Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Sure, spirituality can help.  If you're into that. 

It can also have the power to do some amazingly damaging things. 

Surely there are people who've been told that if they just "find god" their troubles will be over?  Or you must have done something bad so god made you feel that way?  Or god doesn't give you any more troubles than you can take?  Or that suffering is a sign of god's love? 

Help me out here. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Skittle unlogged

I have the feeling (correct me if I'm wrong) that you're referring specifically to bad experiences with the Christian religion.  I certainly have had these, and I'm not quite ready to talk about them b/c they cause too much pain.

For me spirituality does not equal religion,and is in fact totally separate. I have met people (and am married to one) who are incredibly in touch with a form of spirituality, and - this is what I believe and have experienced at least - these are not the types who create the degree of damage that organised religion can.  Of course nobody's perfect.  It's just that I have a very strong feeling re the diffs between true spirituality (whatever form that may take) and people who equate spirituality with the teachings of a specific organised group/religion/cult/whatever.

Some of my most painful personal experiences have been directly associated with the charismatic christian movement.  I have never met more judgemental people in my life and I am ashamed that I was a part f them for the period of time that I was.  Again - I think I need to emphasise this whenever I post here b/c I don't want to hurt anyone - this is my experience only.

Sure, spirituality can help.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Bloodberry,

You use the word spirituality, but I think what you may be referring to is an idea particular to christianity.  Yes, the traditional christian view is that mental illness is a product of personal sin, or a lack of faith.  Many christian congregations refuse to even acknowledge its existence.  Most churches will pray for those with physical illnesses, but rarely if ever do they pray for those suffering from psychological pain.

Here is a quote from psychiatrist and christian author Dwight L. Carlson that I think is very relevant.

Those who adhere to the emotional-health gospel often believe that negative emotions are in themselves sinful. We need to ask them how they account for the displays of Christ's emotions. In the Garden of Gethsemane, he "began to be very distressed and troubled. And He said to them, 'My soul is deeply grieved to the point of death' " (Mark 14:33-34). Jesus, in coming to earth, took upon himself the form of a human with all its frailties, yet he did not sin.

( ftp://ftp.brandwand.com/Exposing_the_Myth...al_Problems.pdf )

Link to comment
Share on other sites

disphunkt, thank you so much for posting this...

I'm going to be reading the whole thing asap. I can't tell you how many times I've been told by well-meaning Christians (my own family included) that if I prayed hard enough/long enough/The Right Way that I would be healed from my MI, the arthritis that has destroyed my joints, and every pimple I've ever had...sorry for that smarta** last remark!

That is one of the attitudes that drove me away from organized religion.

***just my own experience***

In the long run, though, it was the best thing that could have happened for me/to me. It forced me to give up some really rotten and damaging beliefs, and led me on my own spiritual quest. It continues to this day--as it should, I believe. There is more peace, and way less condemnation, in my life now. Perfect? No, but much, much better. My God/Great Spirit is loving, sharing, and accepting. I have no feeling now that my conditions are tests of my faith.

Thanks again!

Spike

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Guest

not all christians are evil, okay.  i'd hardly say it's the "traditional christian belief" that mental illness equals distance from God.  maybe in some denominations, but not all of them.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Guest

the thread so far has only been about negative experiences with christianity, and there was, in fact, someone saying that the traditional christian belief is that there is no such thing as mental illness and that christians won't pray for the mentally ill.  that would seem to be saying negative things about christianity in general, wouldn't it?  not all christians believe that, and it is not a tenet of christianity to believe that, and, y'know, as a mentally ill catholic, i've been pretty badly hurt by people who are convinced of that.  i've had far more of my pagan friends try to convince me that my issues are all in my head and if i just talked to the right goddess she'd fix me right up, so it hurts when people say it's a tenet of MY religion to, well, be an asshole.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

the thread so far has only been about negative experiences with christianity, and there was, in fact, someone saying that the traditional christian belief is that there is no such thing as mental illness and that christians won't pray for the mentally ill.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Another example:

A Buddhist nun I was acquinted with spent every day feeling suicidal and depressed.  She had her duties and her faith, but she also felt that her feelings were part of her suffering that Buddha was giving.  She was hurting so badly, and never got help. 

