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I Realize Now

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posted on Jan, 3 2016 @ 10:12 PM
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To make a long story short: a couple of years ago I worked in home healthcare (I have since moved on to another profession) where I tended to a quadriplegic who was completely paralyzed from the neck down. I worked with him for about 2 years and did everything from grocery shop for him, help him with his daily stretching routine, getting him in and out of bed, giving him his medicine, etc., etc.

We became good friends even though he was hard to work with sometimes, being very stubborn and even downright rude. I enjoyed every second of it though because I am a person who enjoys helping others. Over the course of those two years, he began to get to the point where he didn't really care about doing his daily routine and he became lethargic about his own personal health. After months of this going on, I finally decided to confront him about it and he got very defensive for whatever reason. I told him that if he didn't care about taking care of himself then why should I, then I walked out. That was the last time I saw him. I regret this now that I look back on it.

Fast forward to early December 2015 and I get the news that he passed away, he was in his early 40's. I'm not really sure what the cause of death was, but I assume it was the result of the aforementioned apathy/lethargy. His family is very religious, as was he. He never really talked about his faith much but I knew he was a believer in Jesus.

Anyways, I decided to attend his funeral. It was a beautiful reception and there wasn't a dry eye in the house, including mine. After he was laid to rest his family and friends were mingling and talking about their memories with him, and in the middle of all of this his mom began talking about how it gave her great comfort and joy to know he was with Jesus in heaven and walking again with their other loved ones who passed away.

Though I am not a believer in the religious Jesus, what she said struck a chord inside of me that is still ringing to this day. I finally realized that even though I don't agree with their beliefs, it is what gives them HOPE, so who am I to judge them for what they believe? If it gives them comfort and the answers they're looking for, what gives me the right to tear that hope down and belittle it?

So the lesson I learned is this: if something gives another person hope, comfort, and joy then I should respect whatever that thing is no matter how much I disagree with it (unless that thing brings harm to another person). I do not have the right to try and convince them that they are wrong, to try and destroy something they hold so closely to their hearts.

Even if you disagree with something, that doesn't mean it can't be beautiful. I learned a valuable lesson that day that I will not soon forget.

Special thanks to Night Star for reminding me of this and inspiring me to author this thread.


Thanks for reading.




posted on Jan, 3 2016 @ 10:29 PM
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Your story is truly inspiring.

I am probably much older than you and most people here.

Some of my children are christiian but i am not. I figured everyone is where they are supposed to be in this life and who was I to interfere with it. When they talk to me about their belief, I encourage them and never put it down. It took a few lessons for me to learn this. But the point is, we learn.

I think this is a great lesson you have learned. Try to meet people where they are.

Wish I could say something to make you feel better about it but perhaps the lesson was all that was needed.

Seems you NightStar just did that.

And best wishes to you OP


edit on 3-1-2016 by liveandlearn because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 3 2016 @ 10:29 PM
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Thank you so much for sharing this with us! It's funny, but I almost didn't make that post that inspired this thread. I wasn't sure how much of a difference if any that it would make. Then I realized that if it inspired even one person, it was worth it, just as I know this thread will inspire others.

You already know I agree with you. It doesn't matter what belief system anyone has as long as those people don't harm others. Their religion or whatever path they are on brings them comfort, strength, hope, joy and inspiration and their light shines out for all to see in their lives and in their actions. Be who are and believe what you wish to believe. Love, kindness and compassion are so important in this world.



posted on Jan, 3 2016 @ 10:40 PM
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Very good thread. I have known about religion giving people hope or comfort for over forty years. I picked up on that when I was around eighteen when my father was very sick. In a world full of pain and deception it is good to believe there is some hope and truth out there.



posted on Jan, 3 2016 @ 10:41 PM
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a reply to: 3NL1GHT3N3D1

Beautiful. May he find peace, eternal happiness and everlasting joy and love!

John 14

“Let not your heart be troubled. Believe in God and believe in me.”

In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.

