Shinobi

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Shinobi last won the day on March 18

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About Shinobi

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    Thinker

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Somewhere on the planet, Earth
  • Interests
    Environmental health, biology, sustainability, science fiction, music, art, and many other things.
  • More About Me
    I'm just a guy trying to make it through college while at the same time trying to make sense of life, the universe, and everything. :)

Previous Fields

  • Still have any Gods? If so, who or what?
    Agnostic with a soft spot for panpsychism
  1. Hi, willybilly30. Your friend was absolutely right. Just having someone who will take the time to listen to you can make all the difference in the world. I've never really met anyone who fully understands what my family and I have been through - it's one of those things you almost have to go through yourself to be able to relate to... However, the few people I knew who just took the time to listen and offer their friendship and support during my time of need really helped me more than they'll probably ever realize.
  2. The World Needs Atheism...

    Thanks for the video @Faithfulless! I really enjoyed it, and it really makes me wonder how often hypnosis techniques are actually used in charismatic services. I really think you might be onto something with this! By the way, I had to show the video to some of my friends. The girl who kept calling herself Bob and the guy who forgot where his mouth was just really blew my mind!
  3. The World Needs Atheism...

    Hey, everyone. I found the original Camp Meeting 97 video on YouTube from which Fweethawt's clip was taken. I just thought I'd post it here in its entirety for anyone who might be interested in watching it. It appears that the laughing manifestations start at around 37:00. Edit: After about five or six minutes of watching this, I was completely creeped out... It's very hard for me to believe that there are so many grown adults who have actually fallen into this kind of thinking, who engage in this kind of behavior, and who embrace these kinds of belief systems. It's actually kind of scary. Kenneth E Hagin Campmeeting 1997 072197 Learning to Flow with the Spirit of God
  4. Hi, MOHO. You bring up a really good point. I'm not 100% sure what the answer is. However, I'm personally of the opinion that religious fundamentalism may cause mental illness over time. I found a study that seems to indicate that this might be the case. In an article titled, "Religious Experiences Shrink Part of the Brain," found in Scientific American, author, Andrew Newberg, writes, "In this study, Owen et al. used MRI to measure the volume of the hippocampus, a central structure of the limbic system that is involved in emotion as well as in memory formation. They evaluated the MRIs of 268 men and women aged 58 and over, who were originally recruited for the NeuroCognitive Outcomes of Depression in the Elderly study, but who also answered several questions regarding their religious beliefs and affiliation. The study by Owen et al. is unique in that it focuses specifically on religious individuals compared to non-religious individuals. This study also broke down these individuals into those who are born again or who have had life-changing religious experiences. The results showed significantly greater hippocampal atrophy in individuals reporting a life-changing religious experience. In addition, they found significantly greater hippocampal atrophy among born-again Protestants, Catholics, and those with no religious affiliation, compared with Protestants not identifying as born-again." Basically, this study may indicate that radical religious experiences such as being 'born-again' might actually cause hippocampal shrinkage in the person who experiences them. If this is in fact true, it might help explain some of the erratic behavior that some members of religious extremist groups exhibit during services, etc. Here's the link to the article: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/religious-experiences-shrink-part-of-brain/
  5. Hey, everyone! A post recently made by @Fweethawt reminded me of an article I read that discusses the possible connections between religious fundamentalism and mental illness. According to an Oxford University researcher who specializes in neuroscience named Kathleen Taylor, religious fundamentalism may one day be treated as a mental illness. I just thought some of you might be interested in checking this out. Here is an excerpt from the Huffpost article where I found this information: "An Oxford University researcher and author specializing in neuroscience has suggested that one day religious fundamentalism may be treated as a curable mental illness. Kathleen Taylor, who describes herself as a “science writer affiliated to the Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics,” made the suggestion during a presentation on brain research at the Hay Literary Festival in Wales on Wednesday. In response to a question about the future of neuroscience, Taylor said that “One of the surprises may be to see people with certain beliefs as people who can be treated,” The Times of London notes. “Someone who has for example become radicalised to a cult ideology — we might stop seeing that as a personal choice that they have chosen as a result of pure free will and may start treating it as some kind of mental disturbance,” Taylor said. “In many ways it could be a very positive thing because there are no doubt beliefs in our society that do a heck of a lot of damage.” The author went on to say she wasn’t just referring to the “obvious candidates like radical Islam,” but also meant such beliefs as the idea that beating children is acceptable." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/05/31/kathleen-taylor-religious-fundamentalism-mental-illness_n_3365896.html
  6. The World Needs Atheism...

