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#61 of 102 Old 11-28-2010, 08:13 PM
 
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Unfortunately I don't have the time to participate/write as in depth as I would like to but in short... 

 

as you have stated, you are searching

 

I think thats AWESOME! Keep asking questions, keep reading, keep talking

 

Some more conventional groups of people you might enjoy talking to 

 

Quaker Meeting

Unity

 

Some books that will really get your mind going about how you view the bible

 

Chariots of the Gods by Erich von Daniken's 

The Year of Living Biblically by AJ Jacobs

The Accidental Buddhist by Dinty W. Moore

 

* I suggest these books because they are by other people who asked questions and came up with different ideas about spirituality, religion or the bible... the thing I enjoyed most about these books is that they made me think... sometimes giving me more solid understandings of myself and my own beliefs and sometimes unraveling another layer of questions and over all some really interesting things that make you say "hmmm"

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#62 of 102 Old 11-29-2010, 11:04 AM
 
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wow!! I've skimmed this thread and that's the word that came to mind. I want to share my story but with a disclaimer (the disclaimer is that anything I say or believe now is subject to change and I'm totally cool with that) .

 I grew up very non religious attending baptists churches with friends church of christ with my grandmother and occasionally over the years several pentecostal congregations with my mom. In my teens I attended a 'non denominational' congregation, which is very liberal and very find your own way, I still attend on occasion today.  For about a year I attended a messianic jewish congregation with some of  my family.

 About 8 months ago I lost my mother to an accidental medication overdose. It wasn't the ''oh

I forgot I took the meds earlier'' type of thing it was the prescription drug abuse that went too far death. I grew up with my mom regularly taking drugs. Anyways...according to many people and belief systems my mom ''died in sin''.  I knew in my heart my mom had love for god. I knew she was either with him or would be one day. (I'm still not sure if I believe in a concious death or a rising during ressurection) Basically I'm not sure if people are '' in heaven now'' or ''sleeping''.

Knowing my mom would not be eternally punished led me to study more on hell. My research led me to not believing in eternal punishment. At this point I don't believe in any sort of punishment. I believe all people are reconciled to god I do believe this is through the blood of christ. Most of the first christians (greek) did not believe in hell some did not believe in a trinity and some believed in reincarnation. I believe there have been many mistranslations as far as hell goes. I believe everyone is allready saved and salvation is a completed job . 

 I believe the bible to be the word of god but I also believe that there have been lots of things ommitted and added. I believe this is something god is fully aware of and has allowed to happen. If I believed in hell I'd say getting through this world is our ''hell''. I think everything is a learning experience and we learn often times more from bad experiences than we do from good ones.

 I don't believe in free will any longer. I have some difficulties with literal vs. spiritual interpretations of many things in the bible. I believe god was fully responsible for the fall of man and god is responsible for the evil in the world.  And in my view since I don't understand his way of thinking as much as I hate evil genocide war disaster I am at peace with the fact that it's all a part of god's will and plan for his children. I don't really think people choose to be good or bad christain or unchristian gay or straight boy or girl whatever. It's all up to god. I just can't see him giving us that kind of power...lol. It just seems silly to me for him to give us the choice of accepting him or not. I believe god hardens hearts and people come to know him when it's the right time. Even if it's after death....So with that said I consider myself a christian universalist.

I am not really actively looking for a church (allthough like I said I attend one on occasion) I feel strongly that there isn't a congregation that fits my beliefs. I do speak with people online who feel similarly and that helps a lot. Honestly I feel keeping kids out of organized churches for the early part of their lives is a good choice. Mainly because I feel I've greatly confused my  older son with my changing beliefs and changing congregations. My son had a very difficult time with a lot of the things that were taught in the messianic congregation we attended (as did I) . I am trying to show him a grace  filled relationship with god now. Not one full of guilt and fear. The biggest thing I think I've gotten from this whole ''awakening'' is peace. I used to have a lot of fear and guilt.  I don't carry that around as much anymore. Yes I have regrets...but I think knowing they are forgotten by god and not waiting in some firey furnace for me has really been an awesome realiziation, I have the great transformatin by karen armstrong and am reading the worlds religons by hutson smith right now. I also hope to read a book by shelby spong....I cannot remember the name of it.. Also in between birthing books I am planning to try to read some of martin zenders books. Thanks for this thread!!


