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ficino

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ficino last won the day on March 1 2020

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About ficino

  • Birthday February 26

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    New York, NY
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    literature, philosophy
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    ancient texts

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  • Still have any Gods? If so, who or what?
    atheist

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  1. Hello Nithin, I join others in welcoming you here. I was a strong Catholic but eventually came to be as sure as I can be that it (along with Christianity as a whole) is a false system. The first day I thought I couldn't go on with it, I actually wept thinking I couldn't pray the Rosary any more. But eventually I was happy that I stepped into just living as human a life as I can. Can you tell us a bit more about what you understand "deconversion" to mean? Are you thinking of abandoning the Catholic Church for another religion, or of abandoning organized religion in general but not spirituality, or of abandoning belief in God altogether? I might have some experiences or perspectives that could be helpful, but I'd rather know more about your thoughts before volunteering stuff that may not be applicable. And books and articles that may speak to, say, a Baptist who is thinking of deconverting may not address certain issues that can matter to a Catholic who is thinking of deconverting. Till later, and stick around! Ficino
  2. Hello, cnfrankenstein, welcome from me as well. Since you say that you have been a life-long student of metaphysics, do you mean that branch of philosophy called metaphysics? Anyway, I'd like to hear your views on St. Thomas Aquinas' Five Ways, or in particular, on the First and Second Ways (argument to first unmoved mover and argument to first uncaused cause), and the so-called Principle of Proportionate Causality which they presuppose.
  3. Those of us who have been ex-Christians for some time usually run into one or more of these attempts by Christians to explain our deconversion: failed to understand the Gospel and or/wasn't trained right by parents hurt by mean people at church never truly gave heart to the Lord got involved with wrong lover/friends mad at God (usually because of unanswered prayer) trusted in own understanding in a few cases, something like failed to understand St. Thomas Aquinas But they'll say it always boils down in the end to Just Wanted To Sin
  4. You mean the Navigators? Heh heh. I and my friends were in IVCF. Our campus also had Campus Crusade - I can't get my head around calling it Cru.
  5. To me as a gay man in my later twenties, living as a fully believing Christian, eventually God as depicted in Christianity seemed more and more unjust. It would be one thing if I had some unique defect, but for God to set up a world where there were millions of LGBT people and forbid them to find the kind of relationships that were allowed to straight people seemed unjust. Then, when I realized more and more how NT promises about prayer were false, I started to wonder why I believed in the whole system. Eventually the reasons for belief drained away. I probably would have reached disbelief eventually, but I would have had more "temporal" advantages to remaining Christian as a straight man, I think, than I did as a gay man. So I reached the critical questioning point earlier than I probably would have had I been straight - and, if I'd been straight, I may well have built up a life in which more powerful attachments would keep me at least giving lip service to the cult.
  6. Hello Confused00, and welcome to Ex-Chr. I second what others have said. It's worthwhile hearing from people who have been through some of what you have been through. I have never met anyone from Nepal, however. One of the members of this board, Bhim, is Hindu. His family is Hindu. Bhim went through some years as an evangelical Christian but then got out of it for a number of good reasons. He now expresses support for attempts in India to curtail the influence of Christian missionaries. Bhim may see your message, or you could PM him if your membership here allows you that capability. As for being LGBT+, I'm gay and married to another man. For years as I Christian, I did what I now would call acquiescing in my own oppression, but back then I thought I was carrying the cross to look forward to a whole life of being single. Many things like unanswered prayer and the obvious injustice of Yahweh led me out of the cult. Hang around here and you will get more perspectives!
