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Discussion thread for those without a HP recovering from substance abuse

Old 08-05-2006, 06:08 PM
  # 41 (permalink)  
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And *some* religious traditions REQUIRE us to use our intellect to find solutions to problems ... our own and the world's.

It's wrong to bunch all religious traditions in one bunch. Dispite popular believe, they are very much different, even as they share some similaritties. And even as *I* personally prefer to focus on the similarities. But, the intellect is required by some; not just blind obedience to a misunderstood creed.

Shalom!
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Old 08-05-2006, 06:55 PM
  # 42 (permalink)  
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(((Muse))).....

Thanks very much for your post. I'm about to get ready for work here in a few, but when I get home I will reply in more detail.

xo
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Old 08-06-2006, 01:08 AM
  # 43 (permalink)  
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Hey eenzamster..... welcome to SR.


Originally Posted by eenzamster
I feel a little less alone today.
Likewise.
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Old 08-06-2006, 01:28 AM
  # 44 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by 2dayzmuse
Those of us who describe to a HP still think for ourselves in the same manner as any other. I'm very curious by nature and do not feel that accepting a HP has hobbled or limited my ability to think for myself, explore, intellectualize, etc. I do make decisions for myself and do not accept everything that is suggested or demanded of me in the name of religion. I do not subscribe to a lamb led to slaughter sort of blind faith. I understand you point however. There are those who do. Those of us that rely on spiritual guidance vary and do not have to believe the same. Anchoring us all into the same category is not an accurate representation.

Asking for daily spiritual guidance does not mean we are unprepared for the tragedies that may touch our lives, or that we are excluded by a protective shield of glowing light. We are not unfamiliar to pain or sorrow that comes with life. Believing in a HP does not shut off our brain and render us ignorant. I am capable of merging self will with spirituality, so I believe.



I hope you don't mind me coming to share my beliefs here. I enjoy reading other beliefs and ideas. It does help expand my thought process. I feel strongly in establishing that we all do not fall under the same lumping when referring to spirituality. I recognize that those here likely understand this more than anyone else. You have found your place and are exploring your options. That is cool. I have my own beliefs, but still like to venture into your own.

I have to chuckle when I read some of the comments. I picture a few of us with the HP belief wandering aimlessly in a zombie state as the the man in the sky points and aims his giant remote control triggering us to turn left or right, eat, sleep, think. Hmmmm...who really knows? I don't have all the answers, far from it. I say... whatever gets you through the day, gives you comfort, encourages thought and growth, own it and find strength in it. Live it, respect it and keep searching for whatever sparks your fire.

Today that is how I believe. Nothing is set in stone. Tomorrow I may view things differently. I am always open to knew thoughts and ideas. I appreciate you sharing yours with me.
Hiya there Muse. I really don't have much to add in response to your post. There's nothing to debate or contradict. I don't blame you for wanting to post in this forum at all. In fact, I think it's groovy that you find different ideas appealing. It isn't difficult to understand why.
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Old 08-06-2006, 01:56 AM
  # 45 (permalink)  
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However.....


Originally Posted by 2dayzmuse
Those of us who describe to a HP still think for ourselves in the same manner as any other.
We can poke holes in that statement all day long. But I think you know it isn't true. Are you meaning to say that the human experience is pretty much similar amongst individuals? I agree with that.

Say I get in a really bad car wreck. I survive with minimal injuries. (I say "wreck", because that's what it would be. There's no such thing as an "accident".)

Now say someone who believes in a HP (supernatural deity) has a similar wreck across the street. Is that person more or less inclined to think in terms of "accident"? And is that person more or less inclined to think "Thank goodness my HP was watching out for me" rather than "Thanks to the strong frame, extra reinforcements and breakaway bumper, I'm alive"?

Anchoring us all into the same category is not an accurate representation.
Agreed.
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Old 08-06-2006, 03:37 AM
  # 46 (permalink)  
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Based on the posts in this thread addressing religion/spirituality and their credence, I deduce that some may think - or feel - that my intent is to segregate based on prejudice. I don't prefer or have an affinity for any one belief over another. Every person on earth is where they need to be, which is why I have never knocked one's choices for whatever religion or spiritual path one subscribes. My Grandmother is a devout Catholic. Though I strongly disagree with many of the Church's teachings, there is no one in the world I have more respect and admiration for. She lives the life. It works for her. She's a beautiful, whole, and well-rounded person as a result of practicing her choice of adherence to a religion, and integrates it as necessary to become who she is comfortable being.