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#63 of 102 Old 11-29-2010, 12:34 PM
 
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sorry but I forgot to add the ''confused'' part to my story...I struggle the most with feeling as if I ''owe'' people from my past an explaination. For instance the people who helped so tremendously when my mom died but then I quit attending their services...I also feel so sad that many of the people I once admired and respected so much for their zeal and passion I no longer agree with or admire much for that matter. I don't really have ill feelings towards them just lost that admiration.  I also am not sure about evolution so much of it makes sense but some of it is very foreign to me.  I've never been a science buff. I truly feel more at peace when I meditate with music rather than feeling at peace with a traditional ''prayer''. I still see meditation as a prayer in a way. Maybe I'm not really meditating?? I'm not sure....I can say, I rarely ask god for forgiveness anymore I find myslef asking myself to forgive myself for things more than anything else. I'm kinda just skipping around here....I'm not sure I understand the exact concept of heaven. I think heaven comes to earth. I don't know if I believe in a ''young earth''. I'm sure i'll have more. I wouldn't say I'm ''lost'' but, I'm far from 100% grounded on a lot of things.


I just love the way kisses make ''booboo's'' all better.
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#64 of 102 Old 11-29-2010, 04:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfreed4575 View Post

Unfortunately I don't have the time to participate/write as in depth as I would like to but in short... 

 

as you have stated, you are searching

 

I think thats AWESOME! Keep asking questions, keep reading, keep talking

 

Some more conventional groups of people you might enjoy talking to 

 

Quaker Meeting

Unity

 

Some books that will really get your mind going about how you view the bible

 

Chariots of the Gods by Erich von Daniken's 

The Year of Living Biblically by AJ Jacobs

The Accidental Buddhist by Dinty W. Moore

 

* I suggest these books because they are by other people who asked questions and came up with different ideas about spirituality, religion or the bible... the thing I enjoyed most about these books is that they made me think... sometimes giving me more solid understandings of myself and my own beliefs and sometimes unraveling another layer of questions and over all some really interesting things that make you say "hmmm"


Heh, I never thought someone would suggest Daniken! LOL Not trying to make fun of you, it just never occured to me that it's related, but I guess it is kind of. My DH is into Daniken and I have read Chairots of the Gods. I also LOVED The Year of Living Biblically, it was hilarious! I have never heard of the other one. But thatnks for the recs.

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#65 of 102 Old 11-29-2010, 07:47 PM
 
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I'm glad to see more people posting here again!

 

Tori, my 10yo dd and I have also just started visiting our local UU church and we are both really loving it. Yesterday was our second time there.

 

Tashantx, I'm so sorry about the loss of your dear mom! :hug In a way I've agreed with you about raising kids outside organized religion, but my 10yo feels a strong need for greater connection, so for her sake I really feel like we need to get plugged into a nurturing and accepting community. I also feel like I need to be proactive and choose one that will support us in our unique and unpredictable spiritual paths, so that she won't, by lack of community, get drawn into one of the many ministries in our neighborhood that reaches out lovingly to children and families, while at the same time carrying that lingering message of fear. But I think your kids are younger, and all kids are different, so maybe your family won't need the same thing.

 

I had a really cool experience early this morning. I woke up and felt led to pray a decade of the Rosary as I sometimes do. Mary has begun to really symbolize the Earth to me, in her willingness to let God, or the Life Force, plant something new and start a whole process in her that she had no control over. This time, the mystery I felt led to focus on as I prayed my Hail Mary's, was the rotting log in a Magic School Bus episode that keeps playing over and over again on QUBO.

 

The episode starts with Ms. Frizzle's class having a rot contest, which Wanda wins when she opens something that has been in her refrigerator since she was four. Her prize is a seedling tree, and she decides to plant it an abandoned field. The class goes over and at first Wanda is determined to clean up the field by clearing away the old rotting log -- but of course the whole class shrinks down to bug-size so they can go into the log and see what's really going on. And, naturally, they realize that WONDROUS LIFE is going on and they want to let nature keep on taking her course.

