OrthodoxChristianity.net
August 22, 2014, 05:55:40 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: Reminder: No political discussions in the public fora.  If you do not have access to the private Politics Forum, please send a PM to Fr. George.
 
   Home   Help Calendar Contact Treasury Tags Login Register  
Pages: « 1 2  All   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Life  (Read 1510 times) Average Rating: 0
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
mountainman
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Faith: orthodox
Jurisdiction: oca
Posts: 65


« Reply #45 on: April 18, 2012, 06:34:21 AM »

Life amounts to keeping ourselves occupied until we die.

Some choose to occupy themselves with business, others with social justice, some occupy their time with birdwatching, and others with narcotics.

God and religion are nothing more than a source of entertainment.

Mint, if playing the devil's advocate, being "Catholic (potential Orthodox)" , is simply engaging in an exercise of "tearing down the temple so he can rebuild it again"....  These questions are valuable and sometimes need to be asked/explored before a deeper opening can take place...
Logged
IoanC
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Posts: 2,378



WWW
« Reply #46 on: April 18, 2012, 11:03:20 AM »

Mint, it would be useful to investigate why you are saying these things. Just for entertainment, or do you actually mean them?
It's one thing to play around with ideas, and another to believe them. Notice I said believe. You'll find that there is a distinction between what people think and what they believe. We say/think many things, but we only act on those we believe in (yet we may not know for sure if they are true).  Faith is necessary in approaching God.  No matter how much some would criticize "blind faith", it is a virtuous thing to believe (without seeing) in a God of absolute Love, Beauty and Perfection. It's also a deep desire that man has; and it's one's free will at work. People will continue to want a God, while others will continue to not want a God. It's a matter of desire and freedom, but it also speaks volumes about one's heart and highest (or lowest) aspirations. And there is no conflict between Faith and rationality/logic, unless one does not have correct Faith in God (does not love God for the right reasons).  I have not yet seen the man who does something Good and it becomes something evil. Smiley  And I have not seen the man who does something Evil and becomes something Good. Again, we must be careful not to play around with these notions too much in our head, or else suffering will remind us again that Evil hurts.
Logged

katherineofdixie
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 3,240



« Reply #47 on: April 18, 2012, 12:14:11 PM »

I have always had a hard time discussing with nihilists. How can one explain the meaning of life to someone who is convinced that everything is meaningless?

They're not convinced that everything is meaningless. They are, for example, often convinced that they themselves are quite meaningful and smart and aware, to have discerned truths that have eluded the vulgar and stupid majority.
Logged

"If but ten of us lead a holy life, we shall kindle a fire which shall light up the entire city."

 St. John Chrysostom
Justin Kissel
Formerly Asteriktos
Protospatharios
****************
Offline Offline

Posts: 29,485



« Reply #48 on: April 18, 2012, 02:26:40 PM »

I have always had a hard time discussing with nihilists. How can one explain the meaning of life to someone who is convinced that everything is meaningless?

They're not convinced that everything is meaningless. They are, for example, often convinced that they themselves are quite meaningful and smart and aware, to have discerned truths that have eluded the vulgar and stupid majority.

Have they not?

Oh, and troll is gaining success without even trying. I am impressed. But that success gets back to the comment about people being vulgar and stupid. Well, not vulgar, I rather like vulgar (in most of it's senses).
Logged

I would strongly recommend Orthodoxy and the Religion of the Future by Fr Seraphim Rose.
Big Chris
Formerly "mint"
Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Inquirer
Jurisdiction: Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlotte, NC
Posts: 277

I live by the river where the old gods still dream


« Reply #49 on: April 18, 2012, 08:33:26 PM »

I think I have an idea where the OP is coming from. I think that he has been investigating religion, and had been led to Orthodoxy by some means. He wants to believe in God, yet has been having doubts lately. For some reason, he thought that Orthodoxy was his last hope to find belief in God. For some reason he recently became dissapointed in it, or something happened to make him question the "legitimacy" of Orthodoxy. Now he wants to throw it all to the wind because Orthodoxy was the last "stop" on his journey towards finding faith. Now he feels "resigned" to atheism.

Is this accurate, Mint?

What if this were true?
Logged

Tasting is Believing
mountainman
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Faith: orthodox
Jurisdiction: oca
Posts: 65


« Reply #50 on: April 19, 2012, 12:35:06 AM »

I think I have an idea where the OP is coming from. I think that he has been investigating religion, and had been led to Orthodoxy by some means. He wants to believe in God, yet has been having doubts lately. For some reason, he thought that Orthodoxy was his last hope to find belief in God. For some reason he recently became dissapointed in it, or something happened to make him question the "legitimacy" of Orthodoxy. Now he wants to throw it all to the wind because Orthodoxy was the last "stop" on his journey towards finding faith. Now he feels "resigned" to atheism.

