It depends on which you feed the most...

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by Utuna, Feb 28, 2013.

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    Utuna

    Utuna Member

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    Dear all,

    I'm reading a book and I found a great paragraph that I would like to share with you all and about which I would like to have your opinion :

    The context is about negative feelings when offended.

    (Quote)

    Telling yourself - or someone else - not to have a feeling doesn't take the feeling away. It just buries it deeper, where it can do more harm. And the fact is that a lot about offensive behaviours - whatever the cause - will bring out rage.

    What you do with the anger is something else entirely. Directing unbridled anger at the offensive person will probably get you the same in return. But anger, pointed in the right direction, can move mountains. It can motivate you to set limits, learn more about the psychological causes of the offense, protect those who cannot help themselves, become an advocate, or start a support group.


    (end of quote)
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------

    When I read this, it reminded me immediately of my opinion about the WT and the way they handle imperfection. We are imperfect, it's deep inside us and nothing can make us perfect, not even prayer or Holy Spirit, whether we are anointed or not. By stressing on works of faith and spiritual yield, they teach us to be little saints and to look for perfection in our worship for God, in the way we consider others and in the requirement to be considered as spiritual mature, etc.

    Errors and sin are a part of us and yet, because of this thought pattern, we demand perfection from others. That contradiction is everywhere, whether we apply this to ourselves (with the inherent negative feelings of worthlessness that follow because we never can do enough) or to others (feeling offended or betrayed at the least error from the elders or even the GB.) Our thought pattern is shaped so we consider the worth of individuals according to what they do or don't do. I'm not saying that works are nil nor am I justifying sin but many b/s are in total denial of sin and error when it comes to the org, the GB or other aspects of our beliefs and they feel overwhelmed and lose all their bearings when something shatters their certainties in that regard.

    What I'm saying is that we shouldn't bury our imperfection and do as if it didn't exist so we are little saints and then gain Jehovah's approval. Just as we shouldn't expect perfection from us, we shouldn't expect the same from others. That denial is unhealthy and leads to spiritual deviant behaviours. It's like someone who has diabetes and who wants to behave as if he didn't have it. He can try the best he can to be "normal", eat cakes with a shovel, bury his feelings, hide the symptoms and the consequences of his acts but he can't ignore his nature, and the limits of his body for a long time. As it's said above : "It just buries it deeper, where it can do more harm". Sooner or later, the veneer will crack and peel and make the person feel tired out, worthless because the goals were impossible to attain. We can't remove or ignore long our nature but we can learn to tame it, with Jehovah's help, and take that factor into consideration in the way we treat ourselves and others. To tame doesn't mean to remove, therefore mistakes and sin shouldn't surprise us if they get themselves talked about again from time to time.

    Telling ourselves not to have a feeling doesn't take the feeling away : Constantly telling others that sinful feelings are to be avoided doesn't take their imperfection away. Constantly telling others that sin is bad doesn't impede them from sinning. Death penalty never made the crime rates plummet. If punishment and behavioral teaching don't work or have reached their limits, then what else ? What more ? We can't be told not to sin over and over again and as a consequence, expect ourselves or others not to sin anyway. We must learn to tame the best we can what we can't kill. We should stop fleeing but stand up and tame what can be tamed. However, imperfection is not only about sins but also about our personal limits. Guilt has never been a good way to make people fulfill their duties. If they can't do much because of their personal limits, they shouldn't feel guilty or worthless.

    However, those feelings of guilt are more the standard in the org than the exception, arent they ?

    Even the WT says that some b/s feel this way when they're getting sick or older and that they should be reassured in that regard by others. But, why not just stop teaching that works are the barometer of our spiritual health in the first place ?

    The second aspect that came to my mind is about the negative feelings that may be triggered by offensive behaviours from others or by the feeling of betrayal that may result from their sins or mistakes. Burying the feeling as the WT often advise in their articles and waiting on Jehovah don't do any good. It may be a solution for a while but sooner or later, according to circumstances, it'll come back and be felt like a stronger slap in the face because such an issue wasn't addressed in the first place. That aspect is important especially for us here who are no longer waiting on Jehovah (according to the way the WT means it) regarding what's going on in the org because we've understood that it is just a trick for the WT to fudge the issue. We can't control the situation that made us angry but we can control our reactions to it !