 

As I meditated last night, I became increasingly resolved to learn how to be like that rotting log -- to be food and habitat for the life force, and to learn to go with the flow and let life evolve in the wonderful and unpredictable ways that it does. I see this vision as quite synonymous with the UU vision, as this church truly makes herself available to nurture and welcome any and all souls who would seek to burrow in and find sustenance in her community. Of course, just as there are boundaries in natural law, so there are boundaries in the UU church as well. Mutual respect is essential for the church to be a safe place for everyone, and mutual respect is essential in my life as well, so I think I've found a really good fit,


Susan -- married unschoolin' WAHMomma to two lovely girls (born 2000 and 2005).
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#66 of 102 Old 11-29-2010, 08:20 PM
 
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Neo-paganism seems to be a recurring theme for me. I just re-took the beliefnet quiz and it was #1, and I'm pretty sure it was #1 the last time, too.

Maybe I should learn more about this.


Jumping into this thread to offer a reading suggestion.  Check out the book "Introduction to Paganism" by Joyce and River Higgenbotham.  They have a followup entitled "Pagan Spirituality".

 

I used to be ELCA but then I realized that the religious mythology of Christianity just didn't meld with biology (I'm a biologist by training).  So I started exploring paganism.  We focus our celebrations on the solstices and equinoxes, also the full moons.  While we don't attend any groups, some pagans do go to a UU church while others join a Wiccan coven or a Druid grove.  Still others are solitary practitioners.  

 

Nature is my church at the moment :)

 

 


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#67 of 102 Old 11-30-2010, 09:53 AM
 
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mammal mama thanks so much for the condolences it has been quite hard...my son is actually 11 but he seems to be less interested in ''church''. He actually had some ill feelings toward some of the beliefs the messianic jewish community held. I cannot say for sure if it was misunderstanding or rebellion. We have a uu church here I'm just not sure if I'd feel comfortable there. We do particiapate in festivities (fall festival, christmas stuff etc) with the non denominational church I mentioned and he is actually a member of the '' youth group'' there. We should probably go more often.


I just love the way kisses make ''booboo's'' all better.
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#68 of 102 Old 11-30-2010, 12:16 PM
 
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I used to be ELCA but then I realized that the religious mythology of Christianity just didn't meld with biology (I'm a biologist by training).  So I started exploring paganism.  We focus our celebrations on the solstices and equinoxes, also the full moons. 

Nature is my church at the moment :)

 

 


so interesting, bluets.  I can definitely see what you're saying, and really do get why that makes more sense given your training and your connection to the earth. 

 

I was raised ELCA, walked away after being confirmed against my will, explored many other traditions for 20 years and ultimately realized that I belonged back in the Lutheran church.  I just needed time and space to reconcile a few things.  I also needed a different perspective.  It now makes sense to me in a way that it never did before.  I don't think it ever would have had I not walked the path I did.  I needed to explore my relationship with the world, humanity, God, the earth, spirituality etc. outside the church before it could go back in.

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#69 of 102 Old 11-30-2010, 10:53 PM
 
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Thank you for starting this thread! I am definitely searching for something right now, and have no idea what.

 

I was raised as one of Jehovah's Witnesses, and although I had brief doubts about the history of the organization as a teen, I was too afraid to do research because I thought Satan was putting it into my heart. I went to 3 meetings a week since infancy, and was out knocking on doors on the weekends. As a child I didn't feel like I fit in, and I wanted something else for DS. Having my son changed my world. I started to think about uncomfortable questions, like why would God kill billions of nice people, and only save a few million followers?

 

A few months ago, I researched my doubts online and quickly lost my faith. But I also lost my faith in God. I really would like to believe in God though, and am trying to open myself up again. I still enjoy reading the Bible, even though I'm not sure if it's inspired anymore. I went to a UU church, but I felt uncomfortable being in a group, even though the people were very nice. Groups really turn me off at the moment.

 

My husband has stopped attending our congregation as well, but mentally he's not able to discuss religion. He has too much to lose. His whole immediate family is still in the religion, and it's considered the loving and loyal thing to not associate with your child/friend/etc who leaves the religion. So, I try and respect his wishes, and I don't talk about religion/spirituality with him.

