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#402566 - 07/04/12 08:25 PM Cautious w male survivors & spirituality topic
kcinohio Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/06/12
Posts: 310
Loc: Ohio
Just posting this because I find myself holding back on here.

Particularly around male survivor issues, I find myself holding back some due to perceived differences in spiritual beliefs. Communally, I'm primarily Unitarian Universalist. Within modern UU, individuals may hold quite disparate personal theistic beliefs, but are joined by the seven principles. On a personal level, I'm a polytheist and have been for 14 years this summer.

In twelve step recovery, other than a couple times of the year, I fit in fine although realizing I'm well in a minority, though the focus in recovery is on spirituality. On occasion, there are times when the majority religion overwhelms the spiritual range, but overall it works. To be completely honest, there are still odd days where it becomes an issue for me, but I take that as part of my spiritual workout journey.

When it comes to male survivor issues and feeling vulnerable, I'll admit that I'm more easily intimidated. Since both spirituality and "feeling different than others" is such a part of this male survivor journey for me, I'm sometimes at a loss as to how to share when the topic is bridged in a thread.

I don't want to offend someone on shaky ground themselves about things, nor do I want to make a lengthy qualification about how "my beliefs are different, but this is how I see it" for every thread where religious beliefs are mentioned. But, when that stops me from commenting, I feel less a part of the group then.

I guess the take away from this would be a question. How do you handle interacting with other male survivors when spirituality is the topic at hand, but you know your beliefs differ from the others on some important point?

Maybe if others reveal how they handle it, I can find a way to not feel like I'm talking through a screen door to folks here when such subjects come up.

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#402586 - 07/05/12 02:58 AM Re: Cautious w male survivors & spirituality topic [Re: kcinohio]
traveler Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 3356
Loc: somewhere in Africa
hi, KC,

i think each of us have a unique perspective or set of beliefs when it comes to spiritual things. even the most traditional or orthodox probably have subtle shadings of differences. my set of beliefs would be called "Christian" by most people (so i hope my standing is a presumably "majority" group won't intimidate you) - but i am aware of certain differences that i have with the majority of Christians that i just don't make an issue so as not to cause unnecessary conflict. i also am sure that there are many common areas that i share with other faiths that i am glad to emphasize as a place of meeting. i really find inflexible dogmatism to be very unattractive - although there are some points upon which i would never compromise.

i certainly feel strong enough and open enough to allow others to express their own convictions without being threatened or hurt by their comments. i certainly hope that my posts are not threatening or hurtful to anyone else. they are meant to share my experiences and either solicit or offer encouragement to others with similar pasts or similar beliefs. or sometimes i just need to get something off my chest. i think that the purpose of this Spirituality forum is to allow us to discuss how our faith or beliefs or religion or spiritual values have helped, hindered, influenced or not affected our abuse, its after-effects and recovery.

i usually try to hold back in other forums from saying something that i know would be a trigger to some guys who are super-sensitive to religion and "God-talk" because of having experienced abuse that was related to church or church-leadership or members. so i keep my most blatantly faith-related discussions and statements here. here i feel pretty free to be much more vulnerable and specific i revealing my highs and lows related to my faith or lack thereof.

i think the biggest thing to remember is to respect the beliefs or non-beliefs of others, and to keep my focus on my own experience rather than try to proselytize or convert someone else. (except when i know that another poster shares certain fundamental beliefs with me - then i feel more free to enter into discussion of specific points.)

i truly hope that you will feel free to say whatever is on your mind and in your heart. I believe we all have a lot to learn from one another - often more from those who have different views than those whose think the same. i hope and trust that you will find more acceptance, understanding and support than you expect.

Lee
_________________________
As my life goes on I believe somehow something's changed
Something deep inside...
I've been searchin so long to find an answer
Now I know my life has meaning
Now I see myself as I am, feeling very free...
When my tears have come to an end I will understand
What I left behind: a part of me. Chicago


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#402694 - 07/05/12 10:01 PM Re: Cautious w male survivors & spirituality topic [Re: traveler]
kcinohio Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/06/12
Posts: 310
Loc: Ohio
Thanks Lee, I appreciate the supportive comment.

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#402772 - 07/06/12 03:02 PM Re: Cautious w male survivors & spirituality topic [Re: kcinohio]
scottyg Offline


Registered: 06/26/12
Posts: 253
Loc: Seattle
Oh my god! Thank you for this post. As an unashamed non-christian -came from a long line of heathens including a Quaker grandmother and great-aunt who would spit if you called them "good Christians"- I am also at a loss about how to interact here with respect to others' faiths. The problem is that people can be so absolutist. My aversion to dogmas is second only to my aversion to pedophiles. So I keep extremely mum. I am more of a generally spiritual type, practicing an amalgamation of Taoism, physical cosmology and salvation through BBQ. You refer to yourself as polytheist. I'd put myself in that ballpark.

I am very interested in your journey as it pertains to the UU. Frankly I am terrified of any theology that requires a special building, monuments OK. But I just want to thank you again for opening up this thread!