    Along with what I said above : Constantly telling ourselves not to feel anger about our disappointment when we're hurt by something that happened in the org won't make that feeling disappear. However, we can tame it or redirect the energy that it gives us into something positive. Or contrary to what the WT says, we should stop fleeing and learn to tame our feelings instead. We must learn to tame that which won't die !

    Feeling outraged by what we discovered and feeling betrayed are normal reactions. Being angry isn't a problem but it can become one according to what we do with the negative and painful feelings what the situation gave rise in our hearts. How could we turn something negative into something positive ? How is it possible to use the rage and disappointment that we feel into something positive ? Do we want justice or vengeance ?

    Instead of waging wars against windmills, why not use that energy in order to think a little bit outside the box and to demonstrate our love towards our b/s and our neighbours in ways that are neglected by most of our fellow believers because they're obsessed by the preaching work and don't even notice needy and suffering ones by their side striving to do the most they can and feeling worthless ? Preaching work is important but everything must be kept at its proper place. Every good thing can become a burden and a sin if not kept at its proper place. What would be justice without mercy...

    I thought that that paragraph quoted above said in a nutshell many powerful things and could help us "to overcome evil with good". That's why I wanted to share it with you and to know your feelings about it.

    After all, if we all could "overcome evil with good" and if those words were the standard in the org, wouldn't it be some kind of perfection in and around us anyway...? [​IMG]
     
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    Utuna

    Utuna Member

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    Dear all,

    Only the old timers and "heavies" of this db will remember why I used that sentence as a title of this thread. Thus, so that our beloved newcomers may catch on, here is the key :

    In a movie, a soldier (S) is getting prepared for a long and terrible fight in order to avenge his loved ones who were slaughtered by barbarians. The pain that he feels is so acute that rage and bitterness show through his deeds and words.

    Then his wife (W) chimes in and says :

    W - There are two wolves fighting in each mans' heart. One of them is Love, the other is Hate and they keep fighting each other, all of the time.

    S - But which one wins, in the end?

    W - The one you feed the most.
     
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    Utuna

    Utuna Member

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    Hey, my dear brother,

    I'm fine, a bit busy, tired and missing you all though... [​IMG]

    And you, what's up down there ? Hope you aren't paddling around too much because of the recent floods... But Aussie is a big and beautiful country... Lucky you !

    I've read Londoner's post where he said that the PM box seems to be wonky again. That's incredible, every time that I clean it up, I delete twice the number of messages that I usually receive and the box only keeps working for a short while afterwards. Well, my apologies to all those who have sent me a PM so far and who haven't received anything back yet.

    I enjoyed your post. You have a realistic and balanced view of the worth and value that we all have in Jehovah's eyes. It reminded the following illustration :

    "Cassan Said Amer tells a story about a lecturer who began a seminar holding up a one dollar bill, and asking:

    - Who wants this dollar bill?
    Several hands went up, but the lecturer said:
    - Before handing it over, there’s something I must do.
    He furiously crushed it, and asked again:
    - Who still wants this bill?

    The hands continued raised.
    - And what if I do this?
    He threw it against the wall, letting it fall to the floor, kicked it, stamped in it and again held up the bill – all dirty and crumpled. He repeated the question, and the hands continued to be held high.
    - You mustn’t ever forget this scene – said the lecturer. – No matter what I do with this money, it’ll still be a one dollar bill.
    “Many times in our lives, we are crushed, stamped on, kicked, maltreated, offended; however, in spite of this, we are still worth the same.â€

    Jehovah alone is able and capacitated to determine what is our value in his eyes, and certainly not our works or external criterias used by men to oversee us. It is obvious that faith without works is dead, as James said, but it shouldn't be used in formal ways in order to determine the spirituality of someone or his worth in Jehovah's eyes. Human's mind can't encompass and realize the depth and width of Jehovah's means to make us fulfill his purpose anyway.

    I loved what you said about "self-denial". That's so true !

    Jesus never said or behaved as if we should feel like losers or trampling our own dignity in order to please God.
     
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    Utuna

    Utuna Member

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    Hey JD,

    I was going on reading my book before getting some shuteye and they talked about self-denial and the least that I can say is that it is bleak... It led me to make a reseach online about psychology and self-denial... One thing is sure, the b/s who chose the words for the songbook had a great way with words... lol Please, make some research and see the difference for yourself.