Last I heard, she was sent home, back to Japan. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

the thread so far has only been about negative experiences with christianity, and there was, in fact, someone saying that the traditional christian belief is that there is no such thing as mental illness and that christians won't pray for the mentally ill.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Skittle unlogged

As mentioned above, no-one said "all Christians rare evil".  I was the first respondent and said that I had the impression that bloodberry was referring specifically to experiences with Christianity.  Obviously I was wrong.  But I'd still like to think that my answer to the question was personal and valid - my negative experiences just happened to have involved the Church specifically.  My point about the difference between spirituality and religion was made only because to me spirituality is entirely removed and far more positive than "religion".  It's all about the personal connotations the words have for me.

Anyway... Guest -- with all due respect, please read the posts more closely and consider where people are coming from before taking everything that's said as a personal attack on your belief structure.  I think we're all trying to be respectful and delicate here, because it IS such a delicate issue.  But entirely worth discussing, as long as we take care to recognise that what we post are personal experiences.  I haven't actually read anyone say "Christianity is BAD"; just references to negative encounters and genuine attempts to examine broader views and listen to where other people are coming from.  I particularly appreciated this point from CastorFache:

To put things in perspective, consider that while you took offense to the "attack" on Christianity (which it was not), others may take offense to your reference to the Pagans.

I am not a practising Pagan, but my current explorations and recovery around spiritual issues are leaning very much in this direction.

Respectfully (as much as I can be before I've taken my evening meds),

Skittle

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Skittle unlogged

Please excuse the typo's - first line should read "no-one said all Christians are evil"

Too tired to re- log in and post properly - sorry.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am a Christian and I'd like to throw in my $0.02.

I agree with some others in that there plainly are some Christians (and followers of other faiths), who do not bother to understand the modern views of mental illness. Unfortunately a large part of my OCD is religious-oriented and that makes this a very sensitive issue for me.

There are those who tell you to "pray harder" or "find a closer relationship with Christ." Yet, it is important to remember that these individuals are not necessarily experts of either Christianity or mental illness.

In some churches mental illness has gotten better perspectives. My therapist is a Christian and a psychologist. She uses techniques that are no different than many of the ones I've read about here. Many priests and pastors are receiving training as counselors and psychology is viewed less and less as being completely opposed to religion.

So I don't think it is black and white. There are some shades of grey in between and I am sure that is true of other faiths as well.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Christianity was an overwhelmingly negative experience for me (please note the emphasis) because of my OCPD.  Being the ultimate perfectionist, I grew up thinking I had to live up to biblical standards in order to "make God/Jesus happy".  And if I failed, which, being human, was only a matter of time and circumstance, I was a terrible Christian (you have to be a perfectionist to understand this...it's not something you can rationalize to yourself).  Anything that didn't go well in my life served to reinforce this belief.  Prayers that went unanswered ("Please, God, make my parents divorce and let me never have to see my father again") also fueled my obsessive imagination.  And growing up without the validation and nurturing I needed from my parents, the last thing I needed was to feel I couldn't meet God's expectations, either.

So you could say Christianity twisted the screw a little tighter, made life a bit more difficult than it had to be.  I was just a messed-up kid desperate for love.  If you could've seen how many tears I shed while praying my innocent heart out for forgiveness, and how frequently I begged for it, I know you'd agree that Christianity was like throwing gas on a fire where I was concerned.

Yeah, I'm a little bitter.  And if you don't like it you can bite me.  (I taste like atheist.  Which is kind of a grapey-lemon flavor.)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Guest

dear castorfache and skittle unlogged, with all due respect, read what disphunkt wrote about "the traditional christian view."  that is a generalization about christians.  i wrote specifically that my pagan friends have said it's all in my head - not that pagans said this, not that this is the traditional pagan view, but that specific people i know personally have said this.  there is, in fact, a difference.  of course i wasn't offended by skittle unlogged or spike said, which specified that these were their experiences; i was offended by disphunkt's generalization, which is unjustified.

(and yeah, bloodberry, i did say "no shit sherlock, it isn't in my feet!"  haha.)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

hmm, verrrry interesting topic...enough so that it coaxed me out of lurk mode into posting for the first time in weeks.

