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10 hours ago, florduh said:

They all can't be right, but they can all be wrong.

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Fear is a huge motivator, which is why the church latched onto it. That is also why they target sex so much, it is an inescapable drive for most people, so they label it a problem and then sell the "cure".

 

Hell is not a concept from Judaism, and if Jesus had really preached about it, the actual Jews of the time would have mocked him for trying to convert them to the religions of the Greeks and Romans. That is not something you will hear in church. I noticed in reading through the Bible several times that there was a curious lack of damnation in the Old Testament. I asked my Jewish family members (by marriage) if Jews have a hell. They shook their heads. They said that historically Judaism didn't have heaven or hell for people, just the one human life on Earth. Later, after being exposed to other religions, they developed the idea that people who were not obedient would experience a time of teaching after death to show them the error of their ways, and then reincarnate (or parts of their being would) to try again. That's all. So Christianity is far from being the fulfillment of Judaism, and the stories the gospels relate would have been very out of place in Judea. You see today how violently they react to other religions, and it was the same then. 

 

The gospels are also not the eyewitness stories they claim to be, since we don't know who wrote them (names were tacked on at least a century later) and they will relate things that the disciples could not have heard such as conversations between Pilate and the Jewish leaders, or relating what happened to Jesus during the garden of Gethsemane since the story says they were all asleep. Christians might argue that Jesus told them later, but the gospels don't say that. In fact they relate that after the crucifixion, they were largely uninspired and considering disbanding. The gospels also relate clearly non-historical events like Herod slaughtering the children of Bethlehem (didn't happen), several people raised from the dead when Jesus died (nobody else noticed but this cult, and only one of the gospel writers noticed). 

 

So again, fear is the ooga-booga that religion uses to get into your survival level programming, much like a childhood trauma is hard to release. But the fears, like movie monsters that can generate real fear, are not based in anything real but the fear still feels real. 

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5 minutes ago, Mrjukes21 said:

thank you guys for all your support. has anyone here watched a voice in the desert?

If I get some time in the near future, I'll look over their videos and try to put together a reasonably coherent collection of syllables on the subject for you.  In the meantime, watch some DarkMatter2525 videos; and purplefox.  Leave that cult shit alone.

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alright thanks. its just that they really messed up my mind that its so hard to true happiness because of them. i dont know how to rebuke their points

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34 minutes ago, Mrjukes21 said:

alright thanks. its just that they really messed up my mind that its so hard to true happiness because of them. i dont know how to rebuke their points

 

Perhaps you could list a few of their "points".  I suspect we can help you with understanding them and rebuking them.

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2 hours ago, Mrjukes21 said:

alright thanks. its just that they really messed up my mind that its so hard to true happiness because of them. i dont know how to rebuke their points

 

I think you need to think seriously about why you want to rebuke them?   Or have anything to do with them.  And why you are so unsure of your own good judgement?  Did you not get affirmation as a young child?  If not, you may need help to attain some self confidence.

 

I didn't watch their video, but read a letter their leader wrote.  Do a google search on them.  They have picked a few scriptures and given a lopsided view of Jesus overall teaching.  And we have absolutely no direct message from Jesus----IF he actually existed.  And the words attributed to him were written years later.  Your feelings are being influenced by ancient myth.  And insecure feelings that got programmed into you.

 

The group clearly fits into the cult catagory.  My guess is they want you to come under their guidance, and eventually their control, including your money.  They want you to conform to their slanted version of Christianity, which in itself is based on ancient myth.  If you feel compelled to communicate with them, please get an appointment with a mental health professional.  Or contact Recovering from Religion website.  This may sound harsh, but I think you are skating on thin ice.  In my life I have seen several of these movements. 

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oh ok well thanks for the advice. i just want to rebuke their points because i always get recurring doubts in my head saying i didn't try hard enough to look for truth. try to watch some of their videos if you can

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1 hour ago, Mrjukes21 said:

oh ok well thanks for the advice. i just want to rebuke their points because i always get recurring doubts in my head saying i didn't try hard enough to look for truth. try to watch some of their videos if you can

1. I want to share to you a fact of reality which really frightened me as well. There are thousands of Christian denominations now. There were thousands before. There are now hundreds of thousands if not millions of pages of theological and practical debates about Christianity. You, and noone has time to listen, let alone rebuke them all. On top of that there other thousands of religions, new and old, with their subdivisions. AND thousands of scientific inquiries into the nature of the universe, hundreds if not thousands of different schools and subschools of psychology. The data are too much for many people with specialized education in those fields, let alone one untrained individual.