    Self-sacrifice is a free gift, self-denial is the killing, the gagging and, that's the word for it, the denial of what/who we are. We don't give up a right to God but we deny having any which leads to pain, frustration and regrets.

    As I used to say to a friend, what is the best sacrifice ? : "I give my life to God even though I'm happy and well-adjusted now" or "I give my life to God because my life is a failure and I have nothing to lose anyway"...
     
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    Utuna

    Utuna Member

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    Dear Greggdanielm,

    Obviously, there are different degrees and kinds of anger. Feelings of disappointment, betrayal and anger are normal especially when it comes to sensitive and emotional subjects such as sexual abuse and religion in that case. Yes, even religion can become emotional because it implies a lifetime commitment, personal dedication and meets our deepest ingrained spiritual needs. My point was to determine personally what we do with said anger, not to exhort others to deny one's hurt.

    Please read :

    "Cain was very angry, and his face was downcast.

    Then the Lord said to Cain, "Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast?

    If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must master it.
    " - Gen4:5-7 (NIV)

    Last sentence said otherwise : "If you do well, will you not have honour? and if you do wrong, sin is waiting at the door, desiring to have you, but do not let it be your master." - (BBE)

    In that verse, Jehovah didn't chide Cain for being angry. He never denied Cain's feelings. He rather made Cain think about what to do with that negative feeling. He told him that he had a choice to make. Cain wasn't just ticked off, his feelings led him to commit a murder...

    We are all different, have different emotional sensitiveness, different emotional boundaries and different emotional threshholds beyond which a given situation may hurt us or not. To each and every personality and cause of suffering must correspond a pertinent and efficient way to try to heal or even just soothe the wounds. Time is a key factor as well. It's up to everyone to decide what to do with the pain inside and what means will have to be implemented to keep with this decision. No one can judge anyone as for the decisions taken or even for the absence of decision.

    Even if I do agree that the WT and its elders are in part responsible for what happened to the kids you talked about above, you mustn't forget that the man who did it is the first culprit in that case. Even when dealing with such highly emotional situations, everything and respective responsabilities also must be kept at their proper place (Gen3:12). In that situation, the kids have serious issues against one man who committed sexual abuse on them and serious issues against the WT in general and the other elders in particular for having concealed the crime and for not having given proper spiritual help. We must distinguish the psychological wounds from the spiritual ones even if the situation and our emotions might have gotten them mixed together.

    There are wounds that may keep bleeding for years and even for a lifetime. They can destroy lives and give rise to overwhelming and extreme negative feelings like guilt, rage and self-worthlessness. Those feelings are consequences of a tremendous trauma. Jehovah created us in wonderful ways according to a given common pattern (imperfection added later on top of that) and no matter how hard we try, our psychological traumas follow such a pattern and so do the psychological ways that must be followed in order to find solace and recovery if possible.

    According to the depth of the trauma, different solutions are available. At times, just crying or talking with a close relative or a friend will suffice. Talking, time, love and patience can help a lot. The most traumatic experiences will require a more specific help like the one of a clinician or a therapist. As I said above, time is a key factor and we shouldn't expect others or ourselves to feel better overnight. Psychological help may also come from associations, internet forums, etc.

    Now comes the spiritual help. Prayer is one of the key factors but it is not a magic wand that cures everything. Too many elders may say : "Pray Jehovah and everything's gonna be alright" and then leave the person in the lurch, on its own devices. According to the situation, spiritual help may come from elders, family and mature relatives and friends.

    Even though we all are different, there's always a common pattern and a psychological trauma follows different and separate phases. Time, love, patience and maybe professional help will help each individual to determine what to do and when to do it. It's obvious that someone who feels betrayed by the WT and who loses faith in God may not consider spiritual help as relevant although he may accept to reconsider it several years later when the pain is less acute. In the same vein, psychological traumas won't be relieved by telling someone to spit at a WT magazine ten times every morning so he feels better.

    We are not responsible for the cause that made us suffer but, to a certain extent, we are responsible of how we react to that suffering. The pain and feelings may be so overwhelming and acute that someone may take years to be able to master his reactions or even convert feelings into words. He may even never be able to. No one can judge that person and only Jehovah has the answer.

    My point in my first post was also that our reactions during those phases may differ according to the way we react and to how we feed our hearts. Our psychological common pattern pushes us to talk about our problems and to have our feelings "validated" by others so we feel understood and relieved. Validation/acknowledgement is a powerful tool towards recovery. However, she shouldn't be confused between validating a suffering and validating hatred which is highly likely to be expected anyway in case of severe trauma.

