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TheSpiritualPilgrim

Regular Member
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    71
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About TheSpiritualPilgrim

  • Rank
    Doubter

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  • Website URL
    http://thespiritualpilgrimblog.wordpress.com

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    California
  • Interests
    Reading, philosophy, life
  • More About Me
    In the process of de-converting. You can read my extimony here: http://www.ex-christian.net/topic/58256-the-gospel-of-frustration/

Previous Fields

  • Still have any Gods? If so, who or what?
    Not currently looking
  1. Wow! What a great article. Thanks for posting this. You certainly did your homework and give so many great points. There are many that I can relate but the one that really stood out most was: In my journey I moved around a bit in different denominations. Some even calling other one's I went to cults. It drove me crazy. How can we all call ourselves Christians but have a completely different idea of who/what god is and what the Bible says? For a while I tried to find the place I most agreed with but I kept changing my theology as I ran into disappointment and god did not react in the way I thought he should. So eventually rather than trying to find the "right" group I realized that the most logical answer is that they are all wrong. Well, that was just one of the many bullet points which all added up to my deconversion. The biggest thing was that I always valued honesty and after I started researching I could no longer honestly believe. But thanks again for sharing this. I agree with a comment shared earlier that this should be a front page submission. You are a great writer. Welcome!
  2. Totally agree with this. There was a long period where I was constantly "wrestling with my doubts" and it's because I wanted to believe but deep down I just didn't. You can only fool yourself for so long. Welcome back CDFree!
  3. A book that has helped me is "The Wisdom of Insecurity" by Alan Watts. A philosophy book about the anxiety of trying to have certainty of life. Watts is a former Christian and suggests new thought patterns as ways of coping with insecurity and pain. It's technically Zen philosophy but in no way do you have to be a Buddhist to benefit from it. Also a lot of people here recommend The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins but I have not read it yet. I think it is more of a scientific and psychological argument for the non-existence of god.
  4. Hi Toma and welcome! Thanks for sharing your story. I too have just recently deconverted and went through a very similar process. Just 3 months ago I was signed up to be in a ministry training school. But like you I've always been a thinker and eventually my thoughts and logic all added up to the most logical conclusion: God is not there. Or at least not the Christian God of the Bible. I still think there may be some type of spirit realm or energy that keeps the universe together.. but really who knows?? I've had experiences like you where I assumed I was feeling the presence of God. What I think this was is a feeling of peace with life and unity with life as a whole. In worship I went to a charasmatic church and it was a more meditative, mystical experience for me that would lead to the feeling of peace. These were emotions that I was feeling which can have all sorts of outcomes- crying, trembling, tingling and so on. I've recently begun a non religious practice of mindfulness meditation. This helps me get that same peace but instead of trying to externalize it in worship it is a pure peace with my existence and embracing uncertainty and ambiguity. At first losing my faith was terribly painful. I went through depression and anger but I am now feeling a true sense of freedom that I never had while involved with Christianity. It's still a process for me but know that it gets better. I'm just taking it one day at a time. And as far as what to do next I have asked this question a lot. I have decided to focus on the simple things of life like loving my wife and myself. Working on a career that I enjoy and just living as honestly as I can. good luck with everything. You are strong and smart and will be just fine. Glad you are here.
  5. I always got a giggle when I would see people post: "God only gives you what you can handle. God must think I'm a badass!" I've seen this posted by Christians and non-Christians.
  6. Thank you, and I think you're right. I do need to take a break from any belief systems. If I did take on another religion it would be like a "rebound relationship" and those never turn out to good... Thanks for the encouragement.
  7. Hey, thanks for the comment and the compliment on my writing. I do enjoy writing as a hobby but have never done any published work. Maybe someday? I was gonna link my blog but I see that you already found it. I look forward to chatting more.
  8. Thanks Margee. It does kinda seem like a puzzle that's incomplete now, but I think I need to take a break from the puzzle for a bit and relax. I'm realizing it's not an easy process changing your worldview so thanks a bunch for the encouragement.
