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About Okie

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  1. Many thanks, Kate, for your response. I would think the answer to your question would be yes. I am intrigued by Joseph's comment regarding ego. That has a ring of something like the right track. Maybe fear is rooted in an ego that refuses to let go and let God. And in the process, blocks the love that is readily available and all around us.
  2. Born unto sin? I don't know but it also doesn't make sense to me. Having a sinful nature? Different question and possibly more apt as I consider the many times, past and present, when I do the very things I know I shouldn't or at least are not good for me and those around me. What to make of it all? Hence this forum. I certainly don't have a working thesis at the moment.
  3. If ridicule of someone with an opposing view (guilty as charged) is hatred then I too have been hateful. It was only lately when I came to the view that language is imprecise that I was able to accept that my understanding is also imprecise and incomplete (duh). I too find the so called "new atheists" heavy handed and, dare I say it, bullies. I agree with most of what they are saying but would wish for a little more humility in the discussions. Incidentally, the religious fundamentalists also lack humility IMO.
  4. Probably a nit and my mishegas, but wouldn't it be better to refer to the people online as members, guests, seekers, or ?? rather than users?
  5. Thanks Paul. I share your thoughts especially about our offspring. My experience confirms your statement about the unique nature of a relationship with our children. I would also never sever ties with or intentionally withhold love from my daughter based on her actions or even attitudes. I do know that I have instilled fear in her from time to time over the years and as soon as I recognize it I make a deliberate effort to apologize and try to set things right again. We have been essentially separated since my divorce of many years ago and that situation has caused much grief. She's married now to a wonderfully supportive guy for whom I have much affection. That gives me some measure of satisfaction that I didn't screw her up completely. I am grateful to you for your response
  6. Thanks, Joseph. It makes sense that it is a matter of ego and not a characteristic of god. And your comment as god not necessarily a person gives food for thought. It was emphasized during my brief stint with fundamentalism that you MUST have a personal relationship. Never accomplished it though. Maybe there's more work to do to let go of ego than to worry about love vs. fear. I appreciate your taking the time to respond
  7. A topic that may be too simplistic but one that challenges me daily. Would love to hear what others think about this seeming dichotomy. In the past I've tried to console myself by asserting that the two feelings are incompatible and that a God who wants to love us would not want us to fear him. It strikes me now as a bit naïve. Obviously a stumbling block. Am open to any and all comments. Thank you
  8. Exactly that! When feeling so full of myself (and "logic") that I made fun of those who disagreed. Striving for a more humble approach that recognizes the limits of understanding.
  9. Okie


    Thank you Joseph & Paul (sounds biblical) for the welcome. Will continue to read and post from time to time. Do you have any suggestions about where to start?
  10. Am thoroughly enjoying this thread. Many similar thoughts and feelings. Having been raised with a pro-forma presbyterianism which was not really discussed at home, it never resonated with me. As a young man, I got involved with a fairly "liberal" presbyterian church which presented many new (to me) ideas and attitudes that were, at first, very compelling. As time went on I began to feel alienated even from this for reasons I have yet to explain to myself. Been wandering in the wilderness ever since having no real desire to embrace religion. About 17 years ago I met (and married) a wonderful Jewish woman. Through stories of her experiences I began to pay a little more attention to Judaism. One of the most compelling ideas is the notion that we are not even to utter or spell the name, much less define it in human terms. And the notion that the emphasis of the faith is on the here and now and not the sweet by and by. I am looking forward to reading more of your posts and possibly getting more involved in the discussions. Cheers to all and thank you for letting me share
  11. Okie


    Hi All, New to this discussion. I am a 64 year old man living in Northern California. Born in Oklahoma and transplanted myself in the 70s. We were not particularly religious growing up in OK but did attend Presbyterian churches fairly regularly. Father was a closet liberal which created enormous tension that he shared generously. Have always felt like a fish out of water at church. Nowadays I tell myself that I've made my "Peace with God" and that usually keeps me fairly sane. From time to time, though, the doubts creep in and I find myself wondering if "they" are right. I hope to meet a number of you and find out how others may deal with similar worries. Thank you for allowing me to share. Cheers
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