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15 minutes ago, DarkBishop said:

 

You'll get there. It takes time. 

I hope so. 

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1 hour ago, SeaJay said:

I hope so. 

Again, do really think about some anxiety reducing options. It seems things, for you, are at a level which could warrant those. :)

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Also, remember, even Bart Ehrman said it took years for him to grapple with fear of Hell. You are in good company :)

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Just now, Myrkhoos said:

Also, remember, even Bart Ehrman said it took years for him to grapple with fear of Hell. You are in good company :)

That's a very good point. And think of the education he has been able to recieve and still had issues. 

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39 minutes ago, Myrkhoos said:

Again, do really think about some anxiety reducing options. It seems things, for you, are at a level which could warrant those. :)

You are right. I practice mindfulness meditation, and read. The trick is remembering to be mindful not just when meditating. 

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38 minutes ago, Myrkhoos said:

Also, remember, even Bart Ehrman said it took years for him to grapple with fear of Hell. You are in good company :)


I never knew that. That’s interesting. 

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On 7/18/2021 at 6:40 AM, SeaJay said:



And guess what? I now find myself worrying Islam might be true. I am serious.  

If there actually is a God, I hope they understand that I am sorry it came to this (as I said earlier, there was a time I was happy as a Christian). I could not take the anxiety anymore. I persevered for over 10 years. 

 

Hi SeaJay, good to hear from you. I totally understand the dilemma, the anxiety and the false doctrine of hell that they preach to scare the shit out of people and keep us under control so we'll keep their churches going..

 

    You hint at a strong need to belong and believe in 'something'. I think a lot of humans have this in common. ''No man is an island'' they say. We need each other for survival. I think some people must have a 'higher power' of some sort or they literally couldn't make it on this earth. They would give up. Sometimes therapy and antidepressants don't work for the trauma of what religion can do to you. (Although I would always promote getting a good therapist.)  Maybe these things can work to a certain degree but I had a very hard time with the topic of hell and nothing made me feel better. I constantly thought, ''what if they're wrong?'' Sometimes we just need to feel safe. That's why I am going to post this.

 

I wonder if you have ever listened to the ''Gospel of Peace/Gospel of Grace before? It's quite fascinating concept. If I need to relieve my fear of hell when it comes back to torture me (which it still does to this day) I listen to a man named Mike Williams.  If I was ever going to go back to church and listen to another opinion of the bible it would be, ''The Gospel of Inclusion''. Thousands of pastors are preaching this new ''good news'' now and it is not the hard core shit we got thrown at us and brainwashed with..

 

The message of ''the gospel of grace'' is that Christianity is an embarrassment to what Jesus did for us on the cross. According to this message, Jesus died for the whole world. Sometimes the doctrine of Hell is so ingrained in people that there doesn't seem to be a way out of it's fear. It can ruin one's life. I am not trying to promote another Christian doctrine, I am showing you that millions of others follow this 'Good News'' as they call it. When the image of hell starts to enter my mind, I can listen to a podcast of this ''gospel of grace'' and get truly comforted. Everyone has to do what they have to do to bring themselves some peace of mind. Maybe it might help you to know that not everyone in the world preaches the literal version of the bible. When nothing else works for me, I can listen to one of Pastor Mike's podcasts and I become comforted because what he says makes much more sense to me.  

 

 I was truly 'blessed' to have met Pastor Mike Williams while I lived in British Columbia 25 years ago. I spent 5 days with him at his seminars. The rooms were packed for those 5 days with many other Christians looking for a different message and I was one of them. I was aghast at how many people were packed in that hall. I wasn't the only born again Christian who wanted to hear this message of 'grace'. This was around the time... and was the beginning of my doubting of the bible. I had so many questions about Christianity and it's doctrine. I ended up having a few private talks with him that calmed my breaking heart. I never thought I was good enough for the church and always thought that I would go to hell because I couldn't seem to abide to the rules of this very legalistic church that I belonged to. I was always 'sinning' one way or the other.

 

 The city that I lived in then was called ''The Born Again Capitol of Canada''.  Everyone was 'Born Again' in this city!! It was filled with legalist churches of every brand. The Born Again churches actually put up signs that if you attended this pastors seminars, you were not welcome back into their church. Being the rebel that I am, I had to go and see what they were afraid of. What was he preaching they scared them?? Maybe someone was going to tell me that the doubts I had about certain things could be true?

