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Thread: Who Else Has Questions About Their Health and Spiritual Journey?

  1. #21
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    Default Open Mind

    I have always kept an open mind to various beliefs and religious practices. There is an international religion which includes all the teachings of Abraham, Krishna, Zoraster, Moses, Buddha, Jesus and Mohammad and I wondered if anyone has heard of it. I have only known of it for about 5 years as they have moved into a vacant bank building close to me. They do have a website which is http://www.bahai.org/

    There is a very long article under "The Promise of World Peace" which is interesting....

    Gabriella
    Last edited by Gabriella7; 08-24-2012 at 08:59 PM.
    Progressive/Relapsing MS, Myasthenia Gravis, Spinal Stenosis, Degenerative Disc Disease, Diabetes, Hypertension, Hashimoto's Thyroiditis
    Advocate for ADA, Artist's Community for Change, ADAPT, Universal Living in Place, HopeKeepers, Complementary and Alternative Medicine

    "Life is mostly froth and bubble, two things stand like stone. Kindness in another's trouble, Courage in your own"........Adam Lindsay Gordon

  2. #22
    Distinguished Community Member renee's Avatar
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    Good people- live and let live.
    It's kind of Unitarian Universalism for people who have and
    maintain some religious base in their beliefs.

  3. #23
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    Similar but very different in that UU's also include people who are agnostic, theistic, and atheistic. You are right in that they are good people with a live and let live attitude. UU's have their roots in early America whereas Bahai's only began to be a religion in the 1800's and the headquarters of the religion is in Israel.

    Gabriella
    Last edited by Gabriella7; 08-25-2012 at 09:55 AM.
    Progressive/Relapsing MS, Myasthenia Gravis, Spinal Stenosis, Degenerative Disc Disease, Diabetes, Hypertension, Hashimoto's Thyroiditis
    Advocate for ADA, Artist's Community for Change, ADAPT, Universal Living in Place, HopeKeepers, Complementary and Alternative Medicine

    "Life is mostly froth and bubble, two things stand like stone. Kindness in another's trouble, Courage in your own"........Adam Lindsay Gordon

  4. #24
    Distinguished Community Member Cherie's Avatar
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    I just saw this post for the first time a few minutes ago and have been reading all of your responses and feel so blessed to have each of you peripherally or even deeply involved in my life. Thank you for your candor and honesty.

    I first came to know "God" as I understand "God" at about the age of 3 or 4. It was a personal and intimate encounter that has sustained and built over the years. I was raised in a home of Presbyterian Elders (both parents) and we were at church 2-3x/week. Every day began with a Bible reading and Mother put verses to music that I still can rattle off today. Basics that sustain from both the Old and New Testaments. BUT...we went to Assembly of God and Christian Missionary Alliance church most Sunday evenings and shared our worship space with Methodist and Baptist on Sunday mornings. Youth groups in High School were combined with the various Protestant sects in our area. When I got to College, I became part of an Interfaith College Youth Group that included most of the Protestant faiths, Episcopal, Catholic and Jewish faiths. I realized we all had the same Father God who loved us no matter how we saw Him (or that relationship)

    Went to work in a Clinic run by a Charismatic Episcopal Church in inner city Houston in the Early 70's , met my husband Dave, married there and our children were born into that Community. Our Family truly was "Christ Centered". We started virtually every day with prayer and scripture and ended every day in prayer with the children and then the two of us. That continues to this day 38 years into the relationship and I honestly do not know how I would have handled all of the challenges without that to rely on.

    Our eldest decided that formal church was not for her and feels almost like it was an impediment and neither she nor her husband nor sons have a formal faith life yet she says she has a deep and abiding personal faith. Our youngest is now an Episcopal Deacon soon to be ordained to the priesthood and David and I, years ago, left the Protestant traditions to join the Roman Catholic Church. We do not agree with all the "Church" professes or teaches but we know our God and love Him and trust Him and share him with friends and family and those who do not know the richness of the grace of a life of faith.

    In all the time of difficult trials (childhood sexual abuse, limboland for nearly 20 years with no diagnosis to match symptoms that were, at times, quite disabling, MS and loss of mobility and vision and severe depression) I never once questioned the presence or faithfulness of the God I had come to know and rely on. His Love and faithfulness (I see God as male but the Holy Spirit more as feminine) has been a constant in my life for nearly 6 decades and I feel so cared for and blessed.

    There have been times when I felt I could not handle the physical ramifications of what this illness dealt out and I considered ending my life. My God showed me in no uncertain terms that this is not the way to go. I have seen "heaven" and know it's beauty and peace and I really truly believe if I alter the course of my life to terminate it, that is not what I will be experiencing for all eternity. This is very personal and I cannot possibly expect any of you to believe or accept this but I have.

    My daily life starts with prayer and a time in scripture. I pray and dialogue with my Creator throughout each day in times of good and bad, trial and joy. It ends each day with David and me in bed, holding hands, and lifting our family and friends before our Lord for Him to care for them as we are not able.

    No evangelization..just sharing my personal journey and life ...which I feel would be totally without meaning and validity without my faithful husband and my even more faithful Lord.

  5. #25
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    A thread very similar to this is what got me kicked off of this site years ago, so if this is the last you see of me, you'll know why.