       So, what I see is , forgive if I am wrong, is that you want certainty and that is one of the hardest drugs in most religions. Easy, certain answers. Reality,  is not that clear or easy especially on the big issues. The transition from certain life to an uncertain one is froghtening to say the least. One of the reasons many people cling to all sorts of beliefs because they give them the illusion of control. You said actually " maybe I did not try enough to..."  like these things are totally under your control/ responsability. That is also the conditioning going on - I am not good enough mantra so dear to many forms of christian religions.

       You will always have doubts. But why aren t you worried that you reject Mohammed and the Quran? More than billion people believe HE is the final prophet and the Quran the only uncorrupted book? Why aren t you worried about the difference between Hassan Al Malik and Abdul Hakim Murad? Do you which hadith is trustworthy? People are literally tortured for these things you know.

        You may never find the level of self conviction many christians have. You might understand and even enjoy a certain level of uncertainty. 

         2. As to voice in the desert. Abandoning all for Christ is ordered for all christians. To reject everything in this world - one must hate everything , his parents, even his soul to gain the Gospel. Yes. But THIS is not understood primarily as outward behaviour, but inner reality. Paul admonished people to love a quiet life working with their hands. He himself prided himself in working to sustain himself as he could while preaching. He gathered charity for those in need in Jerusalem from those that did work. 

      Also Jesus visited many places and houses. He never thought complete outward abandonment for all people, only in the cases of the apostles. Paul also says - are they all apostles? DO they all have the power to heal, etc and sets forth a lists of many gifts, finally exalting divine like love. Why would Paul and all the apostles set up communities in the places they went and never told  all those people to just quit all and go preaching. There is no hint , either from Scripture or the New Testament that they did that. 

      As for monasticism, that is a more nuanced topic. But even there most monks were actually prohibited to teach rather than instructed to. Most lived in communities quite close to some cities. They became relative pilgrimage sites outside the corruption of he " urban centres". 

      So, short story, preaching was never considered full time activity for all people, not even for the people that actually went into the desert for God. 

       I tried to watch some videos. Coming from a Christian Orthodox country with some reading in theology and mysticism,  those videos seem like , sorry, for infants. Their production value and editing is also bombastic TV like. Studied Screenwriting so I know a little. My opinion is that they are not even worth your time. Want to challenge yourself? Read/ listen to ancient/medieval pre 1054 theology and mysticism from Greek and other church Fathers. St Isaac the Syrian and evagrious ponticus are two examples. They are also full threats and some gruesomness don t worry 😉

     

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1 hour ago, Mrjukes21 said:

oh ok well thanks for the advice. i just want to rebuke their points because i always get recurring doubts in my head saying i didn't try hard enough to look for truth. try to watch some of their videos if you can

1. I want to share to you a fact of reality which really frightened me as well. There are thousands of Christian denominations now. There were thousands before. There are now hundreds of thousands if not millions of pages of theological and practical debates about Christianity. You, and noone has time to listen, let alone rebuke them all. On top of that there other thousands of religions, new and old, with their subdivisions. AND thousands of scientific inquiries into the nature of the universe, hundreds if not thousands of different schools and subschools of psychology. The data are too much for many people with specialized education in those field, let alone one untrained individual. So, what I see is , forgive if I am wrong, is that you want certainty and that is one of the hardest drugs in most religions. Easy, certain answers. Reality,  is not that clear or easy especially on the big issues. The transition from certain life to an uncertain one is froghtening to say the least. One of the reasons many people cling to all sorts of beliefs because they give them the illusion of control. You said actually " maybe I did not try enough to..."  like these things are totally under your control/ responsability. That is also the conditioning going on - I am not good enough mantra so dear to many forms of christian religions.

       You will always have doubts. But why aren t you worried that you reject Mohammed and the Quran? More than billion people believe HE is the final prophet and the Quran the only uncorrupted book? Why aren t you worried about the difference between Hassan Al Malik and Abdul Hakim Murad? Do you which hadith is trustworthy? People are literally tortuted for these things? 

