How many of you go to church?
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13-08-2012, 12:25 AM
RE: How many of you go to church?
Sometimes I'll go to church if I'm visiting family and they insist. The majority of the time the pastors are legitimately trying to help, and share a positive message, but then again I've never been to a greedy mega-church.

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13-08-2012, 06:43 AM
RE: How many of you go to church?
(12-08-2012 09:15 PM)Erxomai Wrote:  
(12-08-2012 08:25 PM)pawprints1985 Wrote:  explain to me why so many people that I talk to that are now no believers are depressed and you can't tell me that its from all the years you were lied to, because is you believe it is all a lie shouldn't you feel liberated. I'm not picking on people with depression just ask my husband how depressed I was when my business was falling and my parents were getting a devorse.

I probably could not put it into words that someone else would fully understand what's going on in my silly brain, but I'll try.

My thinking feels completely liberated now. I used to work so hard at never being wrong when it came to my beliefs. If I was wrong, it might affect my relationship with Jesus. Everything I did and thought had to be run through my God filters to make sure I was honoring Him and living a life worthy of His love for me.

Now? I only need to filter what I do or think through the paradigm of how do I impact others. Now? I can be wrong about anything and it's okay. It means I have to assimilate the facts and change my opinion and that, my new friend, is completely liberating! OMG, I can't even begin to describe what an incredibly liberating feeling that is!!!

So that's the liberating part.

The depression and anxiety I have been prone to throughout much of my life. Just a few years ago, I started doing something I never did before...I began questioning what I had always accepted as fact from birth. I would have never ever in a million years have dreamed that I would end up an atheist. Why? Because my faith was not just a series of statements that I believed in. My faith was me. My entire identity was in Christ. Christianity was not a religion to me, it was a relationship with a real being who made me and loved me and directed every step of my life. Every major decision I ever made was done after I prayed about it first. Every problem I ever had (including depression and anxiety) I asked God to help with. Every good thing that ever happened, I thanked God for it. Every accomplishment I ever achieved was done because God gave me the power to achieve it.

There are a whole lot of things that went into my de-conversion. I won't go into that story now. Suffice it to say that after a lot of study into other areas like science and evolution instead of religion, I began a journey that lead me to this place. My mind is liberated, but my worldview, my identity, my self-esteem, my relationships with every single person I've ever cared about has completely flipped. It's not just that I no longer believe in God, it's that I feel like I am beginning my life all over again from scratch. I'm relearning who I am as a liberated thinker. I'm relearning what abilities I have because the only thing I ever learned how to do was share Jesus with other people. I have a very low level of self-esteem and confidence because I am still learning what stuff in my thinking is me and what parts of it was my prior indoctrination. My relationships with family and life-long friends has never been the same because they talk about God all the time and I do not. Nor am I willing to argue with them about it so I just totally isolate myself from everyone I've ever known. I did not really have non-Christian friends so I don't know how to make friends outside of church. Now you know why my post count is embarrassingly high. This is the only place outside of therapy where I express my thoughts.

All of these factors triggered the depression and anxiety that has always been with me during my life. But I no longer had a support system to help me. I no longer had a world view that told me everything would be okay because God loves me. I no longer had a job that gave me confidence and self esteem because I can't be a pastor anymore. I no longer can date because I feel too fucked up to try to get to know a woman and share who I am with her.

This all lead me to a very dark place of loneliness and suicidal thoughts. My depression began to run rampant, so I finally got the help I needed before I jumped off one of the tallest bridges in Washington state. That was one year and two weeks ago. I'm doing better, but I have a long way to go in finding out who the new Erxomai is.

I hope my crazy ramblings make a little sense to you. If not, feel free to ask questions. Smile

It's really too bad you're on the left coast and I'm on the other; I'd really like to have a good dinner and a chat with you. We could even invite others.

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Science is not a subject, but a method.
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13-08-2012, 02:22 PM
RE: How many of you go to church?
(13-08-2012 06:43 AM)Chas Wrote:  
(12-08-2012 09:15 PM)Erxomai Wrote:  I probably could not put it into words that someone else would fully understand what's going on in my silly brain, but I'll try.

My thinking feels completely liberated now. I used to work so hard at never being wrong when it came to my beliefs. If I was wrong, it might affect my relationship with Jesus. Everything I did and thought had to be run through my God filters to make sure I was honoring Him and living a life worthy of His love for me.

Now? I only need to filter what I do or think through the paradigm of how do I impact others. Now? I can be wrong about anything and it's okay. It means I have to assimilate the facts and change my opinion and that, my new friend, is completely liberating! OMG, I can't even begin to describe what an incredibly liberating feeling that is!!!

So that's the liberating part.

