How would you respond to this story about leaving Catholicism let alone Christianity?
#1
Quote:EX catholic 18yo guy here. I am 3 weeks from graduating from a catholic highschool.

I've done a [explicit] ton of research on the whole leaving Catholicism thing, and from my own personal experience, I can tell you al lot of what he's going through is catholic guilt and "morals" (more like brainwashing) that have been infused so deeply in his mind that it could take years to remove it. Also from going to my highschool I learned way more about the faith than most people who actually believe know about it, which kind of sucks because it's easy to see how the church really hurts people by catching them in a mental trap and keeping them there. A lot of other ex-Catholics know more about the faith than their catholic counterparts as well.

What it mostly is is that we are taught that God is watching everything we do, that part is pretty standard. Another part is how much we are hated for doing wrong. Even though they say God loves us, the moment you "sin" (a made up concept with no secular counterpart - crimes are different, masturbating isn't a crime but it's a sin - used to control people to doing what you want) God takes away our salvation, and we are said to "turn away from God". This apparently makes him sad or something. This guilt is HEAVILY indoctrinated into children, and as they grow up, this guilt grows with it. By the time they're adults, this guilt is tacked on to every single choice they make.

Eat meat on Friday? No, God said no. But I want to eat meat today... I'll go to hell! So I shouldnt. "

You mentioned how he suppresses enjoying himself. This is something the cult calls" suffering for christ" or "fighting sin". Basically, worldly pleasures are sinful, and by indulging in them, you're sinning. You're a Goddamn sinner. Especially sexual pleasures. The catholic church loves to get their hands all up in your sexual life. They want you to only have sex when you're married, which inevitably leads to the indoctrination of your kids. If you're a good catholic family, you'll force your kids into it too. If you have sex outside of marriage, then you're once again a sinner, in a state of mortal sin (the worst kind of sin, where if you don't repent before you die you WILL go to hell. A lot of sins fall under this category so its not all sexual based, but all sexual sins like having sex, masturbating, and even thinking impure thoughts, are mortal.)

This is kind of a basic overview of what you were saying. All of this indoctrination is why he feels so bad. None of it is his fault, it's how the church WANTS their members to behave. By having this dependent mentality in their members, every time they mess up, they run back to the church. That's how they program people. In his case, he's an atheist, but still has this programming from the church. This means that when he feels like he sinned or made a mistake, his programming is compelled to feel bad. He can't help it.

Quote:but anyone could do that, is that really a specific thing religion instills in you?

Basically, yes. Religion, and especially Catholicism, mormonism, jehovahs witnesses, scientology, and Islam all are religious that use these tactics on a daily basis. I still am trying to get past some of it myself. But one of the first steps to overcoming it is knowing the problem. You should ask him about what he thinks are the specific things that keep him from enjoying things.

Quote:He hasn’t really gone into depth but he’s said that he feels guilty enjoying himself, and then guilty for not being happier, because it’s a vicious cycle where feeling happy feels ‘wrong’

The church wants you to feel guilty for enjoying yourself with world things, but they want you to be happy "through christ". Basically, they say if you pray hard enough that God will make you happy. It's all bull because doimg rituals and praying is fucking boring. In reality it's a way to make you feel bad and force yourself deeper into believing and trusting the church. That's what all these things are about.

I hope this helps. I'm sorry it's long, but this frustrates me how someone else can experience this also. I've experienced it a decent amount, but I'm trying my best. I hope your boyfriend can break free of it. None of it is his fault, and the worst feeling is being controlled by something that you can't control.

Please keep in mind that the poster is also responding to the OP (poster is concerned of atheist BF who grew up Catholic who's suffering from "Catholic guilt" when after they roll in the hay), hence a few quotes.

This post was found on *r/excatholic. All of the subreddit's mods are ex-Catholic turned atheists. Go figure.

*The subreddits description says that it's not a place for debate, or in their own words "proselytizing", but a place for support.  "This subreddit is for any and all ex-Catholics to talk, educate, discuss and maybe even [explicit] about their experiences within the Catholic Church."

Below is made by a poster who currently is a moderator of the subreddit (he describes himself as an ex-Catholic atheist). This is what he wrote about his experience when teaching his two children about being good.

Quote:I have two kids. I've raised them both with very humanist ideals, with the better version of the Golden Rule; "Do unto others, as they would have you do unto them". I'll be honest my wife and I are pretty hardline atheists, so we have taught them to use a critical eye when it comes to claims.

I take my son along to scouts (here in Australia it is more secular than the US Boy Scouts), and I teach them both that doing the right thing and thinking of others is paramount. I think it has worked pretty well. I have seen my son tear up when a friend is hurt, rush to help out even people he doesn't like. I've also seen my daughter give him big hugs when he is sad, and do similar things. I think, they are good kids... and I'd argue better than religious as they aren't being good due to promise of reward, just for the sake of being good.

The reasoning behind the 'better version' you can read here. Speaking about having a critical eye about claims - "doing the right thing and thinking of others is paramount" is a claim itself. Who defines what is right and why is it paramount? So we got an **atheist father who thinks his kids are better than those brought up religiously because they're good "for the sake of being good." I don't have much experience with uppity Christians, and never had I come across a devout Christian who thinks their kids are morally "better" than kids raised in atheistic households, so this is a first for me. Just wow.

**Atheist father claims he went to "the best Jesuit university" in his country (Australia), was catechized Catholic and almost went to seminary school.

Also, I read some of the moderators posts in a debate with a Catholic on numerous issues he had with the RCC (dated about 4 years ago) - nothing impressive. Half of his comments can be summed up as if it can't be observed without evidence being produced then it's not worth talking about.
Unfortunately I don't have any "fun facts" about me unless being a practicing Catholic counts.