    Hi, Fweethawt. I must say that this was one of the funniest things I've seen in quite awhile. How completely embarrassing! Are these people for real? It almost makes you wonder if they don't have a few screws loose to begin with. I can't think of a single mentally stable person that I personally know who would act out like this at home or in public without being under the influence of hardcore drugs or the like... Anyway, you are absolutely right when you bring up the fact that it's scary that these people can vote... It pisses me off that people like this are taken seriously at all by anyone. Unfortunately, in our modern society people like this are not only taken seriously, but they are given positions of authority and power in our cities, places of government, and schools. This might sound harsh to some, but I'm of the opinion that people like those featured in your video should be under some sort of psychiatric evaluation. If anyone acted out like that in regular society without the safeguard of the church, he or she would be forcibly committed. Here is an article that I think you might be interested in checking out. It is titled, "Kathleen Taylor, Neuroscientist, Says Religious Fundamentalism Could Be Treated As A Mental Illness." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/05/31/kathleen-taylor-religious-fundamentalism-mental-illness_n_3365896.html
  7. Agnostic, you are right on so many different levels. I could probably write ten pages about the different feelings and thoughts I've had as they regard this whole situation. There were times after the bottom fell out when I literally felt like I was losing my mind. I can only imagine that my sister felt the pain tenfold. My eyes were opened up to so many different hypocritical and painful things regarding church, religion, family, community, and society in general that it was almost too much for me to take. Even though I didn't immediately lose what little faith I had in God, I was never able to look at anything that was connected to the church in quite the same way again. Eventually, I lost my faith completely, and it's safe to say that between all the pain, confusion, and anger that I experienced as it concerns my father and the church's actions as well as the many personal, emotional, and intellectual breakthroughs I made after leaving Christianity behind, I could never go back to being a Christian again even if someone held a gun to my head and told me to convert or die. I am doing a whole lot better now. Believe it or not, this site has played a huge role in the healing process for me. Even when I wasn't actively posting on here, I could come here and read the different stories that other people had posted as they concerned leaving Christianity behind. Just knowing that there were other people out in the world who understood some of the pain I had been put through really helped me to cope. It helped me to not feel so alone...
  8. Ha ha ha! I was wondering if you'd read that!
  9. There's a huge and very important reason that I didn't post this in the "What are You Listening to?" section of the forums. Every last one of you who are using this site will probably be able to relate with every single word that this man has written. I don't care who you are, this will hit you on a deep and personal level - I can almost guarantee it. Please take a few minutes from whatever it is you are doing and listen to this song. I've honestly never heard anything so bold, raw, and honest in my entire life... Ill Mind Of Hopsin 7 It's us, mind power Live life, mind power It's us, mind power Live life, mind power Yo, fuck anybody I might alarm Life is a tour, I sit and ride along Taking some notes and then I write the song I'm staring down the road my life has gone Is this where I belong? Is it wrong to not believe in right and wrong? My mental state is fucking me up And I cried upon while asking you for some answers But we don't have that type of bond Now my desires gone with the way that I've been living lately If I died right now, you'd turn the fire on Sick of this bullshit, niggas call me a sellout 'Cause I hopped on Christianity so strongly then I fell out Now I'm avoiding questions like a scared dog with his tail down Feeling so damn humiliated 'cause they looking at me like I'm hellbound What story