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#460666 - 02/13/14 09:31 PM Re: Christianity, the Only Hope for Survivor Recovery? [Re: SamV]
Ever-fixed Mark Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/02/10
Posts: 729
Loc: United States
I have deep respect for survivors who find quiet strength in their faith and are able to live it humbly without diminishing non-believers, agnostics, and apostates. It's difficult for me to have the same respect for those who use their faith like a coercive bludgeon and claim it's the path to recovery, while their faiths are also actively re-traumatizing, blaming, and shaming survivors.

In my case, the path to recovery passes through a life free of the oppression, fear, and hypocrisy, that organized religion carries with it.

-efm
_________________________

Everybody here's got a story to tell
Everybody's been through their own hell
There's nothing too special about getting hurt
Getting over it, that takes the work

- "Duck and Cover" by Glen Phillips

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#460682 - 02/13/14 11:54 PM Re: Christianity, the Only Hope for Survivor Recovery? [Re: SamV]
victor-victim Offline


Registered: 09/27/03
Posts: 3554
Loc: O Kanada
Originally Posted By: SamV
Foreword... As a Christian, I have both felt the welcoming care and the harsh rejection of a body of Christians. I believe in the Word of God and in the way He chooses to use imperfect humans to carry out His Will and Purpose. I invite strong opinions and conversation, however personal attacks will not be tolerated.

agreed!

i have studied your questions, and attempted to answer them from my own perspective as a follower of jesus christ and the word of god.

Is this process of supporting recovery strictly Christian?
no, i believe it is not.

Is there other groups that offer this process?
yes, i am sure there is.

Since sexual abuse abounded throughout history, how did humans recover before Christianity?
it is reasonable to assume that some people were able to recover and others were not. i know survivors who seem better behaved and adjusted than i, who are not christian. i thought i was doing ok before i became a follower of christ.

Is it through faith or man's enlightenment that sexual abuse recovery has come to be the force it is today?
i am not sure what is the difference between "faith" and "enlightenment".
you would have to clarify what you mean by your use of those words.
i am leaning toward "enlightenment", if by that word "elightenment" you mean scientific discoveries, sexual revolution, and social evolution since the dark ages.
the suppression of sexual discussion by the traditions of man, for whatever reasons (shame-guilt-embarassment), has caused more harm than good. as we all are aware, sexual abuse thrives in the darkness of silence, suppression and secrecy.
i think the word "faith" has been hijacked and abused for well over a thousand years.
faith in god, for me, is not the same as, and has nothing to do with, faith in the church, religion, government, or any kind of human authority or institution.
that kind of faith is dangerous. i do not trust people.

What about those who have been abused or silenced by followers of Christianity?
such as myself... i can tell you from my own experience, that false christians are bad examples and they cause many people, especially their victims, to turn their back on christ, religion, the bible, jehovah, jesus, etc.
i rebelled and refused and rejected christianity for over 40 years because of bad experiences with churches and christians. i also abhorred and avoided and annulled god over that same time period. this was before i started studying the bible seriously.

What is the solution?
do not judge a belief system by those who do not represent the ideals they claim to believe and follow.
instead, study, research, investigate the system itself.
find out what that system teaches, learn the truth about it.
discover for yourself, what it really means and says... TO YOU.
most christians i have met, do not study or even read the bible.
most christians i have met, do not follow or obey the commandments contained within the bible.
all i can do is try my best, and the reward is in the effort.

Does a survivor abused by a Christian follower have to acclimate to Christianity in order to heal?
i sure needed time. i was certain that christianity was a joke played on fools. i used to believe that there were four types of christians... insane, insincere, insecure, or ignorant.

Can Christians support a non Christian in healing while allowing the beliefs of the survivor to remain intact, whatever the origins?
i don't think i could. my entire healing hinged on forgiveness, which i was unable to accomplish without assistance from the higher power, and i was only able to do that with bible, prayer, and fellowship. nothing else i had previously tried worked as well. believe, christianity was my absolute last choice.

Can a survivor who is not Christian thrive in a community where most are Christian?
before i became a christian, i could not spend any time around christians, because they irritated me irrationally. that is, i could not understand why they bugged me, but they bugged me, nonetheless. i did not even engage in debates. i was not remotely interested in it. i dismissed it out of hand. too many rules. too many miracles. just their happiness alone bothered me. becoming a christian was the last thing on my mind. i don't even know how it happened, but now i am glad it did.

There are many examples of rational and irrational avoidance where trauma has been experienced, when is the appropriate time for an external source to demand acclimation or challenge the conclusions of the trauma survivor?
not sure i understand this question.


Would it be appropriate to demand that a drowning victim be thrust into the water, or a climber go back to the slope, or that an investor who has been the victim of financial fraud be made to invest?
each person is built differently. for some it might just be the right advice.
the old sink or swim system. if you throw someone in the water, they will either learn to stay afloat, or they will drown. it is a risky method of instruction. there is really no substitute for careful preparation and instruction from an expert who knows how to teach.
for me, getting back on the horse after it bucks you off has always been the best response to any setback.
however, in this spiritual situation... i took over 45 years to regain my trust and faith in jehovah the creator and jesus the christ again. considering i am only 53... that is a significant percentage of my life here on earth. i can honestly say that i wish i had done it decades earlier, but i was obviously not prepared to accept it any earlier.




i gave it my best try.
hard questions.

scripture that i studied while contemplating your post.
Originally Posted By: the bible

good advice and instructions for christians from jesus and paul and james.

warning: if cutting, pasting, posting and quoting scripture from the bible offends, irritates, annoys, or bothers you... please do not read any further.

nothing but spiritual biblical scripture being quoted and posted ahead...

"Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels. And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will."
2 Timothy 2

"I urge you, brothers and sisters, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them. For such people are not serving our Lord Christ, but their own appetites. By smooth talk and flattery they deceive the minds of naive people."
Romans 16

“Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they will be called children of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.
Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven,
for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
You are the salt of the earth.
But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again?
It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.
You are the light of the world.
A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.
Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl.
Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.
In the same way, let your light shine before others,
that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbour and hate your enemy.’
But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,
that you may be children of your Father in heaven.
He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good,
and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.
If you love those who love you, what reward will you get?
Are not even the tax collectors doing that?
And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others?
Do not even pagans do that?
Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect."
Matthew 5

“Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.
Do not give dogs what is sacred; do not throw your pearls to pigs. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces.
Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit."
Matthew 7

"Whatever town or village you enter, search there for some worthy person and stay at their house until you leave. As you enter the home, give it your greeting. If the home is deserving, let your peace rest on it; if it is not, let your peace return to you. If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, leave that home or town and shake the dust off your feet. Truly I tell you, it will be more bearable for Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment than for that town.
I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves. Be on your guard; you will be handed over to the local councils and be flogged in the synagogues. On my account you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. But when they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.
You will be hated by everyone because of me, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. When you are persecuted in one place, flee to another.
So do not be afraid of them, for there is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known. What I tell you in the dark, speak in the daylight; what is whispered in your ear, proclaim from the roofs. Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.
Whoever acknowledges me before others, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. But whoever disowns me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven.
Anyone who welcomes you welcomes me, and anyone who welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me."
Matthew 10

"Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world.
You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. They are from the world and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them. We are from God, and whoever knows God listens to us; but whoever is not from God does not listen to us. This is how we recognize the Spirit of truth and the spirit of falsehood."
1 John 4

"I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry."
2 Timothy 4

"Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly. We all stumble in many ways. Anyone who is never at fault in what they say is perfect, able to keep their whole body in check.
When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal. Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go. Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark.
The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.
All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and sea creatures are being tamed and have been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.
With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be.
Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring?
My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs?
Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water.
Who is wise and understanding among you?
Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom.
But if you harbour bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts,
do not boast about it or deny the truth."
James 2

"Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness?"
2 Corinthians 6



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Victor|Victim

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#460824 - 02/15/14 11:05 PM Re: Christianity, the Only Hope for Survivor Recovery? [Re: SamV]
ThisMan Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/22/13
Posts: 767
Loc: upper south
… warning: if you hate the bible... do not read any further.
spiritual scripture ahead...


…..

2/24
It's feels much safer to see the original warning altered to not include "hate of the Bible". I do thank you very much for that effort.


Edited by ThisMan (02/24/14 08:48 PM)
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#460858 - 02/16/14 12:20 PM Re: Christianity, the Only Hope for Survivor Recovery? [Re: SamV]
Lancer Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
You've obviously put a lot of thot into the post Sam. My 2˘: I'm wary of ANY claim that, "xxx is the ONLY hope/solution for yyy."

EFM's post was particularly well-put. He said everything for me in a restrained - yes, restrained - way I could never manage.

I'll draw on a personal experience completely unrelated to faith issues. In my early days with HIV I was told the poison, AZT (Retrovir), was the "only" hope I had and I'd nevertheless be dead in 5-7 years. (AZT had be used in the 60s to treat leukemia). Problem was it not only attacked HIV DNA, it indiscriminately attacked everything. During stage 2 HIV trials in the late 80s a friend of mine was given 10x what eventually became the normal dosage. And he was dead in just over a year. I quit the AZT early on, all its side-effects, the destruction it was wreaking on healthy cells, and I'm still here over 21 years later.

What I'm saying is that "certainties" - the ONLY hope? Really? - promulgated by supposed authorities, self-appointed or not, are red flags. And you bet I have authority issues. Frankly, too, having spent a lifetime in advertising/marketing, I can smell bullshit a mile away.

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#460896 - 02/16/14 09:08 PM Re: Christianity, the Only Hope for Survivor Recovery? [Re: SamV]
victor-victim Offline


Registered: 09/27/03
Posts: 3554
Loc: O Kanada
that is great news about beating the doc's diagnosis, lancer.
i am well past my due date, as well.
sometimes the experts are wrong.
my dad is ten years past their best predictions also.
the will to live is sometimes all that is needed.
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#460944 - 02/17/14 11:29 AM Re: Christianity, the Only Hope for Survivor Recovery? [Re: SamV]
BuffaloCO Offline


Registered: 07/14/12
Posts: 440
Loc: USA
To answer the question of the post, I'd say no. It has worked for me, but others find different paths and I won't argue that those are less valid if they find healing.
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“We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark. The real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.” - Plato

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