(bear with me while i get to my point) i've noticed that there are quite few members here who have been rather badly stigmatized/hurt/insulted/shunned by our fundamentalist Christian citizens.  has anyone considered that this may be because Christianity is the dominant religion in America, and therefore, has a very high statistical chance of having assholes for members?  in contrast, were we to be in Afganistan, there would be a large number of MUSLIM assholes...simply because most people there are Muslim. my point is that it's not the religion per se, it's simply that you will run into a member of the dominant religion far more often than a minority, and therefore, the larger group has more idjits just because it takes up more of the population.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

hmm, verrrry interesting topic...enough so that it coaxed me out of lurk mode into posting for the first time in weeks.

(bear with me while i get to my point) i've noticed that there are quite few members here who have been rather badly stigmatized/hurt/insulted/shunned by our fundamentalist Christian citizens.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I  with trembling hand have decided to weigh in on this most controversial topic..I say with trembling hand cause I bruise easily and take EVERYTHING personally so bear with me..I am with Cerbris( I am so sorry I know that is spelled incorrectly) We should have the right to express our opinions so here goes.

I felt so sickened when I  read of so many people's terrible experiences with the Christian church..I often think how ticked off God must be when he sees how His words and intentions are so badly twisted and abused..The KKK use the bible to back up their claims for goodness sake! I believe it was even used to justify slavery back in the day..The point is God, Christianity, and the bible have all been used to give credence to dispicable behavior through out history. Is that the fault of Christianity as a whole or is it more an individual responsibility. I tend to believe the latter. For a long time people were convinced the world was flat..that did not make it so.

For those of you who may have met me in the beginning I actually posted on the old board with a question whether I was a "bad" Christian because I finally started to take my anti-depressants. I have heard the " if you pray harder it will go away" and " what exactly is the sin in your life causing this burden" lines too. So after some very kind people responded to my query I did some research..There is no mention in the Bible that mental illness is a punishment for sin. As a matter of fact I am pretty sure David ( the  man after God's own heart) suffered from Bi Polar disorder..If you doubt me go read a psalm or two! He was either singing from the rafters or in the pit of dispair.

To sum up I believe we live in a fallen, imperfect world. In this world there is hunger disease and pain. No getting around it. And I just want to say one more thing. Christianity is not about perfection. Actually it is the exact opposite. It is the only club in the world where to become a member you need to understand and confess how incredibly imperfect you really are. I see it like this. When you decide to be a Christian God no longer sees you in all your wretched glory..He sees Christ who came to stand in your place. So you see the work is finished..(if you are curious you can read for yourself this is the last thing Christ said before He died) You can not earn your way to heaven. You can never be perfect enough. God knew that! So he sent Himself to do the job for you. The only thing we need to do is believe. And when you fully understand the incredible gift God has given you..Well you want to reciprocate. With obedience to the structure he set up for us to keep us safe and healthy. Ok I'll get off my soap box now..Now if that doesn't offend someone I don't know what will ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Surely there are people who've been told that if they just "find god" their troubles will be over?  Or you must have done something bad so god made you feel that way? 

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

This answer is going to sound initially exactly like what pisses you off, but hold awhile, it's a bit stranger than you think....

Read the Book of Job in the old Testament (Standard christian bible, get a more modern translation than I'm pointing to if you can)

Wade past through the tacked on tacky bit about the Devil and God (fore and aft) (Obviously tacked on by a later editor who didn't understand in the least  what  went on in between.)

Get the drift of what Job and his unfriends are yaddering on about.

Go past that to God' Reply.

It will blow your mind, it's just so weird and umm. Good. Great. It's really quite amazingly richly strange and wonderful.

Job and Ecclesiastes are quite my favourite.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have to say a little something.

I view God as something much better than and very much outside of religion as it is practiced, for the most part. I have been stung badly by religion, I'll let you in on a little secret in a minute.

To me, God is the entity that is loving, beyond anything we can know. A loving creator. I just think of how magnificent our bodies are. We are cut and our body knows right away to start healing. To me that is a sign that God is loving and understanding.

That sort of intelligence could not be responsible for the the hatred and biggotry that passes for a lot of religion, but not all religion.

When I was in my very early teens, I was in the confessional. A sacred place, very emotionally charged for most Catholics. I was asking the priest about being a homosexual, and he told me I was an abberation of nature. That was a hammer blow that I am not yet able to forget. It has done significant damage and the Catholic Church is responsible for a lot of damage, against a lot of people.