Trying to get better every day week.
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#2
"That's how they program people. In his case, he's an atheist, but still has this programming from the church. This means that when he feels like he sinned or made a mistake, his programming is compelled to feel bad. He can't help it."

So...are we not supposed to feel bad when we sin or make a mistake? That would open the floodgates to a growing group of sociopaths or people with at least some sociopathy. 

In my experience, atheists tend to be either a bitter or a depressed lot. No wonder. No God = no purpose to the universe = no purpose to our own lives = belief we're a bunch of stardust-related accidents on a floating rock going nowhere important = bitter attitude or depression. What you believe impacts everything else.
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#3
(04-19-2019, 03:37 PM)In His Love Wrote: In my experience, atheists tend to be either a bitter or a depressed lot. No wonder. No God = no purpose to the universe = no purpose to our own lives = belief we're a bunch of stardust-related accidents on a floating rock going nowhere important = bitter attitude or depression. What you believe impacts everything else.

As someone who was a militant atheist for most of my life, you hit it right on the mark. I have felt that emptiness which the Church identifies as the desire for God. You try and satiate this bottomless desire with worldly things, false ideals, unrealistic philosophies, and can never attain true happiness. You do have times when you think you're happy and fulfilled, but it's fleeting and passes within moments. This emptiness brought me to the point that I thought of Satan as an emblem or symbol of freedom, as the ideal to mirror in order to be "free." But atheism, satanism, nihilism, it all leads to depression and cynicism.

A lot of what that poor kid said is a lot of what I too once thought. It makes me sad that he is so enraptured with the world that he can no longer find solace in prayer.

Pray for him.
"The Heart of Jesus is closer to you when you suffer, than when you are full of joy." - St. Margaret Mary Alacoque

Put not your trust in princes: In the children of men, in whom there is no salvation. - Ps. 145:2-3

"For there shall be a time, when they will not endure sound doctrine; but, according to their own desires, they will heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears: And will indeed turn away their hearing from the truth, but will be turned unto fables." - 2 Timothy 4:3-4
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#4
(04-19-2019, 03:37 PM)In His Love Wrote: "That's how they program people. In his case, he's an atheist, but still has this programming from the church. This means that when he feels like he sinned or made a mistake, his programming is compelled to feel bad. He can't help it."

So...are we not supposed to feel bad when we sin or make a mistake? That would open the floodgates to a growing group of sociopaths or people with at least some sociopathy. 

In my experience, atheists tend to be either a bitter or a depressed lot. No wonder. No God = no purpose to the universe = no purpose to our own lives = belief we're a bunch of stardust-related accidents on a floating rock going nowhere important = bitter attitude or depression. What you believe impacts everything else.

I'd answer as a counter to the kid that if one wasn't "programmed" to experience Catholic guilt then they're programmed as well, just in a different way. Of course, I believe there is a misunderstanding, for both the OP's BF and the kid that's featured here: unlike, say, SJW and their own "empathy" and commandments, sex taught by the Church is made for marriage. Sex outside of marriage - fornication and premarital sex - is sin. Sex has a purpose and specific context in which it should be engaged. That is what is taught (full disclosure: even before I took my faith seriously I always felt that premarital sex and fornification were gravely wrong; you can even say it was self-evident to me) and, if the OP's BF truly believed that sex outside of marriage was a-okay and that RCC stance was rubbish he'd have less of Catholic guilt than he's experiencing. To put it all on "Catholic guilt" is just an oversimplification.
Unfortunately I don't have any "fun facts" about me unless being a practicing Catholic counts.

Trying to get better every day week.
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#5
Just wanting to watch porn and indulge is a really lame reason to leave Christianity.
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#6
(04-19-2019, 04:27 PM)Florus Wrote: Just wanting to watch porn and indulge is a really lame reason to leave Christianity.

There are many, many lame reasons I've read for leaving Christianity, Catholicism in particular. I read from a guy who went to Catholic school that he "knew that Catholicism was fake" when he, as an alter server, found out that the wafers used for communion came from a local company. I was like what did you expect, to it to come from the sky like manna delivered by a dove, or an aging monk in sandals on a cart pulled by a donkey?
Unfortunately I don't have any "fun facts" about me unless being a practicing Catholic counts.

Trying to get better every day week.
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#7
My father in law is am atheist, but he's very supportive of my wife being recieved into the Church tomorrow. I wish more of them had open minds.
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#8
(04-19-2019, 04:06 PM)Augustinian Wrote:
(04-19-2019, 03:37 PM)In His Love Wrote: In my experience, atheists tend to be either a bitter or a depressed lot. No wonder. No God = no purpose to the universe = no purpose to our own lives = belief we're a bunch of stardust-related accidents on a floating rock going nowhere important = bitter attitude or depression. What you believe impacts everything else.

As someone who was a militant atheist for most of my life, you hit it right on the mark. I have felt that emptiness which the Church identifies as the desire for God. You try and satiate this bottomless desire with worldly things, false ideals, unrealistic philosophies, and can never attain true happiness. You do have times when you think you're happy and fulfilled, but it's fleeting and passes within moments. This emptiness brought me to the point that I thought of Satan as an emblem or symbol of freedom, as the ideal to mirror in order to be "free." But atheism, satanism, nihilism, it all leads to depression and cynicism.

A lot of what that poor kid said is a lot of what I too once thought. It makes me sad that he is so enraptured with the world that he can no longer find solace in prayer.

Pray for him.
I wonder how this thinking is tied to the rise in heavy drug use and suicide.  I am currently dealing with a pre-teen who has a friend who is atheist.  We are already getting pushback from the child because of this friends influence.  But I also see a lot of this to be ego, hubris and the desire to live life as an eternal child "with no one telling me what to do".
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