I just had a mind blowing conversation with my fundamental christian mother. We discussed the bible, evolution, the universe, and other light subjects.
She tearfully admitted that she does not believe the bible to be infallible. She said that it was obviously, "too full of man".
She politely asked me to stop because I was, "crumbling the last foundations of her faith".
I informed her that I wasn't attempting to do that, but that I was glad she was willing to talk about it with me.
I never thought this day would come.
She told me that she thought I was very intelligent and thoughtful and that she admired me.
Up until today, I was only described as wayward and sinful.
Oh, happy day!
Don't be too happy about this. You have helped her see the light, granted, but you have also taken away her security, her sense that there is always Someone out there who will take care of her. You will need to help her build a new set of coping skills so she doesn't feel cast adrift. My suggestion would be to not push it, and to let her set the direction of any conversations you have on this topic. Her fellow church members could also work together to convince her that Satan is using you to lead her astray, so she's not out of the woods yet. Sorry to be a Debbie Downer, just my two cents' worth.
@Donotbelieve I have heard of a lot of broken families due to religion because the religious parents feel like they need to punish you to make you believe. It's sad and they loose their opportunity to be an actual parent and be there for you. Instead they ate there for god which is a false since of security and to me a mental illness that people need this crutch to feel secure. They beat their children to get the demons out. They lecture you about belief. All in all when are they actually there for you? Never if all they Sonia follow the Bible on how to raise you instead of coming up with their own conclusions. I am with You and you shall not be judged!
My sister used to be about as Southern Baptist as someone could be; she thought that without a full immersion baptism, people were not saved. Imagine my surprise several years ago when she said that evolution had to have happened because there was too much evidence for it.
I am not sure if my mouth dropped, but I know my eyes bugged out.
Since then, she says that gays are born gay, The Bible is not infallible, got a divorce (well, he did commit serial adultery--the only defense for divorce), and that IF god exists (saying that she thinks/is sure "it" does), no one knows its nature. She agrees with me that the tenets of Christianity were instituted by men for men.
She remains a Christian, though, and if god exists, says she will have lost nothing. The thought of Jesus and salvation is comforting to her, but she also says that no one knows who will get into heaven.
She does not seek to convert and does not preach.
Fair enough for me.
I've noticed that sometimes planting seeds works wonders.
My introduction to Christianity was having the elders in my family telling me I was going to burn in hell if I sinned. They didn't tell me what sin was and I didn't ask because I thought if I didn't know what it was I could get away with it. I think I was an atheist right out of the chute! I was constantly asking questions about the loving god and his role in disasters, starving children, wars and all the other stuff that seemed out of step with an earthly Christian paradise. I am constantly amazed at seemingly stable, Intelligent people who would gladly have the bible as the law of the land. Brainwashing is hard to overcome. I hope your mother finds the peace she seeks.
Thats amazing to be able to have that conversation with your mom!
Mother Theresa said very late in life that she had not felt the presence of God in her life for over 50 years. It's never too late for humanism and reason.
Yes, and that she kept on for the good she KNEW she was giving to the needy. Strong lady to admit it. Lots of flack because of it though.
That evil bitch withheld pain medication from suffering patients because their suffering "brought them closer to God. If there were a hell she would be rotting in it, as far as I am concerned.
Congratulations.. Too bad my conversations with family always ends up in treating me like I'm a devil worshiper lol
When I lost my faith, it wasn't one big waking up moment. It was a series of small earthquakes that really shook me, until I realized what I was left standing on was not a foundation stable enough to build a life on. Realizing that was huge, and I definitely went through a mourning process. Church had been such a big part of my life. Be patient with her, she's really feeling that loss and uncertainty right now.
There is such a variety of these holds on us. I just outgrew it, lucky to realize it's bs. Stopped needing its comfort. No fear of hell, etc. Most of my family, whom I used to pray for, are atheist. Yea, now! What's left is the few believers and so many friends from religious days. Variety of church reactions, too. Some are horrible, ungodly--ha. Some are gentler, just sad, like mine.
That's awesome that you and your mother can talk about that! It can really bring you closer and you now have a better understanding with each other. I'm happy for you
That's awesome. I wish I could have a conversation like that with my sister. She recently decided being one of the faithful was not enough irrationality for her. She is now in training to become some kind of alternative medicine doctor person thingy. Apparently there is an actual training course for this. I always figured they just made stuff up as they went along.
She actually said to me that all disease is mental and can be cured with the right attitude. So of course I ask "Uh, so all the cancer patients in the world are only sick because they have a bad attitude and can cure themselves by thinking away their tumors?"
Still waiting on an answer to that one.
Faith is how ignorance copes with the unknown. It's all about education and understanding. It's not necessarily a bad thing, but it's a self limiting thing to rely on. It's an opiate that calms restless curiosity at the expense of continued growth. As C S Lewis said, " only the vulnerable move among mysteries ". And the letting go of beliefs in order to expand ones understanding is not an easy addiction to break. Being an atheist should be the natural condition and unremarkable. What makes it controversial is that faith has spoiled the purity of thought and created such an obsticle to what's obvious.
It sounds like a productive conversation. Something I like to make clear with devout people is that I'm not trying to change their mind about their own faith but rather to show that my perspective isn't unreasonable. It would seem you had something of a breakthrough with your mother in this regard. ?
It's really impressive that you were able to get past the usual knee-jerk defensiveness. You must really have great communication skills. You may have reinforced the cracks in her belief. Maybe she'll come to her senses. Brava!
I am so happy for you, for both of you. Such an emotional thing.
I couldn't imagine having that conversation with my fundamentalist mother. I hope yours turns out good for both of you. I don't know why some people have such a hard time letting go of false beliefs.
That must've been SUCH a gratifying moment! I hope your relationship continues to grow. "Coming out" isn't easy for anyone...admitting you've been wrong in a deeply-held belief. Good for her. (And, I'm very sorry about the ''wayward and sinful'' insults. Those must hurt.)
Ahh nice. My mom is just a conformist that wishes I were a conformist.
Good for her! Tell her she's got a friend in England she's never met who's rooting for her!