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How Do I Keep In Touch With My Soul? I Feel Like It's Died.


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Hello,

 

Lately, I have felt dead inside; like I've lost my soul.  Ever since I became a non-believer and stopped believing in any kind of god and stopped praying, I feel like I'm just floating through life...like I'm just here and going through the motions.  I feel like a shell of my former self.  Now, I've always dealt with depression, but this is different...this is a spiritual issue.  I don't know how to feel "alive" anymore or peace within myself these days.

 

Has anyone else ever felt like this before?  What do you do to keep your spirit alive and stay in touch with your soul?  I feel so empty and numb as a non-believer, but I can't go back pretending to believe in something that I don't believe is real.

 

Any advice would be greatly appreciated. :)

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Does you find that anything "resonates" with you, such as music, singing, nature, etc? I can only relate my own experiences, but maybe you can find something like I did. I found that I always had a felt connection to nature, and lying out on the ground in the rain with my eyes closed and just listening calmed my thoughts made me feel less "me" and more part of a whole. After deconverting, my wife introduced me to a rock shop run by a folks that do energy healing. I wasn't sure what to make of it, but I felt a deep connection when I was in the shop, like I had come home. I still don't really understand why, but it was something experiential that I could repeat. Later I took voice lessons and took up singing as a hobby, and found a group of singers that became a replacement for church. If I'm on my own for too long, and just in front of a computer, I find myself feeling like a waste of life. So I get up and sing, or work out to improve myself. I guess it isn't so much a philosophy or mind thing as it is a matter of doing something creative and being with people who have good energy.

 

I found that when I deconverted that the parental voice of "god" went silent, and I finally had peace. I was able to explore life without fear of "the devil" getting me through music or people. It's been about 6 years since I first made an official break with Jesus. I haven't looked back because it was first of all a lie, and amounted to a system of control and manipulation. Only one friend from that period of my life has stayed a friend. I've explored (and continue to explore) what I used to call New Age paths of spirituality, and I find interesting things along the way (along with some bunk).

 

So perhaps exploring spiritual things that you used to shun might be useful as an experiment. Some spiritual things don't even have such a label, like singing.

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I suggest that you go right to the basis of it all. That's consciousness. Here's a nice series that may give you a few "ah ha" moments along the way. 

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q6Ks2tEhfkc

 

Here's another good one that may get you started down a path of reconciliation with your spiritual side, although without the necessity for personifying any of it.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=REPj9eutzVs

 

There's more, a lot more. But see if any of this speaks to you and if it does there's much more to go through. 

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Maybe it's time for you to form a new set of beliefs.  It took me a long time to do that, probably 15 years after de-conversion before I could say "this is what I believe" and feel like my spirit was a part of a whole, a bigger picture.  With this forum you could probably do it faster than 15 years.  Instead of looking at what you don't believe and feeling loss over something you once believed, ask yourself, "what do I believe?"  Keep asking the question until answers come.

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I don't know if its possible, but if you could go back to some activity that did make you feel alive once, you might be able to re-kindle that again.  Seriously think about thinks that did in the past make you feel alive (aside from Christianity).  There has to be something, right?

 

Or, is there something you might want to learn more about? It really could be anything. Then study that thing and make it that your own spiritual path.  Your spiritual path may reside in studying nature, gardening, cooking, philosophy, the possibilities are limitless. It is not the same for any two different people. This is something that needs work for people who have deconverted or are in the process of deconversion, but which is beyond great, once it is discovered.

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Does you find that anything "resonates" with you, such as music, singing, nature, etc? ... Later I took voice lessons and took up singing as a hobby, and found a group of singers that became a replacement for church. If I'm on my own for too long, and just in front of a computer, I find myself feeling like a waste of life. So I get up and sing, or work out to improve myself. I guess it isn't so much a philosophy or mind thing as it is a matter of doing something creative and being with people who have good energy.

 

This. Well-said, Fuego.

 

TotalWreck, I, too, have trouble "connecting with my soul." When I was a christian, I was very connected to my sense of soul -- but that was awful because I was sure it was headed for hell. It was a relief to lose that belief, but having no connection to "immortality" made life seem meaningless.

