ThereAndBackAgain

The Importance of "Full Deconversion"

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Hi Mr T

Any reason you haven't had lucid dream or astral projection in a while?

 

I did it quite often in my teenage years (1970s), but it became harder to do as I got older. (College and grad school [1980s] were weighing on my mind, I guess.) Then I went through a bit of a "New Age" period in the 1990s, (my 30s) and I renewed my interest in altered states. Had some success during that decade, as well. But then my interest waned. Ya know, I still have my Robert Monroe and Stephen LaBerge books around, somewhere in the house. Maybe I'll re-read 'em, and try to go for another "astral spin"...

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On 6/23/2017 at 12:25 PM, TruthSeeker0 said:

It's not healthy. It's probably really difficult to leave if it's a spouse. If it's not and the decision is easier, get out if you can. And for some of us, it probably makes sense to come out with your unbelief after striking out on your own. Make plans and put them in action is my advice, if you know that things will turn into a battleground.

 

Bart Ehrman's books are a good place to start. Also there are several BBC documentaries on youtube that are good ("When God was a Girl" comes to mind).

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On 5/11/2017 at 5:59 AM, DarkBishop said:

Knowledge is power.

 

This is the key to everything. 

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I jumped on a plane yesterday, and during a sudden moment of turbulence I automatically began to pray to god. I immediately stopped myself, realising the ridiculousness of my thoughts, then laughed out loud, as my fellow passengers looked at me strangely. 

Does this mean I am fully deconverted? Do I get a members jacket now?

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MEMBERS JACKETS!

 

I could sport that sucker next time Mrs. MOHO has her chritty bitties over!  :P

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So does the fact that I dont rule out the posibility of something spiritual make me not deconverted. Hmm?????? I like to think that I am just keeping my mind open to the possibility. But IMHO I see myself as a fully deconverted EXCHRISTIAN as I do not believe anything biblical. Nor do I believe that there is a possibility that I ever will again. I suppose If "God" got off his high n mighty throne to actually appear to me in person to prove himself then I would have to believe. But barring a pink unicorn scenario such as that then it aint happening LOL.

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22 minutes ago, DarkBishop said:

So does the fact that I dont rule out the posibility of something spiritual make me not deconverted. Hmm?????? I like to think that I am just keeping my mind open to the possibility. But IMHO I see myself as a fully deconverted EXCHRISTIAN as I do not believe anything biblical. Nor do I believe that there is a possibility that I ever will again. I suppose If "God" got off his high n mighty throne to actually appear to me in person to prove himself then I would have to believe. But barring a pink unicorn scenario such as that then it aint happening LOL.

 

 

Being an ex-Christian doesn't mean you can't be spiritual.  Hey knock yourself out exploring other religions if you like.  I would say "fully deconverted" from Christianity means you could never go back to Christianity.  You kind of know when it happens.  Could you go back to believing in Santa Claus?  Sort of the same thing.

 

I personally rejected Christianity eight years ago in response to the way Evangelical Christians were talking about the Haiti earthquake that killed thousands.  I was disgusted by the disrespect Christians were demonstrating.  But for a while after that I still believed in the Christian god.  Then after a while later I became something of a deist.  I might have stayed a deist for the rest of my life if it had not been for a crystalizing event.  But your journey could take a completely different form.  We don't have to go in the same direction.

 

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On 5/10/2017 at 7:29 PM, ThereAndBackAgain said:

You won't be around here very long before you hear people refer to deconversion as a process, rather than an event.  It hardly needs saying that making the transition from being a True Christian to being an Ex-Christian does not happen overnight.  Looking back at my own deconversion journey so far, and learning about the similar journeys taken by others among us, as well as seeing new members show up here "dripping wet" and frightened or in shock at realizing that they are in fact on the way to being Ex-Christians, I wanted to share why I think it is so important to "complete" the deconversion process, and also to show you - if you are new to this - some of what you can expect as you go through it for yourself.

