I'd like to tell you how I exchange ideas with people living abroad by e-mail.
I met one guy in Mixxer and started to mail each other.
One day, as I was watching the video show of Jill and Opra, Jill casually said that she was not a religions person. This short comment really amazed me because I believed that we shouldn't say such a thing, believing no God.
When I lived in NY, one of my father's co-workers advised me that I shouldn't say I don't believe in one God. I should say I'm a Buddhist even though I don't know much about Buddhism, simply because believing in no God is not acceptable in US. If you say you have no religion, you might not be judged as a decent person.
When I stayed in one American family in NY, I went to church on Sunday and surprised to see that churches are used like community centers.
This experience also made me believe that having no religion would not be accepted in US.
Because of these experiences, Jill's comment, not being a religious person, was like a lightning for me and I had a big question about that.
So, I mailed one of my pen pal friends in Utah asking if it was OK to say that I didn't believe in God, I wasn't a religious person.
He soon gave me his opinions like this:
there are many people in the US who say they have no religion, and there are also many persons who believe generally in God without believing in just one religion.There are also some who believe in one religion, but accept the idea that persons of other religions can also have spiritual experiences.
I think this religious thing is one of the questions we'd better avoid to talk with people living abroad. I might find it difficult to ask it if I were talking face to face with him. But if you have proper manners to use e-mail and know both good and bad points or e-mail, then you are able to exchange your views even about such serious issues.
This experience was much more meaningful for me than reading books.