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Ran Into Some Nice People From My Old Church


ogilvy
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It was a strange feeling to run into this nice couple from the church I used to be involved with, the other day. They are such sincere and decent people. I had the feeling that I miss, a bit, people like that. I was fortunate to go to a church where there wasn't the hypocrisy that is often talked about. When I left that church none of them were mean or treated me differently. In my workplace a lot of people seem hard and brittle, and I just noticed the difference when I unexpectedly ran into this couple, and thought 'hmmm, thats one thing I miss a little bit!". I guess others have had a different experience, but I can't honestly say anybody illtreated me in the church. In fact, the opposite.

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Almost all of my church experiences were pleasant. It is odd that the thing that brought us together was a shared mythology, but the social interactions were very beneficial for me as a teenager. I figure it was a bunch of people with the intention of doing good and a disposition to forgive and help, so it was a very good environment emotionally. If a bloodthirsty deity and the Bible were left out, it could have been ideal.

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My church experience was ok. But I know what you mean. What I miss most is the sense of community and belonging. But in the long run I'm better off being out of there; church sort of stunted my growth.

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I, too, have been relatively lucky with my religion-related experiences. Granted, at the time I was most involved I was quite young, impressionable and not a threat to anyone. Still, I'm somewhat confident saying that most Christians I got to know were nice, decent and benevolent. Not all, but most. A couple of fat priests I remember seemed ostentatious and authoritative, and to my judgement, seemed to miss the good point of the whole Christianity deal. I kept my distance to them. Some priests I've known were very wise, even charismatic and, as far as I could tell, working for the greater good. Those I can still think about with respect and admiration. It was only when I questioned the foundaments of the religion that even the good people made Christendom no good for me anymore - or perhaps it was I who became no good for it.

 

Fortunately, I've found teachers through practicing Japanese martial arts, who also have wisdom, charisma and an air of confidence, so I know Christianity doesn't have a monopoly.

 

For the last seven~ish years, I've felt a need to withdraw sufficiently from those types, including my family. I used to get very depressed among them, feeling simultaneously both superior and inferior (i.e. twice too different), and have not yet completely ridden myself of that tendency. In comparison, last weekend on an Iaidô camp I felt inferior but with potential in relation to my senseis and sempais. Those balanced out and I felt I belonged. I'm lucky, though, I know, as I have also tried out another martial art in another dôjô, where the air was only harsh and violent.

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Even though there was lots of guilt, lots of guilt, christianity kept me out off trouble when I was young and stupid. Sure I would have gotten laid lots more, but who knows what else I would have got.

 

For the most part, the people I knew were honest and kind. I have found these types outside of church too

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