 
Getting stuck in the deconversion process is not a happy situation to be in.  You have already seen some of the problems with Christianity, with the Bible, or the supposedly all-loving, all-powerful God that it serves.  That's why you came to this place.  But you may also be racked with fear: fear of Hell or the fear of getting it wrong, fear of living without a Heavenly Father, without a god-given moral law.  That fear can keep you from moving forward and leaving Christianity behind you.  It can dominate you, paralyze you, make you miserable.  Yet you can't go back either because, deep down, you know it's not true.
 
We who have already taken the journey can assure you that it does get better as you continue onward.  Our archives probably contain many records of such journeys, but I wanted to point out one testimonial that was shared recently by one of our newer members, DarkBishop.  I hope you will read his post before continuing...
 
DarkBishop's experience highlights two things that happen in the later stages of deconversion:
  • The feeling that you have reached a 'Point of No Return' with regard to Christianity.
  • Experiencing the benefits of living without religious dogma or theology.
 
A successful deconversion means that at some point you realize there is absolutely no going back to Christianity.  You realize that you have seen enough, that you couldn't possibly believe it again even if you wanted to.  It's not a case of God "changing the locks" when you leave the house, it's more a matter of realizing that faith is not a sound guide to what is true.  Christians have it, Jews have it, Muslims have it.  You once were sure the Muslims and Jews were mistaken, now you realize the Christians are too.  Some people, early in the deconversion process, worry that they will one day realize that they were wrong, that Christianity is actually true, but it's too late to go back.  It doesn't work like that though: realizing you're past the point of no return happens when you're convinced, as sure as you can ever be, that it's not true.
 
Dark Bishop shared some of the rewards that appear in this stage of the deconversion process. He says it better than I could, so I hope you read his post above.  Does this sound like somebody who has "no purpose in life" as they like to believe about us?  It sounds to me like a man who has a renewed purpose, a renewed energy in life, without trying to satisfy an imaginary (and often contradictory) god and a one-size-fits-all-times-and-all-people moral code handed down from the clouds.
 
So if you are early in the deconversion process and you're fearful and unsure, be reassured, the road ahead is often lonely (Dark Bishop also talks about the challenges of being an Ex-Christian in a world of believers) but it does get better and you can reach that point of confidence, joy and peace.
 
So how do you get to that point?  Some of it is just the passage of time. But there is plenty of help available here in this community.  Old and new discussion topics, lots of testimonials from various stages of the journey, suggestions for books to read, blogs and podcasts to follow.  When you first hang out among us unbelievers, the talk may sometimes seem foreign to your ears, used as you are to being immersed in Christianity, but a funny thing happens over time: there comes a point when you realize that it is the Christians who now sound strange and rather nonsensical. Guess what: you're just about there, starting to feel the benefits of the journey you've taken.  Soon YOU will be eager to welcome and offer a confident hand up to the new arrivals.
 
Remember, courage is not the absence of fear, it is going forward in spite of your fear. You will get lots of enCOURAGEment from this community!
 
TABA

 

 

  Excellent! And thank you TABA!

 

To be pinned for newcomers.......

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1 hour ago, mymistake said:

I personally rejected Christianity eight years ago in response to the way Evangelical Christians were talking about the Haiti earthquake that killed thousands.

 

Eight years clean.....

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8 hours ago, mymistake said:

 

 

Being an ex-Christian doesn't mean you can't be spiritual.  Hey knock yourself out exploring other religions if you like.  I would say "fully deconverted" from Christianity means you could never go back to Christianity.  You kind of know when it happens.  Could you go back to believing in Santa Claus?  Sort of the same thing.

 

I personally rejected Christianity eight years ago in response to the way Evangelical Christians were talking about the Haiti earthquake that killed thousands.  I was disgusted by the disrespect Christians were demonstrating.  But for a while after that I still believed in the Christian god.  Then after a while later I became something of a deist.  I might have stayed a deist for the rest of my life if it had not been for a crystalizing event.  But your journey could take a completely different form.  We don't have to go in the same direction.

