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Deconvert Getting Very Depressed


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Ok Hi All,

 

I have been a lurker for a while on and off. I essentially "officially" deconverted in January and I have been pretty much content/happy since. When I was a christian I felt pressured, like "god" wanted me to be a missionary maybe, going around the world and converting people. However recently I have been having doubts what if I am wrong? What is I go to hell? I have been thinking about this over the weekend.

 

 

Then something happened yesterday.....

 

I had a dream and in this dream and when I woke up this morning I remembered a word from the dream, I hadn't heard the word before ( at least according to my active memory). I googled this word and the first thing that came up was a christian website, people that go to other countries to sing and be missions.

 

Then I got even more scared and annoyed. What if this god is real, and he's trying to tell me something? I cannot force myself to believe in this god, hence why I had struggled so much in the first place, as I was going against my thoughts and logic just to believe in him.

 

I spoke to a friend about ti and all she could say is "wow, its too specific, maybe you will become religious again, and maybe you feel uncomfortable with it because you are not ready". Even if this god was real I couldn't tell people he was right when I don't agree with most the things in the book. What do I do? ANY suggestions? Has anyone else been through this? I'm actually worried because it seems like either way I look at it I will be depressed, a depressed believer (forcibly) or depressed unbeliever in fear of hell!

Help me please, sorry if I sound erratic.

 

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Hi, GettingDown! Dreams are made up of the thinking part of the brain's interpretations of randomly firing neurons. You had probably picked up on that word in your missionary preparation and forgotten about it. Would you mind sharing what the word was?

 

As far as fear of hell goes, that's natural for someone who has recently deconverted, as are other lingering supernatural beliefs. Keep learning freely. That fear will fade. Hell makes no sense, and if it did exist, a loving God would never send someone there.

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If God wanted you to know something, wouldn't he communicate to you in a way that is without question? He gave you one word in a dream.  Now look at the turmoil you're in.  He knew this was going to happen, but did it anyway...  How thoughtful! 

 

Or, he didn't. 

 

I want to be completely honest with you here... There's not only one Hell.  There are a few.  They're on Earth and you can go there if you'd like.

 

As for the eternal resting place for those horrible people who simply could not believe in a loving and compassionate god due to all the suffering in the world.  Well, it's a myth but the threat of its existence serves many purposes in the church - all of which benefit the church.

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I've got a question for you. What if evil, non-physical entities exist and one of them knew what the first result would be if you typed that word into Google and put the word in your dream just to scare you back into the herd so it could laugh at you? That is one possibility. When TrueFreedom says that maybe you already knew the word, but had not thought of it in a while, it is also a possibility that it came up randomly in the dream, for no particular reason. Maybe you've got some kind of psychic abilities you never knew about and somehow, the word just appeared in your mind because of it, completely unintentionally.

 

Hearing a word in a dream and remembering it is really vague. How it got in the dream is unknown, why it was in the dream is also unknown, and unless the Bible god came down out of the clouds and said the word to you, in your dream, you really have no reason to think it's even possible that the Bible god was trying to tell you something. If the Bible god wanted you to go back into the herd and become a missionary, he should have been a lot more specific about it. He should have come down out of the clouds, in real life, surrounded by witnesses, and say, "I want you to be a Christian again and become a missionary." It would be helpful if one of the witnesses was recording the event on camera randomly, for no real reason, so then there would be live footage of Bible god coming down out of the clouds.

 

I think the further away you get from Christianity as your deconversion progesses, the easier it will get, and eventually your fear of Hell will fade away. The site that helped me to get rid of my fear of Hell permanently is this: http://www.losingmyreligion.com/index.htm

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Hi, GettingDown! Dreams are made up of the thinking part of the brain's interpretations of randomly firing neurons. You had probably picked up on that word in your missionary preparation and forgotten about it. Would you mind sharing what the word was?

 

As far as fear of hell goes, that's natural for someone who has recently deconverted, as are other lingering supernatural beliefs. Keep learning freely. That fear will fade. Hell makes no sense, and if it did exist, a loving God would never send someone there.

 

The word was nibba and when I googled it the first thing that came up was nibba.org

 

I was SO upset. I was a pretty happy atheist, but in fairness how can I expect 7 years on christianity to fade to complete nothingness in 6 months? I still fear I am wrong, before I got approved for the forum today I asked god to reveal himself to me. Even if he did I don't agree with plenty things in the bible and I cannot be forced, because a lot of it cannot be justified. I feel like no matter what I will have this problem.

