Question: Which school do you fall into? –Scott
Question: If you reject all forms of organized religion why do you believe in a deity at all? –Scott
Answer: I fall into the realm of Critical Pan-Deism. If you would like to know my full progress through the schools, then observe this.
I started as a Critical Christian Deist (finding fault with modern Christian dogma). I felt that there were some things wrong with organized religion, but at the time, still clung to the Christian tenets that I was taught my whole life. It was a big thing for me to move away from this. My whole family believed it fervently and some members of my family were very vocal about the end-times. I was still stuck with the fear-aspect of some mimetic shock.
As I continued onward, I struck upon the Discovery of Diversity. As many early Deists, my exposure to the amazingly large diversity of beliefs in the world lead me to question why the one I was randomly born into was correct. However, logically I started to conclude that none of them had any more validity. Just because one had more followers or came first really did not seem to matter. Many people I spoke with could give no other reason for their originally believing than their birth into it. At this time, I also began to encounter other types of Christians, who apparently viewed my Catholicism as non-Christian and found that even amongst the other Christian groups some viewed the others as cults or overly liberal breakaways that had strayed from the “True Message”. Seeing that even the Monolith of Christianity was cracked with diversity and in-fighting, I was able to cast off the fear of my upbringing and come into Constructive Pure Deism (no affiliation to a religion but finding truths in all of them).
As I continued to observe the world and form my thoughts free of the necessity to conform to a structured spiritual guide, I began to question if these religions were at all the actual bearer’s of truth. If they had been created by the minds of man, then was not it the mind of man that held the truth. Now facing the idea that religion was in its self just a creation and that the true spirituality was in us all and that we must analyze ourselves and others to see the truth, I came into Critical Pan-Deism (rejection of all organized religion, but holding the idea of an all-penetrating spiritual side to the universe). I still hold that there must be a higher cause, as the spiritual is not apparently mutable from our current abilities. Also we live in a universe of perfect laws. Not so much perfect for our existence, but perfect in their execution and consistency. To me god is in the machine of the universe, a being so powerful, that the very universe we live in runs without error or need of tinkering.
Brian Humanistic Jones