And it led me to believe that there must be something there. I don't profess to understand it, and perhaps later I will tell you my theory of why god must exist, based only on my experience and so not subject to debate as evidence for or against the existence of god.
It doesn't make sense to me why Christmas is so important that even an atheist uses a euphemism to share good wishes. It occurred to me that it must be because of children - what child could go to his or her parents, left out of the tradition of gift giving, and not have sympathy and a present next year?
Another possibility is that the joining of two celebrations, Yule/Solstice and the birth of Jesus made the holiday powerful enough to withstand the tests of time and apathy.
This is the first Christmas I've ever had where I could not feel it. My circumstances are grim and no one can help me. I have not had miracles in my life and I am not expecting them, yet all the while I hope. My hope had nothing to cling to until I thought about Christmas. I began to sing Christmas carols and got a measure of relief. I thought about the strength of thousands of people praying for the same thing, and I wonder, would that make it so? I think the answer is that it depends.
So I sit here (actually lie here, one of my bad luck circumstances is 6 broken vertebrae in my back) struggling with my fledgling faith, and wonder back to the days when I was a born again christian and god really did answer my prayers. What made it work then? I wish I knew. I need it more now than I needed the things I prayed for then, like a new stereo. Now I need a job and some stability. I have Asperger's; the stability is crucial for my functioning and mental health.
I am a skeptic. My mother says ask the universe, others in my family say pray. So I asked the universe for a house, and I asked god for help in general. If it happens, is it proof or coincidence? When I was a born again Christian, I facilitated miracles for people. Was I the hand of God? And if I was, does that mean there is one?
At this time, I only know that I need something to hold onto. At least there is Christmas, whatever it means, Santa Claus or Jesus or whatever.
I leave me with hope.
"They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds." - Francis P. Church
I have read several of your articles and have so much I would like to say/express to you. But where to begin is the challenge.
I try to perceive the world, my universe, through the concepts of a wholistic perspective (which are my own definitions of "it all"!).
Looking at life wholistically is recognizing that each individual soul is a being of spiritual, mental, emotional and physical awareness levels of consciousness that interacts with one's environment that is part of the natural world environment.
In my mind and heart, the spiritual is the main "level" that is ignored, to our own detriment, but I do understand that the reason for that is the dogma and "rules" religions impose upon spiritual perceptions.
I believe that there are "laws of the universe", there is an order to how "it all" works. And the reason it doesn't all work the same for each individual is because of our "uniqueness" of consciousness and the interaction/integrations thereof with self and others.
So I can say that our own individual path is just that, unique and individual, and is to be persued/discovered that way.
It would be great if we could put each person into groups with like characteristics, as we do, and have the same "diagnosis" for each one...wouldn't that be great...but it doesn't work that way. So we have to look for our unique Way, spiritually, mentally, emotionally and physically for how we can best interact with the environment.
I do believe that Christ is the answer. But Jesus the Christ is the Way shower, not the only doer of Christhood. And for those of us that are having unique experiences that cannot be definitively defined by others' thoughts and words of scientific explanation, asking the Christ of our own being to take command is the Way.
The consciousness of Jesus is there to "cling to" and ask and receive assistance from, but he has showed the Way in only the Way he could, we are doing/discovering our Way with the intercession of the Christ of Jesus reawakening the Christ of our Self. Believing there is no separation between the two is the goal. Believing that we have an individual Christhood is the means to that goal.
I am finding help with all levels of consciousness and the physical body and environment, through Health Kinesiology, Brain Gym, The HANDLE method and Rhythmic Movement. But I still have needed a spiritual system of belief to integrate it all.
I hope something I have shared may "strike a chord" for you. I hope many blessings come your way. Don't forget to look to adversities for the inherent blessings they can provide. Your understandings of Faith may need to expand a bit from your current known system of spirituality.
May I include you on my prayer list?
God Bless you in your life,
Please do. While I struggle with the concept of prayer and its efficacy, I can't deny its effects in other people's lives. I think it may be that if enough people pray for a thing, it happens. So why isn't there world peace? Because when people pray for that they are not praying for the same thing. World peace means different things to different people. Maybe if they really did all pray for the same thing, it would happen.
