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My Thoughts


padhyde
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This is my first post, so this is why I am here. I have had spells in my life when I believed I was God. Each time the experience was overwhelming. My mind felt it had been taken over by an exterior force which to me was utterly real. For the moment without me fully explaining in any more detail just accept that I had irrefutable reasons for believing that God had taken possession of my mind and body. I decided to share my experience with my wife. I was then 23 and she was 20. She was frightened, thought that I was unwell and got me to see a Doctor. I was immediately given powerful medication that knocked me out for days. I was thought to be suffering from hypomania. I was off work for 4 weeks. I returned to work. The thoughts and feelings had faded. In my early 30s I had the same experience. This time I told my wife and a Vicar. Same result. I was off work for 2 weeks. A few years later it happened again. This time I told no one, took no medication and just lived with the knowledge that God was finally figuring out how to use me. After a few weeks the thoughts faded. I have had no recurrence of these experiences for a few years now. I am now 63.

I was brought up as a Roman Catholic. I left the Church when I was 16 and regarded myself as a non denominational christian for many years.

Like many, I placed religion at the back of my mind during my career. My religious experiences rekindled my interest and I sought to understand why they were happening to me.

I retired in my early 50s and devoted a lot of time to a study of history, philosophy, science and religion. I gradually came to realise that God and religion are concepts of mankind. I do not believe there is any supernatural deity. Religions are the product of the human mind.

I now believe that my own religious experiences were psychotic disorders.

I also believe that these experiences were the kind of things that happened to many of the great names in the Bible and to Mohamed. The problem is that in those days, people believed them. As soon as anyone today talks about visions and experiences like mine they are taken off to the Doctor for medication. Thank goodness!

Now that's enough from me right now. Later I will talk about other issues arising from my experiences.

Suffice it now to say, I am a very happy man. I have had a great life. I retired from a Chief Executive's job when I was 52 because I could afford to and wanted to live a life of freedom to do things I enjoyed. I have done a lot of voluntary work but now concentrate on a few particular interests. Religion is one of them.

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Welcome! Wow, sounds like you have had some interesting experiences!

 

I am currently studying psychology as my major in college and agree with you about disorders in the early religious leaders. There are also physical disorders that I have read about that mimic the experiences some people in the Bible had. In Dean Hamer's book The God Gene, he talks about the idea that Paul of the Bible, Joan of Arc, Muhammad of Islam, and one other person seemed to have suffered from temporal lobe epilepsy. This involves bright flashes of light, sometimes temporary blindness, and then these people also tend to be completely focused on one goal and completely absorbed in it. They also sometimes see things and hear things that are not there. Religion today takes everything in their holy books or writings as if it were happening today. The problem is that, with science and observation, we have come to know much more about why people do the things they do. We know of many physical things that cause weird experiences, visions, and such so that we no longer have to attribute it to god for lack of knowing any better. This is something I constantly think about as a student of psychology. My mom has bipolar disorder and is highly religious so I have seen how the two intermingle to perpetuate each other. It sounds like you were having some bouts of mania, and I'm glad you got through that! Sometimes, when people have a tendency towards a certain disorder, I think religion can make it worse for them.

 

I liked all your thoughts, and I look forward to the ideas you will contribue to this website!

 

Again, WELCOME!

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Welcome and congrats on your early retirement... I hope I am able to do the same in the future, but I sincerely doubt it. :/

 

You have had some very interesting experiences. We have a couple members on here who I think could relate to your story, although their stories vary somewhat.

 

I look forward to your insight... and welcome! Sit back and have a coffee. :)

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Padhyde,

 

I am ex-christian now, but some of the issues that make me doubt once in a while are related to the paranormal. Your story helps me understand some of those issues I wonder about. Thank you for posting!

 

Last night, I was reading an article in Encounters with the Paranormal about near death experiences. The writer gives a scientific explanation to the phenomenon, which includes seeing flashes of light when the brain lacks oxygen. The article ties right in with the post of YMAtheist and with yours.

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Guest revpo

Enjoyed your story.

I might say or guess shall we say you had built up such a psychological effect in the mind there had to be a burst of outlet and you did it.

This type of situation a doctor will sedate you heavily until the thoughts are gone, not to investigate the base of the problem. I worked in a psych hospital for 5 years in the medicine field, and unfortunately this happens 90 percent of the time, in..medicate..sedate..and out........

 

Yes the belief in a GOD and the supernatural is a myth of man and writings, it was started by man in his writings and progressed hundreds of years later in writings, saying they remember<I doubt that>, anyhow welcome and congratulations on retirement.

I worked/retired at 47, then went to work off/on until a few years ago and retired again.

 

WELCOME

 

REVPO :close:

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Welcome Padhyde (interesting screen name...)

 

Looking forward to your posts. :wave:

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I worked in a psych hospital for 5 years in the medicine field

 

 

Revpo,

 

With your experience have you any idea what proportion of mental illness has its roots in "religion". One xtian counsellor told me that in cases of schizophrenia calvanists and catholics make up a disproportiante share. He did not say why, maybe through doctrines like predestination in the former and hell centred teaching in both? I am trying to get handle of xtianty's postive or negative influence on mental health. I would appreciate any info on this subject you could contribute or point me to. Maybe a separate thread so people might make their contributions?

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Golden,

 

I would be willing to contribute some ideas to this, though I don't have any factual research. This is a topic of highest interest to me and I would love to discuss it. Please do make a separate thread!

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Golden,

 

I would be willing to contribute some ideas to this, though I don't have any factual research. This is a topic of highest interest to me and I would love to discuss it. Please do make a separate thread!

 

Done:-

 

http://www.ex-christian.net/index.php?showtopic=9741

 

Look forward to reading your contribution mom!

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