Chaplains
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31-08-2010, 06:06 AM
 
Chaplains
I want an Atheist chaplain.

the concept may seem contradictory, so please allow me to explain. In the American Army, the Chaplain has a lot of weight. They counsel the faithful on spiritual matters, and on personal matters. They are the door for personal counseling without having to go see a mental health professional. And their opinion holds an exorbitant amount of weight when it comes to needing or wanting something. No one can stop you from going to see the Chaplain at any time.

You have to see a Chaplain if you threaten suicide, or have suicidal ideations. you have to see a Chaplain if you want a compassionate reassignment or a curtailment of an overseas tour for hardship reasons.

But what if you have no faith? I want an officer that falls under the Chaplains corps to deal with those of us that have no faith. Someone to speak as a mediator on my behalf in times of crises that isn't going to try and pray with (or for) me.

basically, I want someone to serve the non-religious role of Chaplain without telling me that my mom is in the hospital because my faith was weak (happened to me a few years ago, she's better now, and because of medicine, not faith)

When I have to go see the Chaplain (against my will), I want a representative that respects my religious beliefs and wears a flying spaghetti monster pin.

thoughts, anyone?

i'll be posting this on my blog as well.
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31-08-2010, 07:50 AM
RE: Chaplains
flying spaghetti monster pin xD well I'm joining the army and going for a course in psychology so I may bring this idea forward Tongue

Hey brother christian, with your high and mighty errand, your actions speak so loud, I can't hear a word you're saying.

"This machine kills fascists..."

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31-08-2010, 08:16 AM
RE: Chaplains
I think it's a good idea, but it won't get any support.

The main problem is your use of the term "chaplain". If you insist on this person being treated as a chaplain, no one will listen. If, on the other hand, they're a "counselor" or "therapist", it may work.

"Owl," said Rabbit shortly, "you and I have brains. The others have fluff. If there is any thinking to be done in this Forest - and when I say thinking I mean thinking - you and I must do it."
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31-08-2010, 08:21 AM
RE: Chaplains
I wouldnt call it a chaplain, maybe a social worker or something. But everything else in the idea is good.

Correct me when I'm wrong.
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31-08-2010, 11:29 AM
 
RE: Chaplains
Good luck with this ... I agree with you that an atheist deserves equal treatment, but I have serious doubts you'd have any luck with this campaign that wouldn't involve winding up in the Supreme Court! Theism is deeply entrenched in the military.
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31-08-2010, 02:11 PM
RE: Chaplains
There's the same problem in the Canadian Forces. Each base has a chaplain, but the majority of them actually offer secular counselling in addition to religious counselling. However, the very fact that there are chaplains in supposedly secular armies is still technically breaching the separation of church and government.

"Remember, my friend, that knowledge is stronger than memory, and we should not trust the weaker." - Dr. Van Helsing, Dracula
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01-09-2010, 09:55 PM
RE: Chaplains
Why is there chaplains in the military?

Do they even fight?

In the British military that sort of thing is done by a non-military group who offer religious support as a second thought to mental and emotional support. I don't remember too rightly, but I think they mainly employ older women who can form a grandma type relationship with a client soldier. Though I may be wrong, it's been many a while since I was involved with the military.

I still think it's revolting that an emotional and mental support origination is there ONLY for religious soldiers.

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11-09-2010, 08:08 PM
 
RE: Chaplains
(01-09-2010 09:55 PM)Cetaceaphile Wrote:  Why is there chaplains in the military?

Do they even fight?

In the British military that sort of thing is done by a non-military group who offer religious support as a second thought to mental and emotional support. I don't remember too rightly, but I think they mainly employ older women who can form a grandma type relationship with a client soldier. Though I may be wrong, it's been many a while since I was involved with the military.

I still think it's revolting that an emotional and mental support origination is there ONLY for religious soldiers.

Well chaplains in the Canadian Forces are there to provide religious support to Protestant, Roman Catholic, Muslim and Jewish soldiers. They can also become padres, and provide emotional support to any member. My issue is that there are no non-religious social workers, or non-religious padres that hold the same position and power as a religious padre.
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11-09-2010, 08:11 PM
 
RE: Chaplains
(11-09-2010 08:08 PM)AngryKraut Wrote:  Well chaplains in the Canadian Forces are there to provide religious support to Protestant, Roman Catholic, Muslim and Jewish soldiers. They can also become padres, and provide emotional support to any member. My issue is that there are no non-religious social workers, or non-religious padres that hold the same position and power as a religious padre.

That's kind of my point with all this.
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12-09-2010, 09:00 AM
RE: Chaplains
Well Chaplains are just the result of precedent. They evolved. When people needed guidance or solace, they needed it on a religious level (because war is fucked and will fuck with any sane person's mind). Now there is a rise in the prevalence of not only people who don't want religious guidance, but in the knowledge of psychology. So I think it's fine to request secular guidance, either in new-skills training for Chaplains, or in the creation of a new secular Chaplain equivalent, or the inclusion of counselors or social workers. Another possibility is a role for psychologists and psychiatrists, but I think there's weight to the idea that perhaps a buffer between the soldier and formal mental health care is wise. I don't think its reasonable to dismiss the history that led to the chaplaincy role. I also don't think it's reasonable to be pessimistic about the possibility of change. The army is all about anything that will keep its soldiers fighting. Every minute spent in counseling (or eating and crapping for that matter) is a minute not spent soldiering. The army has made changes like including Wicca in recognised religions and in the area of gays in the military. But it is a monolithic hierarchy, so naturally all change is slow.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
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