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DanForsman

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DanForsman last won the day on August 20 2020

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About DanForsman

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    San Francisco East Bay
  • Interests
    hiking/walking, vegan diet, smaller houses and less stuff, sustainable world population size, economy not built on growth
  • More About Me
    I am looking for something meaningful to focus on in retirement. I value independent thought and believe that world peace is an achievable goal.

Previous Fields

  • Still have any Gods? If so, who or what?
    No thanks; I have had enough now.

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  1. It is natural for a human without very serious psychological issues to fear death. Maybe without this, suicide would look too attractive too often for us to make it as a species. Who knows, but I think the problem you have is focusing on things you have no control over. You fear death as you should so this is not a problem. You can't predict the exact moment or cause of your actual death so why mix this in with your health concerns. What if you eliminate this link between the two by aggressively pursuing whether medical science in it's present state finds that you have a real health problem(s) or whether it is that you are overreacting to minor common everyday pains and feelings. I'm sure you know that pushups and running are not the most effective ways to diagnose bodily sensations. Email you doctor with your concerns, all of your concerns so you can get an informed medical opinion. If you have reason to feel your doctor doesn't take your concerns seriously enough get another opinion(s) but resolve the issue(s) completely to your satisfaction. Isn't that honestly the best a person can do? Moving beyond is probably moving into hypochondria. You're not responsible for knowing tha death has made a surprise appearance on your doorstep. Being hyper sensitive to interpreting feedback from your body so as to somehow intervene before an organ failure causes your death shouldn't have any significant place in your thinking as a healthy human. Face your medical concerns directly and seriously but listen to what you hear from the best sources available and move on when you have the best answers and treatment (if necessary) you could reasonable expect to find. At some point you must make peace with the fact that you can't prevent death from staging a sneak attack.There are so many things that are completely or mostly in our control and wouldn't it be better to keep your focus on those things and take pride in dealing with those things while recognizing that very very much is not in our human control. Actually it's a relief once you accept that even though you are intelligent and can solve problems you have responsibility only when your actions can realistically effect the outcome.
  2. I read this and wondered if this could really be true. I've seen cats seeming to react to their own dying process as well as to the death of their kittens. I happened to run across this article this morning: https://aeon.co/essays/animals-wrestle-with-the-concept-of-death-and-mortality?utm_source=pocket-newtab I don't know that the article presents compelling proof but still I think it is easy to minimize the thoughts and feelings of animals because they do not speak our language. This is the last paragraph of this article: "We humans like to think of ourselves as a unique species. However, little by little, all those traits that we have been relying on to ground this uniqueness have been falling, as the science advances and reveals the staggering diversity and complexity of animal minds and behaviour. We now have solid evidence of culture, morality, rationality, and even rudimentary forms of linguistic communication. The concept of death should also be counted among those characteristics to which we can no longer resort to convince us of how very special we are. It is time to rethink human exceptionalism, and the disrespect for the natural world that comes with it."
  3. It's risky to debate religion with people you love or anyone you care about or associates in your working life, etc. You did the smart thing not to go there with your family and friends. You never have to debate anyone and maybe that isn't your thing anyhow. Just saying you have thought about christianity and don't believe it's true is enough to get the point across to anyone you want to share your lack of belief with. If a christian you care about legitimately wants to know more you can share a few resources that were or are still especially meaningful to you, if you want to, but you don't owe that to anyone and even that tiny step further can lead to hearing a lecture about how wrong your resources are. There are so many more interesting things to focus on. All that matters is that you find answers to any and all question you personally have about christianity as they come up so you can be comfortable within your own self that you are willing to look at everything and are making choices that make sense to you. Questions may come up from time to time for several years yet but don't let that worry you. You've had extensive systematic indoctrination for many years and there is no reason to think you will disentangle quickly or easily. Be patient and be kind to yourself. You are learning that you are OK and that you can trust your own ability to reason. We can help you find answers if you need help along the way. I think you will be much happier when you complete your deconversion so try to enjoy the ride every chance you get! I
  4. It's the hairdresser's problem in my opinion. You can't put the toothpaste back in the tube at this point anyway but she's made it clear she only want christians to be clients of hers. I really believe you are lucky to have found out this soon. I don't even think stifling would be enough for someone so far down the rabbit hole. Having the minister bless her shop during business hours demonstrates a lack of concern for non christians such as yourself. She would notice a lack of amens and hallelujahs and thank you Jesus' which would require questions. Inevitably you would have had enough. Wouldn't it be fun to have a hairdresser with a wider range of interests and maybe someone who even actually likes you? Truthfully, this was more of a blessing than a problem.
