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Author Topic: Did Anyone Else Have One Foot Stuck In Their Birth Religion?....  (Read 5986 times)

Nyktipolos

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Re: Did Anyone Else Have One Foot Stuck In Their Birth Religion?....
« Reply #30 on: February 24, 2013, 02:38:21 am »
Quote from: Jack;97968
I honestly don't think you should take the sacrament of confirmation if you don't believe in what you're confirming and you're not sure you're comfortable with it. I was essentially pushed through confirmation as a teenager and I didn't like it. There's no rush; the liturgy'll come around again next year if you decide you want to go through with it.

 
And just because you don't take the sacrament doesn't mean you can't go to Mass, or receive the priest's blessing. When I was in a private school for three years I never went through my confirmation, so if I did not remain seated in the pews, I went up in line and crossed my arms (which indicates that I wish to receive a blessing instead of the sacrament, and generally that I haven't gone through my First Confirmation).

After doing some quick Googling, there are apparently a couple of issues surrounding this, including who can give the blessing, or if it should be done at all. If you are worried, I'd try contacting the church you are attending ahead of time and asking them about it. It does seem that for the most part this is an accepted practice.

I do agree with Jack, though: you don't need to rush into confirmation if you are not sure. That's why, as far as I am led to believe, there are many adult groups out there that help adults coming to Catholicism and in helping them figure out if this is the right place for them, how do they go about confirming, supporting them if need be, etc.
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Fireof9

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Re: Did Anyone Else Have One Foot Stuck In Their Birth Religion?....
« Reply #31 on: February 24, 2013, 02:57:03 am »
Quote from: Elizabeth;97908



 

I love the sense of community, the central authority (Pope), the Saints, Mary, the music and ritual, the traditions. I feel like I can not have that stuff alone. I wanted to attend a UU Church, but I cannot get to the nearest one by me because I have no car and the buses don't run near it.


 
I totally understand that! There is also something imo about the actual church building that adds to it as well. There have been times when I have thought of attending a mass just for the vibe. I have only ever been to one once in my life, when I was quite young, but the ritual of it was amazing.
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Re: Did Anyone Else Have One Foot Stuck In Their Birth Religion?....
« Reply #32 on: February 24, 2013, 07:31:58 am »
Quote from: Jack;97968
I honestly don't think you should take the sacrament of confirmation if you don't believe in what you're confirming and you're not sure you're comfortable with it. I was essentially pushed through confirmation as a teenager and I didn't like it. There's no rush; the liturgy'll come around again next year if you decide you want to go through with it.

 
I agree. I took a long time deciding whether I wanted to be confirmed as an Anglican (I was 28, I think). It was right for me at the time, but possibly I should have waited longer. However, there were no signs yet that I was going to end up following a different religion. I wouldn't have been confirmed if there had been.

I'm of two minds over whether to take Communion anymore. I do very occasionally, in gatherings where I've been made explicitly welcome as a Pagan with Christian leanings, like Inclusive Church (which has a number of Pagan Christians under its banner). Otherwise I generally don't anymore. I really miss it - it was the most spiritual point of the service, for me - but it is explicitly about community and relationship with Christ.
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Elizabeth

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Re: Did Anyone Else Have One Foot Stuck In Their Birth Religion?....
« Reply #33 on: February 24, 2013, 08:14:30 am »
Quote from: Jack;97968
I honestly don't think you should take the sacrament of confirmation if you don't believe in what you're confirming and you're not sure you're comfortable with it. I was essentially pushed through confirmation as a teenager and I didn't like it. There's no rush; the liturgy'll come around again next year if you decide you want to go through with it.

 
I completely agree. I don't plan to unless I 100% believe everything they teach. It is just tough being an outsider, looking in.

My SPonsor has been absolutely amazing. She is a very knowledgeable Catholic, but also a Taoist. She wants me to find where I belong, even if it means not being Confirmed Catholic. She has been an absolute blessing!
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SPhoenix

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Re: Did Anyone Else Have One Foot Stuck In Their Birth Religion?....
« Reply #34 on: March 18, 2013, 09:47:35 pm »
Quote from: Elizabeth;97101
Was anyone else like this? What helped to finalize your path in either your birth religion or another?