 

During my long, long deconversion I sought other belief systems that I hoped would restore a sense of cosmic meaning, of being an individual self, but connected to something bigger, something that would last forever. Something that was TRUE. But I found that it just wasn't in me. I could never believe any doctrine or dogma because they were all equally without proof (even if some were also blessedly without the eternal threat of christianity). Therefore I could also never let my intellect go and just fall into some spiritually comforting system.

 

This is still something I struggle with. I don't personally believe there's anything, ever, that adequately replaces god for giving a sense of meaning to life. But once you realize that "meaning" is false, there's no going back, of course. Deliberate self-delusion is, to me, the worst crime against the self.

 

But being involved in creative activity, being out in nature (particularly doing physical activity), working with natural materials (like stone, brick, wood, or soil), or meditation all help to make life seem less empty and burdensome.

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But being involved in creative activity, being out in nature (particularly doing physical activity), working with natural materials (like stone, brick, wood, or soil), or meditation all help to make life seem less empty and burdensome.

 

This really is essential for getting in touch.

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Maybe it's time for you to form a new set of beliefs.  It took me a long time to do that, probably 15 years after de-conversion before I could say "this is what I believe" and feel like my spirit was a part of a whole, a bigger picture.  With this forum you could probably do it faster than 15 years.  Instead of looking at what you don't believe and feeling loss over something you once believed, ask yourself, "what do I believe?"  Keep asking the question until answers come.

 

Good advice, thank you.

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I don't know if its possible, but if you could go back to some activity that did make you feel alive once, you might be able to re-kindle that again.  Seriously think about thinks that did in the past make you feel alive (aside from Christianity).  There has to be something, right?

 

Or, is there something you might want to learn more about? It really could be anything. Then study that thing and make it that your own spiritual path.  Your spiritual path may reside in studying nature, gardening, cooking, philosophy, the possibilities are limitless. It is not the same for any two different people. This is something that needs work for people who have deconverted or are in the process of deconversion, but which is beyond great, once it is discovered.

 

I know this sounds delusional, but I've always wanted to study acting and act in something (even if just in a student film or short film).  I think it would be so fun to pretend to be other people and absorb myself into a character; the thrill of not being ME for awhile.  But I wouldn't even know where to begin or where to go to study acting.Wendyshrug.gif

 

One thing is for sure - I need to do something to take my mind off of all the confusion and sadness I'm going through.

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This. Well-said, Fuego.

 

TotalWreck, I, too, have trouble "connecting with my soul." When I was a christian, I was very connected to my sense of soul -- but that was awful because I was sure it was headed for hell. It was a relief to lose that belief, but having no connection to "immortality" made life seem meaningless.

 

During my long, long deconversion I sought other belief systems that I hoped would restore a sense of cosmic meaning, of being an individual self, but connected to something bigger, something that would last forever. Something that was TRUE. But I found that it just wasn't in me. I could never believe any doctrine or dogma because they were all equally without proof (even if some were also blessedly without the eternal threat of christianity). Therefore I could also never let my intellect go and just fall into some spiritually comforting system.

 

This is still something I struggle with. I don't personally believe there's anything, ever, that adequately replaces god for giving a sense of meaning to life. But once you realize that "meaning" is false, there's no going back, of course. Deliberate self-delusion is, to me, the worst crime against the self.

 

But being involved in creative activity, being out in nature (particularly doing physical activity), working with natural materials (like stone, brick, wood, or soil), or meditation all help to make life seem less empty and burdensome.

 

 

EXACTLY!  I did the same thing.  When I left Christianity, I studied various other religions hoping to find something that would "click", but like you, I just can't believe in something because a book or doctrine says I should.

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I know this sounds delusional, but I've always wanted to study acting and act in something (even if just in a student film or short film).  I think it would be so fun to pretend to be other people and absorb myself into a character; the thrill of not being ME for awhile.  But I wouldn't even know where to begin or where to go to study acting.Wendyshrug.gif

 

One thing is for sure - I need to do something to take my mind off of all the confusion and sadness I'm going through.

 

If you have natural talent you could probably get in with some independent theater groups and do plays.  Plays are fun to do.  You would start doing minor, supportive roles and readings in the back during practice.