“And if I go prepare a place for you, I shall come again and bring you to join me, that where I am you shall be also.”

“And where I am going, you know, and you know the way.”

Thoma said to him, “Our Lord, we do not know where you are going and how can we know the way?”

Yeshua answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

“If you had known me, you also would have known my Father, and from this hour you do know him and you have seen him.”

Philippus said to him, “Our Lord, show us The Father, and it is sufficient for us.”

Yeshua said to him, “All this time I am with you and you have not known me Phillip? Whoever has seen me has seen The Father, and how do you say, 'Show us The Father'?”

“Do you not believe that I am in my Father and my Father in me? The words which I am speaking, I am not speaking from myself, but my Father who dwells within me, he does these works.”



posted on Jan, 3 2016 @ 10:50 PM
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a reply to: Night Star




Thank you so much for sharing this with us! It's funny, but I almost didn't make that post that inspired this thread. I wasn't sure how much of a difference if any that it would make. Then I realized that if it inspired even one person, it was worth it, just as I know this thread will inspire others.


And those words are an inspiration to me. i have away thought if my life or any thing I said or did would inspire just one person I will have made a difference no matter how minimal it may seem.

I think you just did that.


edit on 3-1-2016 by liveandlearn because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 3 2016 @ 10:56 PM
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Thanks guys, you're awesome.

I used to make threads just for the sake of proving Christianity wrong, I had no intention of education only belittlement of the faith. I see my error now and I feel as though I have grown from it.

While I will still be active in this forum, it will be from a more educational point of view instead of just trying to prove someone wrong. I apologize for being that way before, I was ignorant and didn't even realize it.



posted on Jan, 3 2016 @ 11:07 PM
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originally posted by: 3NL1GHT3N3D1
Thanks guys, you're awesome.

I used to make threads just for the sake of proving Christianity wrong, I had no intention of education only belittlement of the faith. I see my error now and I feel as though I have grown from it.

While I will still be active in this forum, it will be from a more educational point of view instead of just trying to prove someone wrong. I apologize for being that way before, I was ignorant and didn't even realize it.


You are acting strangely, how do we know that this is really you. I know, you are 3NL1GHT3N3D1's cat that has taken over the keyboard.



posted on Jan, 3 2016 @ 11:15 PM
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a reply to: rickymouse

SSSSHHHH!! Don't let my secret out.



posted on Jan, 3 2016 @ 11:21 PM
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The path is narrow, you my friend may pass!!!



posted on Jan, 3 2016 @ 11:30 PM
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originally posted by: 3NL1GHT3N3D1
a reply to: rickymouse

SSSSHHHH!! Don't let my secret out.


Hahaha! I like your cat! He sounds very nice!



posted on Jan, 4 2016 @ 04:35 AM
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originally posted by: 3NL1GHT3N3D1
So the lesson I learned is this: if something gives another person hope, comfort, and joy then I should respect whatever that thing is no matter how much I disagree with it (unless that thing brings harm to another person). I do not have the right to try and convince them that they are wrong, to try and destroy something they hold so closely to their hearts.

That is the same conclusion I came to at the age of 17, after becoming an atheist (in the middle of midnight mass on Christmas Eve).
I wrote in my diary;

The decision raises further problems. How far is it ethical, in arguing what one thinks is the truth, to raise doubts in a man’s mind and deny him the security he finds in his faith? Only a few people are actively doubting the validity of Christianity, most people will prefer to pay lip service to it whether they go to church or not. Whatever the sincerity, children are brought up in an atmosphere of Christianity if only that taught at school. If I had children, I would have nothing to fill that vacuum, and it would not do any good to confuse them with apparent splits between authority figures, myself and school. In fact, if their mother was a devout Christian, it would be better to leave them to be brought up that way, so that they could opt out later if they wanted to.