Then there are my two aunts. Both Catholic nuns, and if anyone can teach about the love of God, they can.

So I don't know what to make of religion. I'm not even very friendly with God to be honest. I believed that he hated me for a long time. I now know that it was a mis-belief in the Church that condemned me, but its hard to go back and reframe God as a loving entity after what was said to me.

Its a terrible fact that so much good and bad springs from Religion.  It taints Religion for me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Rein you know I love you but...

Actually it is the exact opposite. It is the only club in the world where to become a member you need to understand and confess how incredibly imperfect you really are.
THIS is what bugs me the most about Christianity. You have to live your whole life being "imperfect" and hoping and praying that you will measure up and get to heaven. Well I am sorry, but I don't buy it. And I am a very spiritual person. Yeah, I am one of those with the weirdo beliefs. Didn't grow up in the church, but have been trying to pay attention as an adult, and I just.don't.buy.it.

Hubby on the other hand went every Sunday till he said "no more". The really sad thing is, his mom was very depressed. And the minister "came 'round" at her request quite often to visit. But sadly, she sat alone a lot with her bible, in the dark and cried. It's heartbreaking to hear the stories. She never would have sought help. No, this woman was a "pray hard enough and you'll be saved" type. I only hope she got there. What am I saying? I know she did.

I love this:

To me, God is the entity that is loving, beyond anything we can know. A loving creator. I just think of how magnificent our bodies are. We are cut and our body knows right away to start healing. To me that is a sign that God is loving and understanding.

It is simple, yet, who can argue with it? Look around you. There are signs of God everywhere. A loving God, that just keeps creating, despite what the "New World American Christians" who live in fear want us to believe.

Breeze

Link to comment
Share on other sites

(if you are curious you can read for yourself this is the last thing Christ said before He died)

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

"It is finished."

-Jesus of Nazareth

I'm not so sure that proves your point, Rein, but I must say, it is a good quote on which to leave.

6

*note, we don't know what "it" referred to, or, if in fact the entire incident either happened the way it has been written, or at all.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

THIS is what bugs me the most about Christianity. You have to live your whole life being "imperfect" and hoping and praying that you will measure up and get to heaven

Breeze you are one of my favorite people in here so I really really don't want to offend you! I just want to say if you have faith there is no hoping and praying you measure up..Really you won't ever be able to "measure up" It was only Christ's sacrifice that makes up the difference..for lack of a better discription..

I am so sorry your hubby's Mom had such a sad situation..If she is no longer with us then I would say yes..she made it..for sure.

I think alot of Christians do hope and pray they will "make it"..I used to be one of them. Now I feel the assurance I need. I wish every one did. I just wanted to point out that Christianity is not a faith based on "works"..Not that we shouldn't try to be the best people we are able..it's just not what it's about. Its just faith..

I know there are many faiths in this place and I don't want to offend anyone. But one's own faith is often a source of offence to someone. I wish it could be different.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Rein you know I love you but...

Actually it is the exact opposite. It is the only club in the world where to become a member you need to understand and confess how incredibly imperfect you really are.

THIS is what bugs me the most about Christianity. You have to live your whole life being "imperfect" and hoping and praying that you will measure up and get to heaven. Well I am sorry, but I don't buy it. And I am a very spiritual person. Yeah, I am one of those with the weirdo beliefs. Didn't grow up in the church, but have been trying to pay attention as an adult, and I just.don't.buy.it.

Breeze

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Hm...reminds me of when someone who was "saved" said "sinners are going to hell because they're imperfect, but because I'm saved, I don't need to be perfect; I'm forgiven." 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest amybeth

Uh, sorry to inform you.  But your all wrong.

As a child of God.  Placing faith in Christ and believing in what God has to say about him means.....

You are perfect.  Your made perfect thru Christs blood.  Everytime you come to Him confess your sins He has washed you clean and made you perfect.  It is biblical.