Is this accurate, Mint?

What if this were true?

if this were true, Mint, than perhaps it would be good to take another look at your motives for being "religious" in the first place. Atheism in this case would be the last stop on the journey to meet your own pride.   Is it your own profit you are interested in, or the profit for you brother?  Do you live for yourself, or for someone else?  And what is "legitimacy" worth, if it does not serve this motive?
Logged
Ortho_cat
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: AOCA-DWMA
Posts: 5,392



« Reply #51 on: April 19, 2012, 12:53:10 PM »

I think I have an idea where the OP is coming from. I think that he has been investigating religion, and had been led to Orthodoxy by some means. He wants to believe in God, yet has been having doubts lately. For some reason, he thought that Orthodoxy was his last hope to find belief in God. For some reason he recently became dissapointed in it, or something happened to make him question the "legitimacy" of Orthodoxy. Now he wants to throw it all to the wind because Orthodoxy was the last "stop" on his journey towards finding faith. Now he feels "resigned" to atheism.

Is this accurate, Mint?

What if this were true?

then you can tell us some of the things that have been troubling you about the faith, and we can talk about them. I went through the same path, which is why it seemed a familiar one to me.
Logged
Ortho_cat
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: AOCA-DWMA
Posts: 5,392



« Reply #52 on: April 19, 2012, 01:13:15 PM »

or you can pm me if you want.
Logged
Carl Kraeff (Second Chance)
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 6,666



« Reply #53 on: April 19, 2012, 05:46:33 PM »

In my case, when I turned 18, my father said that I had been in the Church all of my life and that I had to decide for myself whether or not I wanted to believe and to choose the Church that I would belong to, if I believed. He told me to start from scratch--that is from the premise that God does not exist and work my way out of that hole.
Logged

Michal: "SC, love you in this thread."
Big Chris
Formerly "mint"
Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Inquirer
Jurisdiction: Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlotte, NC
Posts: 277

I live by the river where the old gods still dream


« Reply #54 on: April 19, 2012, 09:50:39 PM »

I think I have an idea where the OP is coming from. I think that he has been investigating religion, and had been led to Orthodoxy by some means. He wants to believe in God, yet has been having doubts lately. For some reason, he thought that Orthodoxy was his last hope to find belief in God. For some reason he recently became dissapointed in it, or something happened to make him question the "legitimacy" of Orthodoxy. Now he wants to throw it all to the wind because Orthodoxy was the last "stop" on his journey towards finding faith. Now he feels "resigned" to atheism.

Is this accurate, Mint?

What if this were true?

then you can tell us some of the things that have been troubling you about the faith, and we can talk about them. I went through the same path, which is why it seemed a familiar one to me.

If I could reclaim all the hours I've wasted recounting my developing experience on discussion boards like this, who knows how young I'd be!  It's a constant reenactment, writing a novel just to bring some disinterested audience 1/16 up to speed so they can facilitate some smart-jack response. 

I have wasted more than 5 years of my life, dropped out of graduate school, and nearly became a monk all for the pursuit of something called God and His Son Jesus, I have wrestled with God with nearly every waking breath, I have been sent to therapy because my piety was leading an identity crisis, I have tried running away from God, I have tried practicing Dzogchen and seriously believed that I was karmically destined to practice Dzogchen, and then I get swept up again in this Christianity thing again which I can't escape, and I get really really really excited to finally become Orthodox, something I've wanted to do since first studying the Fathers in college, and, you know what, as much as I can have faith that there is a God and that all the modernist biblical scholars are viewing Scripture through postmodernist Glasses, I can equally feel like a shipwrecked sailor clutching to a piece of driftwood hovering above the abyss of the dark sea below.  I realize that I practice religion because I'm not Brad Pitt who has a busy schedule.  I practice religion because I want to believe there's a god, I want to believe the Buddhists are wrong, I want to believe there is hope, I want to believe that if what Jesus said is true then the Orthodox Church is the true church, I want to believe because the sun rises, the Northern Cardinal eats its food without malice but with thanksgiving, and behind each face lies a story that extends backwards in time throughout the generations.

And screw you yuppies who are to judge me.
Logged

Tasting is Believing
witega
Is it enough now, to tell you you matter?
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Diocese of the South
Posts: 1,614


« Reply #55 on: April 19, 2012, 11:46:14 PM »

I think I have an idea where the OP is coming from. I think that he has been investigating religion, and had been led to Orthodoxy by some means. He wants to believe in God, yet has been having doubts lately. For some reason, he thought that Orthodoxy was his last hope to find belief in God. For some reason he recently became dissapointed in it, or something happened to make him question the "legitimacy" of Orthodoxy. Now he wants to throw it all to the wind because Orthodoxy was the last "stop" on his journey towards finding faith. Now he feels "resigned" to atheism.