 

Mike knew every high flutin', famous pastor from all over the world and had been a Born Again pastor for many years and I wanted to hear what he had to say.. (his story is unbelievable of how he left the whole lot of them behind!) He is now considered a blasphemous  pastor because he teaches the gospel of inclusion. Now thousands more have joined him in this new 'Gospel of Grace'. According to Mike, we are all saved on Exc . It goes further than that. The whole damn world is saved because of Jesus. Period.

 

Even though it is another version of reading the bible, it is an interesting one to me (even today) and a completely kind, loving one at that. Here is a 3 hour long podcast on how he views hell. It's very comforting (even if none of it is true, it's another way of looking at the bible and this terrible topic of hell) It may help you to know that many people look at the scriptures today ''in context'' (when, where, timeline of when the books were written...this is what they look at) and not like the legalistic churches where everything they preach today is cherry picked. This is not to confuse you with another doctrine but it may bring you some peace. But If I was going to follow Christianity today, this is the teachings I  would follow. If you choose to listen to it, I hope it brings you comfort about Hell. He has a lot to say about it. It's long. 3 hours. If you need something to hang on about Jesus, get brainwashed by this. Jesus is not judging you one bit according to this new gospel. Not. One. Bit. This gospel of grace makes your heart sing, not be afraid. Just press the download button and hear what he has to say. It's called ''The Irrelevancy of Hell.''

 

Comfort to your heart my friend. 

 

https://gospelrevolution.com/product/the-irrelevancy-of-hell/

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On 7/19/2021 at 1:50 AM, SeaJay said:

It doesn’t help that I think Heaven is communicating with me by way of coincidences and sometimes even seeing things. It’s been this way since November 2010 when it all started. 
 

For example, I practice mindfulness meditation (eyes open) and yesterday whilst doing so, a word flashed before my eyes, and it was ‘Methodist’. Absolutely no reason I would conjure up that church. Later during the same meditation session, I saw the name ‘Paul’ as in St Paul. Though, my current secular reading is dealing with the apostle Paul so that could explain that. As well as realising ‘Paul’ probably comes from my current reading, there were other little tell-tale signs that it all originated from my mind - but I won’t bother you with the details. Suffice to say I was only slightly appeased it came from my mind. 
 

Then, just before dropping off to sleep and just before waking up, I sometimes see images in my mind’s eye. Then I am worrying that I will see something in real life that equates to my ‘vision’ (because if I am being shown the future, then obviously it is coming from Heaven - because what are the chances, right?). I’ve had this off and on for over 10 years and the number of times I believe these communications have “come true”, so to speak, I think I can count on one hand. And even then there’s differences between what I saw in my head and what I saw in waking life - but still, it’s scary. 
 

I think if I could get over this notion I am being communicated with, deconversion would be easier. But every time I think I’m out, I get dragged back in. It’s tough on times. 
 

Has anyone here ever experienced things like, seeing images and/or seeing coincidences as something akin to a sign?

 

Fragmented, unclear messages, words, visuals. Couldn't a deity do a better job than that? :) Why would a god send you a half-assed message? If it 'was' a supernatural being, it wasnt a very smart one. Might be something to consider.

 

Your experience reminds me of hypnagogic hallucinations. They occur as one fades into and out of sleep. Now and then I hear my wife call me when I'm half asleep. I look at her and she's out cold. I used to hear the doorbell ring in the morning while in bed. I would pop out of bed and nobody's there. My hyperalert dogs never seemed to hear these occurrences. :) 

 

shrugs. :)

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3 hours ago, Margee said:

 

Hi SeaJay, good to hear from you. I totally understand the dilemma, the anxiety and the false doctrine of hell that they preach to scare the shit out of people and keep us under control so we'll keep their churches going..

 

    You hint at a strong need to belong and believe in 'something'. I think a lot of humans have this in common. ''No man is an island'' they say. We need each other for survival. I think some people must have a 'higher power' of some sort or they literally couldn't make it on this earth. They would give up. Sometimes therapy and antidepressants don't work for the trauma of what religion can do to you. (Although I would always promote getting a good therapist.)  Maybe these things can work to a certain degree but I had a very hard time with the topic of hell and nothing made me feel better. I constantly thought, ''what if they're wrong?'' Sometimes we just need to feel safe. That's why I am going to post this.

 

I wonder if you have ever listened to the ''Gospel of Peace/Gospel of Grace before? It's quite fascinating concept. If I need to relieve my fear of hell when it comes back to torture me (which it still does to this day) I listen to a man named Mike Williams.  If I was ever going to go back to church and listen to another opinion of the bible it would be, ''The Gospel of Inclusion''. Thousands of pastors are preaching this new ''good news'' now and it is not the hard core shit we got thrown at us and brainwashed with..