Christ died as the propitiation for your sins.  YOu don't have to do a darn thing.  You don't have to BE a darn thing.  YOu don't have to change a single thing.  YOu just have to make a choice to believe that God so loved you that He gave HIs only begotten Son, that whoever believes in HIm shall not perish, but have eternal life.  For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. John 3:16-17

It is not through works or through being a better person that one gets to heaven.  Ephesians 2:8  For it is by GRACE you have been saved through FAITH; and that not of YOURSELVES, it is the GIFT OF GOD;

  not as a result of your WORKS, so that NO ONE may BOAST!!!!!

Now, trust me.  Being a better person does get you some mighty fine perks and rewards once you come face to face with the living God. (save that for another theology lesson).  And it could do well to save you a lot of explaining to Him.  But, you definately have secured yourself eternal life when you place face in Jesus Christ as the Messiah.  And confess your sins to Him.  Thats that simple biblical.  That is Christianity.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Holy Crow!

We are not all wrong, but we are all confused and that is the fault of the Church and religion.

What Amybeth says about being made perfect through Christ's blood is a strong statement. My understanding is that God's sacrifice of his only son, on the cross, and Jesus' willingness to die for us, created an enormous store of GRACE, which we can all draw upon. I understand that we need only show a moment's remorse at death, and we can enter Heaven in a state of Grace.

So what is the problem? The bloody Church. It is a well-known fact that the Roman Catholic Church sold indulgences in medieval times. What that means is that you paid money, and the Church carved you a peace of this GRACE and you could be assured of a place in Heaven. No shit. Things like this lead to the Reformation, the splitting of the Church. Now we have all sorts of Christian Churches, but they all came from the Roman Church and sorry to say, some of its flaws and biggotry were shared out as well. Some things are slow to change. Religion is one of the slowest.

What you need to think of is this; mothers and fathers (healthy ones) love their children. There are remarkable stories, of mothers particularly, performing mind-boggling feats for the sake of their offspring. So could a Supreme Being be any less loving? Believe in Love, and don't fret about the pettyfogging rules that abound in the Bible. The Supreme Being, God, created us, must love us, must want to reunite with us. If we were created imperfect and with free choice, then mistakes must be in the master plan.

I'm Catholic, and have been scarred very deeply by Catholocism, however these are the words of Pope Innocent of Assissi, AD 15th Century.

"My children, errors will be forgiven. In our obsession with original sin, we do often forget original innocence."

Peace and Grace,

Nervyboy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As a perfectionist and OCDer with a mom who is something of a religious zealot, I think I understand Ella.
I have a theory that all fanatics/zealots are OCDed.  Who else would take things to such extremes, cognitively and behaviorally? 

As far as the notion that "you were born perfect in God's eyes and are already forgiven", etc., etc., that has been expressed in myriad ways so far, I find it kind of amusing that Christians conveniently overlook the irony that one can be "born perfect" and "born forgiven (for just plain ol' being human)" at the same time.  That we need to be forgiven contradicts the whole "you're perfect just the way you are!" hoo ha. 

And no one's ever heard of "original sin"?  Not every branch of Christianity shares the same ideology.  The bible is not a love-me-tender guidebook for the faint of heart (or fallible).  Read it sometime.  That it's been reinterpreted, and semantically mangled to death, so many times throughout history says a lot about the "imperfection" of its author(s).

I'm really not anti-Christian, but I tend to take on that role when the Christians get all preachy, "C'mon down and join us, sister!", on the nonbelievers' asses.  Which is what is happening in this thread.  It just really pisses me off.  And it pisses me off because I used to say the exact same things (when I was a fanatical Christian) and now I get to experience the same obnoxiously saccharine rhetoric I inflicted on others.

Oh well.  Karma I suppose.

We are not all wrong, but we are all confused and that is the fault of the Church and religion.

I love that line!  Well said  ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest amybeth

Hey your right.  I'm sorry.  That was a strong statement about all yourall being wrong.  I'm not one bit religous. I am very Spiritual. I was too brought up Catholic.  Which ruined me.  I thought I was going to Hell for many many years because of my Catholic upbringing.  Not ever being a "good enough" girl to get to heaven.  Then someone showed me Ephesians 2:8.  And I just about died.  I fell on the floor and bawled.  I couldn't believe all this time I believed that Christ died for my sins yet, I still thought I was going to Hell.  I watched my mother refuse to die and torture herself with cancer until she was 61 pds and say I'm going to Hell because I was a bad mother!!!! Even though she believed in Jesus.  She was Catholic....  She finally gave in and died.  At the very end she saw an Angel.  That is why she gave in.  Anyway. 