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I've got a question for you. What if evil, non-physical entities exist and one of them knew what the first result would be if you typed that word into Google and put the word in your dream just to scare you back into the herd so it could laugh at you? That is one possibility. When TrueFreedom says that maybe you already knew the word, but had not thought of it in a while, it is also a possibility that it came up randomly in the dream, for no particular reason. Maybe you've got some kind of psychic abilities you never knew about and somehow, the word just appeared in your mind because of it, completely unintentionally.

 

Hearing a word in a dream and remembering it is really vague. How it got in the dream is unknown, why it was in the dream is also unknown, and unless the Bible god came down out of the clouds and said the word to you, in your dream, you really have no reason to think it's even possible that the Bible god was trying to tell you something. If the Bible god wanted you to go back into the herd and become a missionary, he should have been a lot more specific about it. He should have come down out of the clouds, in real life, surrounded by witnesses, and say, "I want you to be a Christian again and become a missionary." It would be helpful if one of the witnesses was recording the event on camera randomly, for no real reason, so then there would be live footage of Bible god coming down out of the clouds.

 

I think the further away you get from Christianity as your deconversion progesses, the easier it will get, and eventually your fear of Hell will fade away. The site that helped me to get rid of my fear of Hell permanently is this: http://www.losingmyreligion.com/index.htm

 

Thank you. I am going to read though this site. I thought things would be easier for me, because my family and friends are quite chill they know and don't really care, but for me the torture is more mental than anything else.

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If God wanted you to know something, wouldn't he communicate to you in a way that is without question? He gave you one word in a dream.  Now look at the turmoil you're in.  He knew this was going to happen, but did it anyway...  How thoughtful! 

 

Or, he didn't. 

 

I want to be completely honest with you here... There's not only one Hell.  There are a few.  They're on Earth and you can go there if you'd like.

 

As for the eternal resting place for those horrible people who simply could not believe in a loving and compassionate god due to all the suffering in the world.  Well, it's a myth but the threat of its existence serves many purposes in the church - all of which benefit the church.

 

I do feel it is a form of control. The fear of hell is what keeps me going back, not because I agree with the foolery!

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If God wanted you to know something, wouldn't he communicate to you in a way that is without question? He gave you one word in a dream.  Now look at the turmoil you're in.  He knew this was going to happen, but did it anyway...  How thoughtful! 

 

Or, he didn't. 

 

I want to be completely honest with you here... There's not only one Hell.  There are a few.  They're on Earth and you can go there if you'd like.

 

As for the eternal resting place for those horrible people who simply could not believe in a loving and compassionate god due to all the suffering in the world.  Well, it's a myth but the threat of its existence serves many purposes in the church - all of which benefit the church.

 

I do feel it is a form of control. The fear of hell is what keeps me going back, not because I agree with the foolery!

 

I'm really sorry you're going through that.  That can be stressful.  Not sure if it matters or not, but one of the final phases of my deconversion was the study of a biblical hell in the bible.  Believe it or not... It's not very clear that this place exists.  I guarantee you just as good a case (or better, IMO) can be made that it doesn't exist from the bible than it does.

 

Jesus never said, "Hell."  He said "Gehenna" which is a physical place on earth right outside of Jerusalem.

 

In any case, I'm sorry you're fearful.  Hopefully soon those feelings subside. 

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If God wanted you to know something, wouldn't he communicate to you in a way that is without question? He gave you one word in a dream.  Now look at the turmoil you're in.  He knew this was going to happen, but did it anyway...  How thoughtful! 

 

Or, he didn't. 

 

I want to be completely honest with you here... There's not only one Hell.  There are a few.  They're on Earth and you can go there if you'd like.

 

As for the eternal resting place for those horrible people who simply could not believe in a loving and compassionate god due to all the suffering in the world.  Well, it's a myth but the threat of its existence serves many purposes in the church - all of which benefit the church.

 

I do feel it is a form of control. The fear of hell is what keeps me going back, not because I agree with the foolery!

 

I'm really sorry you're going through that.  That can be stressful.  Not sure if it matters or not, but one of the final phases of my deconversion was the study of a biblical hell in the bible.  Believe it or not... It's not very clear that this place exists.  I guarantee you just as good a case (or better, IMO) can be made that it doesn't exist from the bible than it does.

 

Jesus never said, "Hell."  He said "Gehenna" which is a physical place on earth right outside of Jerusalem.

 

In any case, I'm sorry you're fearful.  Hopefully soon those feelings subside. 