Is this accurate, Mint?

What if this were true?

then you can tell us some of the things that have been troubling you about the faith, and we can talk about them. I went through the same path, which is why it seemed a familiar one to me.

If I could reclaim all the hours I've wasted recounting my developing experience on discussion boards like this, who knows how young I'd be!  It's a constant reenactment, writing a novel just to bring some disinterested audience 1/16 up to speed so they can facilitate some smart-jack response. 

I have wasted more than 5 years of my life, dropped out of graduate school, and nearly became a monk all for the pursuit of something called God and His Son Jesus, I have wrestled with God with nearly every waking breath, I have been sent to therapy because my piety was leading an identity crisis, I have tried running away from God, I have tried practicing Dzogchen and seriously believed that I was karmically destined to practice Dzogchen, and then I get swept up again in this Christianity thing again which I can't escape, and I get really really really excited to finally become Orthodox, something I've wanted to do since first studying the Fathers in college, and, you know what, as much as I can have faith that there is a God and that all the modernist biblical scholars are viewing Scripture through postmodernist Glasses, I can equally feel like a shipwrecked sailor clutching to a piece of driftwood hovering above the abyss of the dark sea below.  I realize that I practice religion because I'm not Brad Pitt who has a busy schedule.  I practice religion because I want to believe there's a god, I want to believe the Buddhists are wrong, I want to believe there is hope, I want to believe that if what Jesus said is true then the Orthodox Church is the true church, I want to believe because the sun rises, the Northern Cardinal eats its food without malice but with thanksgiving, and behind each face lies a story that extends backwards in time throughout the generations.

And screw you yuppies who are to judge me.

LOL. You had me right up to the last sentence.

2 things--First, you are not only one, not even the only one on this board, who stumbled into Orthodoxy not with the sense that everything finally made sense but rather that all the other options had failed and Orthodoxy was our last desperate 'Lord I believe, help Thou my unbelief'.

While I'm sure that if it hasn't happened yet, it will, the vast majority of your respondents are not judging you. We are genuinely trying to help, we're just not sure how (being just as human as you are).
Logged

Ariel Starling - New album

For it were better to suffer everything, rather than divide the Church of God. Even martyrdom for the sake of preventing division would not be less glorious than for refusing to worship idols. - St. Dionysius the Great
NicholasMyra
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Antiochian/Greek
Posts: 5,825


Avowed denominationalist


« Reply #56 on: April 20, 2012, 03:42:26 AM »

Mint,

How often do you ask yourself how you feel?
Logged

Quote from: Orthonorm
if Christ does and says x. And someone else does and says not x and you are ever in doubt, follow Christ.

"You are philosophical innovators. As for me, I follow the Fathers." -Every heresiarch ever
Big Chris
Formerly "mint"
Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Inquirer
Jurisdiction: Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlotte, NC
Posts: 277

I live by the river where the old gods still dream


« Reply #57 on: April 20, 2012, 09:10:17 AM »

2 things--First, you are not only one, not even the only one on this board, who stumbled into Orthodoxy not with the sense that everything finally made sense but rather that all the other options had failed and Orthodoxy was our last desperate 'Lord I believe, help Thou my unbelief'.

Yesterday, I was watching a video entitled "Moving Art - Gratitude," which contained a beautiful, meditative narration by Brother David Steindl-Rast, and I thought to myself, 'This is the true beauty of Christ; this is the essence of Christian spirituality; this would convert billions.'  Brother David Steindl-Rast is a Catholic monk - and I found myself thinking, again, 'If such a wise, spiritually awake man is satisfied with remaining as a Catholic, why can't I?'  Then, moments later, I was reading about how the Vatican is cracking down on American feminist nuns - and oh, the comments that followed were egregious.  I realized then why I have had so much trouble remaining Catholic:  "Catholicism" has become more of a political position than it has as spiritual body of believers; there's so much negativity happening in the Catholic Church, and millions upon millions of Catholics from the faithful to the dissident are angry about something; even the monks are confused, many of them becoming Zen masters in addition to priests in the wake of Merton; there is such a dearth of priests that the ones we have are spread like too little butter over bread so that the 99 sheep rather the one which remains faithful are left to wander aimlessly; and there is NOTHING going on in my own parish or any other parish near me…and trust me, as someone who has been part of RCIA, the Knights of Columbus and the Stewardship Commission I should know.  There's very little good going on in the Catholic Church.  Sure, there are good-hearted souls who feed the hungry, who help destitute in the Phillipines, who act in the name of environmentalism and social justice, who live the words of Jesus and do their best to live holy, fulfilling lives - but this isn't any indication of the truth of the Catholic Church as I have seen and read reports of Orthodox, Jews, Muslims and Buddhists doing the same.
Logged