The Bible is really a beautiful love letter from an all loving Father who does mercifully love us and is Longsuffering for us.  He is crazy for us. And the Bible is beautiful.  Here is a little fact for anyone who wants to dispute the Bible and what it has to say.

Taken from Science Speaks.  Moody Press

The Old Testament contains 306 specific prophecies about Christ's first coming to earth.  Each one of them came true-LITERALLY-exactly as predicted!!

There are 540 Bible prophecies in both Testaments AWAITING fulfillment at Jesus' second coming.  What should we assume about them? (They will be literally fulfilled.)

The Bible contains hundreds of other prophecies about other things.  Every one came true in the time and way it was scheduled.

What are the mathematical odds of hundreds of Bible prophecies coming true?  The answer is a number GREATER than the estimated stars in known space!!!!!

The calculated mathematical probabilites of just 8 prophecies coming true is a conservative estimate of 1 chance out of a number with 26 zeros.

TO VISUALIZE HOW BIG SUCH A NUMER IS, IMAGINE THE STATE OF TEXAS IS COVERED WITH SILVER DOLLARS TO A DEPTH OF 3 FEET.  TEXAS MEASURES 710 MILES AND CONTAINS 262,134 SQUARE MILES.  FURTHER IMAGINE THAT ONE OF THOSE QUINTILLIONS OF SILVER DOLLARS WAS TEMPORARILY PAINTED RED AND A BLINDFOLDED PERSON WERE ASKED TO SELECT 1 COIN FROM ANYWHERE WITHIN THE STATE.  WHAT WOULD BE THE "ODDS" OF HIM PICKING UP THE RED ONE THE 1ST TRY?  HIS CHANCES OF BEING CORRECT THE 1ST TIME?  HIS CHANCES OF BEING CORRECT THE 1ST TIME ARE THE SAME AS FOR 8 BIBLE PROPHECIES COMING TRUE...

It is accurate and True.  The word of God (The Bible) can be trusted.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What Amybeth says about being made perfect through Christ's blood is a strong statement. My understanding is that God's sacrifice of his only son, on the cross, and Jesus' willingness to die for us, created an enormous store of GRACE, which we can all draw upon. I understand that we need only show a moment's remorse at death, and we can enter Heaven in a state of Grace.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Actually, if you believe in Christian dogma, God had TWO sons: Adam, and Jesus.

For some reason, everyone always conveniently forgets Adam.

________________________________________________________________________________

__________

On a similar but different topic:

St. Brigid of Ireland (Catholicism) is mysteriously worshipped in the same place as the Goddess Bridget (Paganism).  There are many such co-optings placed at the time of the conversion of the Pagans of Europe and the British Isles to Christianity. 

________________________________________________________________________________

____________

In terms of sprituality, many of our modern day religions (IMHO) are vacant.  The "spiritual" aspect has been replaced by "organized".  Where once there was "what is my relationship with my creator?", one now sees "what is my relationship with my religion, and am I maintaining the tenets of its dogma?"

FWIW, I find that maintaining a good operating relationship with one's self is probably the best way to go, and, if help is needed beyond that, the choosing of a kindred spirit (human, ethereal, or otherwise) can be calming.  What I don't find helpful is anyone or anything dictating dogma or doctrine to me.  I see spirituality and religiosity as two completely separate entities.

6

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What Amybeth says about being made perfect through Christ's blood is a strong statement. My understanding is that God's sacrifice of his only son, on the cross, and Jesus' willingness to die for us, created an enormous store of GRACE, which we can all draw upon. I understand that we need only show a moment's remorse at death, and we can enter Heaven in a state of Grace.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Actually, if you believe in Christian dogma, God had TWO sons: Adam, and Jesus.

For some reason, everyone always conveniently forgets Adam.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

j/k:

Adam had a brother, named Phil.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I may be wrong but:

"Nothing is what it seems to be.  The world that you create and see through the egoic mind may seem a very imperfect place, even a vale of tears.  But whatever you perceive is only a kind of symbol, like an image in a dream."

Tohl

If you saw an angel but mistook it for a stone statue, all you would have to do is adjust your vision and look more closely at the "stone statue," not start looking somewhere else.  You would then find that there never was a stone statue."