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I don't know if its possible, but if you could go back to some activity that did make you feel alive once, you might be able to re-kindle that again.  Seriously think about thinks that did in the past make you feel alive (aside from Christianity).  There has to be something, right?

 

Or, is there something you might want to learn more about? It really could be anything. Then study that thing and make it that your own spiritual path.  Your spiritual path may reside in studying nature, gardening, cooking, philosophy, the possibilities are limitless. It is not the same for any two different people. This is something that needs work for people who have deconverted or are in the process of deconversion, but which is beyond great, once it is discovered.

 

I know this sounds delusional, but I've always wanted to study acting and act in something (even if just in a student film or short film).  I think it would be so fun to pretend to be other people and absorb myself into a character; the thrill of not being ME for awhile.  But I wouldn't even know where to begin or where to go to study acting.Wendyshrug.gif

 

One thing is for sure - I need to do something to take my mind off of all the confusion and sadness I'm going through.

 

 

That doesn't sound delusional to me. You could use the internet to find acting schools, find local groups, -- the internet is an amazing resource that I wish I had in 1979-1980 when I didn't know what to do with myself!   It really does take effort and determination, but half the battle is already won if you decide nothing will stop you.

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This is a wonderful topic. I agree that you should find a way to begin getting some acting experience.  I have missed sharing my musical talents since leaving a church environment.  I've recently begun getting together with other musicians more and more frequently, and it makes me feel a bit more alive and valued.  It's a very spiritual-feeling experience.

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That doesn't sound delusional to me. You could use the internet to find acting schools, find local groups, -- the internet is an amazing resource that I wish I had in 1979-1980 when I didn't know what to do with myself!   It really does take effort and determination, but half the battle is already won if you decide nothing will stop you.

 

 

Thank you for not telling me I'm crazy.  I need to have SOME sort of dream or goal.  I'm not dreaming of becoming some A-list movie star; I just want to act in any thing, even little productions.   

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This is a wonderful topic. I agree that you should find a way to begin getting some acting experience.  I have missed sharing my musical talents since leaving a church environment.  I've recently begun getting together with other musicians more and more frequently, and it makes me feel a bit more alive and valued.  It's a very spiritual-feeling experience.

 

That sounds great.  Like you, being a part of some sort of art or creativity is the one thing that makes me feel alive.  I have something I can't explain inside of me that I need to channel into a way to express myself...something that connects with my spirit and makes me happy.

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That doesn't sound delusional to me. You could use the internet to find acting schools, find local groups, -- the internet is an amazing resource that I wish I had in 1979-1980 when I didn't know what to do with myself!   It really does take effort and determination, but half the battle is already won if you decide nothing will stop you.

 

 

Thank you for not telling me I'm crazy.  I need to have SOME sort of dream or goal.  I'm not dreaming of becoming some A-list movie star; I just want to act in any thing, even little productions.   

 

 

Not delusional in the slightest. And local theater companies are often eager for new talent.

 

If you try out and don't make it into a production on your first shot, becoming a crew volunteer is both fun and a great path to eventually getting into plays.

 

Not quite a substitute for being in the arms of the Almighty, but with acting at least you know it's all make-believe. GONZ9729CustomImage1539775.gif And it sounds like a creative passion would do you wonders.

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Spirituality within musicians groups depends on the group as well as yourself.  Some music lends itself to transcendent experience, like drum circles and music made for that purpose.  Other music can be a drag spiritually if you're dissonant with a group you're in.

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I know this sounds delusional, but I've always wanted to study acting and act in something (even if just in a student film or short film).  I think it would be so fun to pretend to be other people and absorb myself into a character; the thrill of not being ME for awhile.  But I wouldn't even know where to begin or where to go to study acting.Wendyshrug.gif

 

One thing is for sure - I need to do something to take my mind off of all the confusion and sadness I'm going through.

 

If you have natural talent you could probably get in with some independent theater groups and do plays.  Plays are fun to do.  You would start doing minor, supportive roles and readings in the back during practice.

 

 

I'm going to have to start seeing what I can do to get started.  I live in a small town, but I do live 2 1/2 hours away from a big city.  Since I only work 4 days a week, maybe this is something I could focus on the other 3 days of the week.