Thanks

 
Hi Elizabeth,

I'm going to just warn you ahead of time that I have some residual bitterness left over from some issues with Christianity.... which makes it strange that yes, I too once waffled in whether or not I was Christian.

When I was a small child, I had several death experiences. Meaning that I died and was resuscitated. These days, everything seems to be called a near death experience, so I want to be clear. *wink*  Anyway, during these experiences, I walked with what I still call God.

God is the very essence of Love. While I was dead, I was surfing on waves of Holy, undeniable, complete LOVE. It had physical presence, it was weighty, it was colorful (we only see three, but there are limitless colors!). It was music, and light and pure life. It was absolutely beyond explaining.

So when I was taught about "god" and told that God's name was Jesus, I accepted it. Even as a child, though, I struggled to understand. How does a being of such infinite love demand sacrifices? How does a being of such infinite, unspeakable love command mass murders? How does love itself expect a human sacrifice in order to be appeased before It can love you??

Would you demand that your good son be murdered to appease your anger his sibling? Would you create beings flawed and incapable of good decisions, then hate them for being flawed? Would you then require murder to appease you for them being flawed?

All of these things were incompatible with Love.

I started to read the bible, and study it extensively, without the desire to excuse away everything I read. I stopped trying to find a way to force the round peg of human sacrifice (jesus) into the square hole of Love Itself.

When I realized that there were big problems with the whole story, and I could no longer justify them, I had to walk away. When I began to understand that things accepted in Christianity were quite disgusting if looked at honestly from outside the religion, I found it terrifying. The Christian god is a terrifying god. It really is.

When looked at honestly and without justification, the symbolic cannibalism that Catholics and some Christian sects indulge in (eat my flesh as crackers and drink my blood as wine) is completely out of line with Love.

When looked at without a desire to excuse it all away, the Christian god is extremely terrifying. "Believe my illogical, monstrous story, or be burned forever."

I know all the justifications--I used to make them... like how we as parents punish our children, and that's what god's supposedly doing. But the difference is that we let our children live through, and thus learn from, our punishments. We don't punish our children with such a sadistic excess, and we don't do it forever--the point is to teach them. And if they don't live through it, they don't learn, now do they.

Anyway. I spent times literally on the ground, abjectly groveling in utter terror... because WHAT IF I WAS WRONG?? What if the Christian god is the REAL one, and he's really going to torture me FOREVER because I couldn't--COULDN'T--believe that love itself would torture or would want human sacrifice as an appeasement.

I still sometimes miss the singing and the fellowship. I miss the rituals and the community... but I realize that I'm subjecting myself to the constant bombardment of the belief that "love" is murder, cannibalism, and telling people that they're born wrong and bad.

That's when I realize that I could never do it again. I'll find or form a community, but I won't subject myself, and especially my child, to the belief that "god loves you only because some guy was butchered brutally".

I KNOW God. I KNOW that LOVE ITSELF would find such a thing abhorrent. And I could never subject my daughter to the terror that I experienced when trying to leave Christianity. It would break my heart to find out that my child was hiding in terror under her bed because she thought LOVE ITSELF might burn and torture her forever. Nor do I want my daughter to believe that LOVE is TORTURE, MURDER, CANNIBALISM, or the other BRUTALITIES the bible's god committed against humanity. The bible says GOD IS LOVE, but then the picture it paints of god is that of a monster. Is love a monster, then?

I don't believe so.

That was my journey away from that religion. It was an extremely hard and terrifying one.  

I hope I didn't offend anyone. This isn't about any Christian, it's about the religion itself. And these are my personal experiences, too... others' mileage may vary.

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Re: Did Anyone Else Have One Foot Stuck In Their Birth Religion?....
« Reply #35 on: March 18, 2013, 11:46:25 pm »
Quote from: Elizabeth;97101
I was brought up Christian, but ventured into Catholicism on my own. I disagree with a lot of their teachings, as well as Jesus as Messiah, but I feel stuck there.

At this point in my life, I am examining what I want to teach my children when I have them. I want them to grow up knowing they can choose where they want to go spiritually. I want them to be confident that they can choose their own path.

I feel a strong pull towards Catholicism, I do not know why. But I also want to do my own thing. I struggle with figuring out what that is.

I constantly waffle between the two. For a few weeks, I can be fine with deciding to leave Christianity. But then, WHAM, I feel like I should give it one more try. And back and forth it goes.