 

It's difficult finding my own path. I'm also pregnant, so this all came up at a bad time. However, DH and I were able to "agree to disagree" for now and raise our children neutral, with no religion. I just wish I didn't feel so lost while pregnant. I used to think I had all the answers, but now I'm not sure of anything. And that's a scary feeling. But I believe this is just a bump in the road, and the path I will take will lead me to a fulfilling place.

 

Thank you all for sharing your stories. It's really nice to know I'm not alone. If anyone wants to PM me their journey and what helped them, please feel free.

 

Mammal_Mama - the book The Fall looks really interesting! I'll have to check that out.


belly.gifMama to a Little Scientist (09/08) and our Ray of Sunshine (05/11).
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#70 of 102 Old 11-30-2010, 11:57 PM
 
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Stories that touch my heart, all of you, thank you for sharing. I can so relate. It's such a shaky ground to be on. And Mi_Amor, I am so sorry to read that this is happening while you're pregnant.  I can especially relate to that.  I believe the pregnancy and birth will help you process this better than you could on your own. That was my experience.  i don't know how to explain it, but even though "the sh** hit the fan" for my family during the last pregnancy, I felt especially empowered to handle it, as a pregnant woman.

I'm at a scary place now, spiritually. Grew up Charismatic/Pentecostal Christian, which is one branch of Evangelicalism. I am so happy I grew up in the way I did. I had a very happy childhood, I was very spiritual, zealous for God, everything was just wonderful, spiritually.  Things were solid, as far as having answers, and yet there was also a wonderful feeling of mysticism, since Pentecostals/Charismatics place emphasis on the mystical spiritual gifts and are open to rapturous experiences. 

One aspect of Charismatic teaching is that you should actively seek to hear God's voice every day to guide you.  Depending on the congregation, level of maturity, and level of Pentecostalism vs. more mainline Evangelicalism, they can place some emphasis on getting signs from God (I now see this can be kind of like looking for omens in a superstitious mindset). So 4 years ago when I met my now-husband, I began to look for some kind of sign from God about whether he was the right man for me.  I thought I got my "sign," even though I didn't love him, and he didn't love me.  Long story short, we had only dated 3 months when we found out we were pregnant.  That's when my whole world began to shake, and everything I thought I knew suddenly seemed so fragile and strange.  Our pastor's counsel was to get married, to provide a secure life for the child, rather than being raised by single parents. I was still in my idealism, and I thought that since we were both spirit-filled Christians, we could work out any problems or issues between us that might come up in the marriage.

Predictably (to probably everyone but me), our relationship has been horrible.  It has completely shaken my whole concept of God.  I feel betrayed that God would lead me into such a terrible state of suffering, when all I was doing was trying to obey him.  Sure, it was a sin to have sex before marriage; that was a big mistake, but I repented of it as soon as it happened.  And how many people do that all the time and don't have any consequences? We only had sex once before marriage, and we got pregnant.

So this has led to a period of intense questioning of everything I believe.  I feel I have become stronger in so many ways, though there are so many issues to be ironed out. I have become much more liberal, but I think it's just because I've seen through some of the inconsistencies in logic in some conservative thinking.  Like drinking alcohol, wow, I can't believe I ever thought that was a sin!  And I'm not bothered at all by a woman pastor anymore. Being a breastfeeding mom has really torn away lots of my prudishness, what freedom that is!  The latest development has been an interest in astrology. Not sure what I think about it, and I'm kind of scared to dig into it, but I think that there's something to the idea that the stars not only provide an amazing message of God's truth, but they somehow influence our lives as well.  I dunno, but I'm going to talk with someone who claims to be a Christian astrologer soon, and see if he can put some of this together for me.

Other issues, I'm content to leave as mysteries, since I think there's no way human minds could possibly ever understand them, such as the issue of predestination vs. free will.  I think both can be "proven," and God is big enough that both can be true at the same time.  I'm not a complete relativist; I do still believe in absolutes, but I also believe there are so many paradoxes in the universe. An example from science is the paradox of light-- is it particles, or is it waves? Both can be proven, so light is both, even though that doesn't seem logical.