I do understand why some may question where I'm going with this thread.

All of my life, I have left the door open for a god, had strong belief in karma, an afterlife, etc.

My intent is to strip all of those beliefs away from my thought processes. It is an uncomfortable transformation, but also an exciting adventure. The discomfort is comparable to the apprehension one feels when making a major life decision that may bring unexpected results. My objective is to simplify. To learn to interpret and change most of my thoughts, feelings and actions based on logic and reason. The personal angst of paring down while in the midst of conflicting ideas and debate is what drove me to start this thread - not my opinions of religion/spirituality or lack thereof.

In general, I don't place a higher value on any one group's opinions or thoughts over another's. One group's thoughts and opinions may be of more value to me than another's depending on the situation. Just as religious or spiritually focused persons may prefer to connect with others who contribute to their growth within their religion or spiritual path of choice, so it is here. Nothing more and nothing less.
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Old 08-06-2006, 05:37 AM
  # 47 (permalink)  
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2day said: "Hmmmm...who really knows? I don't have all the answers, far from it. I say... whatever gets you through the day, gives you comfort, encourages thought and growth, own it and find strength in it. Live it, respect it and keep searching for whatever sparks your fire".

Thanks for this 2 Day. This is what I strive for. Exactly that. To heal me. I find the secular approach good for this. And there was a thirst for a secular view on things - hence the amnosity at times. But I think the balls has started now, and SoS, SMART, and the 'go it alones' will continue to flourish.

That is not to seperate that from AA. I still practice a few AA principles. But I just felt it asked too much for this athiest.

Peace, 5
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Old 08-06-2006, 05:39 AM
  # 48 (permalink)  
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eenza, welcome, welcome, and, er, welcome.
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Old 08-06-2006, 07:15 AM
  # 49 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by aloneagainor
Yep, my understanding too comes across as cold, calculating and unfeeling. Others see this and they get to feel superior to me, because they think they're more compassionate and caring than me. I leave them free to reel in their mysticism and God-mystery. While I'm busy reasoning things out and happily enjoying the process.
Thanks for this bit gainor.

I was thinking along the same lines earlier - how many people assume atheists are insensitive and unemotional. In actuality, most atheists process their thoughts differently, the result being a whole lot less emotional baggage. It deserves a level of appreciation equal to others' belief systems and has a beauty all its own.

I don't have the time, and can't afford the luxury of reeling in mysticism. For all practical intents and purposes, logic is certainly the most cost-effective choice for disputing irrational thoughts which lead to emotional excess.
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Old 08-06-2006, 07:23 AM
  # 50 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Five
2day said: "Hmmmm...who really knows? I don't have all the answers, far from it. I say... whatever gets you through the day, gives you comfort, encourages thought and growth, own it and find strength in it. Live it, respect it and keep searching for whatever sparks your fire".

Thanks for this 2 Day.
Beautiful, isn't it Five? I was really becoming concerned for Muse a couple of months back.

It's really great to see you expanding your horizons Muse. For REAL.

Funny, as you grow and expand, I pare down and simplify (which is a growth of sorts in its own right). We're all good in our own right.

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Old 08-06-2006, 08:41 AM
  # 51 (permalink)  
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I'm reading this all but I really have nothing to add as I tend to keep my beliefs private. But no, I don't believe in a God at all, or a Higher Power, it lies within myself.

Marte
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Old 08-06-2006, 10:19 AM
  # 52 (permalink)  
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these honey-mustard pretzels are keeping me sane and focused for the moment.

i'm "being here now"....with my pretzels.
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Old 08-06-2006, 10:45 AM
  # 53 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by 2dayzmuse
Those of us who describe to a HP still think for ourselves in the same manner as any other.