 

The message of ''the gospel of grace'' is that Christianity is an embarrassment to what Jesus did for us on the cross. According to this message, Jesus died for the whole world. Sometimes the doctrine of Hell is so ingrained in people that there doesn't seem to be a way out of it's fear. It can ruin one's life. I am not trying to promote another Christian doctrine, I am showing you that millions of others follow this 'Good News'' as they call it. When the image of hell starts to enter my mind, I can listen to a podcast of this ''gospel of grace'' and get truly comforted. Everyone has to do what they have to do to bring themselves some peace of mind. Maybe it might help you to know that not everyone in the world preaches the literal version of the bible. When nothing else works for me, I can listen to one of Pastor Mike's podcasts and I become comforted because what he says makes much more sense to me.  

 

 I was truly 'blessed' to have met Pastor Mike Williams while I lived in British Columbia 25 years ago. I spent 5 days with him at his seminars. The rooms were packed for those 5 days with many other Christians looking for a different message and I was one of them. I was aghast at how many people were packed in that hall. I wasn't the only born again Christian who wanted to hear this message of 'grace'. This was around the time... and was the beginning of my doubting of the bible. I had so many questions about Christianity and it's doctrine. I ended up having a few private talks with him that calmed my breaking heart. I never thought I was good enough for the church and always thought that I would go to hell because I couldn't seem to abide to the rules of this very legalistic church that I belonged to. I was always 'sinning' one way or the other.

 

 The city that I lived in then was called ''The Born Again Capitol of Canada''.  Everyone was 'Born Again' in this city!! It was filled with legalist churches of every brand. The Born Again churches actually put up signs that if you attended this pastors seminars, you were not welcome back into their church. Being the rebel that I am, I had to go and see what they were afraid of. What was he preaching they scared them?? Maybe someone was going to tell me that the doubts I had about certain things could be true?

 

Mike knew every high flutin', famous pastor from all over the world and had been a Born Again pastor for many years and I wanted to hear what he had to say.. (his story is unbelievable of how he left the whole lot of them behind!) He is now considered a blasphemous  pastor because he teaches the gospel of inclusion. Now thousands more have joined him in this new 'Gospel of Grace'. According to Mike, we are all saved on Exc . It goes further than that. The whole damn world is saved because of Jesus. Period.

 

Even though it is another version of reading the bible, it is an interesting one to me (even today) and a completely kind, loving one at that. Here is a 3 hour long podcast on how he views hell. It's very comforting (even if none of it is true, it's another way of looking at the bible and this terrible topic of hell) It may help you to know that many people look at the scriptures today ''in context'' (when, where, timeline of when the books were written...this is what they look at) and not like the legalistic churches where everything they preach today is cherry picked. This is not to confuse you with another doctrine but it may bring you some peace. But If I was going to follow Christianity today, this is the teachings I  would follow. If you choose to listen to it, I hope it brings you comfort about Hell. He has a lot to say about it. It's long. 3 hours. If you need something to hang on about Jesus, get brainwashed by this. Jesus is not judging you one bit according to this new gospel. Not. One. Bit. This gospel of grace makes your heart sing, not be afraid. Just press the download button and hear what he has to say. It's called ''The Irrelevancy of Hell.''

 

Comfort to your heart my friend. 

 

https://gospelrevolution.com/product/the-irrelevancy-of-hell/

Thank you for the reply and sharing your story.  The fear of hell has traumatised me so much, I literally cannot have anything to do with Christianity or any of the Abrahamic faiths. Nothing at all whatsoever. For me, death has to be oblivion - nothing else. I actually caught myself believing that was what happened when you died, even when I was a practising Christian. With all the suffering, I’m more than happy for it to be oblivion. 
 

Again though, thank you very much for the reply. 

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2 hours ago, midniterider said:

 

Fragmented, unclear messages, words, visuals. Couldn't a deity do a better job than that? :) Why would a god send you a half-assed message? If it 'was' a supernatural being, it wasnt a very smart one. Might be something to consider.

 

Your experience reminds me of hypnagogic hallucinations. They occur as one fades into and out of sleep. Now and then I hear my wife call me when I'm half asleep. I look at her and she's out cold. I used to hear the doorbell ring in the morning while in bed. I would pop out of bed and nobody's there. My hyperalert dogs never seemed to hear these occurrences. :) 

 

shrugs. :)

You’re absolutely right. I once looked up hypnagogic and (I think the other one is called hypnapompic or something), and it definitely sounds like what I am experiencing. It’s just the uncertainty. 
 