 

I hope so, that dream just undone all my hard work! Stupid word. I feel a bit better since joining here though I know I am not alone. That is comforting.

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Yeah, it is comforting.  You're not alone.  Doubters are all over.  Even in church and they stay there because they too are fearful and face it - sometimes church offers a great outlet for a social life and support.  It's hard to give all that up for some.

 

Any god that would put you through this is not loving or good.  Fuck that asshole.  He self-proclaims to be good but terrorizes his chosen. 

 

Or the fear is a result of a indoctrination that becomes inter-woven into our sub-conscience which is why you dreamed about it. 

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Ok Hi All,

 

I have been a lurker for a while on and off. I essentially "officially" deconverted in January and I have been pretty much content/happy since. When I was a christian I felt pressured, like "god" wanted me to be a missionary maybe, going around the world and converting people. However recently I have been having doubts what if I am wrong? What is I go to hell? I have been thinking about this over the weekend.

 

 

Then something happened yesterday.....

 

I had a dream and in this dream and when I woke up this morning I remembered a word from the dream, I hadn't heard the word before ( at least according to my active memory). I googled this word and the first thing that came up was a christian website, people that go to other countries to sing and be missions.

 

Then I got even more scared and annoyed. What if this god is real, and he's trying to tell me something? I cannot force myself to believe in this god, hence why I had struggled so much in the first place, as I was going against my thoughts and logic just to believe in him.

 

I spoke to a friend about ti and all she could say is "wow, its too specific, maybe you will become religious again, and maybe you feel uncomfortable with it because you are not ready". Even if this god was real I couldn't tell people he was right when I don't agree with most the things in the book. What do I do? ANY suggestions? Has anyone else been through this? I'm actually worried because it seems like either way I look at it I will be depressed, a depressed believer (forcibly) or depressed unbeliever in fear of hell!

Help me please, sorry if I sound erratic.

GD, you're still caught in the fear trap, which you need to address first of all, or you will never be free. I can't stress enough the importance of your overcoming that. Black and white, heaven and hell duality isn't exactly how things work. There are only a few fear based religions extant, and what they all have in common with each other and that distinguishes them from the rest of the world's more peaceful religions, is holy war and concepts of a heaven and hell. The only real hell those religions have to offer is what they create in war, which they generously dish out here and now, in this life, not in any afterlife. As a mortal I tend to fear that, but I don't fear their definitions of afterlife.

 

Alternately, you need to investigate ways of thinking that are not fear based. Asian religions would be a good start, and African, and here's one for you, dig into some of the beliefs and practices of those countries you're wanting to go to and learn about them with no intent to interfere, just read and familiarize yourself. Think about them and their day to day lives, and think about how they treat one another. See what you can learn from them, I'm sure there's a lot.

Realize also, you don't have to be a christian to go over seas and do good things.

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Ok Hi All,

 

I have been a lurker for a while on and off. I essentially "officially" deconverted in January and I have been pretty much content/happy since. When I was a christian I felt pressured, like "god" wanted me to be a missionary maybe, going around the world and converting people. However recently I have been having doubts what if I am wrong? What is I go to hell? I have been thinking about this over the weekend.

 

 

Then something happened yesterday.....

 

I had a dream and in this dream and when I woke up this morning I remembered a word from the dream, I hadn't heard the word before ( at least according to my active memory). I googled this word and the first thing that came up was a christian website, people that go to other countries to sing and be missions.

 

Then I got even more scared and annoyed. What if this god is real, and he's trying to tell me something? I cannot force myself to believe in this god, hence why I had struggled so much in the first place, as I was going against my thoughts and logic just to believe in him.

 

I spoke to a friend about ti and all she could say is "wow, its too specific, maybe you will become religious again, and maybe you feel uncomfortable with it because you are not ready". Even if this god was real I couldn't tell people he was right when I don't agree with most the things in the book. What do I do? ANY suggestions? Has anyone else been through this? I'm actually worried because it seems like either way I look at it I will be depressed, a depressed believer (forcibly) or depressed unbeliever in fear of hell!

Help me please, sorry if I sound erratic.

GD, you're still caught in the fear trap, which you need to address first of all, or you will never be free. I can't stress enough the importance of your overcoming that. Black and white, heaven and hell duality isn't exactly how things work. There are only a few fear based religions extant, and what they all have in common with each other and that distinguishes them from the rest of the world's more peaceful religions, is holy war and concepts of a heaven and hell. The only real hell those religions have to offer is what they create in war, which they generously dish out here and now, in this life, not in any afterlife. As a mortal I tend to fear that, but I don't fear their definitions of afterlife.

