Atheism & losing loved ones
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10-05-2015, 11:49 PM
RE: Atheism & losing loved ones
Honestly, there is no way to get over this kind of loss, you just get thru it.

my moms death was really hard, I found that I could oly make it thru the day if I could manage to get some sleep. But it was hard to sleep, at the end of the day I was exhausted from stress and grief, and my mind would flood with memories and pain. I would be up all night. i had to get a script from the doctor for Ambien, so it would knock me right out.

getting rest at night helped me to cope better thru the day. And by cope I mean that I cried at the drop of a hat for the first year 12 hours a day instead of 24.

6 years later I still have hard times, I always will, but now I know that they will pass.

Don't be afraid or feel ashamed to get professional help.


"Life is a daring adventure or it is nothing"--Helen Keller
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10-05-2015, 11:55 PM
RE: Atheism & losing loved ones
i forgot to mention, the group Anj listed earlier is also on facebook

https://www.facebook.com/faithfreegriefs...ts&fref=ts

they have a private group there you can join so that others don't see your posts.


"Life is a daring adventure or it is nothing"--Helen Keller
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11-05-2015, 01:33 AM
RE: Atheism & losing loved ones
I'd say only time will take the pain away or at least lessen it. But know that your pain is borne of love. Though I'm can't really grasp how religion can talk pain away from such looses. Though have never been religious.

But cry, cry a lot. Crying is a vent.
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11-05-2015, 08:08 AM
RE: Atheism & losing loved ones
It helps to understand the grieving process a bit.

Initially you are in shock and fairly numb.

How hard you grieve has little to do with how much you loved the person and everything with how much a part of your daily life they were. Every time you do, see, smell or sense anything that reminds you of them, it is a trigger for grief. The more frequently a particular situation occurs, the less it will impact you. The effect slowly wears off.

You cannot control grief. If you push back tears, they will return stronger at a later time.

Grief releases dopamine in your brain to help you cope. The reason religions are helpful is because praying also releases dopamine. So does eating chocolate, spicy foods, jogging, strenuous exercise, and various other things that may be individual to you.

Grief comes in waves. You think you have regained your balance and bam - there it is again.

Grief also includes anger and denial. Human nature wants a cause, something to blame. Here, again, religion provides the explanation that god needed the person. It's of course nonsense. In a house fire, there will be a real reason it broke out and something real you can blame.

Most importantly, everyone grieves at their own pace. No one can tell you how and when and how long to grieve, it's an individual experience, and your body knows when and how much dopamine it needs to cope.

Grief is weird because you will at times be like an onlooker seeing yourself grieve - this is because your body takes over and you have no say so. Just give in to it, and you will heal faster.

I hope this helped a bit. Please talk about her here all you like, it helps and we are happy to listen.

[Image: dobie.png]Science is the process we've designed to be responsible for generating our best guess as to what the fuck is going on. Girly Man
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11-05-2015, 09:30 AM (This post was last modified: 11-05-2015 09:59 AM by Thumpalumpacus.)
RE: Atheism & losing loved ones
My sympathies on your loss.

It's important that you allow yourself to grieve. It's important to hold onto your memories.

I think the biggest trap is the search for closure. I don't think there's really such a thing when it comes to losing a loved one. The pain eases, but never passes,and it can be brought up afresh by the most random happenstance ... suddenly it's there again. I've learnt to cope with the loss of loved ones not by chasing away that pain, but by understanding that it is sweet, as well. Savor the times you shared, and count yourself lucky that you had such a person in your life as this young lady apparently was.
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11-05-2015, 07:24 PM
RE: Atheism & losing loved ones
I gave Einstein's elegy to Besso at my brother's funeral. Because I could think of nothing else to say.

"Now he has departed from this strange world a little ahead of me. That means nothing. People like us, who believe in physics, know that the distinction between past, present and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion."

#sigh
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12-05-2015, 04:30 AM
RE: Atheism & losing loved ones
(10-05-2015 04:51 PM)Timj Wrote:  I am very new here. I am not sure where to post this thread. Does anyone have experience on coping during the loss of a loved one as an Atheist. I once believed in God, and now I do not. I have just lost a loved one and am kinda lost. In the past I would have sought comfort from my church. Forgive me if this post is in the incorrect place.

Hi there.

I lost my dad a few years back.

There was a finality to it I suppose. No hanging on to a vain hope of seeing him again and No concern about him ending up in hell.

I can't speak from a theists point of view so I might be setting up a straw man here, but I imagine a theist would have a much more difficult experience thanks to hell, and never really coming to terms with loss because they think they are still living on in another place...never really accepting the loss.

I valued the years I spent with my dad because we both knew they would be the only years we would spend together.

I still get upset, I still miss him and would give anything to see him again. But I know that's impossible.