The depression and anxiety I have been prone to throughout much of my life. Just a few years ago, I started doing something I never did before...I began questioning what I had always accepted as fact from birth. I would have never ever in a million years have dreamed that I would end up an atheist. Why? Because my faith was not just a series of statements that I believed in. My faith was me. My entire identity was in Christ. Christianity was not a religion to me, it was a relationship with a real being who made me and loved me and directed every step of my life. Every major decision I ever made was done after I prayed about it first. Every problem I ever had (including depression and anxiety) I asked God to help with. Every good thing that ever happened, I thanked God for it. Every accomplishment I ever achieved was done because God gave me the power to achieve it.

There are a whole lot of things that went into my de-conversion. I won't go into that story now. Suffice it to say that after a lot of study into other areas like science and evolution instead of religion, I began a journey that lead me to this place. My mind is liberated, but my worldview, my identity, my self-esteem, my relationships with every single person I've ever cared about has completely flipped. It's not just that I no longer believe in God, it's that I feel like I am beginning my life all over again from scratch. I'm relearning who I am as a liberated thinker. I'm relearning what abilities I have because the only thing I ever learned how to do was share Jesus with other people. I have a very low level of self-esteem and confidence because I am still learning what stuff in my thinking is me and what parts of it was my prior indoctrination. My relationships with family and life-long friends has never been the same because they talk about God all the time and I do not. Nor am I willing to argue with them about it so I just totally isolate myself from everyone I've ever known. I did not really have non-Christian friends so I don't know how to make friends outside of church. Now you know why my post count is embarrassingly high. This is the only place outside of therapy where I express my thoughts.

All of these factors triggered the depression and anxiety that has always been with me during my life. But I no longer had a support system to help me. I no longer had a world view that told me everything would be okay because God loves me. I no longer had a job that gave me confidence and self esteem because I can't be a pastor anymore. I no longer can date because I feel too fucked up to try to get to know a woman and share who I am with her.

This all lead me to a very dark place of loneliness and suicidal thoughts. My depression began to run rampant, so I finally got the help I needed before I jumped off one of the tallest bridges in Washington state. That was one year and two weeks ago. I'm doing better, but I have a long way to go in finding out who the new Erxomai is.

I hope my crazy ramblings make a little sense to you. If not, feel free to ask questions. Smile

It's really too bad you're on the left coast and I'm on the other; I'd really like to have a good dinner and a chat with you. We could even invite others.

Agreed. I'll have to make a trek out there sometime. Boston is one major US city I've never been to. My Bucket List needs to have the Freedom Trail and Fenway Park on it.

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13-08-2012, 03:19 PM
RE: How many of you go to church?
(13-08-2012 02:22 PM)Erxomai Wrote:  
(13-08-2012 06:43 AM)Chas Wrote:  It's really too bad you're on the left coast and I'm on the other; I'd really like to have a good dinner and a chat with you. We could even invite others.

Agreed. I'll have to make a trek out there sometime. Boston is one major US city I've never been to. My Bucket List needs to have the Freedom Trail and Fenway Park on it.

Proof!! America needs a Bullet Train!
Criminy, I'd probably have my own compartment on it - I'd be all over the US and Canada, hanging with the people I've met on this forum. Shy

A new type of thinking is essential if mankind is to survive and move to higher levels. ~ Albert Einstein
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13-08-2012, 03:29 PM
RE: How many of you go to church?
(13-08-2012 12:25 AM)fstratzero Wrote:  Sometimes I'll go to church if I'm visiting family and they insist. The majority of the time the pastors are legitimately trying to help, and share a positive message, but then again I've never been to a greedy mega-church.

Really, they don't have to be a mega-church to be greedy. One small church in my area goes to the older people (i.e. retired collecting social security and such) on the day they get their checks to "help" them calculate their tithe--after giving them something to guilt them/make them feel like they should give back even if they don't attend the church.


I've actually got one of my town's churches podcasts (the closest thing to a "mega church" although it's still small, big for my area, but small) and I've listened to it. Despite some false logic like items, I get what they are trying to say, and most is just decent things that apply to everyone without religion (to be honest, I've recently started to wonder if the minister isn't.... questioning.... his beliefs given things I've seen about ministers sometimes being atheist or just losing their faith), and then go to religion after. I've even talked to the minister before, saw the church pre-rebuild (they completely changed it, it hadn't changed in over 20 years, same pews and everything--they decided it needed a change). And one thing I did find quite refreshing (so to speak) is I don't recall him ever trying to get me to attend! Even when I asked questions for a friend, he never tried to get me to come, he said all are welcome, but if you don't agree with their viewpoints you wouldn't like it--but that was directed toward my friend, and not me.


Of course one of my friends has invited me to go there once... I thought of doing it, but to be honest it was only a thought because there's an attractive woman I like that goes there, and I think she only goes for people who attend her church. Anyway... I thought that it would be a bit hard to bite my tongue and not say anything.
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13-08-2012, 04:00 PM
RE: How many of you go to church?
Not anymore. Thank. God.

Bury me with my guns on, so when I reach the other side - I can show him what it feels like to die.
Bury me with my guns on, so when I'm cast out of the sky, I can shoot the devil right between the eyes.
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