Tasting is Believing
JoyceV925
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Faith: Catechumen - Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 40



« Reply #58 on: April 24, 2012, 11:41:56 AM »

I think I have an idea where the OP is coming from. I think that he has been investigating religion, and had been led to Orthodoxy by some means. He wants to believe in God, yet has been having doubts lately. For some reason, he thought that Orthodoxy was his last hope to find belief in God. For some reason he recently became dissapointed in it, or something happened to make him question the "legitimacy" of Orthodoxy. Now he wants to throw it all to the wind because Orthodoxy was the last "stop" on his journey towards finding faith. Now he feels "resigned" to atheism.

Is this accurate, Mint?

What if this were true?

then you can tell us some of the things that have been troubling you about the faith, and we can talk about them. I went through the same path, which is why it seemed a familiar one to me.

If I could reclaim all the hours I've wasted recounting my developing experience on discussion boards like this, who knows how young I'd be!  It's a constant reenactment, writing a novel just to bring some disinterested audience 1/16 up to speed so they can facilitate some smart-jack response. 

I have wasted more than 5 years of my life, dropped out of graduate school, and nearly became a monk all for the pursuit of something called God and His Son Jesus, I have wrestled with God with nearly every waking breath, I have been sent to therapy because my piety was leading an identity crisis, I have tried running away from God, I have tried practicing Dzogchen and seriously believed that I was karmically destined to practice Dzogchen, and then I get swept up again in this Christianity thing again which I can't escape, and I get really really really excited to finally become Orthodox, something I've wanted to do since first studying the Fathers in college, and, you know what, as much as I can have faith that there is a God and that all the modernist biblical scholars are viewing Scripture through postmodernist Glasses, I can equally feel like a shipwrecked sailor clutching to a piece of driftwood hovering above the abyss of the dark sea below.  I realize that I practice religion because I'm not Brad Pitt who has a busy schedule.  I practice religion because I want to believe there's a god, I want to believe the Buddhists are wrong, I want to believe there is hope, I want to believe that if what Jesus said is true then the Orthodox Church is the true church, I want to believe because the sun rises, the Northern Cardinal eats its food without malice but with thanksgiving, and behind each face lies a story that extends backwards in time throughout the generations.

And screw you yuppies who are to judge me.

Oh I feel you! You feel like the ground has opened up and your heart ripped out and then you feel steady just to be knocked over again? At least that was my experience. I wasn't raised any faith but all my life I've considered myself aware of "something spiritually more" and searched for it as best I could. I would get upset that I didn't know who Jesus was, I felt like I was "missing the boat" that how can there be so many Christians in the world if there isn't something to it? I knew nothing of God, the Holy Spirit, or about any of it. I'd never really picked up a bible. I began going to various churches about 3 years ago to find a place I felt the presence of God. I found what I was looking for when I visited the Orthodox church. But I didn't understand ANY of it. I didn't understand the Saints, the Sermon, the Liturgy (and yes it was in English). None of it. All I knew was that I felt something there I'd never felt before. It scared me at first. Overwhelming of the senses. But after a few more weeks I craved that beauty, that energy again and I went back, still knowing nothing of who Jesus or the Theotokos or even how to read a bible. It took about 8 months (during which I attended a UU church sporatically) when I just missed that essence so I went back to the Orthodox church. Again I felt that energy and decided to write the priest an e-mail. It literally said, "I have no idea who Jesus is, but there's something here and I want to learn more about it." We then met and talked for 2 hours (talk about a fried brain) about Jesus and Mary and the early church history and I was given a book to read (the Hopko series). At first I just read it from an intellectual stand point. None of it had really ingrained in my heart. But over the next couple months my mind and heart were put through the wringer as I literally packed up all the baggage I had about religion and Christianity from society and my parent's influence and start ALL OVER. I was terrified. I would call my priest in tears that I felt so torn and confused and he would tell me "the demons of doubt will come to test you but just stay the course".  And I thought, anything that makes me feel this screwed up and emotionally roller coastered must be worth it because in my opinion, spirituality can't be easy and convenient and soul-meaningful at the same time. I felt like my old (non)belief system was fighting for its life. I've been attending regularily since last Oct and I admit, the rollercoaster didn't stop until about month 5, which was just this past Lent where things finally are seeming to come together.

So I will give you the same advice, don't let your doubts cloud your mind. Keep reading, asking, learning. Stay the course.
Logged
Tags:
Pages: « 1 2  All   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.18 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 0.094 seconds with 42 queries.