Tohl

It's all in your mind.

Who's right and who's wrong.

Me against them.

Them against me.

Why?

WHY?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest amybeth

I was hurt so badly and forever damaged by my upbringing from my religion in the catholic church.  These little statements from nuns and priests.  Then I can put an end to my part in this thread.

"Amy, you are going to Hell if you keep doing that"

end of story..

peace out.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Bloodberry (nuisance)
I was hurt so badly and forever damaged by my upbringing from my religion in the catholic church.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

What Amybeth says about being made perfect through Christ's blood is a strong statement. My understanding is that God's sacrifice of his only son, on the cross, and Jesus' willingness to die for us, created an enormous store of GRACE, which we can all draw upon. I understand that we need only show a moment's remorse at death, and we can enter Heaven in a state of Grace.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Actually, if you believe in Christian dogma, God had TWO sons: Adam, and Jesus.

For some reason, everyone always conveniently forgets Adam.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

j/k:

Adam had a brother, named Phil.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I may be wrong but:

"Nothing is what it seems to be.  The world that you create and see through the egoic mind may seem a very imperfect place, even a vale of tears.  But whatever you perceive is only a kind of symbol, like an image in a dream."

Tohl

If you saw an angel but mistook it for a stone statue, all you would have to do is adjust your vision and look more closely at the "stone statue," not start looking somewhere else.  You would then find that there never was a stone statue."

Tohl

It's all in your mind.

Who's right and who's wrong.

Me against them.

Them against me.

Why?

WHY?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

So, how did this philosophy hurt you or someone else? 

And I'm not quite sure how Amybeth's examples, nice as they were, showed how she was hurt by so-called spiritual or religious methods.  Maybe she can expand on that....?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

It did not hurt me.  It is what helps me.  So I am sorry for not resonding correctly to the thread.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Rein:  A little late but....

Not that we shouldn't try to be the best people we are able..it's just not what it's about. Its just faith..

Now THIS makes sense.  ;)   This I can get behind. Wonder if you split for good?

Breeze

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wonder if you split for good?

Kind of..I just did not want to keep adding fuel to the fire..And someone in here did ask a good question..the topic is How Can It Hurt..oops should have read the title..I know how it can hurt..I have been hurt by organised religion..I have also been helped by plain faith so I thought I would share..thank you Breeze.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have been hurt by organised religion..I have also been helped by plain faith
I totally relate to this.

During my last foray into organized religion, I volunteered my time as youth group leader, altar guild, and lay eucharistic minister.  I made friends, I attended and enjoyed services.  The pastor of this church is a narcissist beyond belief.  I dared to confront him about a sexually abusive church member, and he refused to do anything about it because this guy was from an "important" church family.  The pastor was passive aggressive and even bluntly aggressive to me for two years after that.

I realize that this is more about an individual in the church, but it is the ORGANIZATION that created the chaos.  This guy is more concerned about his career and moving up through the hierarchy than any actual "goodness."  He also refused to stand up for gay rights when there was a schism in the church, although privately he supports gay rights. 

That was the last straw for me, and I left.  I miss having a church "family," but I just coudln't deal with the hypocrisy any longer.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

hey all,

i've just been reading the last few posts on this thread.

but i do have something which i think is interesting. way back when, i did some work for a church that i was getting $ paid to do. For the most part i enjoyed it.

i dont want to give too much info as this was a very small, but very wealthy, and very popular church.

some of the church members volunteered to do the same thing as myself...and we worked a lot together.

now remember, the church HIRED ME w/ a PAID position.

well, there was this one elder who "volunteered" and he was the picture perfect "asshole." i mean, if you look it up in the dictionary, you'll find his face. and i told my supervisor about him and what he was doing and how it was actually emotionally damaging to some of the other volunteers and hired hands.

supervisors response: he donates a lot of money, he can do whatever he wants.

oh, so thats how it works. (sarcasm).

december

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest luli2545

Hi all,

Good reading, hmmmmm.

I grew up in Unitarian (now Unitarian Universalist) tradition...

How this helped: gave me a false sense of superiority over more traditional ("christian"?) folks, which sense of superiority I seemed to need at the time...and I developed a healthy skepticism about all organized religion groups here in the U.S., including and maybe especially skeptical of Unitarianism as experienced in its churches and fellowships.