Reality is cold, merciless and unforgiving. But at least I know why he died. There was no internal struggle and no unanswered questions.. He died because he didn't stop smoking when the doctor told him to, simple, It wasn't gods fault, it wasn't the devil either.

Just nature taking its toll, and it awaits us all.

Enjoy your stay... Have a life BEFORE death... Cos you ain't getting one after.

Sorry.. Rambling on. To summarise..there is no internal struggle and no one was 'taken away before their time'

I cherish the memories and now impart everything my father taught me onto my son.
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12-05-2015, 01:10 PM
RE: Atheism & losing loved ones
Timj

how are you doing? are you getting any sleep?

just chcking in to see ho you are doing.


"Life is a daring adventure or it is nothing"--Helen Keller
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12-05-2015, 07:06 PM
RE: Atheism & losing loved ones
(10-05-2015 04:51 PM)Timj Wrote:  I am very new here. I am not sure where to post this thread. Does anyone have experience on coping during the loss of a loved one as an Atheist. I once believed in God, and now I do not. I have just lost a loved one and am kinda lost. In the past I would have sought comfort from my church. Forgive me if this post is in the incorrect place.

The easiest for me was just to realize what an amazing thing life is. Life is precious because it ends. That sounds really... weird, but it's true. If it didn't end, if we didn't lose people, if moments could last forever, the meaning would be greatly reduced. One thing that really helped me through losing my mother was a quote from Dawkins (like him or not):

“We are going to die, and that makes us the lucky ones. Most people are never going to die because they are never going to be born. The potential people who could have been here in my place but who will in fact never see the light of day outnumber the sand grains of Arabia. Certainly those unborn ghosts include greater poets than Keats, scientists greater than Newton. We know this because the set of possible people allowed by our DNA so massively exceeds the set of actual people. In the teeth of these stupefying odds it is you and I, in our ordinariness, that are here.We privileged few, who won the lottery of birth against all odds, how dare we whine at our inevitable return to that prior state from which the vast majority have never stirred?”

For me, there's just so much meaning in thinking of it that way. We are incredibly lucky to even exist. We are incredibly lucky to have even brief moments in the sun with people we love. For me, it makes it impossible to feel too sad that they left... Rather it makes me want to celebrate the fact that they existed, that I exist, that I had the chance to know them, and it just makes me want to celebrate what a wonderful thing that is.

There's no easy way to cope. It hurts to lose someone. It hurts to realize that the last time we had with them, was the last time we'll ever have with them. It's hard to grasp that every time we speak with a person, whether we depart this life or they do, it could easily be the last moment we'll ever share. But for me that is countered or at the very least balanced by remembering how lucky we are and how beautiful it is that we are here at all.

"Science doesn't know everything, and doesn't claim to. Religion knows nothing, but claims to know all"
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12-05-2015, 07:14 PM
RE: Atheism & losing loved ones
(12-05-2015 07:06 PM)iBananya Wrote:  
(10-05-2015 04:51 PM)Timj Wrote:  I am very new here. I am not sure where to post this thread. Does anyone have experience on coping during the loss of a loved one as an Atheist. I once believed in God, and now I do not. I have just lost a loved one and am kinda lost. In the past I would have sought comfort from my church. Forgive me if this post is in the incorrect place.

The easiest for me was just to realize what an amazing thing life is. Life is precious because it ends. That sounds really... weird, but it's true. If it didn't end, if we didn't lose people, if moments could last forever, the meaning would be greatly reduced. One thing that really helped me through losing my mother was a quote from Dawkins (like him or not):

“We are going to die, and that makes us the lucky ones. Most people are never going to die because they are never going to be born. The potential people who could have been here in my place but who will in fact never see the light of day outnumber the sand grains of Arabia. Certainly those unborn ghosts include greater poets than Keats, scientists greater than Newton. We know this because the set of possible people allowed by our DNA so massively exceeds the set of actual people. In the teeth of these stupefying odds it is you and I, in our ordinariness, that are here.We privileged few, who won the lottery of birth against all odds, how dare we whine at our inevitable return to that prior state from which the vast majority have never stirred?”

For me, there's just so much meaning in thinking of it that way. We are incredibly lucky to even exist. We are incredibly lucky to have even brief moments in the sun with people we love. For me, it makes it impossible to feel too sad that they left... Rather it makes me want to celebrate the fact that they existed, that I exist, that I had the chance to know them, and it just makes me want to celebrate what a wonderful thing that is.

There's no easy way to cope. It hurts to lose someone. It hurts to realize that the last time we had with them, was the last time we'll ever have with them. It's hard to grasp that every time we speak with a person, whether we depart this life or they do, it could easily be the last moment we'll ever share. But for me that is countered or at the very least balanced by remembering how lucky we are and how beautiful it is that we are here at all.

Very well said Thumbsup
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