Also, on a couple of occasions, I’ve heard a woman call my name (wasn’t my wife though). I’ve also experienced something called “exploding head syndrome”. That’s a blast! If you’ll excuse the pun 😁

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28 minutes ago, SeaJay said:

Thank you for the reply and sharing your story.  The fear of hell has traumatised me so much, I literally cannot have anything to do with Christianity or any of the Abrahamic faiths. Nothing at all whatsoever. For me, death has to be oblivion - nothing else. I actually caught myself believing that was what happened when you died, even when I was a practising Christian. With all the suffering, I’m more than happy for it to be oblivion. 
 

Again though, thank you very much for the reply. 

 

I sure hope I did not offend you SeaJay. I guess when you mentioned that you were worrying about Islam being true, you might want a much nicer version of Christianity. What is it about Islam that you think it could be true? 

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3 hours ago, Margee said:

 

I sure hope I did not offend you SeaJay. I guess when you mentioned that you were worrying about Islam being true, you might want a much nicer version of Christianity. What is it about Islam that you think it could be true? 

Maybe bk, at first glance it sounds simpler - one book by one prophet about one God, no priests, no images, no sacraments. It gets complicated further on but I always feel that Islam is like simplified Christianity, in theology and practice.

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14 hours ago, Margee said:

 

I sure hope I did not offend you SeaJay. I guess when you mentioned that you were worrying about Islam being true, you might want a much nicer version of Christianity. What is it about Islam that you think it could be true? 

That’s ok, no worries. Concerning Islam, nothing in particular, I’m just worrying in general. Tomorrow I might be worrying about another religion’s eternal punishment doctrine. 

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I’ve realised that mornings are usually the worst time for me. I looked this up and (if I’ve got this right) apparently, it has something to do with cortisol (the body’s main stress hormone) and  which fuels the flight or fight response we have. It’s linked to adrenal glands. 
 

Anyway, it’s at its highest first thing in the morning. 
 

Edit: And roughly 5 hours later I feel a lot calmer. 

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11 hours ago, SeaJay said:

I’ve realised that mornings are usually the worst time for me. I looked this up and (if I’ve got this right) apparently, it has something to do with cortisol (the body’s main stress hormone) and  which fuels the flight or fight response we have. It’s linked to adrenal glands. 
 

Anyway, it’s at its highest first thing in the morning. 
 

Edit: And roughly 5 hours later I feel a lot calmer. 

About that, I actually was told byba nutritionist that one way to deal with that is a eating a rich protein filled breakfast.

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23 minutes ago, Myrkhoos said:

About that, I actually was told byba nutritionist that one way to deal with that is a eating a rich protein filled breakfast.

Protein- different to carbs right? Only I read it has something to do with low blood sugar levels. 
 

Ok, honey on potatoes for breakfast it is then!

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8 hours ago, SeaJay said:

Protein- different to carbs right? Only I read it has something to do with low blood sugar levels. 
 

Ok, honey on potatoes for breakfast it is then!

Honey on potaties seemes like a carb fest !!! :)) Not that protein rich.

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Yesterday and today I’ve been feeling much better. Compared to how I have been, it’s as different as night and day. 
 

Thank you all very much for the support. ❤️

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Hi SeaJay, I’m delighted to hear this!  I’m not completely surprised, to be honest.  Your decision to finally step away from Christianity once and for all is something you’ve been wanting and needing to do for a long time now, give the misery you went through these past few years.  
 

I’m sure you know that it’s not likely to be all plain sailing from here.  There will likely be setbacks and rough days as your anxiety kicks in.  It may roll over you like that San Francisco fog I told you about.  But as sure as anything the sun will rise higher and it WILL burn off.  You’ve wisely decided to stay well away from Christianity - and any religion - from now on, and in doing so you’ve gained the upper hand.  You’ve taken the hardest step, my friend.  Now you’re fully a part of this community that is here for you and others going through this process.    You’re among friends who understand you in a way that few others can.  I’m glad you’re here, and I’m proud of the courage you’ve shown!

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Thank you for the support TABA, thank you all, I really do appreciate it. This site is my greatest means of support and I’m glad and fortunate it exists. I’ve been in some horrendous situations where the suffering was so bad. I’m not sure what I would have done if this site wasn’t available. Might have had a break down or something. I might have had one to some extent. 
 

Anyway, in my opinion there are no strangers here, only friends I haven’t met yet. As they say, ‘a friend in need is a friend indeed’. 