Was anyone else like this? What helped to finalize your path in either your birth religion or another?

Thanks

 
yeah im not that religious really... i believe in gods and god and stuff but i dont go that much farther then that :/ so this might not be AS on topic as most people
i DO switch back and forward alot tho cuz im a half breed between jewish and christian from my mums and pups. so i usually say im jewish cuz its kinda fun being jewish. i like to say jewish words like oy and shlep and mench.
but at christmas i sorta all of a sudden go all "oh im half christian! wheres my tree and presents and santa at?"
so. i guess that was totally unenlightening. i'll be on my way now XP

Scent of Pine

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Re: Did Anyone Else Have One Foot Stuck In Their Birth Religion?....
« Reply #36 on: March 24, 2013, 03:14:12 am »
Quote from: SPhoenix;101858
Hi Elizabeth,


When looked at without a desire to excuse it all away, the Christian god is extremely terrifying. "Believe my illogical, monstrous story, or be burned forever."

Anyway. I spent times literally on the ground, abjectly groveling in utter terror... because WHAT IF I WAS WRONG?? What if the Christian god is the REAL one, and he's really going to torture me FOREVER because I couldn't--COULDN'T--believe that love itself would torture or would want human sacrifice as an appeasement.

I hope I didn't offend anyone. This isn't about any Christian, it's about the religion itself. And these are my personal experiences, too... others' mileage may vary.

 
I COMPLETELY understand this.  I was raised in a very strict Protestant church, a "Sinners in the hands of an angry God" church.  They were big into spiritual warfare. We were told that we would go to heaven as long as we were in that church, and when we were there we'd look down at everyone else burning in hell and LAUGH at them.  It was sick.  It was spiritual abuse, combined with a "spare the rod" physical abuse.  

I left at the age of 14, when my mother was excommunicated for divorcing my father (ironic for Protestants, huh?).  I'm well into adulthood, and have considered myself pagan for a very long time.  But every so often I get a terror attack of "what if I'm wrong??"  After having it beaten into your skull for your entire childhood it's really hard to come out of it.  I'm not sure if I'll ever be really over it.

SPhoenix

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Re: Did Anyone Else Have One Foot Stuck In Their Birth Religion?....
« Reply #37 on: March 24, 2013, 08:16:01 am »
Quote from: Scent of Pine;102600
After having it beaten into your skull for your entire childhood it's really hard to come out of it.  I'm not sure if I'll ever be really over it.

To be honest, it's like PTSD. The flashbacks that come with "what if I'm wrong" are as strong and as frightening as the flashbacks that come from having been raped and tortured literally.

I just would not risk raising my child in that belief system. The community and the songs and the rituals are just not enough reason to risk that kind of long term damage to my child's psyche.

I'm discussing in PMs with someone, how it's nice to not be alone in this. To know that others also suffered these extreme "attacks" of terror. (Obviously, not happy someone else suffered, but happy to be able to come together and understand each other, now that we have)
« Last Edit: March 24, 2013, 08:19:02 am by SPhoenix »

kala83

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Re: Did Anyone Else Have One Foot Stuck In Their Birth Religion?....
« Reply #38 on: May 26, 2013, 06:28:19 pm »
Quote from: Elizabeth;97101
I was brought up Christian, but ventured into Catholicism on my own. I disagree with a lot of their teachings, as well as Jesus as Messiah, but I feel stuck there.

At this point in my life, I am examining what I want to teach my children when I have them. I want them to grow up knowing they can choose where they want to go spiritually. I want them to be confident that they can choose their own path.

I feel a strong pull towards Catholicism, I do not know why. But I also want to do my own thing. I struggle with figuring out what that is.

I constantly waffle between the two. For a few weeks, I can be fine with deciding to leave Christianity. But then, WHAM, I feel like I should give it one more try. And back and forth it goes.

Was anyone else like this? What helped to finalize your path in either your birth religion or another?

Thanks

 
I grew up christian much of my life and I still attend church really regularly actually, I believe that Jesus was a good man I do believe in that he did die for my sins. But I don't believe thats the only thing out there.

I know a lot of pagans don't agree with that way of thinking but this is just what works for me the best.

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Re: Did Anyone Else Have One Foot Stuck In Their Birth Religion?....
« Reply #39 on: May 29, 2013, 02:59:28 pm »
Quote from: kala83;109981


.


