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Anger, how to deal with it?
Posted: 04 December 2006 06:29 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 76 ]  
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I’m listening too. Thanks for bringing us back to the subject.

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Posted: 04 December 2006 01:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 77 ]  
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Hey all. New member here - Aaron is my name.

Just stupidly sent a request for advice to Sam Harris himself before finding the forum. Think he’ll answer? 

It took the End of Faith and God Delusion to sort of finally turn me, after a years-long period of introspection, into a full-blown atheist. It’s wonderful finally feeling totally free from any religous shackles. 

There is the excitement of an ambivalent person like me finally truly believing wholeheartedly in something that makes sense, without a shadow of a conscious doubt.  (Sometimes I still have that conditioned “godthink” state where I think someone is listening and accounting for my thoughts and when I speak aloud to myself. That’s been a challenge to cut out, but I’m glad to keep catching myself at it.)

My excitement around the atheist cause (or, more aptly, the idea of religion being harmful) grows daily. I also feel angry at the world, and don’t know where to begin. I love my friends and family, and don’t want to alienate them, but my tolerance for religion is near zero. My mom loves synagogue (Judaism is something she re-claimed in the last few years) and even dragged me to services when i visted a couple of years back. Never again.

I feel the excitement that comes with finally having the blinders fully removed.  I understood almost every word in Harri’s book (Dawkins is a bit of a more difficult read for me), but, not being an intellectual, I have a difficult time re-articulating what I understand to others. 

I am a composer, and one think I’d like to do is somehow, without being tacky, compose as my doctoral dissertation piece (in a couple of years) a tribute to this cause.  That would be how I could best be heard, I suppose.

Thanks for giving me the space.  I’ll stop for now.

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Posted: 04 December 2006 03:45 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 78 ]  
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[quote author=“HappyHeathen”]I am a composer, and one think I’d like to do is somehow, without being tacky, compose as my doctoral dissertation piece (in a couple of years) a tribute to this cause.  That would be how I could best be heard, I suppose.

Given all the religious compositions, that seems like a worthy idea. 

I think John Adams might have beaten you to it though…

(Harmonielehre, Part III)

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Posted: 04 December 2006 07:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 79 ]  
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[quote author=“HappyHeathen”]Hey all. New member here - Aaron is my name.

Just stupidly sent a request for advice to Sam Harris himself before finding the forum. Think he’ll answer? 

It took the End of Faith and God Delusion to sort of finally turn me, after a years-long period of introspection, into a full-blown atheist. It’s wonderful finally feeling totally free from any religous shackles. 

There is the excitement of an ambivalent person like me finally truly believing wholeheartedly in something that makes sense, without a shadow of a conscious doubt.  (Sometimes I still have that conditioned “godthink” state where I think someone is listening and accounting for my thoughts and when I speak aloud to myself. That’s been a challenge to cut out, but I’m glad to keep catching myself at it.)

My excitement around the atheist cause (or, more aptly, the idea of religion being harmful) grows daily. I also feel angry at the world, and don’t know where to begin. I love my friends and family, and don’t want to alienate them, but my tolerance for religion is near zero. My mom loves synagogue (Judaism is something she re-claimed in the last few years) and even dragged me to services when i visted a couple of years back. Never again.

I feel the excitement that comes with finally having the blinders fully removed.  I understood almost every word in Harri’s book (Dawkins is a bit of a more difficult read for me), but, not being an intellectual, I have a difficult time re-articulating what I understand to others. 

I am a composer, and one think I’d like to do is somehow, without being tacky, compose as my doctoral dissertation piece (in a couple of years) a tribute to this cause.  That would be how I could best be heard, I suppose.

Thanks for giving me the space.  I’ll stop for now.

Apologies for quoting the whole post, but it just sounded so familiar. A lot like myself. Welcome to the forum, Aaron!

I only stopped short on the phrase “believing wholeheartedly”, and only because I’ve recently grown a tad hyper-sensitive to the word ‘believe’. As one great contributor to this site, Ted Shepherd, pointed out to me (well not to me personally, but within one of his illuminating posts), the word ‘belief’ clearly implies doubt. We don’t have to believe  in the natural world, in things that present clear evidence of their existence to one and all in near identical fashion. We can know  it, see it, hear it, taste it, and share it, without concern that they can’t see the same world we do. I almost never use ‘believe’ anymore, and catch myself when it slips out, unless I’m speaking about something I’m genuinely uncertain of. Believers have  to use it, they can do nothing but  believe, because they cannot know.