And I have decided to leave my husband.  This is recent, and I don't have the money or resources to do it, and it's stupid timing, since I gave birth to our second child only a month ago.  But I have made the decision, which is the first step.  This is a very non-Christian decision to make, and it makes me scared and sad that I have come to this point.  I don't really recognize myself!  But the way I'm thinking of it (today!) is that it's impossible to move forward without being in sin.  Sin is just falling short of God's perfection.  If I get a divorce, I'm sinning, since God's perfection is for marriage to reflect his love of Christ/The Church.  But if I stay in this relationship, I'm sinning, because I'm unable to live in freedom and follow the purpose for which I was created.  I know that most people around me can't understand that, and I don't even understand it. I just know that I don't want this anymore, and I'm not going to be passive and let it keep happening to me.

Anyway, long post, I'm sorry.  I'm feeling very confused but somehow stronger too.  I'm clinging to the fact that God loves me, and has a loving purpose for my life, and if I keep pressing on, I will find a place of peace again someday.

That's my story.

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#71 of 102 Old 12-01-2010, 03:53 AM
 
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i don't belong to any thought, religion or trend....i am who i am with my thought, believes constantly changing. but one thing for me is for sure, God is the energy every type of it that lives in everything and everyone....i am just trying to find my way to peace and that is my task, that is to me (and maybe to other religions, maybe tao is the closest to what i feel) being in soul one with the total world energy (that is God or whatever name people choose for it) until then my soul will wonder from heaven to hell and back according to circumstances. i remember me defending this total energy theory when I was high school and I still believe in it. and can find prooves for in some religions as well.....


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#72 of 102 Old 12-01-2010, 05:48 AM
 
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joynsyde - I'm so sorry that you are going through all of that! But you should take solace in knowing that you are doing what's best for you and your children and creating a life that will make all of you more open to the spiritual world around you.

 

This (quote below)  is where I'm at right now too. I SO want to believe; want to experience the kind of faith that makes you feel connected to the world around you. A guess a better term for my present spiritual  frame of mind is "lost and seeking." That is how I feel - lost & adrift. It's funny, but when I took the beliefnet quiz I found myself answering the questions based on what I wished I believed - because honestly, I don't think I believe anything right now. I so want to believe. I have been turning to prayer as of late, though. Being raised Catholic I've been reciting "Our Fathers" to myself almost as a grounding exercise when I start to feel overwhelmed by these big questions. Its something I know and feel familiar with so it calms me somehow. I guess I'm just waiting to get to a place where that can be replaced w/ a true peace and affirmation of God's presence in my life - in whatever form that takes.

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A few months ago, I researched my doubts online and quickly lost my faith. But I also lost my faith in God. I really would like to believe in God though, and am trying to open myself up again. I wished


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#73 of 102 Old 12-01-2010, 02:09 PM
 
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so interesting, bluets.  I can definitely see what you're saying, and really do get why that makes more sense given your training and your connection to the earth. 

 

I was raised ELCA, walked away after being confirmed against my will, explored many other traditions for 20 years and ultimately realized that I belonged back in the Lutheran church.  I just needed time and space to reconcile a few things.  I also needed a different perspective.  It now makes sense to me in a way that it never did before.  I don't think it ever would have had I not walked the path I did.  I needed to explore my relationship with the world, humanity, God, the earth, spirituality etc. outside the church before it could go back in.


i was a very willing participant until a few years ago, shortly after ds was born.  partly it was the local church community, partly it was the new pastor.  he actually said a few things that were helpful in spurring a different way of thinking about the Father *and the Mother* - so i felt less discomfort when i left than if i had left earlier.  i grew up in a very German Lutheran church (in a small city with about 30 similar churches) - replete with the architecture, the music and even the choir gowns - it was almost like being transported to a contemporary version of J.S. Bach's church.  the local ELCA church - not at all like that.  i just didn't really bond there, didn't feel like i belonged - in spite of my efforts to do so.

 

i've toyed with the idea of going to the very active UU church, but i find i enjoy (perhaps, need?) the unstructured time on Sunday mornings - in the growing season, i use the time to focus on cultivating my dirt, communing instead with the great outdoors.  my dh is a declared pantheist so he's not about to be heading off to church and i'm uncomfortable hauling ds to church without dh - for me, it should be a family affair.