    Please compare :

    "Yes, that man caused terrible sufferings to you and it must take a lot of courage just to keep living with so much pain".

    "Yes, the JWs are all arrant hypocrits and you're just one victim more of their despicable ways. For sure, they must pay for this".

    So, our comments and people with whom we associate will either heal our wounds or feed our hatred. Simplistic (and devilish) reasonings often mix the both of them. You won't heal a hurtful heart by feeding it with hatred. It's like someone who drinks his sadness away whereas alcohol increases depressive moods. You won't cure a hurt by feeding a negative symptom of it.

    Regarding the difference between anger, hurt and hatred, here is an example. I know a sister who lost her husband because he was climbing on a chair to fix a painting on the wall instead of using a stepladder. Unfortunately, he fell from the chair and killed himself. I was told incidentally after the funerals that she was very mad at him because he had been careless at that moment and the consequences were unspeakably hurtful for all. Was that anger, hatred? Anger isn't hatred.

    If a sister is cheated on by her husband, will she want divorce because of hatred or because of the hurt that might cause hatred ? The hurt may stay for years but what of the hatred ?

    This discussion board is made up of plenty of individuals and with many different backgrounds and bleeding wounds to heal. Since a few years ago, many of them left the db because we weren't harsh enough against the WT. They went to other places where people not only validated their sufferings but validated their hatred too. That's where the notion of choice comes in. When the hurtful situation took place, they didn't choose to be hurt and don't have the choice but to feel the pain. However, they have the choice to feed their hatred or not. Like Cain somehow, they let their anger become hatred.

    I will finish with your own words : The best thing you can do is live a happy life and not let your anger ruin your future happiness.

    Yes, absolutely ! There are pains that only Jehovah is able to remove but we can placate our anger and above all make our hatred die by not feeding it.

    "And "don't sin by letting anger control you." - Eph4:26 (NLT)

    "Go ahead and be angry. You do well to be angry — but don't use your anger as fuel for revenge. And don't stay angry. Don't go to bed angry."- (The Message)

    "If you become angry, do not let your anger lead you into sin,..." - (GNT)

    In other words, do not let someone else's sin become yours...

    That subject is very delicate and complex and I tried to choose my words very carefully in order not to hurt anyone. I'd be very sad if it were the case. If you don't agree or think that my reasoning is incomplete, please, feel free to add your opinion. You'll always be welcome.
     
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    Utuna

    Utuna Member

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    Dear Greggdanielm,

    I guess that if you were chosen to go help those poor victims, you must be sensible, competent and empathetic as for human feelings and psychology.

    Now, please, watch the videos below

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=oMKRIQF9U40

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=B2OHD9c-N7U

    and make some research about the doctor's life and his reactions and words after what happened to his girls.

    In those videos, you can see utter pain and anger. Show me where you see hatred ? How would you react ?

    Is that man a saint ? He isn't even a Christian and thinks that Jesus is a mere prophet.

    If your conclusion is that what he does is great, in what ways do you think that we can learn from him ?
     
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    Utuna

    Utuna Member

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    Dear Greggdanielm,

    It is your right to think that the statements above were over-simplified. They weren't mine but a quotation from a book about psychology which is a best seller and worldwide renowned. Anyway, I particularly agree with that quotation and wanted to share it with my beloved b/s here on this db. It may be easier for you to grasp the ins and the outs of that quotation by standing back from your feelings against the WT. That book was written for secular purposes, not in order to defend the WT or the JWs.

    Why would turning anger into good be impossible ? Absence of proof isn't proof of absence. It's not because you haven't seen it personally that it is impossible. I saw it with my own eyes and my own heart as my ex-bride had suffered for years from sexual abuse in her childhood by an elder and her reactions, thoughts and feelings had nothing to do with your statements. You would pass her coming the other way during a convention and you wouldn't notice anything. Now the problem is solved and the anger is fading away slowly. She has wounds that might never be healed until Jehovah does it personally but she is happy whilst still being a faithful rank and file JW.

    If you still think that it is impossible, just have a look at the members of this discussion board. Many had to undergo terrible hardships and difficult moments in the past and although they may still feel pain because of this, they are here with us and sharing their experience and feelings and above all, they find the comforting words to help other suffering members, newcomers or "heavies" alike.