  5. It's probably just that the site has changed so much. Maybe a 1 1/2 or 2 years ago there were still so many confused or worried questioning christians or early stage ex christians that would discover this site and then finally join in really needed someone to listen and often really urgently needing help. That was every day or two and it wasn't unusual that several people would make their first post in the same day. There was a feeling that you were doing a great service consoling, comforting, validating and brainstorming potential solutions to complex problems. I can't remember how it came up but i remember my daughter making a little joke several years ago saying, "Of course he likes posting there, he saves peoples lives!" I know some real concerns still come up and new de converts still sometimes post with real needs but they are so few and far between that each and every one is sure to receive a lot of excellent attention from thoughtful well qualified posters. So I can get the taking a break of whatever amount of time considering that maybe the urgency that they previously felt isn't there and maybe a kind of redirection of the bulk of the posts being more toward debate rather than support. They may very well check in later.
  6. Hi Zen. Even with the distant relationship your dad was still a very important part of your growing up and his death is a loss for you. Like others here I am sorry to hear this sad news that is impacting you and your family and especially your mother. There may be grieving for you or not. Just continue to be honest with yourself and allow your feeling about what has happened to develop however they need to. You are making progress in your life right now and that is possibly the most important for you to keep your focus on. Congratulations on your first EMT job! Good for you on making a plan and carrying it through. Be proud of yourself for such a significant accomplishment.
  7. I just read what you've written here Salemite and I think you are wanting to put yourself into too small of a space. You want to give considerable credit to your husband moving in your direction but all I can see is that he is willing to listen to you sometimes as long as he doesn't get angry. His halfhearted support of your education while at the same time putting it down ("he doesn't see the point in me seeking more education"} isn't what you need. It's difficult for me to picture that your 25 year marriage has become an acceptable imperfect but improving partnership as I think you are hoping to portray it. So are you referring to your obligation to back up the coerced decision of the 18 year old girl or that of the 21 year old. If you don't take seriously what your inner self is trying to tell you could lose that voice and yourself with it. You haven't even allowed yourself to share your dream with us. I can't help but wonder if you've allowed yourself to explore that dream. I don't know what your future could be but the world could certainly use a really good chemist or chemistry professor or tell us what do you see as something you really want? In my opinion the most important thing we do as parents is roll model. You are at a difficult place in your life and chances are very good that your children have some sense of that and will put much stock in how you handle this difficult time. They know they will become adults and then their turn will come so they watch everything we do even if they pretend like they don't. They watch because they want to know. It really doesn't matter whether daughter or son but let's say you have a daughter. Do you want to send the stifle message that what she wants for herself should be on a much lower plane than her husband or even that parenting necessarily means sacrificing your hopes and dreams. I think you are presenting yourself with a false dichotomy when you say you are unwilling to destroy your 25 year marriage or break up your family. If you actually have a partnership your husband has every opportunity to support you right down the line on following you dream (if you allow yourself to have one) and getting your PHD and doing whatever you want to with it. He can actually work to make you feel good about wanting to be who you are whether or not he thinks that is the you that would work best for his goals. You love him. It would be fine for him to show you some true unselfish love. You supported him unconditionally throughout his getting his education and starting out in his working life. Why would it be so strange for you to want the same thing from him. Maybe you'll have to do some creative things with your parenting to replace some of the things that you were able to do previously but you will have shown you children how to respect themselves and possibly just as importantly how to face difficult situations head on. I'm just wanting you to look at your thoughts and desires in a more fair light Salemite. No one can or should make decisions for another person. You are very young still at 43 and 6 years is not a long time to work out your deconversion. I very much wish you would consider finding a good secular therapist for yourself and carefully go over all the issues you have touched on here. I think this would be a great time to get someone in your corner who doesn't have anything to gain from what decisions you make. It is I think the very minimum you owe yourself before you "accept" your situation (because you are no longer 20) or move on into a life that may be not where your DNA wants you to go. Be careful and respectful of yourself. Maybe down the line couples therapy or even family therapy would be something to consider. Your husband may not want to think about or understand what is at stake for you so the onus is probably entirely on you or hopefully on you with the help and support of a great therapist.