Jennifer, Naturopath and mom

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#74 of 102 Old 12-02-2010, 04:28 AM
 
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Im not confused nor seeking with regards to spiritually but can I poke my head in and share what has worked/works for me?

What works for me is Islam. A good, old fashioned, monotheistic religion of Papa Abraham. I know with all the worldwide negativity against Islam (lots of it caused by stupid actions of some Muslims), its become practically a faux pas to admit that heh. So why Islam, what's its appeal? Well in a nutshell, I'd say it's its focus on the relationship btwn man and God. Everything about being Muslim is about my relationship with God (who we call Allah = The God that is (worthy of being) Worshiped). What with having to take out of your day ten or 15 minutes every few hours (for a total of 5 times daily) to prostrate and bow to God, praising him, asking him to forgive your mistakes, just talking to him, you cant help but continually feel that link to the above. And, for me at least, it does wonders, physically spiritually mentally.

We call this connection 'Ibadah,' or worship. The literal meaning of ibadah is a well tread, worn path because it's something that a person keeps coming to again and again, both physically with physical acts of worship (like praying, fasting, giving charity), and spiritually, with acts of worship that take place in the heart (like love of God & messengers, fear of God's punishment, reliance on God, submission to Him etc). What makes us "go back" to God, once and again? Well, for one, we don't have the concept of absolute reliance on God's unconditional love. We can't just bomb the blazes out of people, cheat them, lie, abandon religious obligations -- and then end our day with, Well, God loves me. A much more, imho, important and PRACTICAL concept that we do have is that of *returning* to God. God loves those who return to him, go back to him every day again and again, with humility, with love, with an admittance of their weakness as humans, looking for forgiveness and love. God tells us that if we were a perfect nation who did no wrong, he would do away with us and replace us with a nation that erred. This is because people who are imperfect, who commit wrongs and mistakes, are continually in need of returning to their lord, continually seeking his forgiveness. So Islam accepts my human-ness and yet expects me to constantly work on myself, to never be satisfied with the status quo, to continually check my heart, my intentions, my actions. And the closer I come to God, the closer he comes to me.


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#75 of 102 Old 12-02-2010, 04:43 AM
 
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Even Abraham was confused & seeking:

(Remember) when Abraham said unto his father Azar: Takest thou idols for gods? Lo! I see thee and thy folk in error manifest.

Thus did We show Abraham the kingdom of the heavens and the earth that he might be of those possessing certainty: When the night grew dark upon him he beheld a star. He said: This is my Lord. But when it set, he said: I love not things that set.

And when he saw the moon uprising, he exclaimed: This is my Lord. But when it set, he said: Unless my Lord guide me, I surely shall become one of the folk who are astray.

And when he saw the sun uprising, he cried: This is my Lord! This is greater! And when it set he exclaimed: O my people! Lo! I am free from all that ye associate (with Him).

Lo! I have turned my face toward Him Who created the heavens and the earth, as one by nature upright, and I am not of the idolaters.*

(Quran 6:74)

(*Note: We use this proclamation/submission of Abraham as our opening line at the beginning of each prayer)


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#76 of 102 Old 12-02-2010, 05:11 AM
 
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I've come to the realization that I'm not confused or seeking anymore.  I know what I believe, and I know what I don't believe; there's just no organized religion that celebrates what I believe, OR, I'm not sure that a religion is going to let me just tag along without getting serious about it.  So here I am, in limbo, picking the one that matches me closest and then having to deal with the things that I don't believe and how to wrangle around those but still celebrate the rest of the faith...which to me, seems disingenuous, but millions of other people seem to do it so I guess I should just pick something close and move on.   And then, what to do with the kids?  Ugh.  We have been discussing religion a LOT more with Christmas upon us, and I finally got that book I ordered so I guess that's where we'll start.


Heather, WAHM to DS (01/04)DD (06/06). Wed to DH(09/97)
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#77 of 102 Old 12-02-2010, 06:36 PM
 
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Bluets, thank you so much for the book recommendations! I've really felt drawn to learn more about Paganism ever since dd1 and I got into Nancy Farmer's Land of the Silver Apples a few years ago. At first it seemed sacreligious to read dd what the Bard said about Christianity being just one branch on the great tree, but this has started to ring more and more true to me. Now we've read the third book in this trilogy, The Islands of the Blessed, reread Land of the Silver Apples, and finally started on the first one, Sea of Trolls. What an amazing journey through time and culture!