 

Right :-)

And in fact I dont believe I could ever believe in any man made religion. I think that if there is some type of spiritual ..... Or supernatural experience to be had then it is nothing man has been able to grasp and put into text without their own preconceived notions of what it is. But I know that odds are that there is nothing and that we were just fortunate enough to exist on a pebble in space with moss growing on it LOL. But I do like to keep an open mind to the possibility of some type of personal spirituality. Honestly I read BAAs final letter to his friends and family and even as an athiest he had found a way to be spiritual. I thought it was beautiful how he explained what he hoped for his atoms. While I may hope for something a bit more substantial his words were still inspiring.

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I don't have as much time to post (or read) all of the discussion topics since I have gone back to work. But because I work from my home, I can check the board on and off all day. How I missed this thread is a mystery? I must have been camping at the time. What a fabulous post.

 

One of the things that I wanted to say was don't even be surprised (even after years of deconverting) that some of us e-x christians are still waiting for some magic. But 'real' magic. I've been really studying how the brain works and I can see now how when you have believed something for so long and it is real to you and it is part of who you are and now you have learned that it was all a lie......you're in for a real bumpy ride. The brain hates change is what I am learning. And it literally goes through trauma for some of us, depending on the different personalities. It does not want to let go. That is why all addictions are so hard to overcome. The brain wants to remain the same. To create a new worldview the brain has to rewire millions of neural networks and it can take a long time. And again, it all depends on how long you were involved in chritianity and how much you believed. For some people they learn the truth and 'bang', they begin a new life immediately and it doesn't seem to upset them nearly as much as some others. The brain also registers this. For instance, the person whos' mind is set on giving up smoking will make up their mind, put the cigarette down and begin life as a non-smoker. Others will struggle and struggle. These kind of personalities who make their mind up 100% (and quit something) are very lucky. But I have seen few of those on Ex-c. Most of us have struggled while learning the truth.

 

One of the reasons I mention, 'Acceptance' so much when I post is because it helps the brain along when you accept something the way it is, be it any situation including love relationships, belief systems, you can make a plan of action on how you are going to change the situation. And with christianity, this is where

Ex-c comes in. Reading and studying all the testimonies and links to documentaries that all the members advise us to go and watch. Then coming here and posting all your questions and concerns. As your brain starts to accept the new information, (and this takes you to eventually accept the truth) the brain will calm down after a while and you will begin to laugh again and carry on a new type of life without religion.

 

I always love an opportunity to thank everyone here on Ex-c who helped me so much in the last few years. I don't have these kinds of conversations in real life so coming here is like coming to see my gang and my heart feels at home.

 

Love and (hugs) to you all on your journey.

 

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For me, it took several stints in Christianity to finally see a pattern -- that every time I gave Christianity another chance, I realised why I doubted in the first place. How many times was I going to have to do that before I finally reached a point of no return? It's like a person giving their abusive mate chance after chance, and after getting the same result, they return to what's familiar.

 

What helps me tremendously is living for TODAY. Living in the moment. That's where life is magickal.

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9 hours ago, PaganBookworm said:

 

 

What helps me tremendously is living for TODAY. Living in the moment. That's where life is magickal.

This is my philosophy too, no other gods needed ;)

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12 hours ago, Margee said:

 

 

Love and (hugs) to you all on your journey.

 

 

I always love your posts Margee! Love and hugs to you as well!! :-) You have been a great help to me on this journey. Thank you!

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One thing that helps me, is to realize that if I went back to Christianity, I would have to be a moderate, which is what I used to be, which is what caused me to question and doubt in the first place, which

would just simply lead to me being an apostate again. I would just end up repeating the same experience twice, so what's the point in that? There isn't. 

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Would you say that if you have not told your family (but friends know), you haven't gone through full de-conversion? 

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On 4/8/2018 at 8:54 AM, Axelle said:

Would you say that if you have not told your family (but friends know), you haven't gone through full de-conversion? 

 

It probably depends on your personal beliefs, not whether you've told everyone. If you're beyond believing in it, then you've deconverted. Everyone may not know that, but you do. 

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On 4/8/2018 at 8:54 AM, Axelle said:

Would you say that if you have not told your family (but friends know), you haven't gone through full de-conversion? 

 

Nah I know I’ve deconverted. I haven’t told most of my family just cuz I don’t want them. (Especially) my mom, hurting and worried if they are going to see me in heaven. I would like it if she was able to die with a peaceful mind. Hopefully many years from now. 