And I believe (;)) that I know what you mean, about how the echoes of old fears can still be heard in our heads sometimes. It happens to me, too. Some here would like us to think that it’s God’s voice we’re hearing in those moments, that he’s calling us back to the fold. But I now know it’s nothing more than stubborn remnants of some bloody brilliant indoctrinization, just childlike fears that religious proponents are all too eager to exploit.

The good news is that the ‘flashbacks’ gradually decrease in frequency and intensity, so just hang in there and keep feeding on reality. Faith is a nasty drug, and I for one am real happy for you, getting off it.

Looking forward to hearing that composition someday.


p.s. I have a big monster crush on Oregon, and hope to eventually relocate there. Do you like Eugene?

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Posted: 05 December 2006 03:38 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 80 ]  
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Mia and made_maka, thanks for the replies.

Excellent point about the word “belief” - I’ll definitely use that word more carefully in the future!

made_maka, could you elaborate on how Adams’ Harmonielehre espouses the cause of atheism? I just read Adams’ own comments at http://www.schirmer.com/Default.aspx?TabId=2420&State_2874=2&workId_2874=23704 and don’t see it.

I can only speak for Eugene, Mia.  I came here for school a little over three years ago, and it’s an interesting place. Very green in all aspects of the word. Perhaps a social rift between the University people and the non-University people, and my social life is entirely with University people, with the scary exception of a local Mormon I dated when I first arrived, but please let’s not talk about that(!)  I do not own a car or drive, so don’t get out of Eugene much.

I only wish that the U of O had some sort of secular-focused student group. Perhaps I need to start one.

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Posted: 05 December 2006 05:41 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 81 ]  
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[quote author=“HappyHeathen”]
made_maka, could you elaborate on how Adams’ Harmonielehre espouses the cause of atheism? I just read Adams’ own comments at http://www.schirmer.com/Default.aspx?TabId=2420&State_2874=2&workId_2874=23704 and don’t see it.

Oh, I only meant that Meister Eckhardt was tried by the Pope for heresy.  He was too much of a humanist.  It doesn’t espouse the cause of atheism, more (in my opinion) the power of the irrational that isn’t theistic.  (E.g. the dreams which inspired the piece.) 

I was just talking off the top of my head, so to speak.

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Posted: 14 December 2006 12:40 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 82 ]  
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I understand completely, I live in England so we dont have a big problem with Christianity but Islam is big and getting louder and more visible.

Recently one of Tony Bliars cabinet Jack Straw critisised the veil!!

What was once a rare sight has now become quite common. Not that this makes me angry, worried and uneasy yes, but angry? No.

What does make me angry is the hypocritical things Muslims say.

Stuff like ‘‘Islam is a religion of peace’’ and ‘‘we would like to live under sharia law’‘, ‘‘because gods law is better than mans law’‘.

When Islam allows men to beat their wives and Sharia law prescribes criminals to have their hands and feet to be chopped off and homosexuals to be stoned to death.

Islam is quite patently NOT a religion of peace but if I were to say that in England I would be seen as a racist and I would also risk being atacked by angry Muslim youth.

This kind of hypocrisy makes me very angry.

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Posted: 14 December 2006 01:02 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 83 ]  
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[quote author=“jmisloski”][ jmisloski wrote:

These are highly intelligent people who seem to have absolutely no rational or logical thoughts about science. Everything they believe is based on religion. At least one of these people insists the world is only 6,000 years old because the church says so. ]


The above quote from “Letter to a Christian Nation” appeared in one of TA’s messages tagged with my name. I looks like a technical glitch but I’m not sure.  Just to clear any confusion, I didn’t post this quote.

If you want me to respond to it as a follower of Jesus I’d be glad to but this thread is about dealing with anger and I don’t want to sidetrack the discussion (although I think I may have already done that to some degree…) So if I need to take my questions to a different thread or start a new one let me know.  I don’t want to add to the anger, just understand it.

You come across as a very open minded man, not many Christians can take critisism of their cherished beliefs so well. Good on ya mate!!

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Posted: 18 December 2006 03:00 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 84 ]  
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Thanks Luke.

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