Jesus also gave a warning about "causing to stumble the little ones who believe in me".



posted on Jan, 4 2016 @ 05:05 AM
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a reply to: 3NL1GHT3N3D1

That is all well and good, but there has been such a cultural brutal and oppressive domination of Western life by religion. Traditionally these people, and they still do, make us feel that we are no good in their eyes and worthy of contempt because we have a different morality and don't wish to do stuff like go to Church to be dictated to by a child abuser priest, etc.

I would not go trying to white wash over the disparity between those who let religious dogma and an invisible made up god in the sky be let loose on them and those who no longer wish this kind of authority in their lives or present in the state. I will listen to nothing that is channelled by priests who are the worst offenders sometimes against the very dogma they are spouting. Most of those bastard child abusers have still escaped justice. Is the church above the law? I would arrest the lot of them.

I still find most Christians to be very old fashioned, judgmental, ever so hypocritical (they don't do as their teacher told them to like helping others when they are down, etc), cliquey, narrow minded, under the thumb, indifferent to the abuses that have been carried out by their religion, and so on.

Do you not understand that feelings will run high when an institution is attempting to control us en masse with myths and fantasy, that will not even accept the conclusions of modern science and would have us live in a dark age and say that to be gay is immoral and all the other things that religion tells us are bad?

I am not a child. I don't want to be abused this way. I want to decide for myself what is good and what is bad in my life. I don't want to impose this on others. I WANT them to be free, too.

Yes, have any religion, but don't expect me or the state to do as your religion and your priests command. Those days are finished. Good riddance.

Sorry, but no amount of fuzzy wuzzy good feeling, aaaahhhhs and emotional blackmail will keep me from speaking my mind.


edit on 4-1-2016 by Revolution9 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 4 2016 @ 06:55 AM
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a reply to: Revolution9

I prefer to take a neutral stance on the matter. It is a lot more peaceful just not choosing sides on this matter. "You're either with us or against us" is a practice that causes stress and argument. Peace of mind can be obtained by avoidance of conflict.



posted on Jan, 4 2016 @ 07:05 AM
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a reply to: Revolution9

You are painting an entire group with the same wide brush. Don't do that. Even if the amount of people who don't fit that narrative is small, they exist.

I'm not a fan of the Sunday morning Christians anymore than you or others are, but the real good people who are quiet and peaceful, and lead by example do exist.

And just as it's not fair to scream at an Atheist for how wrong he might be, it's not right to scream at a believer, as we don't "know" anything until we die, so arguing over who "might" be right is asinine. If it brings them comfort, (whatever "it" is), then let it be. There are plenty of things this life has to offer that will be negative, we need as many positives as we can get.



posted on Jan, 4 2016 @ 07:38 AM
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a reply to: 3NL1GHT3N3D1



Though I am not a believer in the religious Jesus, what she said struck a chord inside of me that is still ringing to this day. I finally realized that even though I don't agree with their beliefs, it is what gives them HOPE, so who am I to judge them for what they believe? If it gives them comfort and the answers they're looking for, what gives me the right to tear that hope down and belittle it?

So the lesson I learned is this: if something gives another person hope, comfort, and joy then I should respect whatever that thing is no matter how much I disagree with it (unless that thing brings harm to another person). I do not have the right to try and convince them that they are wrong, to try and destroy something they hold so closely to their hearts.

This makes you a better person than the vast majority of Christians I've known in my life. Including myself for much of my past. I can promise you, they could care less about what gives you hope. And they don't mind belittling it, and tearing it down. There are those of course, who mostly keep their judgement and derision to themselves, but don't think for a moment they respect your beliefs and faith if you aren't a Christian like them.



posted on Jan, 4 2016 @ 08:36 AM
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a reply to: 3NL1GHT3N3D1

I agree. That's kind of the point of "live and let live". I can accept almost anyone as long as they cause no harm to others.



posted on Jan, 4 2016 @ 08:40 AM
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a reply to: 3NL1GHT3N3D1

Beautiful post! I agree with your conclusion completely. Religion isn't my thing, but many people find comfort and joy in it.

