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  1. #21
    Member Manimal's Avatar
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    thanks ill check it out, not sure i really consider my self to be atheist tho but i am willing to bet they would be a great deal more accepting.

  2. #22
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    Not positive, but I think they (or at least some of them) started out as agnostics after leaving Christianity. They have a religious background. I consider myself agnostic, and I really enjoy everything their podcast has to offer. The overall tone is pretty respectful of everybody, although it does poke fun at the more ridiculous religious stuff.
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  3. #23
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    holy crap sabastious, you were thinking of closed doors? i think the internet just opened a whole bunch for you! you are really lucky to find so many people around here with similar situations. not only that, but people who are willing to get in touch with you on a more personal level thru PMs

    i think you should do what you think is right. no religion that simply forces you follow rules without question is a true religion. most religions say that once you have convinced yourself of the religion's validity, you cannot pick and choose what rules you to follow but that you have to commit to it completely. thats fair, but only when one is convinced that the path is right.

    you weren't convinced, and so you should feel empowered that you made a decision for the better. one that will open you to a new world and broaden your horizons.

    personally, i cant compare what alienation from friends and family would feel like but i would think that taking up hobbies and engaging your mind in many things might help

  4. #24
    reborn PeaceBaby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeffster View Post
    I'm not sure where to start in response to your narrow, bigoted presentation...
    Jeffster, I would encourage you to be ... softer here. Gentle even.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeffster View Post
    I encourage you not to give up on God, even if the Bible has become discouraging to you. During the darkest times in my life, I had nothing but a faint glimmer of hope that God still loved me, and without it, I'm not sure I would've survived.
    This is nice and I echo the sentiment.

    Be aware though that there is a huge gap between a completely literal interpretation of the Bible (as JW's practice - the Bible is the inerrant Word of God) and a community where figurative debate and interpretation of scripture is permitted.

  5. #25
    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeffster View Post
    I'm not sure where to start in response to your narrow, bigoted presentation,. but I guess I will say that "religion" is not a creature that has the power to be "harmful and unfair." People can use religious dogma to do so, but you are placing the blame on a belief system (rather ALL belief systems that exist under that umbrella) rather than on the people themselves, where it belongs.
    I no longer hold religious people responsible for their actions. It's too clear to me that they can't see what they're doing to the people around them, because their beliefs have made them see their actions differently than they really are. This was just my personal opinion, take it or leave it.
    One CANNOT be a "victim of religion" as religion is not an action. And your statement about "destroys their identities" is particularly ironic in that in recent times it is those crusading against Christianity specifically who are most interested in convincing people to embrace false identities and cling to beliefs that life is not supposed to require sacrifices or self-denial.
    *tries not to snicker at the thought of being lectured about irony and self-denial by an SP*

    Okay, "victim of religion" might have been a little over the top, but I hope you see my point about what religious groups can do to people, and the danger inherent in them.

    I think you misunderstand our purpose, Jeffster. We are merely trying to convince people to discover their own ideals and purpose instead of simply accepting the ones laid on them by religion as unquestionable. People should definitely be willing to sacrifice and self-deny for their own ideals and goals (that's just a matter of maturity), but they shouldn't have to sacrifice for something that has no personal meaning to them just because they've been conditioned to believe that it's "right" to value it, and "wrong" to want something they actually do care about. They have no sense of meaning or identity except the one that's been forced on them, and that's a tragedy.

    Christianity in particular is, I'm sorry to say, particularly coercive. There's one God, one path, one destination, one law in life, no one is unique or different, anyone who disagrees is destroyed, and there's no questioning or justification allowed. I, for one, don't like the message that sends people about their place in the world. Can you not see how that message is inherently intended to destroy people's individuality and self-expression?

    I'm sorry you don't understand. I wish you could. I wish everyone could.

  6. #26
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Just a general note: I think when someone leaves an oppressive religious organization (in this case, a particular branch of JW), and they've been suffering under an onus of excessive guilt and social control all their lives, the LAST thing they need is to have people start knocking their feet out from under them by trying to impose yet MORE religious control.

    They need a safe place for a period of time, to restabilize.
    There has to be a clean break, a complete razing of the past, before you can build anew.