     But like Josh said it’s a point where there is no way you can believe again because you know the truth. I can even go to church now and not worry about feeling “condemned” I’ve also gotten past the anger and such to. Sometimes I even glean some good points from the message. Not because of “the Holy Spirit” but because while there are a lot of bad scriptures in the Bible. There are also a lot of good common sense and moral messages that can be preached. Those are the ones I like to hear. 

      The reason I attend church a couple times a month now is to spend time with my family mostly. My deconversion has been a shocker to them that we are working through and I still like seeing my daughter face light up when I walk in. I don’t go to Sunday school as I see it as a waste. So I only come to the regular service. 

 

DB

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Thank you so  much for pinning this post, or I probably would have never seen it. @DarkBishop's metaphor about the blue or the red pill is the best explanation I've ever read. And it helps immensely to think of it this way.

 

I started visiting Ex-Christian way before I deconverted. I even signed up for an account, and then never posted, and didn't come back for a long time. It takes what it takes, I guess.

 

I know I've fully deconverted at this point, and I also know the worst is over. I still have a process and a journey to go through, but I have left the really bad emotionally difficult stuff behind. Time creates perspective, and perspective helps a lot.

 

I'm in a new phase now, and I'm not sure exactly what it is, but it's interesting to be living it from the inside, as opposed to seeing it from the outside. I'll explain. When I was still in the church, but going through the initial stages of deconversion, I'd watch atheist talks on Youtube. I thought, "Hey, if my god is so powerful and my truth so profound, then watching this won't do anything to my faith." (I'll pause while we all laugh hysterically about this.) :yelrotflmao:

 

Ok.. so anyway, my thoughts were, "Geez, these atheists just focus on disproving god, they're always talking about the bible, how it's wrong, etc.. So, if life is so amazing without god, why can't they stop focusing on him?"

 

Now, here's the thing: I'm now in the exact same position!! I'm that person!

 

I have been logging in here every day. I started a blog. All the crap I've  bottled up is just pouring out of me. And, I have strong, almost uncontrollable desire to study and read everything I can get my hands on about the bible's origins. I'm even considering taking an online Historical Biblical Criticism class!  I've become one of those people!! 🤣

 

So, that's interesting to me, and it's also uncharted territory. It's also probably just part of my process. But, it's SO IMPORTANT for me to read the stories here, of those that have gone before me. I appreciate everyone here that has shown such a warm welcome. I hope I can pay it forward too.

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It was really gratifying for me to read @yunea‘s post today about no longer being triggered by Christianity.  Read this post and you will see somebody who has progressed through the difficult stages of deconversion into a new confidence and a new comfort level with leaving her former faith behind.  This is what “Full Deconversion” looks like.  It doesn’t necessarily mean being hard-core atheist; it does mean that your mind has pretty much completed its reprogramming and that your indoctrination into Christianity has been reversed.  Religious faith is no longer distorting your view of the world and you are free to draw your own conclusions and to forge your own path.

 

Congtatulations Yunea!  

 

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"But you may also be racked with fear: fear of Hell ..."

 

I threw out the hell fantasy when I was a little kid the same day an ugly Catholic nun told us we were going there.

 

I stopped going to church at age 18 and a few years later became a hardcore atheist. It was never stressful for me so I guess I was lucky.

 

The last 8 years I have been writing posts at my anti-religion blog at http://darwinkilledgod.blogspot.com. I have been told by at least one person my blog helped him realize the god fairy is not real.

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On 6/27/2017 at 9:28 AM, MOHO said:

yup,

 

We've all been there, @HoustonSeeker.

 

It would seem that the mind can be programmed, just like a computer (well, kinda), and it takes time and being subjected to reality on a constant basis for you to snap out of it.

 

That's why I come here. I am subjected to such fairy tale BS by Mrs. MOHO and her critty friends that I need a dose of reality each day - sometimes twice! :P

That's exactly how I feel now... like a robot... but it is such a wonderful thing to have a place where I can come and hear you guys... It reminds me that I am a human!

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