How this hurt: in a minor way, it added to my sense of not fitting in, and my family was weird too so we all didn't fit in, only that wasn't much of a comfort either.

Really, I wanted some security that other non Unitarians seemed to have. I worried a lot about dying, was there a god who would help me etc. Nope, no god, you're just bones in the earth afterwards... which seemed lonely and scary. "Well, in everyone, there is GOOD," my mom would say. "And just take out one letter "O" from "GOOD" and you have....GOD!" she added. Well, my dad wasn't into that, said he just didn't know, and was an agnostic. (At age 10 this was all getting more confusing, and I still dreaded death, and didn't have a magical god to go to for the inside scoop on long division and surviving gym class.

There were shrinks in the congregation, so early on I got no negativity about mental illness.

Wasn't until a divorce recovery group at a christian church that I learned that divorce was often considered a sin by some christians. That blew me out of that support group, for sure!

In a roundabout way, though, for me & my MI (depression, anxiety), some internalized sense of what the fates (god maybe?) had doled out to me, what I'd gotten, was depression for being bad. This is muddled, but...maybe I mean that I have struggled with a deep sense of my badness, and this forms in a way the core of depression for me....just, I'm bad. (And I never got to have any of the redemption stuff from being in a more traditional religion.) (Not that I'm saying the Unitarians made me feel bad at my core, it's just that I didn't get any antidote to other influences (family) that made me absorb a sense of me/bad.

The above may not be very interesting or profound.

Also, we never got taught about Christ dying on the cross and what that meant for us mortal sinners...somehow redeemed through that. I don't understand that.

I think I read in someone's post that all Jesus asked was for people to have faith, that was all that was needed to enter heaven? Is that right? Because he took on all our sin? Huh?

I would love the idea that my faith (in?) could provide a lessening of current suffering for me. Don't worry so much about entering Heaven after death; my interest is now...my life, my sense of wellbeing.

So, given the above mishmash of things I've thought about to no real conclusion: I'm in a non religiously based meditation group -- a class, really---. Vipassana meditation, and I'm heavy on the meta part, loving kindness. The loving kindness meditations are my way of aligning my thoughts, my heart, towards others and myself, along compassionate and caring lines. Aiming lovingkindness at me does reduce my depression. Insofar as this posting topic was about helping/hurting by spirituality/religions, I guess this meditation group is sort of organized...but no dogma...and it does help me. If I could do this group every day in the morning I'd have a good chance, along with meds, support etc. of feeling fairly happy fairly often. The topic of MI has not come up directly, so I'm not sure about their non-religiously-based responses to that. Probably I'll be told that meditation helps both depression and anxiety.

Anyhow, I know I'm going on long here...your provocative posts!

I guess when a child though, I felt embarassed by being Unitarian in a very churchy city, sort of like being a communist....or something. And my spirituality/ faith was not fed by being a member more recently as well. ( although I can tell you how to buy free trade coffee, how to support political refugees, and build habitat houses).

Maybe loosely on topic, I don't know,

Luli2425

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Rocky I am so sorry you had to go through that..My daughter has a friend who is going through the same thing..She is only 20 and is now cut off from everyone she once held dear..That is not true Christianity! You would have to ignore most of what Christ said to be a member of such a church..

Link to comment
Share on other sites

See, I'm glad you told me because I was reading one of those magazines they leave laying around in the laundromat and I was telling my boyfriend, "Wow! They're really enlightened and they say a lot of interesting stuff! Would you leave me if I became a Jehovah's Witness?"

But he said he'd leave me so that was out of the question anyway so...but I was thinking that they had really come into the 21st century, not that I knew much about them in the 20th century. But they really talked about women's rights and the culture of fear and 3rd world poverty and they seemed very, well, liberal. They also talked about depression.

I guess it was total propoganda.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

;)       lately all i see in organized religion is profit    badda bong !    you know why isn't there a new Bobb Dobs Church of the Sub Genious book out ? probably because no one reads anymore and they sure wouldn't get Bob Dobbs slack anyhow.

    i enjoy your writing as a break from the obsession i have with politics,history and doom.

  well paint has dryed so its off to work on more annoying non art only wackos find amusing. :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...