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Amen my friend! Keep preaching. There have been so many different interpretations of Luke 14:33 and that teaching of Jesus that I can’t tell which one is correct. Although yours seems to make more sense but for some reason in my head it’s like a voice in the desert makes sense. At this point I don’t know anymore but what I do know is that the Christian god isn’t clearing up my confusion by not answering my prayers or ever answering them at all for all the years that I prayed in my life. At this point all  I wonder is what should be my purpose in life after de converting. And how  should I live the rest of my post Christian life 

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52 minutes ago, Mrjukes21 said:

Amen my friend! Keep preaching. There have been so many different interpretations of Luke 14:33 and that teaching of Jesus that I can’t tell which one is correct. Although yours seems to make more sense but for some reason in my head it’s like a voice in the desert makes sense. At this point I don’t know anymore but what I do know is that the Christian god isn’t clearing up my confusion by not answering my prayers or ever answering them at all for all the years that I prayed in my life. At this point all  I wonder is what should be my purpose in life after de converting. And how  should I live the rest of my post Christian life.

1. It can seem to make more sense because you are more used to it. Familiarity does this to us. Or you just might like the idea of leaving it all behind and following a noble cause. It is something that attracts many people. It did attract me and it still does to a degree. Eat sleep sex seems quite boring after a short while, to many. Even the vikings who had a reputation for rape and pillage like poetry a lot it seems :)

2. About the confusion. I kind of think, now, like I said, if there is this God like entity which is all powerful and all knowing, HE/ She will show me what is the truth at some point. It really is not up to me. Maybe that is a lesson worth learning. Most of our lives is not up to us - or nature and our nurture. I personally don't believe that " free will" is useful beyond the social level and some kind of shorthand/metaphor. 

3. What you should do. I do not very well what I should do. But I can tell what I have been doing that I felt helped.  a. Reading and talking to a therapist, in my case Gillie Jenkinson about mind influence, tehnique, problems, recovery. I hesitate to call all religions cults or mind control, but the information from the "cult studies " world is useful for everyone as it talks about how worldviews can form, how they can be manipulated, impact recovery, etc, why.. I am not saying to rake them all at face value but some insights I found useful. As well as listening to podcasts reading seeing interviews of ex cult people. Indoctrination and Let s talk about sects are goid example of these.

      b Reading and studying about other religions.

        c. Thirdly pondering about the foundations of my self. Like what are feelings, what are beliefs, etc? And trying to read very easy introductions to philosophy so I can get some tools to think with. Some simple awarenesd exercises also help. Like, before I decide what do with my life, what is life? Like I am trying not to run from or towards Christianity, first try to develop a better foundation. Before anyone is Christian, Buddhist, etc, I see that human do certain things. Eat sleep think feel dream. What if I treat my self like I just discovered a new species on Mars? What could I say? I use concepts, language. I move, etc. You get my drift? Trying to dig deeper and see what I find at the bottom, if any. Semiotics help. Like I see, well people use symbols a lot to describe inner and outer realities. I am not trying to be an academic but really try to use this intellectual/contemplative ability we humans have instead of parroting others with little to no understanding. I return to the metaphor of a new species on Mars. You ask what its purpose? Well we have obs, investigate and experiment before we even TRY to give an answer, no? Well this seemed to help me. You see of there is anything useful there.

      In the meantime try not to do gross harm unless in extreme circumstance (killing, theft, deceit, etc) . It is pretty to see why doing those ends up with suffering,  personal and social, bad chaos and unclear hearts and minds. 

      

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4 hours ago, Mrjukes21 said:

oh ok well thanks for the advice. i just want to rebuke their points because i always get recurring doubts in my head saying i didn't try hard enough to look for truth. try to watch some of their videos if you can

Right now, you don't need to rebuke them, refute them, or even offer a rebuttal.  Right now, it is enough for you to simply tell yourself, "I don't believe that." 

 

I'll let you in on a big secret here: there is no universal truth that is true for everyone.  You get to decide what is truth for you, not some Aussie wanker YouTube video.  Your truth will ring true with you.  It might not ring true with me or anybody else; but it will ring true with you. 

 

This much confusion over some videos suggests that what they say does not ring true.  That is enough of a refutation for now.  "I simply do not believe that.  That is not my truth."

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18 minutes ago, TheRedneckProfessor said:

Right now, you don't need to rebuke them, refute them, or even offer a rebuttal.  Right now, it is enough for you to simply tell yourself, "I don't believe that." 

 

I'll let you in on a big secret here: there is no universal truth that is true for everyone.  You get to decide what is truth for you, not some Aussie wanker YouTube video.  Your truth will ring true with you.  It might not ring true with me or anybody else; but it will ring true with you. 