should I tell now? I'll just expose the truth I'm so close to the fucking edge, I should be close to you But who the fuck are You? You never showed the proof And I'm only fucking human yo, what am I supposed to do? There's way too many different religions with vivid descriptions Begging all fucking men and women to listen I can't even beat my dick without getting convicted These ain't wicked decisions, I got different intentions I been itching to get it, I've been given assistance But the whole fucking system is twisted Now I'm dealing with this backlash because Marcus isn't a Christian And I've been told that my sinful life is an addiction But I can't buy it, it's just too hard to stand beside it I need an answer and humans can't provide it I look at the Earth and Sun and I can tell a genius man designed it It's truly mind blowing, I can't deny it Is heaven real? Is it fake? Is it really how I fantasize it? Where's the Holy Ghost at? How long it take Man to find it? My mind's a nonstop tape playing and I can't rewind it You gave me a bible and expect me not to analyze it I'm frustrated and you provoked it I'm not reading that motherfucking book because a human wrote it I have a fucking brain, you should know it You gave it to me to think to avoid every useless moment It was a mission that I had to abort 'Cause humans be lying with such an inaccurate source It's gon' be hard to put me back on the course Next Jehovah's witness to come on my porch, I swear I'm slammin' the door A lot of folks believe it though, but I'm not surprised Humans are fucking dumb, still thinkin' that Pac's alive I ain't trying to take your legacy and torch it down I'm just saying, I ain't heard shit from the horse's mouth Just sheep always telling stories of older guys Who were notarized by you when you finally vocalized Now I'm supposed to bow my head and close my eyes And somehow let the Holy Ghost arise, sounds like a fucking poltergeist Show yourself and the boom is done Every rumor's gone, I no longer doubt this shit, you're the one I'll admit that my sinful ways was stupid fun And all my old habits can hop onto of a roof to plunge I'll donate to a charity that could use the funds Fuck the club, instead of bitches I'd hang with a group of nuns And everyone that I ran into would know what I came to do I wouldn't take a step unless it was in the name of You I hate the fact that I have to believe You haven't been chatting with me like you did Adam and Eve And I ain't seen no talking snake or rabbit from trees With an apple to eat, that shit never happens to me I don't know if you do or don't exist, shit is driving me crazy Send your condolences, this is me reaching to you so don't forget If hell is truly your pit of fire and I get thrown in it I'mma probably regret the fact that I ever wrote this shit My gut feeling says it's all fake, I hate to say it but fuck it, shit I done lost faith This isn't a small phase, my perspective's all changed My thoughts just keep picking shit apart all day And in my mind I make perfect sense If you aren't real then all my prayers aren't worth a cent That would mean that I could just make up what my purpose is And I could just sit in the church and say fuck in the services Man what if Jesus was a facade? Then that would mean the government's God I feel like they've been brainwashing us with a lot So much that we don't even notice that we're stuck in the box Man everything is what if, why is it always what if Planet Earth what if, the universe what if My sacrifice what if, my afterlife what if Every fucking thing that deals with you is fucking suspect I'm fucking done, I'm fucking done This is my fucking life and I'm living it, I'm having fun If you really care for me, prove that I need to live carefully But I'll be damned if I put my own pleasure aside for an afterlife that isn't even guaranteed We are you, and you're us, stop playing games My life's all I got, and heaven is all in my brain And when I feel I am in hell, my ideas are what get me through pain Do as you please, and I'll just do me, I'm a human, I'll stay in my lane Ill mind It's us, mind power Live life, mind power It's us, mind power Live life, mind power Songwriters: Marcus Jamal Hopson Ill Mind Of Hopsin 7 lyrics © The Administration MP, Inc
  10. They Told Me to Kneel, I Stood Up

