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  1. #61
    Minister of Propagandhi ajblaise's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by toonia View Post
    I have had a few difficult decisions. One was to give up the idea of God. I'm agnostic not because it feels right, or because I'm angry at god or religious people. I don't think my reasoning is necessarily superior to people who ascribe to a religion, since I am merely a product of my experiences and can point to a place in time where I held irrational assumptions like anyone might. The implications of agnosticism can have negative emotional impact on me. The reason I hold that position is because it is the honest position. It is the natural conclusion for the actual doubts I have. It isn't comfortable, but it makes sense.

    The important decisions in my life have not been based on how comfortable they feel to me. I have made personal decisions that were painful and frightening, but were reasonable and had positive outcomes that were clear if I looked past the current feelings about it. I am tough on myself and will dismiss anything I feel about something if it gets in the way of a decision based on honesty (i.e. the reality of the situation).
    Quote Originally Posted by Victor View Post
    Yes, I found leaving God to be a big decision.

    It was preceded by years of philosophical debate, but the moment of truth came when I had to decide between sleeping with my girlfriend and being a sacramental christian.

    I knew I couldn't have both. I had to have one or the other. And fortunately I chose Rhonda.

    So I swapped God for Rhonda.

    But since then I have tried to have my cake and eat it too.

    So today I see God through metaphorical eyes.

    Metaphor is often misunderstood and demeaned, but so far it is only humans that can think metaphorically.

    As you know metaphors are comparisons of relationships. And metaphor underlies all of language and mathematics.

    So we might say, metaphor is the language of God.

    And anyway, metaphor enables me to sleep with my girlfriend and receive the sacraments.

    So the big decision turned out to be no decision at all - and now I have my cake and eat it too.

    Whoopee!
    Hmmmm. Sometimes it's good to be a soulless NT. I was able to leave God in my early teens, and it wasn't even a decision really.

  2. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by Viv View Post
    Hardest decision I ever had to make was to let a few people I love go.

    Factors: Recklessness with their lives- money, drugs, promiscuity.. (I sound like a total prude, I know).

    Since our values clashed, I think that really kinda severed ties.. As much as I wanted to be 'there,' I don't think be 'there' really helped, until maybe one day, they will wake up, realize. Or maybe they just didn't care? I think that sometimes, things happen for a reason. I believe that group influence is really strong. Being the oddball I guess, my hopes were to help rub off in a positive way? It didn't. I had to wake up myself. I still wish them the best of luck.
    They won't change unless they truly want to. You're mature for recognizing that.

  3. #63
    & Badger, Ratty and Toad Mole's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iwakar View Post
    Leaving my brothers behind when I ran away from home at 14 years old and not returning for several years after. I just couldn't take the abuse any more. Either my mother or I was going to die.

    The guilt I felt for years following that destroyed me in an entirely other way. I thought I'd selfishly left them to their fate, but in hindsight I had more power to protect them from afar. I threatened her with CPS and lawyers with my father's help if the bullshit didn't stop and we both followed through true to our word. It must've scared the effing daylights out of her. (CPS had taken her and her siblings from her abusive father when she was a teenager too. History and fate had come full circle.) She never hit them again. If she had, I might've killed her.

    When my INTP father had to make a list of the abuse my brothers and I had experienced, it was one of the few times in my life I ever saw him cry. Then it was his turn for guilt.

    What a sad circle. It stops with me.
    It is a sad circle. But how wonderful you are now creating a virtuous circle.

    And what an important part of the world you are now, as you can see from this video -

    YouTube - Parenting For A Peaceful World

  4. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by ajblaise View Post
    Hmmmm. Sometimes it's good to be a soulless NT. I was able to leave God in my early teens, and it wasn't even a decision really.
    When I discovered all the gods in the world and in history, I knew they couldn't be taken literally.

    On the other hand I also knew that there had never been a civilization not based on a religion.

    And as I feel I belong to my civilization, I had an interesting problem to solve.

    And as civilzation is now being attacked by barbarity, it is important to gather my feet under me to meet the attack.

    So I guess I am lucky, as I am not only comfortable in my own skin, but also comfortable in my civilization.

  5. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by mlittrell View Post
    EDIT:

    actually now that i think about it there is no worse lol it might have been harder for you then for me and i would never know because i am not you.
    In fairness, I guess I could say the same. I have no idea of what your life is like so it's entirely possible that whatever it was was actually worse for you. I guess my decision, the decision itself, wasn't all that hard insofar as the repercussions of making a different choice were very obvious. It was the aftermath that really made it hard to stand my ground. It was such a drawn out process with a weird kind of ripple effect that I couldn't have anticipated. I still wonder how much damage I may have done, or be doing, five years later.