  8. So was it just a compilation of these peripheral issues that was enough for you to deconvert or did you also directly confront whether the bible and christianity were true and find that lacking before you deconverted. I believe Krowb is saying that a majority deconvert on the strength of mistreatment or other negative experiences within the church being the primary or even sole reason for deconverting. Was this more or less the case for you?
  9. I don't think the majority had a problem with the church that made them leave. If you were to read the hundred+ testimonials on this site you will find most like you ran into a question or two that bothered them and caused them to look outside sanctioned sources. Often they are hurt by the reaction of church friends or family who they discover were conditional friends after they confess that they have deconverted. Also if something within the church or congregation caused hurt or suffering that frequently becomes an impitus to look more closely at the foundation of their faith which is found wanting so they don't leave because of hurt but because they don't find the bible believable. Another significant group are those who believe hook line and sinker. Believing your faith is grounded in absolute truth means there are an incredible number of obstacles everywhere waiting to cause doubt and inquiry and reality.
  10. Welcome CherryTreeLane. I'm glad you are now able to trust your own reason. It is a shame that parents get trapped in religion and worse that their church actively pushes them to exert mind control and fear techniques to force beliefs onto their children. It's just wrong that this continues to be tolerated by our society but the pressure is there because converting church members' children to members is the primary and most successful tool churches have for obtaining new members. As MOHO said good for you on freeing yourself from the trap. That is no small task! OK. No pressure here but a few references to abuse from your husband makes me wonder how that is working or has worked out. I hope you'll consider joining us in helping others who need encouragement as they make their own path to freedom from religion. Congratulations!
  11. Me too. I wonder what she believes and if the two of you still discuss those problem areas in christianity.
  12. I'm in agreement with the idea that you need to find joy in your own life first. What is the alternative? Expecting to find a partner to put your life together for you is probably not even doable although a lot of old Disney movies and romantic films might give you the impression that it is. People are drawn to people who seem to know themselves and what they want. You're only 20 which means that probably your best dating opportunities are ahead of you. As we move on from adolescence potential partners start to appreciate more basic everyday abilities in other people and many young people who were overlooked as partner material in their younger dating years find their value rises as they are able to establish themselves in their work and in just creating a life for themselves. You still will have plenty of time for serious dating after you establish yourself in your career and then potential dates will know that you are someone who is likely to be able to hold up your end financially at least and you will have proven that to yourself as well. When you start earning a paycheck if you are still unhappy with yourself you should try some therapy. You're young and seem quite capable so try to relax and have more faith in yourself. Your family may have set some traps for you with thoughtless comments and dysfunctional relationships but it is possible to work through these things and leave them behind. You can only go one step at a time but if you can learn to enjoy the ride and have a little more confidence in yourself the speed you're moving at will loose much of the negative context it has for you right now. Moving into your own life is a very big deal. The overwhelmingly important thing is that you have goals and are going somewhere so allow yourself time and don't shortchange yourself for not having gotten where you want to be yet.
  13. Reading all these things you've written here make me wonder if you are willing to let yourself be happy with what you have. You had all those years where self deprivation was fundamental to your identity and the key to your self satisfaction. You have let that sexual deprivation go but characterize yourself as having turned you back on your christian god and become the prodigal son. You say you await a future of either your return to Christianity and repentance for your present behaviors or eternal torture in hell with family and friends. That seems like a very heavy load to have to drag around with you while you enjoy your new found freedom. You say that the beauty in nature supports your belief in the Christian god but wouldn't that support belief in any number of other gods besides the Christian god? Do you think the 2/3s (about 4.9 billion) of humanity that choose a non christian god or no god are somehow fundamentally flawed or just don't care enough to listen to the Holy Spirit? Why has the Holy Spirit been so ineffective in its mission after more than 2,000 years of work?
  14. Actually you are the only one making a claim. To say, "How do you know that is true" is not a claim. Even to say "I won't believe what you're saying without good evidence" or "I don't find the evidence you presented to be compelling" is not a claim. Someone needs to go at least as far as to say there are no supernatural entities before you get a claim. I think this is why the definition of atheist was extended to include believes no gods exist be Meridian if I remember right because nothing in the word atheist (a being a commonly used prefix meaning not) would indicate a position of knowing that no supernatural beings exist. This definition is a boon (god send) for christians and they seem to unanimously us it on this site.
  15. What happens with christians when they adopt the christian life and they're still not perfect......a bad person, a "SINNNNNERRRR".
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