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Dealing with the Difference

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posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 05:57 PM
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So, I am trying to understand how we deal with the difference between who we are and who we want to be. The logical me wants to be all sorts of things, but the emotional side of me often gets in the way. I am basically a pragmatist, but there is a part of me on some level that also wants to be kind, helpful and loving. I don't like emotions and I have trouble dealing with them.

At what point are we just better off accepting our shortcomings and the essence of who we are Vs. fighting them constantly and trying to change ourselves, but being constantly at odds at what seems to be our very nature? There are some things that no matter how hard I WANT to change about myself I feel at my very core that isn't me.

I am a serious introvert and prefer to just avoid people, but in social situations I am capable of being humorous, open and talkative. However, after that social situation I am incredibly drained and tired and can't help, but worry over every detail of what went on and any possible faux pas I might have made. I have opportunities and desires to volunteer, but at the same time I dread the social interaction even though I am capable of benefiting others in my community.

It is always a struggle for me to move between living in a cabin in the woods and embracing others. I don't NEED other people and I am quite content just reading a book or learning something new from the internet. I don't get bored or lonely on my own, however, it does seem somewhat selfish when I do have the ability to give more.

Anyway, this is simply one example of the dissonance I have between just doing what makes me happy as a person and stretching myself into uncomfortable areas suck as engaging in society.

Do I have a right to just be a happy, loner? Do I have a responsibility to work on those parts of myself that might not be my strength or something I enjoy doing? Does it all come down to philosophy of who we are and why we are here?

I believe there is a 'god' or prime mover in some form. I believe life has purpose and I think that is why I feel I should try to better myself and be more than I am comfortable with because there is some sort of grand plan.

If there is no god and no purpose to life then I should just be able to accept who I am and be happy because that would be as noble a purpose as any in a world without purpose.

Anyway, I am glad I was able to write it down even if it isn't a perfect picture of what I am feeling.




posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 06:40 PM
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You basically sound exactly like me. Aside from a very few people I am extremely comfortable with, I just get drained in social situations and could be perfectly fine without them.

I do believe absolutely in God though. He is there. I know it.
edit on 3-4-2019 by ketsuko because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 06:49 PM
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originally posted by: ketsuko
You basically sound exactly like me. Aside from a very few people I am extremely comfortable with, I just get drained in social situations and could be perfectly fine without them.

I do believe absolutely in God though. He is there. I know it.


I also do believe 100% in God and that is one of the reasons I don't just accept myself as I am and retreat to my off-grid hovel. I think there is a purpose to life and one that requires us to challenge and better ourselves. It would be so much easier if I was a Atheist and could do whatever I wanted.
edit on 2019/4/3 by Metallicus because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 08:36 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus

Being an atheist doesn’t absolve you from morals. In fact i think we have a far better understanding of them, since we don’t believe in divine consequences, and still choose to live moral lives. (Not all of course)
I don’t screw people over because i know i am responsible for my own reputation, and i know that doing so, changes a person’s personality.


I honestly think the problem is that you accept the idea that god exists. It’s a form of intellectual dissonance. You believe in something that there is absolutely no reason to believe in. (Therfor the stress on faith). You are told over and over from childhood, that you are a sinner and that you need saving. This belief makes you think there is some version of you that could be perfect if only you could be what (you are told) god wants you to be.

Atheists don’t seem to have this duality about them. They believe that there is only one chance to be a good person, this is all of the time you have. No afterlife, no forgiveness. where believers carry a huge burden of guilt and hope some all father will forgive them at some point. Atheists don’t feel like they will get post mortem forgiveness, and so they (not all) try to get things right on the first go around.

People who accept evolution understand that we’re still just apes, but, with wicked math skills.

No harsh judgments, just my pov.
edit on 3-4-2019 by Woodcarver because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 08:39 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus

Hello soulmate! My daily in-head dilemma.



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 08:44 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus

How much time do you spend asking god for forgiveness?
edit on 3-4-2019 by Woodcarver because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 08:46 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus

I have reverted back to lurking for several months, and planned to not post on ATS anymore, but your OP struck a chord with me.

I am 35. My family (wife, daughter, myself) live in my parent's house. I've been unable to graduate college after half a dozen attempts and have had over thirty different jobs, not one of which I've been able to hold longer than six months. Most of this because of social problems/interpersonal deficits.

I would be tempted to casually observe that I began having problems in high school, but if I'm honest I can see that I've always had trouble getting along, with everyone, eveywhere I went. I was branded one of the "bad kids" early on and have been trying to redeem myself ever since. It took a long time to realize that, had I been born even five years later, I would have been diagnosed with Asperger's and I wouldn't have had to waste decades of my life spinning my wheels and feeling like a loser.

The intervening years have not been good. I have, on many occasions, tried various methods of "fixing myself", but failure after failure, accompanied by depressions and suicidal episodes, have seriously compromised my willingness to even try at life. Sometimes I just accept that I will never "fit in" or figure out how to have a reasonable quality of life. I'm ashamed that my family sees me so weakened. I want -- more than anything -- to give my family a good life, to make my parents feel proud that they raised me...that it wasn't a waste, that I wasn't a disappointment. Sometimes life feels like one of those dreams where you're desperate to run away from some looming menace but you can't, and you can't even wake up.

Somehow, I still believe in God. That is the only way I can deal with the difference between who I am and who I want to be. I get very frustrated sometimes and my faith is shaken. I am lonely most of the time, even with God, but it's better than alcohol. But. Life is nothing if it is not humbling. Everyone's got some sort of trouble in this world. Sometimes I find it in myself to chuckle and quote The Big Lebowski: Nothing is #ed, dude.