  6. #66
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ajblaise View Post
    Hmmmm. Sometimes it's good to be a soulless NT. I was able to leave God in my early teens, and it wasn't even a decision really.
    It's okay, dear -- He never left you.

    (Bwa ha ha haaaa.... sorry, couldn't resist. )

    Quote Originally Posted by juggernaut View Post
    ... I guess my decision, the decision itself, wasn't all that hard insofar as the repercussions of making a different choice were very obvious. It was the aftermath that really made it hard to stand my ground. It was such a drawn out process with a weird kind of ripple effect that I couldn't have anticipated. I still wonder how much damage I may have done, or be doing, five years later.
    Yup, this is the ambiguity that makes it difficult to make these decisions in the first place.

    Especially if you're pitting potential future long-term benefit against current or probable pain/damage.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  7. #67
    Minister of Propagandhi ajblaise's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    It's okay, dear -- He never left you.

    (Bwa ha ha haaaa.... sorry, couldn't resist. )
    So that's who has been stalking me! I just thought he was an old homeless guy quoting Leviticus.

  8. #68
    Senior Member Winds of Thor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Victor View Post
    Yes, I found leaving God to be a big decision.

    It was preceded by years of philosophical debate, but the moment of truth came when I had to decide between sleeping with my girlfriend and being a sacramental christian.

    I knew I couldn't have both. I had to have one or the other. And fortunately I chose Rhonda.

    So I swapped God for Rhonda.

    But since then I have tried to have my cake and eat it too.

    So today I see God through metaphorical eyes.

    Metaphor is often misunderstood and demeaned, but so far it is only humans that can think metaphorically.

    As you know metaphors are comparisons of relationships. And metaphor underlies all of language and mathematics.

    So we might say, metaphor is the language of God.

    And anyway, metaphor enables me to sleep with my girlfriend and receive the sacraments.

    So the big decision turned out to be no decision at all - and now I have my cake and eat it too.

    Whoopee!
    Next time you're outside, look at everything. Someone made all this stuff. And if it's not a plant or water, the raw materials from the stuff we make were made by somebody.

    Just the same as a man makes a ship. The ship sinks. The smaller fish make it their home. The same stands to reason from us up the other direction.
    "..And the eight and final rule: If this is your first time at Fight Club, you have to fight."
    'Men are meant to be with women. The rest is perversion and mental illness.'

  9. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by Avatar7 View Post
    Next time you're outside, look at everything. Someone made all this stuff. And if it's not a plant or water, the raw materials from the stuff we make were made by somebody.

    Just the same as a man makes a ship. The ship sinks. The smaller fish make it their home. The same stands to reason from us up the other direction.
    Yes, just as a watch has a watch maker, the world has a world maker.

    And as you can see, this is a beautiful metaphor.

  10. #70
    darkened dreams labyrinthine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ajblaise View Post
    Hmmmm. Sometimes it's good to be a soulless NT. I was able to leave God in my early teens, and it wasn't even a decision really.
    Based on seeing the number of NT/ST religious thinkers and the number of soulful, passionate atheists, my inclination is to suspect it has more to do with environment, culture, and indoctrinization than personality type. Personality can certainly play a role, but people who can move away from religion as a child or teen typically have a much different introduction to religion than those who wait until adulthood or never leave. For example, when I was a teen I was at a religious boarding school where I was influenced 24/7 and was required to live up to many rules regulating both social and personal values and there were punishments if you did not do this. These institutions were designed specifically to keep the young people in the church. It is as much a measure of their external introduction to religion as it is a measure of internal perspective. Most people do not realize this. It has been rare to encounter people who are willing to hold a position based solely on what makes sense as opposed to what makes them feel stronger or superior to others. People, however rational, who make fun of religious people have a personal feeling of superiority invested in their position of being non-religious. Their position makes sense, but also satisfies the personal need to feel strong and secure. It seems as though this drives many conclusions even when people are not aware of it. When a person doesn't have a feeling of superiority associated with their belief, it isn't much fun to look down on others since they are a reminder of various possibilities for oneself.
    Step into my metaphysical room of mirrors.
    Fear of reality creates myopic morality
    So I guess it means there is trouble until the robins come
    (from Blue Velvet)

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