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Old 07-08-2010, 07:43 AM
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Secular Introductions

Hi everyone,

I'm new here, so how about a round of introductions from those of us who are walking the Secular path to sobriety?

About a year ago I did an online survey of about twenty questions that claimed it could tell you what world belief system you were most closely aligned with. I did it, and that was when I first time I'd ever heard of Secular Humanism. It amazed me to discover there were so many other people out there who's views were pretty much like mine, and that they had organized!

If I had to describe myself, I'd have to say I'm an Agnostic leaning heavily in the Atheist direction who's sensitive to Animistic whisperings.

How about you?

Murray
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Old 07-08-2010, 09:23 AM
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Welcome to SR, I'm pretty brand new here too!

I consider myself a secular humanist as well, and ultimately believe in myself. I'm an atheist, although I find religion and how it affects humanity positively/negatively to be a fascinating subject.

I guess I have more of a philosophical take on life that "I'll believe it when I see it." =)
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Old 07-08-2010, 09:30 AM
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Hi Murray and welcome to Secular Connections.

Early on in my recovery journey I found it necessary to discover my authentic self. I found that Zen philosophy was the best fit to my most cherished and valued beliefs. Through addiction treatment groups I came to know that secular recovery would be my path to wellness.

Being able to hold on to my healthy world views without undergoing some disturbing quasi-religious belief conversion experience makes addiction treatment much, much simpler for me.

As for the best fit addiction treatment modality for me; SMART Recovery, CBT and Zen dose a excellent job of making the required psychical transformation for a new long last drug/alcohol free lifestyle.
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Old 07-08-2010, 09:35 AM
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Hi growbot. Welcome to the secular side of SoberRecovery.
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Old 07-08-2010, 01:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Zencat View Post
Being able to hold on to my healthy world views without undergoing some disturbing quasi-religious belief conversion experience makes addiction treatment much, much simpler for me.
Me too. I don't think I could "take what you need and leave the rest" either. I would see way too many opportunities for debate and disrupt the whole group dynamic!

By the way, what's CBT? I live in a fairly isolated small town where AA is the only option, but I am gaining a lot of good information by visiting websites

Beep, Boop, Whizzzzzzzzzz, Ding-Ding-Ding, Grobot

Murray
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Old 07-08-2010, 06:05 PM
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CBT is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.
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Old 07-08-2010, 07:30 PM
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Hello, Murray. Welcome!

I call myself an atheist, but in reality, I'm an agnostic, because I don't believe you can prove a negative. The universe is a magnificent and there is a lot we don't know. Stephen Hawking and others make a good case that any supernatural deity is a logical fallacy, requiring infinite energy, faster-than-light travel, time travel, etc. I can buy that, and in any case, live my life based on the assumption that there is no supernatural deity.

I do believe in powers greater than myself, however. In fact, I am the least powerful thing in my life. Some of these are good, some are not. My job is to know the difference, and align myself with the highest and finest aspects of myself and others in the world and history that I respect and have what I want.

Glad you are here!
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Old 07-08-2010, 11:29 PM
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Hi Murray and Growbot! Welcome.

I'm an atheist-leaning agnostic; I agree with carlri that I can't prove a negative and therefore can't really call myself an atheist. No evidence either way (also I have no evidence that pink unicorns-- or celestial teapots, or Flying Spaghetti Monsters-- do or do not exist. Just sayin'...) I tried very hard to fit into some religious group. I went through a lot of them but I never felt comfortable with any of them until I realized it was because I was trying to force myself to believe something that just doesn't work in my brain. I became much happier and more comfortable in my beliefs once I figured out what they are... though this never seems to end.

I actually think I am one of the most powerful forces in my life, for good or bad. I'm certainly not even worth a hiccup in the rest of the universe... but that's nothing to worry about: the greatest human who ever lived is still food for worms. When I'm focused on doing things that are good for me I can be pretty awesome. There are smarter and more powerful people and things in the universe, but I do alright for myself. On the other hand when I'm focused on drinking myself silly and loading up my next hit... well then I'm not so awesome. But it all depends on me. Just look at my signature line: none but ourselves can free our minds.
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Old 07-08-2010, 11:57 PM
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Originally Posted by gneiss View Post
I actually think I am one of the most powerful forces in my life, for good or bad. I'm certainly not even worth a hiccup in the rest of the universe... but that's nothing to worry about: the greatest human who ever lived is still food for worms.

This is it for me too!

I have always wondered why people will not give themselves the 'credit' for getting sober/clean. A person has the power within themselves.


Oh yea, Hello and Welcome to Murray and carlri and growbot!!!
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Old 07-09-2010, 12:31 AM
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Ten years ago when I was trying to quit smoking cigarettes for the umpteenth time, a co-worker told me, "All you have to do is decide".