  7. I can think of at least two strategies that some Christians use to wave away Bible contradictions, falsehoods, absurdities, etc. 1. they'll say that the Bible is not God's revelation but is the record of the believing community's encounter with God. They may add that the Bible is not the Word of God but Jesus is the Word of God, and the Bible witnesses to Jesus. I think some liberal Protestants take this "it's a record of revelation, it's not revelation per se" approach. 2. sophisticated members of denominations that claim the Bible is inerrant (e.g. sophisticated Catholics) may say that the Bible is inerrant in all it asserts for our salvation, or that its assertions are for the sake of our salvation. So they try to bracket off some stuff that they find embarrassing and say either that it's not what the Bible is really asserting (e.g. the Flood story asserts truths about God's saving His people but is not asserting history), or that stuff in the passage that ISN'T for the sake of our salvation is not the inerrant assertion (e.g. stuff that is scientifically wrong). I still see no reason to believe what the Bible says about doctrine and precepts, which can't be tested, when what can be tested in the bible so often fails the test: e.g. consistency between authors, historical and scientific matters, etc.
  8. Wow, Jenni, you have been through a lot. A lot that you did not deserve to go through. I am glad you are in such a better position now. You have a lot to discover ahead of you! FWIW a thought about the anger: Aristotle says it's a response to a perceived injustice. There is a lot of injustice in the whole bundle of Christianity as a system. I think it's legitimate for you to be angry against that and the people who profit from its injustices. That is enough to explain your anger, so I don't think you have to feel that you are "mad at God," the way Christians like to accuse ex-Christians of being. And I think you can say something like, "I defend A's right to belief and practice her/his faith, but I deny that Christians have the right to control everyone else, and their attempts to control the rest of us make me angry - and my anger gives me energy to resist!" Or something like that. Hope to hear more from you, F
  9. Yes, I went through these stages, too. Toward the end of my time as a Christian, I had stopped praying "for" things. I dimly recall that the last thing I prayed for was for a 28 yr old guy in our Christian group to be healed of cancer. EVERYONE was praying, even little children. Rod died anyway. So eventually I got to the point where I would either just pray praise-type prayers or else "thy will be done" prayers. That faded away. Later I read on some online boards like this that a lot of people "learn" as mature Christians that prayer basically isn't answered. A good number of them wind up concluding there is no warrant for believing in the religion.
  10. TruthSeeker0, this is a good article. To me it's ironic that it is written by an evangelical and that the author approvingly cites people like Al Mohler and Ed Stetzer. Mohler opposed Trump in 2016 but quickly backpedaled when Trump became the darling of Mohler's own tribe. Anyway, I agree with the author, and also agree on how there are many elements of especially evangelical Christianity that promote openness to conspiracy theories. I see it in my own relatives.
  11. Hello Georgia, people like me who used to be Christians but are so no longer are often asked whether we left because of bad experiences in church, bad treatment from Christians, disappointment with failures of Christians, and so on. My experiences with people in the churches I attended were pretty much positive. It was the system of teachings and precepts itself that I came to see is not workable.
  12. Good point. I was thinking of how Thomistic types will usually say that faith is an act of the intellect, affirming that certain propositions are true, and then they'll talk about actions as coming from the will, choosing and doing certain things that the intellect has perceived (or falsely believes) are good. But they muddle things when they start talking about "the Mystery of evil" and such.
  13. Great analogy! ETA: though I guess a Christian apologist could say it doesn't hold because mysteries are not about precepts, telling you what or what not to do, but about doctrines.
  14. Hi IAM4TRUTH, a further thought: you might get something out of checking out Sheila C's blog, A Gift Universe, and even commenting and/or sending her a message: http://agiftuniverse.blogspot.com/ Sheila was raised and educated in a very traditional/conservative Catholic background, including college. She now has been blogging mostly about parenting and teaching her kids at home under COVID-19, but she used to post a lot about her reasons for leaving that Catholic system and what she has derived from leaving it. She has a lot of good perspectives, though I think she's younger than you - her kids are younger than yours. Best, F
  15. Yes, boy do I relate! I never heard of The Alpha Course, but I taught CCD, often served at mass, was often called on to be a lector... I was starting the process of joining a religious order. Good thing I didn't, lol. But like you, there was much I loved even just in the ritual. I loved the way time is structured - the liturgical year, the Hours of the Divine Office, the sense of arcs of nature and history and the mystery beyond those. From my perspective now, I agree with the former head of the Board of the school where I used to teach, who, being lapsed Russian Orthodox, said, "I don't believe in God, but I believe in ritual." I don't miss that sort of ritual now, though, despite how much I thought I would. And don't get me started on the political stances taken by the RCC, which I think are immoral.
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