We recognize we have been hurt, disappointed, or abused by religion or the religious. -Step One Continued
Instruction: Pick an Example.
Look back over your life and pick one example of a time when you feel you were religiously abused. The first one that comes to mind will suffice. What were the details? How did it make you feel? Did you feel as if you had been misunderstood, when your motivations were pure and your intentions loving? How did it make you feel about religion or the religious persons involved?
In my life, I recall times when I felt abused by someone or by a church doctrine that was so rigid that there was no wiggle room. Everything was divided into well-defined categories of right and wrong, and if I stepped over the boundaries of right, I was wrong and doomed to destruction. Over time, many of those boundaries have been moved or even abolished, so all that time I felt guilty, unworthy, and doomed can now be written off or ignored. It makes one wonder if religion was mistaken about those rigid rules, what else is it mistaken about? Perhaps their way is not the only way. Perhaps there are more paths that lead Home.
From one example, you can look at other experiences in your life that mirror or build upon that one incident. Keep in mind that we don’t mean to condemn all religious faith. We only want to recognize times when religions, though well-meaning, have made mistakes. Let us not make the mistake of judging them. Let’s just learn how to find our own path, make our own decisions, and learn how to follow our hearts. Today’s lesson is to pick an example of religious abuse and try to discover the lessons presented both positive and negative.
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Our purpose is to help individuals to heal who have been injured by religion or the religious. We welcome your comments and questions.