Perhaps we need to add a ***POSSIBLE TRIGGERS*** disclaimer to the title of our threads. That way we won't offend those who would become upset by our unconventional take on spriritual matters?
_________________________
I've got a bike you can ride it if you like.
Its got a basket, a bell that rings
And many other things to make it look good.
I'd give it to you if I could -but I've borrowed it.

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#402794 - 07/06/12 08:07 PM Re: Cautious w male survivors & spirituality topic [Re: kcinohio]
traveler Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 3356
Loc: somewhere in Africa
not a bad idea, scottyg... to have some sort of identification or disclaimer, like the Family & Friends forum asks posters to state their gender, then yu know where they are coming from.

on the other hand, i really don't like labels - prefer non-denominational churches - often ones that meet in neutral, secular venues - (even visited one that met in a bar!)so maybe the disclaimer would tend to be more divisive rather than helpful.. i guess there are pros and cons either way.

but i am so glad to see more action here on this forum. please keep it up. KC and Scotty - you both seem careful enough of others feelings that i don't think you pose a threat to anyone. write! post! just include the appropriate trigger warning if you think it is needed. we will all benefit.

Lee
_________________________
As my life goes on I believe somehow something's changed
Something deep inside...
I've been searchin so long to find an answer
Now I know my life has meaning
Now I see myself as I am, feeling very free...
When my tears have come to an end I will understand
What I left behind: a part of me. Chicago


Top
#402798 - 07/06/12 08:54 PM Re: Cautious w male survivors & spirituality topic [Re: kcinohio]
scottyg Offline


Registered: 06/26/12
Posts: 253
Loc: Seattle
thank you Lee. You are truly a Samaritan, clothing, sheltering and feeding weary travelers abandoned on the road.

You're a credit to your faith.
_________________________
I've got a bike you can ride it if you like.
Its got a basket, a bell that rings
And many other things to make it look good.
I'd give it to you if I could -but I've borrowed it.

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#402814 - 07/07/12 02:07 AM Re: Cautious w male survivors & spirituality topic [Re: kcinohio]
traveler Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 3356
Loc: somewhere in Africa
to go with the Samaritan theme a step further - i think that's what Jesus meant that we should all do. no credit to me. more of a reminder that this is to be considered the normal behavior and if others aren't there - then they have some catching up to do.

lee
_________________________
As my life goes on I believe somehow something's changed
Something deep inside...
I've been searchin so long to find an answer
Now I know my life has meaning
Now I see myself as I am, feeling very free...
When my tears have come to an end I will understand
What I left behind: a part of me. Chicago


Top
#402833 - 07/07/12 12:10 PM Re: Cautious w male survivors & spirituality topic [Re: kcinohio]
scottyg Offline


Registered: 06/26/12
Posts: 253
Loc: Seattle
Yes, traveler, that is what I meant. You love god and you love your neighbor, as Jesus commands. Sadly, I've found many people passing on the highway are more like the preist and the Levite and less like the man from Sumer. That is why you're a credit- you walk the walk.
_________________________
I've got a bike you can ride it if you like.
Its got a basket, a bell that rings
And many other things to make it look good.
I'd give it to you if I could -but I've borrowed it.

Top
#403006 - 07/09/12 11:07 AM Re: Cautious w male survivors & spirituality topic [Re: kcinohio]
Blessedcurse Offline


Registered: 06/05/12
Posts: 93
It's the spirituality forum, not the christianity forum.

I wellcome other perspectives. Also I don't have that much in common with most christians I've met and many of them wouldn't even concidder me a proper christian.

To me these spiritual things are things we all need to work through, no matter what religion you have. Or as an atheist. On my part I don't get offended by atheists usually. I do get a bit scared by christians posting bible quotes though. But I'll have to work on that.

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#403216 - 07/10/12 10:22 PM Re: Cautious w male survivors & spirituality topic [Re: scottyg]
kcinohio Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/06/12
Posts: 310
Loc: Ohio
Thanks Scottyg. I was wondering if any others felt the concern around this.

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#403218 - 07/10/12 10:27 PM Re: Cautious w male survivors & spirituality topic [Re: Blessedcurse]
kcinohio Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/06/12
Posts: 310
Loc: Ohio
Thanks blessedcurse, appreciate your perspective on this. There's definitely a breadth of beliefs along the topic of spirituality.

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#405756 - 08/03/12 08:00 PM Re: Cautious w male survivors & spirituality topic [Re: kcinohio]
SamV Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/13/09
Posts: 5942
Loc: Talladega, Alabama, USA
Express yourself and your convictions fully, so long as those beliefs are not for contest. Find the commonality. Agree with what you are able. Temper the reply with love and compassion. Respect the path other's choose. Disagree lightly.
_________________________
MaleSurvivor Moderator Emeritus 2012 - 2014

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#406181 - 08/08/12 12:52 AM Re: Cautious w male survivors & spirituality topic [Re: kcinohio]
ren42 Offline


Registered: 03/26/11
Posts: 54
.


Edited by ren42 (12/28/12 05:09 PM)

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