I have to chuckle when I read some of the comments. I picture a few of us with the HP belief wandering aimlessly in a zombie state as the the man in the sky points and aims his giant remote control triggering us to turn left or right, eat, sleep, think. Hmmmm...who really knows?
True, we all decide for ourselves what to believe; the difference comes in how we go about deciding. Those following a religion or program or belief in God rely on that foundation as truth. That mode of thinking, those belief systems, provides answers and direction and grounding. And for many faith in that that method works! But those who have rejected religion and the concept of God have to seek answers elsewhere. In reliance on our own logic and reason, there is no text no program no cohesive community to guide/ direct/ instruct/ provide answers for us. Nor do we want one to do that for us.

Reminds me of an ongoing dispute I have with a Christian friend. When we're in awe of an adaptation of nature (pick a subject: The complexity of the eye, the variation in bird plumage, waterfalls, earthquakes! the brain! et al) I delve into exploring factors surrounding how and why it became the way it is, and he's ever-more convinced that no way could this have happened by chance, surely it's God's design.

Originally Posted by Autumn
I don't have the time, and can't afford the luxury of reeling in mysticism. For all practical intents and purposes, logic is certainly the most cost-effective choice for disputing irrational thoughts which lead to emotional excess.
A person (devout Christian) I work with, when faced with any and every question about why something is the way it is, reverts to his standard answer, "I don't know, it's a mystery." Vague speculation works for him, gets him out of having to reach any conclusive answer. Mysticism does provide that out, of turning over reasoning to faith in God. To be secular, to reject religion and the mystical, and by definition to undertake to live accordingly, requires independent reasoning of mind. It's a lot more work that way, but it's also one's life work. I think therein lies a primary difference in the manner in which one thinks, between life with a belief in a higher power and one without. It's about where we turn to find the answers.
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Old 08-06-2006, 10:47 AM
  # 54 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by windysan
these honey-mustard pretzels are keeping me sane and focused for the moment.

i'm "being here now"....with my pretzels.
Hey now Windy,
We're Here, you with pretzels, me with tea, and not out scanning cow pies...
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Old 08-06-2006, 12:01 PM
  # 55 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by AutumnWe can poke holes in that statement all day long. But I think you know it isn't true. Are you meaning to say that the human experience is pretty much similar amongst individuals? I agree with that.
Yes, that is what I was attempting to say.

Originally Posted by Five
Thanks for this 2 Day. This is what I strive for. Exactly that. To heal me. I find the secular approach good for this. And there was a thirst for a secular view on things - hence the amnosity at times. But I think the balls has started now, and SoS, SMART, and the 'go it alones' will continue to flourish.
I agree Five. It seems the timing is right for the door to finally open to new ideas and possibilities. People were not very receptive to the idea in the past. It was taking quite a stance to choose an nontraditional belief in days gone by. There are enough people that are demanding another option and we are seeing doors open as a result.

Originally Posted by AutumnNow say someone who believes in a HP (supernatural deity) has a similar wreck across the street. Is that person more or less inclined to think in terms of "accident"? And is that person more or less inclined to think "Thank goodness my HP was watching out for me" rather than "Thanks to the strong frame, extra reinforcements and breakaway bumper, I'm alive"?
I would say both. I would believe that divine intervention would have played a big part and that intelligent people were brought to the notion of designing safer cars. I may have an issue as to why he didn't let me stay home that day and have me avoid the whole situation in the first place. Something I might take up with the big guy later, if that were the case. Perhaps a perfectly timed wrong number throwing off the entire cosmic event would be more in order.


Originally Posted by Autumn
It's really great to see you expanding your horizons Muse. For REAL.
Thanks for you concern Autumn. I hate thinking that I was being a hard ass in my beliefs, but that was then. Let me try to explain how I expanded my horizons. Coming into AA they have a very strict set of doctrine as you all well know. I believe it is there for a reason and serves a good purpose. I can understand why they function as they do.

Early in sobriety we need guidance and structure. Although the program may be difficult at times to accept some of the more challenging concepts or actions of others, they are attempting to not vary from the program. The steps are applied the same for all alcoholics even though we may be individuals. I full understand the concept of how and why. We cant start breaking up the program in that sense because then, the foundation of the program becomes weakened.

Although I can be hard headed at times, or somewhat of a rebel, I stuck with the plan because I know I needed the structure to get sober. Maybe some others may not be so receptive in becoming pliable, or told what to do. That is where the conflict begins with the member and the program. That is also where the choice comes in. Work the program, or seek another.