That stuck with me for a long time, because ultimately he was right. It all starts with a decision, then sticking with it. I needed more than that though, I needed to know the physiological reasons why I felt so bad. When I found out that nicotine closely resembles dopamine, and that my brain was so used to being bathed in nicotine that it had pretty much shut down it's ability to supply adequate amounts of dopamine when needed, that knowledge gave me the strength to quit.

Alcohol, as I'm finding out, does a very similar thing. My addiction isn't some faceless demon...it's actually me! My limbic system is trying to use every trick it knows to get that soft alcoholic glow it wants, even though it could kill the rest of my body in the process.

I don't need a disembodied force to save me. I'm the one who will decide not to drink again. I'm the one who controls my destiny. I'll arm myself with peer reviewed scientific knowledge to better understand why my body is going crazy as it dries out, and thanks to this forum, lean on as many shoulders as I need.

Murray
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Old 07-09-2010, 07:43 PM
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Murray, I love it! Especially the thing about peer-reviewed literature. I started doing a lot better when I learned a little about my addiction (in my case methamphetamine was my DOC). Same kinda thing, it mimics dopamine and your brain stops producing its own dopamine. But somehow that made it a lot easier, I understood what was happening in my brain and that it was temporary. That knowledge made it a lot easier to deal with.
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Old 07-12-2010, 08:31 PM
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Welcome Murray and Growbot !

Just wanted to weigh in as a confirmed Secular Humanist. Corliss Lamonts' publication; The Philosophy of Humanism; ....was truly a (personal) life changer.

.
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Old 07-29-2010, 04:49 PM
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I am new here, and I have two things that I pray to, the Sun, and Joe Pesci.


Last edited by Dee74; 07-29-2010 at 10:30 PM. Reason: link removed by request
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Old 07-30-2010, 07:56 PM
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Hi Supercrew. I used to be the praying type long, long ago. Then things changed for me...not to say praying doesn't has its usefulness for those that engage in such behaviors...but now I do things in a secular way. Hence I hang out in the Secular Connections Forum. At any account I hope you can feel comfortable here on the SR secular side of recovery.
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Old 07-30-2010, 09:59 PM
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As I mentioned when I joined, I'm not exactly secular, but I have a problem with evangelism, which is one of the reasons I am here.

Another reason, is that my approach to problem solving is of the geeky, nerdy persuasion...I study and read, as wide and deep as I can figure out...and then I like to talk about it, which can get me in trouble, and is how I ended up on SR and SC:-)
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Old 07-30-2010, 10:12 PM
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Hi, I'm MT Wildflower, and I'm a recovering Baptist.

I'm not following any particular recovery path - I'm early in it so I'm just trying to not drink right now and if something like standing in an asparagus patch reciting the Pledge of Allegiance would help, them I'm all for it.

I'm currently personally agnostic, though I believe in Anne Lamott and Madeleine L'engle and they believe(d) in God, so maybe I'm a believer once removed.

If there is some kind of higher power or force out there, I like to think of it as taking away the part of me that says "I can't do this" and leaving me with the part that says "I can."
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Old 07-30-2010, 10:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Zencat View Post
Hi Supercrew. I used to be the praying type long, long ago. Then things changed for me...not to say praying doesn't has its usefulness for those that engage in such behaviors...but now I do things in a secular way. Hence I hang out in the Secular Connections Forum. At any account I hope you can feel comfortable here on the SR secular side of recovery.
Ha Ha Zen! I edited my post, because I didn't want to offend anyone. The pray thing comes from a standup routine by George Carlin regarding religion, you can find it on youtube. (I posted it, but thought better of it after reading the stickies)

I don't believe in much, aside from myself and my family. I'm not religious, but I like Santa Claus, I would much rather see a big bunny delivering eggs than a crucifiction. I think I once had an alien experience......but I was drinking, and I think Carlins skit on religion rings pretty true. If there is a greater power I wouldn't call his work devine.

Just checking in to get away from some of the preaching on other parts of the board, and trying to find the best way to keep my sobriety!
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Old 08-02-2010, 04:53 AM
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Hello, I was very glad to see this secular section. I understand the sentiment of someone offering prayer, but it just does nothing for me. I noticed this section was for people in a recovery program. I'm a brother of an addict, hope it's okay. Anyway, my brother is having trouble breathing, and has had addiction problems since 15. He is 40 and i'm 42. He conquered drinking, but is smoking himself to death, and i just don't know what to do anymore. Here is my original thread on it > http://www.soberrecovery.com/forums/...wards-him.html

Very nice forum here. It's good just to read your stories.
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Old 08-02-2010, 05:15 AM
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I missed this.

I'm an atheist. Used to be a Christian...started asking a lot of questions on my own...came up with more questions than answers...things no longer made sense, so I found I no longer believed.

SR helped me to get sober, but I did the work. For me it's mostly finding something else to do rather than drink.
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Old 08-02-2010, 05:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Supercrew View Post
I am new here, and I have two things that I pray to, the Sun, and Joe Pesci.

George Carlin...wish he didn't die.
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