The Social Context” the author describes “individual self-identity [a]s more eclectic …constructed from a wide range of culturally available options (53). Reading this really affirmed my idea that an individual’s identity is not concrete but rather always evolving from personal experiences. I have always felt embarrassed to question my faith, but reading this section and hearing my classmate’s experiences have reassured me that I am not the only one trying to find myself.  So with this I would like to leave the class with a question that I have been thinking about since the discussion. Does religion choose you or do you choose religion?