Another thing about people with AS is that they often have odd ideas, and perhaps this is one of my odd ideas.
Presumably, I am the atheist you are referring to.
Here is the difference.
When I wish people a happy winter solstice, or fsmas - I am celebrating my life and theirs, and the coming of spring (soon - when it stops raining lol), and laughing at the absurdity of life and the silly things we do to ourselves and each other. Not the birth of a mythical figure who has come to save me from the sins I was born into.
No tree killing or plastic crap buying for me either.
But, what choice is there but to laugh at these things? I am sorry that you are having a tough time right now and I hope you can deal with these problems.
Christmas is not a time for celebrating a religion. It is a time to enjoy the things you do have and share them with others. The winter solstice has been there since we began to measure and understand these things. Will be there long after we are gone. It doesn't really matter how you choose to celebrate it, or what you call it. But I am pretty certain that worshiping a guy that was nailed to a piece of wood is not a healthy way of doing it. If you would take some advice from an atheist -
Take a deep breath, relax, ask any of your friends and family that might be able to help to do so, go out, get that job and live your life. If singing carols makes you feel better - go sing some more carols. Whatever it was that made you think there was a god and allowed you to facilitate miracles for people is still there, you just have to trust it.
If you cannot trust yourself, who can you trust?
Anyone else who reads this thread please google asperger's (AS) or check my hubs on AS so that you don't give me advice to rely on my family and friends. that is difficult for someone who has asperger's.
as for the rest, hopefully mark's presence in my thread will bring it to the attention of others. i would accept good advice from anyone.
Sorry. I looked at your hubs on Aspergers. I assumed that your family would understand and you could communicate with them through email or letters. My mistake.
I will not try and help any more.
I like wolves too......
I haven't (as yet) Googled it, so I have no idea what you are going through.
I am the "opposite" of Mark. Like you I am a believer. I just want to encourage you to keep fighting. Whatever level you are at,give it your best. God always does what we can't. Adds His strength, when we run out. Grabs your hand, when you have run out of rope.
Remember the poem(story) "footprints". I do pray you have a special Christmas.
Keep on holding on shashigai. I have vertebrae problems with my low back and neck as well. I don't sit in front of my computer because I can't sit for long periods of time, so I lie in front of my computer. I have been fighting a compensation claim since 1994 that should be coming to a head shortly. I did a search for asperger's and read a couple of your Hubs. God bless you my friend.
Prayer definitely helps ease the pain. In fact most Christmas carols are a form of prayer. Silent Night, O Little Town of Bethlehem, Away in the Manger and most of them are parts of the Bible put into song. Here's a good collection of Christmas carols.
Coincidentally I logged on today for the sole purpose of posting an article that I just read from a booklet on daily reflections for Advent. But it fits this thread perfectly. I hope you don't mind if I add it here.
Jean Vanier, the son of the 19th Governor General of Canada, is the founder of l'Arche, an international network of faith-based communities centered around people who have developmental disabilities.
Shashigai seeing you are trying to make some money online (like I am and failing) and most aspers may develop an obsession with what they do I should follow your progress. We could possibly help each other. But I got my Google adsense account disqualified just about two years ago so I don't make anything for my time spent here on Hubpages. It would be the same for me with Thevideosense, Knol and your other ones as well. We have a couple of inexpensive team builds at my forum.
thanks all, while my situation is not improving my attitude is and that is a very good thing. i do not know how to hold on to nothing, and i do not have the resources that atheists have to hold on to, so i am limited to finding a concept of god to hold on to, since that worked for me in the past. christmas seems a good time to find it, though wading through the dogma is daunting.
well, i am still here though my circumstances grow more dire by the day. i originally was catholic and have kept in touch with my godmother who is a little like me. she sent me some help and a card which i appreciated because they cheer me up.
christmas was over quite quickly here - that has been happening more in recent years and i think it is because people gear up for it so soon. i wanted to keep some of that magic feeling i was starting to feel. sad that i will have to wait until next christmas.
i don't know about religion but i think there is at least god. i intend to publish a hub debating this from the perspective of atheism. i am not well versed in atheism but i can think logically on occasion so hopefully it will engage the logical mind.
thanks all of you who prayed for or are praying for me. i really do appreciate it.
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