 

((((((((Joynsyde)))))))) May you feel totally enveloped in love, peace, and holy energy as you embark on your journey! You are truly a wonderful mama to seek a better situation for yourself and your little ones.

 

Ever since Sunday when I learned for the first time about the existence of a man named Kahlil Gibran, my curiousity has been piqued and the more I read the more I want to get to know him better. For anyone who's interested, here's a link to an awesome article about his religion --

 

http://www.allsoulsuuindy.org/ser20060122.htm

 

He seems to have been a man who saw no real divisions between Muslim and Christian, or between Arab and American. I love this quote of his:

 

"I love you when you bow in your mosque, kneel in your temple, pray in your church. For you and I are sons of one religion, and it is the Spirit."


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#78 of 102 Old 12-02-2010, 06:43 PM
 
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Ekatherina, I just noticed that you are in Lebanon, which is Gibran's birthplace!


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#79 of 102 Old 12-03-2010, 05:48 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joynsyde View Post

I'm clinging to the fact that God loves me, and has a loving purpose for my life, and if I keep pressing on, I will find a place of peace again someday.



thumb.gif  I love that.  It might just be my devotion for the day.


Baby on my hip, preschooler on my lap, kindergartener climbing my back, bird on my shoulder, dog at my feet, DH holding us all together.  love.gif

 

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#80 of 102 Old 12-03-2010, 09:52 AM
 
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I need to vent. Went to our counselor two days ago.  I didn't want to go, because I knew that he would not agree with my decision to leave. I barely understand myself yet on this issue, so it's difficult to explain to others.  Plus, with baby being only 1 month old, I'm rather low on sleep these days, which makes articulation difficult.  (However, I really don't feel I'm making a hormonally-imbalanced, unstable decision.  I think there are a lot of facts to back me up.)

And as I expected, there was a lot of verbal pressure to change my mind.  Hinted that I was placing my own "happiness" above the needs of our children, above the word of God, and above obedience to God.  Hinted that I was planting a negative seed that would eventually grow to develop fruit of more bad problems.  The clincher was when he said "being miserable never killed anyone, and it might make you stronger..."

(I really really hope he didn't mean to say that, that it was just an accident.  I know my pastor loves me and wants the best for me, but this statement was extremely insensitive! I mean, seriously!!)  At that point, I stood up, gathered my things and walked out of the room! 

I could hardly believe I was doing it. I am not a rebellious person, and I'm not the type to do that!  I guess being sleep-deprived has lowered my normal inhibitions somewhat.  It felt DANG good, though!

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#81 of 102 Old 12-03-2010, 10:42 AM
 
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I loved reading your pesonal story.  I love your transparency and I am so sorry you have walked through  so many difficult things. 

I know you said you don't beleve in free will but the reason I believe in free will is because God didn't want to creat a bunch of "robots" who did exactly what they were programed to do.  He gave us a choice to choose to love him or not.  Making anyone love you or not love you is crazy...it should be their choice.  If you say you don't believe in free will then why do some believe and some don't? 

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#82 of 102 Old 12-03-2010, 08:07 PM
 
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imprfctppl I think you were talking to me?? lol...I guess to a point I believe in a ''limited free will'' I don't just shrug off my bad decsions and choices and say oh well that was god's idea . I just don't feel we have a choice in the matter of our salvation. I believe that all will be reconciled to christ at some point. I know it's not a popular belief and I'm growing and find things I believe change often so basically I'm allways open to review and scrutinize a belief I hold. I guess it does sound absolutely insane that god would create creatures whom he would ''force'' to love him. The way I see it is at some point and time we will all face god and it will just be downright impossible not to accept his gift of love and salvation. I hope I sort of summed it up.