  9. Hey thanks for the welcome and the encouragement. The depression has gotten way better just in the last month so I'm hopeful that the worst is over.
  10. Like others have said this is an amazing post. I can relate so much to your words. Thank you for posting this.
  11. Thanks for the encouragement to post. I'm a newbie here. Been lurking around the last 6 weeks or so. Just posted my "ex-timony" today here.
  12. “I wish I had never heard the Gospel.” I whispered this phrase to myself today while staring at the cross still hanging on my living room wall. Life was so much easier before religion got involved. I remember being a simple minded child before being introduced to Christianity. The world was beautiful, it had an almost magical glow to it. Then as I got older around age 13 it came—I heard the Gospel and “accepted Christ”… It catapulted me into a couple of nice Christian teenage years. The first girl I ever made out with was at youth camp and that was pretty cool. I talked to God all the time and felt that He was leading my life. I remember crying out to God to save my Dad because I didn’t want him to go to hell. Then around age 17 or so rational thinking took over and I quickly left my faith and pursued things like college and getting married. Fast forward about 8 years and I’m an alcoholic in a strained marriage that I almost lost with a failing business I had started. It was obviously time for a life change. Lucky me at the same time I had some weird, freaky sleep paralysis spiritual experience at an old Inn known to be haunted. My brain thinks, “Hey this must be proof of a spirit realm so since everything is going so bad you should go back the God you loved so much as a teenager.” I did and it seemed like things started to pull back together. But I could never make sense of Christian theology in my head. I tried to apply the verse, “lean not on your own understanding” but then I thought, “why the hell would God create us with a brain if were not supposed to use it?” And so I took up some unorthodox theology. I got caught up in the charismatic movement where I could have a more open/less conservative view of God. I started believing as an inclusivist. I reasoned if God created this screwed up world then it’s His responsible to clean up the mess. And if Jesus really died for all—like the Bible says—then he has taken responsibility… although He still just kicks back on a cloud while kids starve and genocides take place. I also started chasing after signs and wonders thinking if I got enough experience that my “encounters” would outweigh my intellectual confusion and I could finally just live happily as a Christian. And so my wife and I moved across the country twice going to different churches where I thought God was telling us to go. Both times I ended up in extreme financial issues and depression. The worst of it happened just recently and I finally decided to go to a doctor and a psychologist about the depression. They got me on some meds and I am doing much better now. But as far as God goes, I’m through with the hide and seek game. I stopped going to church just over a month ago because I couldn’t take the ups and downs it would throw my thinking into. The problem with me is that I really want to believe in God but the truth is I don’t—at least not the God of the Christian Bible. I can’t believe in a God that would order homosexuals to be stoned to death and entire villages of women and children to be executed. I can’t believe in a God that I thought led me somewhere and then abandoned me depressed and in pain twice, when all along He knows just one flippin word from Him would snap me out of it. If I could just know He was there I would have felt better. The depression came from trying to make sense out of something that was untrue. The truth is I’m too compassionate, intellectual, just and analytical to ever be a Christian. To be a Christian I had to lie to myself daily and that is a walking contradiction. I cannot do it anymore. My depression is much better after being on meds for 6 weeks and staying away from church but I’ve had these inclinations to keep trying to continue some sort of spiritual life but it’s so confusing. I’ve read up on Hinduism, Buddhism and Christian Gnosticism and they are all quite interesting but not for me. If anything from studying Buddhism I’ve realized that labeling myself is where I first went wrong. Buddhism teaches the limits of words and if there is some Higher Power its not going to be comprehended through a book written 2000 years ago. So that’s where I’m at now. I’m just being me. Taking life as honestly as I can, focusing on loving my wife and loving myself. The posts on here have been much helpful through the process so far. It’s very comforting to know that I’m not alone in the pain I feel from my Christian past. It’s also very intellectually freeing to not be frightened to read an article on Neanderthals, the age of the universe or micro evolution anymore. God bless the Neanderthals.
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