 

This much confusion over some videos suggests that what they say does not ring true.  That is enough of a refutation for now.  "I simply do not believe that.  That is not my truth."

With the caveat that this should not devolve into extreme subjectivism - I decide you are a leprecaun and will kill you the get the pot of gold. I much rather value open conversation and dialogue, and building sounder and sounder communal principles for distinguishing truth/lies. Like the ideal of a scientific community. 

         The xtremes - whatever the preacher says is true, no matter what, whatever I say is true, no matter what, sound a little dangerous to me. 

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51 minutes ago, Myrkhoos said:

With the caveat that this should not devolve into extreme subjectivism - I decide you are a leprecaun and will kill you the get the pot of gold. I much rather value open conversation and dialogue, and building sounder and sounder communal principles for distinguishing truth/lies. Like the ideal of a scientific community. 

         The xtremes - whatever the preacher says is true, no matter what, whatever I say is true, no matter what, sound a little dangerous to me. 

Agreed.  I suppose I should have clarified a bit better.  

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7 hours ago, Mrjukes21 said:

 

 I wonder is what should be my purpose in life after de converting. And how  should I live the rest of my post Christian life 

 

I will try to summarize it.  Think about the "should" thinking that has been programmed into you, and whether it is working for you.  And then think about what actually gives you a sense of purpose and feeling worthwhile.  Only you can decide that.

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Well thanks guys for all your support it means a lot to me. By continuing to give advice you guys somehow make my day just a little better and give me some motivation to live

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On 12/29/2020 at 6:39 PM, Mrjukes21 said:

I don't know how to start but I was a  devout Christian for over 30 years. I would go to church every Sunday, ask forgiveness for my sins every night and pray to god and I even read the four gospels of the bible. But a few years ago I came across a YouTube channel called A voice in the desert. This channel preaches that in order to become a Christian and be saved you must sell all your possessions, quit your job, and preach the gospel day in and day out. When I first heard of that I was very shocked and was very confused. So in order to confirm that this channel wasn't lying I decided to read my bible over again and boy was that channel right in what they were preaching. So from there on I decided to keep praying to god and ask him for guidance on how should I do it. But I never ended up getting an answer from him just like all the other times I've prayed. This teaching played a big role in my deconversion as I didn't want to leave my family or friends for a god who can't even answer my prayers or doesn't have an effect on my life. I also became depressed as a result of this teaching and have been ever since. I haven't found true happiness in the entire  time that I've deconverted from Christianity. Right now I am in the middle of believing in a Christian god and wanting to become a full on atheist but it's been hard for me to move on because of my fear of hell that's been crippling me. I come to this website for help and guidance on what should I do now and how can I make my life better. 

 

Yes, yes, a thousand times yes. I know exactly what you are going through @Mrjukes21. From just the little intro here, I know exactly the state of mind you are in and the struggles you are going through. I just happened to start on the same path a few years before you did. There is a blog from another person who ended up deconverting and I found his story very similar to mine. It helped me put my thoughts in perspective and let me know I was not the only one struggling to make sense of Christianity:

 

https://christosophical.wordpress.com/

 

I encourage you to read it from the earliest to the latest. It will make more sense and you can see the progression take place.

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On 12/30/2020 at 1:55 AM, Mrjukes21 said:

Also if you guys don't mind what do you guys think of the people who say the world is a stage and are anti vax, believe in  predictive programming, and that celebrities are part of illuminati? these things are big factors into why it's hard for me to be full on atheist. I would really appreciate some advice on this stuff

 

Florduh stated it well - unless there is good evidence to demonstrate something is true, i.e., it comports to reality, then it is not worth exerting the effort of belief. Consider Hitchen's Razor: "That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence."

 

I know the feeling you have. This fear and anxiety in the pit of your stomach of the great "What if?" What if I am wrong? What if there is a God and I am not smart enough to figure out what he wants? What if I end up in Hell? This is absolutely normal. I cannot speak for everyone, but I had a long period of self doubt. The key to me getting through it was to educate myself on the foundation of all things Christianity, the Bible. Once I realized the Bible is not what Christians claim it is, the whole house of cards fell and I was able to break out of the cycle of self doubt. I am not so arrogant to say I KNOW it is all bologna, but the am convinced the chances of Christianity being real are so slim, it doesn't even come close to a whole number.

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