Understanding Atheism, the Essence of Forgiveness, and Secular Recovery
In this special part #7 Q&A podcast series, I answer three thought-provoking questions you’ve sent my way.
Feelings About Atheism
Question #1: "How do you feel about atheism?"
Let's start by deconstructing the construct of this question. The notion of asking how one "feels" about atheism can imply a sense of influence or validation over someone else's beliefs. It's crucial to understand that beliefs are deeply personal and subjective. Everyone has the right to their own beliefs without judgment or superiority.
I share my perspective, not as an atheist but as someone who respects diverse beliefs. Atheism, as I've learned from my friends and followers, is often defined as the absence of belief in a higher power or gods. It's a personal stance that doesn't necessarily imply a specific moral or ethical framework. Many atheists focus on humanism and morality, emphasizing the value and agency of human beings and their right to make choices without external interference.
Atheists often appreciate intellectual autonomy and a critical examination of religious doctrines. They respect diverse perspectives and have a keen focus on human rights, equality, and social justice. It's essential to remember that these beliefs do not judge or invalidate others' beliefs. Instead, they represent a journey of self-discovery and understanding.
Question 2: "Can you talk about forgiveness?"
Forgiveness is a complex and deeply personal journey. It's crucial to clarify that the emphasis on restoring relationships as the primary focus of forgiveness can be misleading. True forgiveness prioritizes healing from the harm caused and allows individuals to release the person who harmed them. This release is not about blind acceptance of abuse but about healing and refusing to engage in a harmful cycle.
The concept of “turning the other cheek as Jesus did” is often misunderstood. It perpetuates a harmful dynamic between you and your healing and prioritizes the offender's needs over your own. This approach disregards the reality that some relationships may not be healthy and should not be restored.
Forgiveness is very personal and complex and is about inner transformation, personal growth, and cultivating compassion for oneself. It's not about enabling harmful behavior or sacrificing one's well-being. It's about finding closure and moving forward in life as an empowered and healed individual.
Question 3: "I've tried recovery programs, but they rely heavily on trust in a higher power. Any advice?"
Recovery programs like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) often emphasize trusting in a higher power. However, this approach may not resonate with everyone. It's crucial to research alternative recovery programs that align with your beliefs and values.
Some secular recovery programs, such as Smart Recovery, Refuge Recovery, Women for Sobriety, Moderation Management, Rational Recovery, and the Life Process Program, offer science-based and non-religious approaches to overcoming addiction. These programs focus on self-empowerment, evidence-based techniques, and personal responsibility.
Remember that your recovery journey is deeply personal, and you have the right to choose a program that suits your needs and beliefs. Seek support from programs and communities that align with your values and goals, and remember to do your research.
You can read the transcript for this episode of Spirituality Matters HERE.
You can listen to the Spirituality Matters Podcast HERE.
You can watch the uncut episode version on Rev Karla’s YouTube Channel HERE.
If you have specific questions you would like answered please email us at email@example.com.
Looking to further your healing journey? Rev Karla understands that everyone’s spiritual journey is unique and deeply personal, that is why we offer communities for those desiring a safe and supportive environment. Engage with like-minded souls, and embark on a sacred journey of deconstruction, spiritual growth, and healing. Visit us online to join a program or Live event that speaks to you.