    Ha ha! I completely understand. And, I'm wishing you the best of luck! If there's anyone here at ex-c who should be able to put this guy in his place, it would be you.
  11. They Told Me to Kneel, I Stood Up

    @bornagainathiest I've been reading these endless debates between you, the rest of the ex-c crew, and stranger (they're starting to become excruciatingly painful to get through), and I just thought I'd interject with my thoughts on the matter, if that's okay? Anyway, I'm almost 99% sure that Stranger is trolling you and everyone else here at ex-c, and if I were you guys, I'd seriously think about getting out while I was ahead. Just my two cents (no offence intended)! However, don't let me stop you. I'm just beginning to think that he really doesn't care about what you or anyone else here has to say... Maybe he's mad, and he wants to fill up the forums with his raving lunacy? Who the hell knows...? Smh :/ @Stranger, I already told you how I feel about you a few weeks ago. I'm the guy who thinks you're like a Christian version of an Islamic jihadist. My opinion has only been strengthened by your piss poor failed attempts at rhetoric, and I have absolutely no desire whatsoever to talk to you at all. So don't bother responding to me. I won't write back - you can bet on it!
  12. Thanks for the encouragement, Riversong. I'm really sorry to hear about what happened to you... Everything you have described is exactly what my family went through. What freaked me out the most was how people within the church community were so quick to tell me and my sister that we needed to "learn to forgive." I realize that at some point we all have to try to find some understanding as it regards even the most horrendous of situations, but there are some things that happen in this life that never need to be forgotten or written off so easily. I mean, imagine going up to a Jew and telling him or her that that he or she needs to forgive Hitler for killing off his or her family. It sounds almost absurd, right? I honestly don't even know what these people are thinking?! Anyway, I'm really sorry that your mother didn't do more to protect you from the creep you were forced to go to church with, and I mean that sincerely. I can totally relate because my mom didn't do much either. Even though she left my father over the matter, I think she immediately put up a wall to block it all out, and as a result, she never fully allowed herself to come to terms with what actually happened. To this day, she gets weird and flaky if the subject is brought up... By the way, the story you related to me about the guy writing a letter to you in which he blames the devil for his repulsive actions is beyond ridiculous. I honestly don't even have words for it... How does someone like that wake up and look at himself in the mirror with a straight face? How could your mom think that his letters were enough to make up for the pain he caused you? The whole situation is sickening..
  13. Hi, ConsiderTheSource. I'm so sorry to hear that you had to deal with a similar experience regarding your child. I think you'll know what I mean when I tell you that nobody really understands how hard it is deal with molestation and rape until they've actually had to go through it themselves. The way the people in the church handled my father was sickening and disappointing to say the least - I'm sure you can relate. On the one hand, I'll admit that there were a few people who tried their best to be understanding and helpful, but I think that the shock of it all was almost too much for them to bear, and it left them more or less helpless. On the other hand, there were people who refused to even believe it, like the ministers I mentioned above. I think their disbelief or rather denial stemmed from the fact that what my dad did shattered their fragile worldview, and it threatened to undermine the various power structures within the church that they had built their lives and reputations around. I lost so much respect for so many people I knew who were in leadership within the church community that I was involved with at the time that all of this happened. You never really get to see a person's true colors until he or she goes through a life experience that truly tests every aspect of his or her character... Thanks, Jeff. I really appreciate that. We all managed to survive... somehow, and I'm really not trying be overly dramatic when I say that. I'm honestly surprised that my sister didn't take her own life. She told me that suicidal thoughts used to cross her mind all of the time. What my dad did to her screwed her up in ways that I'm not even going to try to describe in this thread. And, honestly, I don't think I should be the one who tries to speak for her. There is no way that I could ever fully understand her pain... DB, I couldn't agree more... I know that you used to be a minister, so I'm sure that you probably have a pretty good idea of how all of this went down. Like I said to ConsiderTheSource above, I lost a lot of respect for a lot of people when all of this was taking place. Outside of my family there were people involved within the church who should have stood up to do the right thing, but they didn't... By the way, when her counselor and social worker found out that there were loopholes in the legal system that prevented my sister from getting the justice she deserved, they were completely furious. It's not like my sister and the people involved with her case didn't try to pursue justice. They just got to a point where their hands were tied, and they couldn't do anything more about it. However, for what it's worth, the social services and child protection agencies in the area where my dad resides were notified about all of this, and supposedly, he is on a private watch list that they keep. I really don't know what else to say about the matter. I think you said it best - it's fucked up.
  14. Jesus Did It!

    Hey, MOHO. I certainly understand where you are coming from. However, just because you've never had to deal with a psychopathic pervert preacher who also happens to be your father doesn't mean that you've got it easy. I'm sure you deal with more than your fair share of trials, heartaches, and headaches as they concern dealing with your wife, stepson, and all of the religious gobbledygook that comes along with having to live with their belief systems. The truth of the matter is that none of us who have found the courage to walk away from the faith we were raised to embrace as our own have it very easy. So many aspects of our society are built around a lot of religious nonsense and superstition, and at times, I'm sure we all feel like the world is completely against us... Anyway, I wouldn't wish what my family has been through on anybody. There were times when the pain and confusion was enough to make me consider completely flipping out and going off the deep end.
  15. Thank you for being so understanding, TruthSeeker. I rarely ever talk about this incident with people because I am so embarrassed and angry over the way it was handled. This is the first time I've ever brought it up publicly. Most people don't seem to understand how my dad could get away with what he did, but apparently you do. I want you to know that I really appreciate you for that. At this point, all I can hope for is that my story will help someone else out there who might be going through the same thing or something similar.