 

Alternately, you need to investigate ways of thinking that are not fear based. Asian religions would be a good start, and African, and here's one for you, dig into some of the beliefs and practices of those countries you're wanting to go to and learn about them with no intent to interfere, just read and familiarize yourself. Think about them and their day to day lives, and think about how they treat one another. See what you can learn from them, I'm sure there's a lot.

Realize also, you don't have to be a christian to go over seas and do good things.

 

 

Thats the thing, I don't want to go anywhere other than for regular travel purposes, or certain countries I might work in just because I'd find it interesting. I just use to feel obliged to e.g. I was a christian that likes travel therefore that *must* make me do missions. Not because I want to, I don't see anything freeing about converting people. It's like saying there was isn't good enough, and pitying them at the same time its insulting. And why would I have to do the leg work for a "god".

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Maybe God wants you spread the Good News and deconvert the missionaries at nibba.org. :)

 

I worry about being wrong a lot too, but here is what I realized:  Christianity is idolatry.  Worshipping God through beliefs and rituals that we know to be false, is no different than building a big wooden statue of a monster and bowing down to it.  It's better to be agnostic than to pretend to believe the wooden status is God.

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Hi GettingDown, and welcome to Ex-C. What you are experiencing is very common. I've been out of Christianity about three years now, but if I were to be placed in a hell fire and brimstone message from my childhood, it would be very hard to me to deal with it emotionally, even though I no longer believe that hell even exists. I certainly cannot believe that it was created by a loving God as punishment for those who don't believe in Him. 

 

Something that has been helpful for me is to realize that while some dreams are crazy and apparently mean nothing, others are my mind working through issues that are in play in my subconscious. Once it bubbles up into my conscious mind, it then allows me to work on the issue. Sometimes all that I have to do is validate those feelings as legitimate when it's a situation that cannot be changed. 

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You'll benefit just to learn about a people before you travel then.

 

It's really not hell people are afraid of, it's the religion delivering the contexts, the idea that they're afraid of. Once you step back and see this, that it's the religion that's creating the "eternal" threat and not the God it's describing to you, you will have nothing to fear.

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The word was nibba and when I googled it the first thing that came up was nibba.org

 

I was SO upset. I was a pretty happy atheist, but in fairness how can I expect 7 years on christianity to fade to complete nothingness in 6 months? I still fear I am wrong, before I got approved for the forum today I asked god to reveal himself to me. Even if he did I don't agree with plenty things in the bible and I cannot be forced, because a lot of it cannot be justified. I feel like no matter what I will have this problem.

 

Today, the first Google hit for "nibba" is the Northern Idaho Bed and Breakfast Association.

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Yes....I've been through this type of situation and still I am in it (background, I'm agnostic).  And I am depressed, always.  For me it was that people started suggesting to me that I should write a book.  Various people and it would just come out of nowhere and they'd say I ought to write a book about my life, and I'd fear it was "God" leading them to command me to write this book I don't ever want to write.  I don't want to write about my life because it's exceedingly painful, and private, and not something I can go and share with the world.  I was orphaned and life has been pretty traumatic.  And I also didn't want to write some sort of evangelistic book about God, because like you said there's so much about God in the scriptures that I find morally repulsive.  Another thing is a-mum likes to play Christian radio, God help us, in the car and it would often seem to me like some of these songs were direct messages to me (and it also happens with non-Christian songs).  For instance there may be a song about grief and I'd get thinking perhaps it was God's way of warning me I'd be going through a loss in the near future.   The book thing still really upsets me but I calm myself by saying, you know, if there's a living God and he wants me to write this book well I simply am not going to.  He shall have to come down here and grab hold my hands and force me to type the words against my will.  If he's really into free will then he can't make me write anything but let's face it the god in the bible doesn't seem much interested in free will else we wouldn't have the "god hardened pharaoh's heart" stuff.  But listen I understand how this feeling like god's going to manipulate you into doing something you don't want, is depressing, and very scary, all I can say is, like I said, then he shall have to force me. 

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The word was nibba and when I googled it the first thing that came up was nibba.org

 

I was SO upset. I was a pretty happy atheist, but in fairness how can I expect 7 years on christianity to fade to complete nothingness in 6 months? I still fear I am wrong, before I got approved for the forum today I asked god to reveal himself to me. Even if he did I don't agree with plenty things in the bible and I cannot be forced, because a lot of it cannot be justified. I feel like no matter what I will have this problem.