I don't know that life can't get better. Therefore, by some unforeseen influence, it might. It's a somewhat tenuous stopgap, but I'm still alive.



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 08:51 PM
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a reply to: DictionaryOfExcuses

I personally believe that no matter how ugly or hard this life is that our eternal life waits on the other side and it's going to be so amazing that we will never comprehend it. And so that keeps me going. PM me any time you want to talk or feel lonely. The agony of loneliness is unbearable.



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 08:52 PM
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a reply to: Woodcarver

As a believer he/she is already forgiven. By repenting he is keeping his nature in tune with God's and all is well. I guess it depends on his specific faith. So your question might be of no need. But, I'm glad you asked it since it may help other believers know their place in Christ - we are righteous before God. Thanks!



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 08:58 PM
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a reply to: Woodcarver

I don't carry any huge burden of guilt. I know God has forgiven me already. I know that he loves me more than anything. He sent his own son to earth to live as a human being subject to temptation as any other human. And, I know that Jesus died for my sins. I'm "in". I rejoice in my Father's love and friendship, his guidance.

We believers are sons and daughters of GOD! I am a good person, I try my best to do good because I have a soft and loving heart for all, but also because I love Jesus. However, I still sin as that is human nature. The difference is that when God sees me, He sees me as pure because Jesus has paid the price - so God sees perfection when He looks at me. I am so loved! As you and all believers are. But, I am now connected to God through the Holy Spirit - we are as one, although I am in no way God or have His abilities. I simply belong to Him in ever way.

I hope you find that same love soon.



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 09:04 PM
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originally posted by: hiddeninsite
a reply to: Woodcarver

As a believer he/she is already forgiven. By repenting he is keeping his nature in tune with God's and all is well. I guess it depends on his specific faith. So your question might be of no need. But, I'm glad you asked it since it may help other believers know their place in Christ - we are righteous before God. Thanks!
Maybe, people have different ideas of what god is and what god wants from them. You shouldn’t speak for other people about what they believe. It’s not like there is any consensus of what a christian is. What i do know is that atheists don’t seem to have the problems that christians do. I know plenty of christians who do carry a lot of guilt. That’s pretty much what the OP is about isn’t it?
edit on 3-4-2019 by Woodcarver because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 09:13 PM
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originally posted by: Metallicus
So, I am trying to understand how we deal with the difference between who we are and who we want to be.


The church spire is there to remind us to aspire to be like God. The gargoyles along the roof edge looking down at us laughing are to remind us how foolish we are for even trying to be like God.

God created us and the world with many imperfections. To achieve maximum faith in God we must be accepting of who we are in spite of all our imperfections. We must not judge God or God's creation in spite of all the imperfections. Everything is just a sliver or reflection of the greatness that is God. God is perfect and complete not having any desires or needs. To be God-like means to be able to fulfill all your own needs as well as be able to share some kind of abundance with others.



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 09:16 PM
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a reply to: dfnj2015

But, in the stories, god is not perfect. He makes mistakes, he hurts people, and he treats people unfairly. Atheists know that we have to be better that that. Believers have a poor example to live up to.

And repeating the mantra that god is good god is great does very little to relieve the stress that example puts on people. People should be good, but, people can’t be perfect.
edit on 3-4-2019 by Woodcarver because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 09:27 PM
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a reply to: Woodcarver

God is not a social justice warrior.




posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 09:38 PM
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originally posted by: Woodcarver
a reply to: Metallicus

How much time do you spend asking god for forgiveness?


Why does it matter to you?

I check in with God every night before bed. It's part of preparing myself to sleep and get ready for a new day.

Yeah, I do ask for forgiveness each night. It's part of the process of letting go of each day and moving on. Everyone should try it, both corporeally and spiritually. There are the lines in the Lord's Prayer -- "Forgive us our debts (or trespasses) as we forgive our debtors (or trespasses ..."

You forgive the people who wrong you just like you seek forgiveness from the people you've wronged, and when you have done wrong, you also seek forgiveness from God. Doing it at night is part of wiping the ledger clean and moving on for me. It's not about carrying guilt but precisely about letting it go.



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 09:48 PM
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a reply to: ketsuko

Hhmmmm... you do things every day that you feel you need forgiveness for? I really genuinely don’t understand that. I simply don’t make choices i think i’ll feel guilty about later.
edit on 3-4-2019 by Woodcarver because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 10:05 PM
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a reply to: Woodcarver

6 posts up, you admonish against speaking on behalf of others beliefs. 4 posts up, you do just that. You are clearly arguing for the sake of argument, which is fine, I just wanted to point out (spitballing here) that perhaps your standard of conduct is lower, or you are unable to see when you wrong, or you are unable to feel guilt or shame, and this is why you feel so confident in the superiority of your moral virtue.


edit on 3/4/2019 by DictionaryOfExcuses because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 10:35 PM
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a reply to: Woodcarver



Being an atheist doesn’t absolve you from morals


I don't think you understood what my post is about or perhaps I didn't make it clear, but I am not talking about morality, but about motivation to better oneself. If we are here for a finite time with no master plan then I would be free to do as I wished and simply be happy.

Without a creator God or a higher purpose it would be a waste of time to do anything other than what made you happy. For some that might be serving the greater good if that is what makes you happy. For me it is curling up in front of the fireplace with a good book and ignoring the world.

edit on 2019/4/3 by Metallicus because: Sp



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 10:37 PM
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originally posted by: Woodcarver
a reply to: Metallicus

How much time do you spend asking god for forgiveness?


None.

I believe that is more of a religious dogma and I am not religious.



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 10:40 PM
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a reply to: DictionaryOfExcuses

I really appreciate you sharing your story.

It reminds of a Thoreau quote...

"The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation".




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