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When you left the faith, did you worry that you were seeing  signs, or, being communicated with in some way, to show that you were wrong?

 

I have this anxiety. 


Edit: Unbelievable! Guess what, a friend of mine I haven’t seen in years who is very much a Christian just turned up at my house and wanted to tell me that he’s silenced the atheists. 
 

A sign? I’m actually shaking :( Why does this always happen to me!?

 

He said he could destroy or words to that effect, evolution, and that scientists have changed the size of the metric metre so they could prove the speed of light was constant (because he thinks it isn’t). He also said Kent (Ken?) Hovind was an amazing person or something. 


That said, if ANYONE was going to say something like, “I’ve felt I needed to come see you”, it would be him. But he said nothing. 


But still, haven’t seen or heard anything from him at all- and he shows up out of the blue. 
 

I told him I don’t/can’t discuss anything to do with Christianity and he respected that, but I am still shook up about it all :(

 

Can’t believe it. 

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3 hours ago, SeaJay said:

When you left the faith, did you worry that you were seeing  signs, or, being communicated with in some way, to show that you were wrong?

 

I have this anxiety. 


Edit: Unbelievable! Guess what, a friend of mine I haven’t seen in years who is very much a Christian just turned up at my house and wanted to tell me that he’s silenced the atheists. 
 

A sign? I’m actually shaking :( Why does this always happen to me!?

 

He said he could destroy or words to that effect, evolution, and that scientists have changed the size of the metric metre so they could prove the speed of light was constant (because he thinks it isn’t). He also said Kent (Ken?) Hovind was an amazing person or something. 


That said, if ANYONE was going to say something like, “I’ve felt I needed to come see you”, it would be him. But he said nothing. 


But still, haven’t seen or heard anything from him at all- and he shows up out of the blue. 
 

I told him I don’t/can’t discuss anything to do with Christianity and he respected that, but I am still shook up about it all :(

 

Can’t believe it. 

 

Well seajay something like that was bound to happen one day. I have old friends that I might drop in on if I'm in the area. And if he knows of your dilemma at all then he would have reason to show up and tell you these things. 

 

But the whole speed of light thing made me laugh a little. It sounds like some of the stuff the Christians that show up here with their new personal Revelations would say. I guess my question would have to be. Even if one could slow light down, or if it wasn't traveling at what scientists say is the speed of light. How does that silence athiests? Slower light does not mean there is a God. But I'm sure in his mind it does. For whatever reason. 🙄 I have a friend that likes to message me out of the blue from time to time. He is now falling in line with flat earthers. Probably bc the Bible does depict a flat earth creation. He was telling me all kinds things that were supposed to be "proof" of flat earth. Most of their theories are because of plain ignorance and YouTube BS videos. 

 

So was God sending him to tell me about flat earth so I could believe in the Bible? No, no he wasn't. If there is a God I would hope that that God would know the earth is spherical. 

 

 

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@SeaJay, you know better than any of us the misery you endured for the past ten years or so, related to fear of Hell and the Christian god.  Does it seem credible that a loving god would entice you back into this living hell by use of coincidences?  Or by any other means, for that matter?  Seems pretty passive-aggressive for a deity.  More like an ex-lover.  Surely a loving god would have eased your fears at some point over the last decade, and brought you the peace that surpasses all understanding.  But no, that didn’t happen.  In fact you have found relief by hanging around non-believers.  Deep down, you know why.  Your anxiety, which looks everywhere for trouble, is more real than this supposed god.  But it’s not invincible.  You’ve taken steps to overcome it.  Stay the course and you will overcome, my friend. 

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Thanks both. I’m feeling a bit better after rationalising it and reading both your posts. 
 

The funny thing is (and cutting a long story short), knowing what I know about this friend, if anyone was going to knock my door and tell me they had a message for me - it would definitely be this friend. But not only did they say nothing of the sort, they said things that sounded to me, just plain wrong. 
 

Also, I think to myself, if this was a sign:

 

(a) I admitted to myself that Christianity probably isn’t true, 11 days ago, so why did I have to wait so long, why not 10 minutes after I admitted it, or even two or three days later? The timing doesn’t really make sense, unless it’s nothing but a coincidence

 

(b) I’m utterly convinced that a supreme creator of the universe could let me know in no uncertain terms that I was wrong; I know they could do a much better job than that (and I’m not even trying to be remotely sarcastic or disrespectful in saying that). So what my friend said (and didn’t say) also doesn’t make much sense, unless it’s nothing but a coincidence. 
 

Trying to think logically about it. 

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