    So please save the "God debates" for after the guy gets some stability in his life again.
    "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. #27
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    I am very greatful for your guy's posts

    I think I may have painted a bit of a different picture than my current situation because I was so depressed yesterday.

    I do feel that way, but it has gotten a whole lot better ever since I made my stance firm and started telling people. I have been starting to try to integrate into society but it's a very slow process.

    I'm not sure if I am suppressing these dark emotions or if they are diminishing over time, because when they come up again they take me for a ride. But they definitly have been getting fewer and far between over time.

    One thing that I have been really trying to focus on is finding someway to sell my music, that's what I want to do for a living.

    About 4 months ago I pushed myself up and started making more music. My mother is an Aqua Arobics instructor and she needed some good stretching music that was timed. That kind of started my musical journey and I ended up making 3 seven minute songs that worked very well for her stretching.

    My mother doesn't understand my stance, but I guess she's "starting" to accept it, but the mass disappointment is always a dark undertone when I am around her. But I refuse to abandon my family. If they don't want me around then fine, but I'm not going to be the one leaving them.

    So after a few months I had 12 songs that I had made and I started trying to market them. They got accepted by a company in new york that places music in tv and film media. So that was a great success.

    But there is always the social aspect of this transition. Breaking into the music industry seems like a calk walk compared to making friends right now, hah.

    As far as MBTI types go I really seem to connect with other INFP's INTP's(they are fun to debate with) and ENFP's(they seem to love life so much!). Not saying I can't connect with all personality types (except ESTJ's jk!) but it is a bit easier with those types.

    Depression is such a stupid wall that needs to be climbed. It is a huge chasm between me and making friends. Before I would just have to go out in the door to door ministry or go to the Kingdom Hall to make friends, now I have work a little harder at it and the depression looms.

  8. #28
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    I forgot to mention Do something, Learn something, Share something, Change something - Meetup.com. There are some cool local groups there (depending on where you live) for all sorts of things ... Scrabble, chess, philosophy, sports, books, dogs, hiking, wine ... might be worth checking into.
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  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jewelchild View Post
    I forgot to mention Do something, Learn something, Share something, Change something - Meetup.com. There are some cool local groups there (depending on where you live) for all sorts of things ... Scrabble, chess, philosophy, sports, books, dogs, hiking, wine ... might be worth checking into.
    Damn, slim pickins where I live.

    Cool site tho.

  10. #30
    #005645 phthalocyanine's Avatar
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    ,

    1 John 4

    7 "Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. 8Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. 9This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son[b] into the world that we might live through him. 10This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for[c] our sins. 11Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.

    13We know that we live in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. 14And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. 15If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God. 16And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.
    God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. 17In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him. 18There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

    19We love because he first loved us. 20 If anyone says, "I love God," yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen. 21 And he has given us this command: Whoever loves God must also love his brother."
    Ephesians 2

    1 As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3 All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature[a] and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath. 4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressionsit is by grace you have been saved. 6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faithand this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

    11Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called "uncircumcised" by those who call themselves "the circumcision" (that done in the body by the hands of men) 12remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. 13But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ.

    14 For he himself is our peace, who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, 15 by abolishing in his flesh the law with its commandments and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new man out of the two, thus making peace, 16 and in this one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility. 17 He came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near. 18 For through him we both have access to the Father by one Spirit.

    19Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God's people and members of God's household, 20built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. 21In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.
    Acts 15:5-11

    5Then some of the believers who belonged to the party of the Pharisees stood up and said, "The Gentiles must be circumcised and required to obey the law of Moses."

    6The apostles and elders met to consider this question. 7 After much discussion, Peter got up and addressed them: "Brothers, you know that some time ago God made a choice among you that the Gentiles might hear from my lips the message of the gospel and believe. 8 God, who knows the heart, showed that he accepted them by giving the Holy Spirit to them, just as he did to us. 9 He made no distinction between us and them, for he purified their hearts by faith. 10 Now then, why do you try to test God by putting on the necks of the disciples a yoke that neither we nor our fathers have been able to bear? 11 No! We believe it is through the grace of our Lord Jesus that we are saved, just as they are."

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