 

Today, the first Google hit for "nibba" is the Northern Idaho Bed and Breakfast Association.

 

 

Man if i got that I wouldn't think anything, now I fear "god" is gunning for me. I kept researching words in dreams/unknown words in dreams/ dreaming words and bible things kept coming up. Last night was distressing.

 

That's where they hold the bible studies.

Sorry you lost me

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According to the first page of google results, It's also apparently a very tiny town in Norway, and if you google Nibba, Norway, the first thing you get this morning is a couple results for accurate Islamic prayer times and the proper compass heading to Mecca. There's a standing stone of fairly ancient provenance there. Very scenic.

 

What does this mean? I have no idea. Become a Muslim, and an archaeologist, and go all Indiana Jones about megaliths in Norway?

The brain is a very odd thing, and all sorts of stuff wafts loose when we sleep. You never know what strange things wash ashore on the beaches of consciousness from all the information we encounter from the world. However, your returns of Bible-y things when you google "dream messages" is, I believe, fairly straightforward. People who believe in the Bible are also likely to believe that dreams are a message from God. So, in the English language, if you were to try to find out what a message from the universe in your dreams meant, you'd be statistically more likely to get Christian stuff. Other systems, not so much. Not that they don't exist. And actually the very first thing you get is this site, which is a pretty standard "dream dictionary" that seems to have nothing to do with the Bible at all.

As for the Universe sending you messages, maybe this forum thread is kismet, too: I wouldn't worry about it too much, and I'd reiterate what Voice said, that there's far more than one way to look at things, and, after all, Christianity is only about 1/3 of the total world population. That includes all sects - and most of those think the others are going to Hell. So, any one branch of Christianity is tiny, compared to the sea of other worldviews. It might do you good to look at the rest, and see what a huge spectrum of belief our species has. Go your own way - you might be outnumbered, in this culture, at this time, but, against the total mass of human opinion, no one belief system has a lock on "Truth".

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...how can I expect 7 years on christianity to fade to complete nothingness in 6 months?

 

Exactly.

 

The religion is basically brainwashing that employs fear as its primary tool. It takes time for most people to get their brain back to normal.

 

Remember, you've been trained to look for signs that confirm the imaginary god and it's become a habit to attach meaning to random events and coincidence. Damn near everything gets twisted into a "sign from god" in the mind of the True Believer. Patience is needed to work through the damage that's been done to your thinking process. Peace will come in time.

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These kind of fearful thoughts happens to me sometimes too.  They come and go.  To help them to go, I like to call to mind a few things.  This is a little scattered...

-There are a lot of hells in a lot of different religions.  Catholics believed for centuries that only Catholics went to heaven.  Eastern Orthodox believed the same about themselves.  There are still many Orthodox out there that think this way, and some fringe Catholics that do as well.  Many Protestant sects believe that all Catholics and Orthodox are damned-- and many do believe and have believed this about other Protestant sects.  Sunni Muslims generally believe that all non-Sunnis go to hell.  I read a Taoist book called the Divine Panorama that had utterly horrific depictions of hell-- one of the things that sent a person there was denying the truth of reincarnation.  Many Romans believed that the gods let the Empire fall (and brought about all the suffering that went with that) because the Romans had forsaken them for the false god Jesus.  Buddhists believe that you will suffer more in the karmic cycle if you follow the false beliefs of Christianity.  There are many, many competing belief systems that threaten harm to those who don't believe.  

Another thing I think about is that fear is not a moral motive.  Gandhi thought this.  He also thought that the different Western ideas of hell were unsound because there is no redemptive suffering or purpose to them.  

Diderot once noted that if you take away the fear of hell you take away Christianity.  He also remarked that God must love his apples more than his children, and that no good earthly father would treat his children how God supposedly treats his...

Christians think (generally) that torture is extremely sinful.  Why can God do it for eternity and it not affect his moral character?  Why in all areas of life we are expected to believe things with a degree of confidence based on evidence-- except in religion, where we are supposed to have extreme confidence about the extremely dubious or be punished in the most extreme way?

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In addition to the subconscious activity during dreams, humans are also prone to confirmational bias. Once an idea is seated, the brain will tend to pay attention to things that agree with the theory and ignore those that differ. Years of religious brainwashing plays on this phenomena. Hang on tight and let reason guide you.

Welcome to the forums!

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