After being in the program for over 2 years now, I feel I have a strong sober foundation. I can afford to vary my beliefs now where I felt I couldn't before. I couldn't for my own behalf, and well being. Today, after hearing so many other people speak out with different views, other than AA's way, it would be insensitive, or even ignorant of me to not listen to what it was they were saying. I finally figured out that my way is not the only way. I lightened up and opened my mind to other beliefs. It takes time to come to a certain acceptance.

We are conditioned to believe a certain way, doctrine. Much like your Grandmother. Her place in history, her environment had brought her to a firm Catholic belief. There comes a time where we may choose to break away from a firm belief system, which many have chosen to do. Religion is a prime example of that. When we reach a time of wanting more, thirsting for a new way, or have grown dissatisfied with what we have been fed, we search for other means. Or more simply, for myself, I just decided to broaden what I had been taught to include others beliefs as well as my own. I feel comfort with where I am. We all are here seeking the same path. We need to make room for one another on this sober highway. Open up the car pool lane and journey together.
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Old 08-06-2006, 12:36 PM
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Originally Posted by aloneagainor
Hey now Windy,
We're Here, you with pretzels, me with tea, and not out scanning cow pies...
I did scan some from my truck the other day. I just looked at em and grinned. My spinal fluid kicked in and I was fine.

good times
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Old 08-07-2006, 06:16 AM
  # 57 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Autumn
Thanks for this bit gainor.

I was thinking along the same lines earlier - how many people assume atheists are insensitive and unemotional. In actuality, most atheists process their thoughts differently, the result being a whole lot less emotional baggage. It deserves a level of appreciation equal to others' belief systems and has a beauty all its own.

I don't have the time, and can't afford the luxury of reeling in mysticism. For all practical intents and purposes, logic is certainly the most cost-effective choice for disputing irrational thoughts which lead to emotional excess.

Yes, it sure feels like the safe card sometimes. I would hate to deal with emotional agony by trying to figure out what chacra was misfiring, or whether I have bad energy in my finger tips or something.

I sometimes feel, by using logic, that I am cheating. But I think that is why its in my brain in the first place, to help me. Don S: we use reason to deal with a complex universe.

My sister is a Doc of Pschology and she teaches people who are almost educationaly retarded how to use CBT. Looking for evidence is not just for the 'higher eds' IMO.
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Old 08-07-2006, 07:00 PM
  # 58 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by aloneagainor
True, we all decide for ourselves what to believe; the difference comes in how we go about deciding. Those following a religion or program or belief in God rely on that foundation as truth. That mode of thinking, those belief systems, provides answers and direction and grounding. And for many faith in that that method works! But those who have rejected religion and the concept of God have to seek answers elsewhere. In reliance on our own logic and reason, there is no text no program no cohesive community to guide/ direct/ instruct/ provide answers for us. Nor do we want one to do that for us.

Reminds me of an ongoing dispute I have with a Christian friend. When we're in awe of an adaptation of nature (pick a subject: The complexity of the eye, the variation in bird plumage, waterfalls, earthquakes! the brain! et al) I delve into exploring factors surrounding how and why it became the way it is, and he's ever-more convinced that no way could this have happened by chance, surely it's God's design.

A person (devout Christian) I work with, when faced with any and every question about why something is the way it is, reverts to his standard answer, "I don't know, it's a mystery." Vague speculation works for him, gets him out of having to reach any conclusive answer. Mysticism does provide that out, of turning over reasoning to faith in God. To be secular, to reject religion and the mystical, and by definition to undertake to live accordingly, requires independent reasoning of mind. It's a lot more work that way, but it's also one's life work. I think therein lies a primary difference in the manner in which one thinks, between life with a belief in a higher power and one without. It's about where we turn to find the answers.
Thanks, gainor, for taking the time to explain that which I pointed out in a few lazy sentences. Can't expect everyone to read between the lines.
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Old 08-07-2006, 07:04 PM
  # 59 (permalink)  
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I love the interplay of ideas here. It was your words that originally sparked mind in that response. Peace.
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Old 08-07-2006, 07:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Five
My sister is a Doc of Pschology and she teaches people who are almost educationaly retarded how to use CBT.
You have a sis? How lucky for her! I bet she adores you! I would torture you relentlessly and make you my slave for life.

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