It's one thing to say that I don't believe or that I am not religious, but it becomes something altogether different when I suggest that YOU (anyone) shouldn't believe either.

I always think of my mother and the joy and peace that her "relationship with Jesus" brought into her life. It doesn't even matter if it was all in her head. It was probably the one thing that taught her how to love so completely and I am a benefactor of that love and kindness... How can I fault that?



posted on Jan, 4 2016 @ 09:29 AM
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a reply to: 3NL1GHT3N3D1

So the lesson I learned is this: if something gives another person hope, comfort, and joy then I should respect whatever that thing is no matter how much I disagree with it (unless that thing brings harm to another person). I do not have the right to try and convince them that they are wrong, to try and destroy something they hold so closely to their hearts.

Growing up in a small town in the country, the two things we had more of than anything else, was churches and bars. The only time you really knew about another's religion was when you saw them going or coming from their religious gathering place. Religion was private and rarely shared with those outside of your particular religion.

Of course seeing a person at a religious place did not necessarily mean they embraced the religion of the establishment. Friends and neighbors often attended and shared in religious events. The Jehovah Witnesses would come around and leave their Watchtower pamphlets, and would come in to speak with you, if you invited them in, but they never forced themselves on you. Most people just didn't bother to open the door if they didn't want to have to make nice.

We had Muslims in our community, back then, you knew who they were, because in our town, they were all members of Black families, the men always were very nicely dressed, and they almost always wore bow ties. We also knew some of them because they sold us the whitefish that was very popular back then.

All of this to say that religion was not something that was as issue. Even in a small country town, there were multiple religions and it didn't interfere in lives or friendships.

Country folk are big on staying out of other people's business. The slogan, What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas." came from the motto, "What happens behind close doors, stays behind closed doors." People used to keep their personal life private. It used to be considered rude to even ask someone who they voted for, that is why you place your ballot behind a screen in private.

Our society changed. We no longer treasure privacy and personal space. We no longer allow others to believe and live their lives the way they choose. It is all about getting in someone's face and proving how smart and right you are. Our society has become about building yourself up, while tearing someone else down.

When people interacted with each other personally, when they could look their fellow man in the eye, and shake his hand, people were more humane. Now that we communicate over vast distances, and we never see the real person, just the virtual image of what a person projects on a computer screen, we see only the illusions, the illusions projected and the illusions perceived.

The internet was lauded as the way to bring all the people of the world together as one global community. Human nature will never allow that to happen. Communication deteriorates when you can't see or hear the people with whom you are communicating.

Words on a computer screen are just words. Words that are given meaning from a single source, our own minds. Communication by computer is a constant battle to get your ideas from your brain into the brain of a person that you don't know and may not even exist.

We are essentially communicating with ourselves, and we have become narcissistic. We have so much information, so readily available to us at our fingers tips, that we think we have the ability to know everything. Yet we don't know enough to realize that knowing is of little benefit if we can't live together in peace.

Peace and happiness starts with the respect of life and humankind. A world that is just about you is not a world you will cherish.

edit on 4-1-2016 by NightSkyeB4Dawn because: Word correction.



posted on Jan, 4 2016 @ 10:19 AM
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a reply to: 3NL1GHT3N3D1

This is a lovely OP, 3NL.

It resonates a lot with me. My father died 5 years ago, and it shook me to my core. I've always been interested in the spiritual, life-after-death, and so forth.

I believe that we do, in fact, return to an ethereal existence (from whence we 'came'), and that consciousness continues on some level in some dimension beyond our reach as bipedal mammals.


While I will still be active in this forum, it will be from a more educational point of view instead of just trying to prove someone wrong. I apologize for being that way before, I was ignorant and didn't even realize it.


You were growing and learning along the way. Thinking, and adjusting your own perspectives. We all have a private path to walk. Think of it as having finished that term in your 'soul's' education and moving on to the next. There will always be students behind you and ahead of you. Until we all reunite with the Source.



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