    Have a look at internet forums talking about social problems, mental illnesses, sexual abuse or else and see how many people are online and trying to share their experiences and provide solace and a compassionate ear to all. Have you never seen former homeless people working hard in order to help the ones who are still in the lurch ? They are everywhere !

    "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort,

    who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.
    " - 2Cor1:3-4 (NIV)

    "Prick an eye and you will draw a tear, prick a heart and you reveal its feelings." (Siracid 22:19)

    Turning anger into good doesn't mean at all being healed, not suffering anymore or total recovery. It means using the rage and anger that the pain gives us in order to achieve positive goals instead of endlessly brooding over our misfortunes and feeding a hatred that leads to nowhere. The latter is a vicious circle and just keeps the pain going over and over for years. Some people may choose to join a db where hateful posts are published but uttering the same accusations and hateful comments over and over again for years has nothing to do anymore with pain, it is hatred and bitterness. Such individuals think that they are free from the WT but they will never be free. The jail is in their heads and hearts. They won't find peace and turn over a new page as long as they have this hatred fed.

    Frankly, I wish you could elaborate more your thoughts and feelings in that regard instead of uttering simplistic and dumbed-down reasonings. The general impression that we have when we ponder over your posts is that you are parrotting what's written in hateful anti-JW websites without having the understanding and expertise required to back up your statements with arguments and thoughtful reasonings. You push again and again the same emotional button of a suffering audience in order to trigger hateful feelings against the WT without any desire to be objective, upbuilding or thorough in your reasonings.

    In your last paragraph, you talk about the Catholic church as a red herring and in order to hide your real intentions which are to criticize and denigrate the WT. I don't care about the WT, it denigrates itself very well for itself. You might have been hurt and shocked by what you initially learned about the WT but you're still stuck in the early spiritual and psychological stages that followed that trauma. The real point is not what the WT is, what the WT says or what the WT says that it is. The latter is just a toy, a smokescreen that Satan gave you so you keep busy and fulfill his hateful secondary purpose in order to divert people from what is really at stake. The real points are how what is happening nowadays is still a fulfillment of Gen3:15, that is how Satan keeps looking for ways to keep a hold on the Seed. In the same vein, what is important is not to fight against the WT but to bring solace and comforting words to all those who suffer from this situation, anointed or not. Moreover, your job is not to fight the WT but to provide the figurative "cup of fresh water" to Jesus' anointed brothers. You've taken over a fight that is not yours and way above your understanding and abilities.

    I know that you've absorbed such things on an intellectual level because I've read several posts from you broaching that subject but you keep following the same erroneous path and behaviour over and over again. I don't want to judge you or was never meant to be mean. I just wish you would wake up and stop fighting against windmills. Here people need love, not hatred.

    You won't help a boy who's suffering from domestic violence by telling him over and over again that his father/mother is a jerk/witch. He needs love, understanding and upbuilding comments. If you can't give him what he needs, then leave him alone instead of making things worse than they already are.
     
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    Utuna

    Utuna Member

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    I liked that comment very much so I post it anyway...

     
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    Utuna

    Utuna Member

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    Dear Thinking,

    As you're a member of this new forum, I apologize for not having been able to ask you beforehand to quote your post but I like it very much so... :p

     
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    Utuna

    Utuna Member

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    Dear Greggdanielm,

    Till the last second, Satan will strive to deceive and keep God's anointed sons under a relative control. There's no such thing as true religion. It's a myth because Satan instils his lies everywhere. Sooner or later, sincere believers get led astray again. It's just a question of time.

    SOJ and you are in the same boat, defending or fighting against spiritual mirages. One day, the bone that Satan gave you to gnaw will vanish and when you wake up, you'll feel like that man whose predicament is recorded in Isa29:7-8 :

    "...will be as it is with a dream, with a vision in the night — as when a hungry man dreams that he is eating, but he awakens, and his hunger remains; as when a thirsty man dreams that he is drinking, but he awakens faint, with his thirst unquenched." - (NIV)
     
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    Utuna

    Utuna Member

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    Luv you, dear sister !! Miss you !!!

    Hope that you won't be mad at me for quoting your ever pertinent and spiritual thoughts but many lurkers and newcomers may keep being encouraged by them, like by the posts written by other members, which is, after all, why this very forum exists and its members are a part of....

     
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