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#83 of 102 Old 12-03-2010, 08:23 PM
 
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Here is what I believe. The bible was written by men which in my opinion does not make it the absolute word. I believe Jesus was a great teacher but I do not consider him different than anyone in the ultimate sense because I believe everyone has the divine spark within and it is that part of us that live forever and has always been alive. Ultimately whatever spiritual path we choose to follow does not matter. We are not here just to join religions but rather evolve. No one is predestined for anything because we have total free will and can change our path in life whenever we choose. In order to evolve we have to create our own experiences and predistination in my opinion would get in the way of that.

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#84 of 102 Old 12-03-2010, 11:15 PM
 
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Marking the thread! I'm very interested in this topic, I will come back and share my thoughts later :)


You must have chaos within you to give birth to a dancing star.
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#85 of 102 Old 12-04-2010, 12:17 PM
 
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Tashantx

Oh yes I'm sorry i guess I was.  I am still getting used to this site :)  Thanks for your reply.  I think you summed it up and yes at some point we will face God.  Hopefully we will have decided to trust him though before we meet him wink1.gif (face to face anyway)

Thanks again for your reply!

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#86 of 102 Old 12-04-2010, 05:56 PM
 
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(((((Joynsyde))))) May you feel God's loving arms wrapped around you, and may you very soon feel this love coming through people, too!

 

I'm so proud of you for getting up and walking out after that ridiculous comment. You are an amazing woman and an amazing mama, and you are right that there is a place of peace out there waiting for you. Just keep putting one foot in front of the other. And please keep us posted!


Susan -- married unschoolin' WAHMomma to two lovely girls (born 2000 and 2005).
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#87 of 102 Old 12-04-2010, 07:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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joynsyde HUGS  That was a pretty insensitive thing to say.  Plus, people do die all the time from being miserable.  :irked  I can't comment on whether you should leave your husband or not since I don't really know you, but I don't think anybody needs to be miserable.  I hope you find joy soon.


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#88 of 102 Old 12-05-2010, 07:34 PM
 
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Well, in all fairness, the counselor did tell my husband that the bad seeds (how he treated me) that he planted for three years (as long as we've been married) means he's now eating the bad fruit of how I'm reacting.  And I think his comment about being miserable was something he said kind of accidentally, on his way to making a different point.  At least I hope so; I'm the kind of person who wants to give people the benefit of the doubt...

 

I'm not going to rebel agasinst Christianity, but I do need this season of ambiguity, searching.  I think I need to start from scratch, reevaluate things, think outside the box, stretch my roots outside the pot, as someone mentioned earlier.  I don't want people to try to nail me down right now; these questions are born of suffering, and you can't just put pain in a box and give it a neat label.

I'm going to a Friends church, but it's more on the conservative side, or maybe I should say on the orthodox side, doctrinally.  Anyway, it seems to be along the lines of what I need now, not too pushy.

 

The astrology investigations have been interesting, and have put some things into a clearer light.  Never thought I'd be even thinkng about astrology!  I was always taught it was demonic, witchcraft, or simply a sham.  But I found a Christian astrologist who says he sees the movement of the stars and planets as a language that speaks of God's plan for us on earth.  Each person has a "chart" that speaks of his/her respective personalities and life seasons.  Pretty staggering to think about, but it's strangely comforting. If everyone has a chart, then God is involved in everyone's life and has a design for each person.  It puts Scriptures like "God knew us before the foundation of the earth," "The heavens declare the glory of God," and "Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven" in a new and inspirational perspective!  There's no way the devil has enough power to control the movement of the planets and stars. And if we worship the creator, not the creation, it's not idolatrous to try to read the language of the skies, I think.

It's interesting to find out that my chart shows me in a season of breaking out of previous constraints. Wow.

The hardest thing about where I am right now is that there are so few people who are able to understand what's going on in my mind.  "Normal" is far from me these days!  Thanks, everyone, for your kind words.

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#89 of 102 Old 12-06-2010, 09:27 AM
 
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joynsyde, hugs! I agree with what you've declared about astrology. What a beautiful way to put it.


I just love the way kisses make ''booboo's'' all better.
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#90 of 102 Old 12-06-2010, 03:24 PM
 
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http://www.trans4mind.com/personal_development/astrology/seasons.htm

 

Here's an interesting article or post about astrology and the seasons. I haven't had a chance to read it all yet.


Susan -- married unschoolin' WAHMomma to two lovely girls (born 2000 and 2005).
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