I still have one foot stuck in Christianity.  

I've embraced Paganism in my heart, I've said my good-byes to Jesus (that was an interesting meditation experience, let me tell you) and I've start happily down my path.  

But...

I have flashbacks.  

I still think I'm a terrible person, and for no other reason than because the Bible says that I'm not worthy of that God's attention until I accept the sacrifice of a Man that did nothing wrong (Jesus).  My own Gods are working with me on this, They've told me that I am worthy of working with Them, that They wouldn't have shown up if They didn't think I was worthy.

I have times when I curl on the bed with my hands over my ears, expecting demons to burst into my room.  

There are moment when I expect Anpu, my God , to attack me--the Anpu I know would never do that.  WTF is wrong with my brain that it expects my own God to suddenly change His mind that I'm not worthy of Him, and to tell me in such a horrifying fashion?

There's more, but that's all I can think of...

Yes, I do have one foot stuck in my birth religion, and it's not pretty.:(

Louisvillian

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Re: Did Anyone Else Have One Foot Stuck In Their Birth Religion?....
« Reply #40 on: June 06, 2013, 09:14:28 am »
Quote from: Elizabeth;97101
Was anyone else like this? What helped to finalize your path in either your birth religion or another?

I wasn't raised in or really even around religion as a kid. Both of my parents were, and are, irreligious atheists. But this still coloured my way of thinking; I grew up learning to be very skeptical of claimed things, to be logical and scientific. So it took me a long while to genuinely believe that the gods exist; it took actually experiencing them for myself. And even though I believe in the gods, I don't necessarily believe in other things that most Neopagans and occultists do, in cases where I haven't experienced or seen those things for myself.

anonymus

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Re: Did Anyone Else Have One Foot Stuck In Their Birth Religion?....
« Reply #41 on: October 06, 2013, 04:10:10 pm »
Quote from: SPhoenix;101858
Hi Elizabeth,

I'm going to just warn you ahead of time that I have some residual bitterness left over from some issues with Christianity.... which makes it strange that yes, I too once waffled in whether or not I was Christian.

When I was a small child, I had several death experiences. Meaning that I died and was resuscitated. These days, everything seems to be called a near death experience, so I want to be clear. *wink*  Anyway, during these experiences, I walked with what I still call God.

God is the very essence of Love. While I was dead, I was surfing on waves of Holy, undeniable, complete LOVE. It had physical presence, it was weighty, it was colorful (we only see three, but there are limitless colors!). It was music, and light and pure life. It was absolutely beyond explaining.

So when I was taught about "god" and told that God's name was Jesus, I accepted it. Even as a child, though, I struggled to understand. How does a being of such infinite love demand sacrifices? How does a being of such infinite, unspeakable love command mass murders? How does love itself expect a human sacrifice in order to be appeased before It can love you??

Would you demand that your good son be murdered to appease your anger his sibling? Would you create beings flawed and incapable of good decisions, then hate them for being flawed? Would you then require murder to appease you for them being flawed?

All of these things were incompatible with Love.

I started to read the bible, and study it extensively, without the desire to excuse away everything I read. I stopped trying to find a way to force the round peg of human sacrifice (jesus) into the square hole of Love Itself.

When I realized that there were big problems with the whole story, and I could no longer justify them, I had to walk away. When I began to understand that things accepted in Christianity were quite disgusting if looked at honestly from outside the religion, I found it terrifying. The Christian god is a terrifying god. It really is.

When looked at honestly and without justification, the symbolic cannibalism that Catholics and some Christian sects indulge in (eat my flesh as crackers and drink my blood as wine) is completely out of line with Love.

When looked at without a desire to excuse it all away, the Christian god is extremely terrifying. "Believe my illogical, monstrous story, or be burned forever."

I know all the justifications--I used to make them... like how we as parents punish our children, and that's what god's supposedly doing. But the difference is that we let our children live through, and thus learn from, our punishments. We don't punish our children with such a sadistic excess, and we don't do it forever--the point is to teach them. And if they don't live through it, they don't learn, now do they.

Anyway. I spent times literally on the ground, abjectly groveling in utter terror... because WHAT IF I WAS WRONG?? What if the Christian god is the REAL one, and he's really going to torture me FOREVER because I couldn't--COULDN'T--believe that love itself would torture or would want human sacrifice as an appeasement.