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That doesn't sound delusional to me. You could use the internet to find acting schools, find local groups, -- the internet is an amazing resource that I wish I had in 1979-1980 when I didn't know what to do with myself!   It really does take effort and determination, but half the battle is already won if you decide nothing will stop you.

 

 

Thank you for not telling me I'm crazy.  I need to have SOME sort of dream or goal.  I'm not dreaming of becoming some A-list movie star; I just want to act in any thing, even little productions.   

 

 

Not delusional in the slightest. And local theater companies are often eager for new talent.

 

If you try out and don't make it into a production on your first shot, becoming a crew volunteer is both fun and a great path to eventually getting into plays.

 

Not quite a substitute for being in the arms of the Almighty, but with acting at least you know it's all make-believe. GONZ9729CustomImage1539775.gif And it sounds like a creative passion would do you wonders.

 

 

LOL! Yes, we definitely know acting is make-believe!  Good advice about the local theater companies - I'm going to try out for something when I get the chance.  I too think a creative passion would do me wonders to fulfill me inside and help keep in touch with my soul.

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That doesn't sound delusional to me. You could use the internet to find acting schools, find local groups, -- the internet is an amazing resource that I wish I had in 1979-1980 when I didn't know what to do with myself!   It really does take effort and determination, but half the battle is already won if you decide nothing will stop you.

 

 

Thank you for not telling me I'm crazy.  I need to have SOME sort of dream or goal.  I'm not dreaming of becoming some A-list movie star; I just want to act in any thing, even little productions.   

 

 

Please - just say "I want to do this." Then do it. Its that simple. Don't think in terms of A-list movie star, just see what happens. In the last post you said that now you have the answer, right? Now, you must actualize it or make it a reality.

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That doesn't sound delusional to me. You could use the internet to find acting schools, find local groups, -- the internet is an amazing resource that I wish I had in 1979-1980 when I didn't know what to do with myself!   It really does take effort and determination, but half the battle is already won if you decide nothing will stop you.

 

 

Thank you for not telling me I'm crazy.  I need to have SOME sort of dream or goal.  I'm not dreaming of becoming some A-list movie star; I just want to act in any thing, even little productions.   

 

 

Please - just say "I want to do this." Then do it. Its that simple. Don't think in terms of A-list movie star, just see what happens. In the last post you said that now you have the answer, right? Now, you must actualize it or make it a reality.

 

 

Thank you for such good advice and support!  I knew I would get such good advice on Ex-C.net - you ALL have always helped me make sense of things when I've gone through rough times.beer.gif

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I feel the same way, kind of like an orange with all the juice sucked out of it. After losing christianity I still had my family, then my kid stopped talking to me. I feel like everything that has kept me alive is gone. I'm like a shadow these days, I feel like I might blow away in the wind.

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I feel the same way, kind of like an orange with all the juice sucked out of it. After losing christianity I still had my family, then my kid stopped talking to me. I feel like everything that has kept me alive is gone. I'm like a shadow these days, I feel like I might blow away in the wind.

 

Galien, you've been de-converted for quite a while haven't you?

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I feel the same way, kind of like an orange with all the juice sucked out of it. After losing christianity I still had my family, then my kid stopped talking to me. I feel like everything that has kept me alive is gone. I'm like a shadow these days, I feel like I might blow away in the wind.

 

Galien, you've been de-converted for quite a while haven't you?

 

 

Yes, it started in about 2007 I think then just took on a life of its own. An estrangement with my kid over the past 12 months has made everything worse. It is like both of my main foundations in life have fallen apart. I am lucky I have a kind, loving partner, but not even that is holding me together this time. I guess its just too much to lose.

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I feel the same way, kind of like an orange with all the juice sucked out of it. After losing christianity I still had my family, then my kid stopped talking to me. I feel like everything that has kept me alive is gone. I'm like a shadow these days, I feel like I might blow away in the wind.

 

Galien, you've been de-converted for quite a while haven't you?

 

 

Yes, it started in about 2007 I think then just took on a life of its own. An estrangement with my kid over the past 12 months has made everything worse. It is like both of my main foundations in life have fallen apart. I am lucky I have a kind, loving partner, but not even that is holding me together this time. I guess its just too much to lose.

 

 

Believe me, I can relate to feeling like a shadow of your former self.  Luckily you have a partner; I don't even have that.sad.png

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