I still sometimes miss the singing and the fellowship. I miss the rituals and the community... but I realize that I'm subjecting myself to the constant bombardment of the belief that "love" is murder, cannibalism, and telling people that they're born wrong and bad.

That's when I realize that I could never do it again. I'll find or form a community, but I won't subject myself, and especially my child, to the belief that "god loves you only because some guy was butchered brutally".

I KNOW God. I KNOW that LOVE ITSELF would find such a thing abhorrent. And I could never subject my daughter to the terror that I experienced when trying to leave Christianity. It would break my heart to find out that my child was hiding in terror under her bed because she thought LOVE ITSELF might burn and torture her forever. Nor do I want my daughter to believe that LOVE is TORTURE, MURDER, CANNIBALISM, or the other BRUTALITIES the bible's god committed against humanity. The bible says GOD IS LOVE, but then the picture it paints of god is that of a monster. Is love a monster, then?

I don't believe so.

That was my journey away from that religion. It was an extremely hard and terrifying one.  

I hope I didn't offend anyone. This isn't about any Christian, it's about the religion itself. And these are my personal experiences, too... others' mileage may vary.

 
this has been one of my main objections to Christianity and reasons for going apostate
although ever since I hit my teens I tended to be apathetic to religion making me wonder if I ever really believed. I think I've always feared my Mom more than any angry deity since she is the one that has so far demonstrated actual punitive capabilities

Jake57

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Re: Did Anyone Else Have One Foot Stuck In Their Birth Religion?....
« Reply #42 on: October 16, 2013, 01:32:17 pm »
Quote from: anonymus;124322
this has been one of my main objections to Christianity and reasons for going apostate
although ever since I hit my teens I tended to be apathetic to religion making me wonder if I ever really believed. I think I've always feared my Mom more than any angry deity since she is the one that has so far demonstrated actual punitive capabilities

 
I am a convert to Catholicism, but very liberal.  Good thing I found a church with other of the same inclination.

Medulla

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Re: Did Anyone Else Have One Foot Stuck In Their Birth Religion?....
« Reply #43 on: October 16, 2013, 04:43:19 pm »
Quote from: Elizabeth;97101

Was anyone else like this? What helped to finalize your path in either your birth religion or another?

 
I'm still quite caught up in my birth religion. I no longer follow it but being part of my upbringing and part of my cultural background it affected my worldview. I used to be annoyed by that but nowadays I'm fine with it and even enjoy it. I don't see why I can't be drawn to something that is so familiar to me while also not practicing it because in most ways it's not my cup of tea.

Allec

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Re: Did Anyone Else Have One Foot Stuck In Their Birth Religion?....
« Reply #44 on: November 12, 2013, 12:43:30 am »
Quote from: Elizabeth;97101
I was brought up Christian, but ventured into Catholicism on my own. I disagree with a lot of their teachings, as well as Jesus as Messiah, but I feel stuck there.

At this point in my life, I am examining what I want to teach my children when I have them. I want them to grow up knowing they can choose where they want to go spiritually. I want them to be confident that they can choose their own path.

I feel a strong pull towards Catholicism, I do not know why. But I also want to do my own thing. I struggle with figuring out what that is.

I constantly waffle between the two. For a few weeks, I can be fine with deciding to leave Christianity. But then, WHAM, I feel like I should give it one more try. And back and forth it goes.

Was anyone else like this? What helped to finalize your path in either your birth religion or another?

Thanks


I don't have this religious struggle. I was raised in a Catholic household, but it wasn't as strict as others were and I never had any trouble leaving behind the faith when I realized it wasn't for me for various reasons (prior to even learning about paganism.)

But the one trouble I have is the "customs" I grew up with, particularly Christmas. My new religious path doesn't have anything in regards to the Christmas time of year, but it was really the only time of year that had any family tradition. My new religious path DOES focus on tradition, though, so I have decided that since I am honoring the traditions and not necessarily the religion it is OKAY for me to keep them in a secular or converted fashion. (I also imagine this is similar to how people of pre-Christian Ireland treated their conversion to Christianity--keeping the customs but making them secular.)

So in short: I am finding what I want/need to keep and how to "convert" it to my new beliefs.
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