    I was born Catholic, went to Mass, was about to undergo my first communion, when my father died. My older brother, 15, studying to be a priest, naturally called the priest of our church to inform him of my father's death. The priest came to the house, offered his condolences, told us that my father was a good man, a good husband, a good father, but not a good Catholic (he had divorced his first wife, then married my mother), so could not be buried in the church.

    We stopped going to the Catholic church. As a good catholic child (of 8 years), I prayed mightly to God, expecting that since he brought his son back to life, surely he could do that small thing for me and bring my father back to life. Of course that did not happen. My brother started going to the Lutheran church in town, and became a Lutheran minister. I kept praying. Prayers were never answered (never mind that I was apparently praying for the wrong things. What did I know? I was just 8...9...10..11...12...etc.)

    Went to Lutheran church with my brother, and then to a Lutheran college, where I was studying to be a deaconness. Figured that I'd better figure out this God thing..since he wasn't listening to me, I better figure out why. Left the Lutheran church in college when I got into a disagreement with the minister who, one Sunday, proclaimed "thou shalt not kill!"... and then the next week, "....but it is OK to kill for one's country" (this was in the late 60's, Viet Nam war raging; I was (still am) an anti-war activist, shuttled my friends to Canada to avoid the draft, also involved in civil rights demonstrations in the South).

    It was as a participant in the civil rights demonstrations that I met my first Unitarian Universalists, and also discovered that one of the men teaching me theology was at the time a Lutheran minister...but was leaving the Lutheran church, becoming a UU minister. For many of the same reason I left -- the god the Lutheran church was preaching about wasn't the sort of god either of us could belive in. Or accept. Or understand.

    So now, 45+ years later I am a committed UU. I don't believe in God/god/goddess/Supreme Being. I don't believe there is anyone "out there" in either heaven or hell who cares about what little ol' me does or says or believes. I try to "do good"...because it is the right and ethical thing to do, and makes for a more pleasant society. I judge "good" by societal norms and expectations, laws and guidance, including the Bible, the Koran, other "good books" of other religions -- and if you read them carefully, they all say pretty much the same thing -- reat others as you want to be treated, respect your fellow citizens, we all go around only once in life -- there are no dress rehearsals... and do on. I don't believe in an after life. I die..and that's all there is. Like any other organic thing, I rot, replenish the earth, and new life grows from my remains. Ashes to ashes, dust to dust.

    So, no, God (however you want to name him/her) has no real input into my health (or lack thereof). It is what it is. I ...like a ton of other folks... have a chronic illness which has been, is, and continues to be a pain in the patootie...but I wasn't "chosen", or "blessed", or "cursed" to have this. It just is. And so I deal with it as best I can, often in my case in ill humor.

    But that's my story and I'm stickin' to it.

    Cat
    ...I am not a doctor nor medical professional, and don't pretend to be one, here... :o

  6. #26

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    I think that your relationship with God is on two levels a personal one and a community one. Church gives you a sense of community and with that support. I have found my church community has been a huge help for me emotionally and when I am able to attend Mass a sense of peace. Spirituality is a very individual thing, different for everyone and no way is better or worse, it has to be what works for you. As for "why," to me, for the most part why isn't what is important and much as how you deal with the what. The only time why is important is if it will help with the what like why you have the symptoms you have because it will lead to a treatment. But if the why can't be found and there is still an effective treatment then maybe why isn't important because it stops you from moving forward with your life. I myself have chronic pain, fibromyalgia and an autoimmune problem which in combination lead to all sorts of issues. I spent a while wondering why. It certainly wasn't how I planned my life at 51yo. But I finally asked myself what was I gaining from all of this worry about why, the answer nothing but stress. So I made a choice, deal with my issues as best I can, do as much as I can knowing that my friends and family accept that I do as much as I can do and get on with life.

    Pat

  7. #27
    Distinguished Community Member agate's Avatar
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    I'm afraid I've pretty much left the fold if I was ever really in the fold.

    I think it's great that many people find comfort in religious faith.

    But I was brought up by agnostics. My parents were so opposed to organized religion that I wasn't allowed to go to church or Sunday school. They relaxed this idea when we moved out of the south and to a big city. A Unitarian church would have been OK, I'm sure.

    Eventually (in my 30s) I became an Episcopalian.

    My mother was raised an Episcopalian. My father's family were "Old Light" Presbyterians, a strict branch of the Scottish kirk, as I understand it.

    I was going to the Episcopal church a couple of times a year (but never on Easter or Christmas because of the crowds) for a number of years but haven't looked for an Episcopal church to join since I moved 3 years ago. Going to a church service didn't do much for me because I couldn't hear much of what was being said, even with hearing aids. And getting there and back wasn't so easy either.

    I've known plenty of people who put up with these inconveniences but my commitment isn't strong enough.

    If I join any religion, it would be the Society of Friends or the Unitarians. As far as hopes for an afterlife go, I don't have any. This is it as far as I'm concerned. This is all there is.
    MS, diagnosed 1980. Avonex 2001-2004. Copaxone 2006-2009.

    "Always put off until tomorrow whatever you think you should do today." --Anonymous



  8. #28

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    I'd like to share something that happened to me a few months ago. Just some history. I am 2 herniated discs in my lower back and messed up neck muscles from being rear ended a few years ago, fibromyalgia probably triggered from the pain from the accident and am also dealing with a bunch of autoimmune symptoms probably from my Hashimoto's thyroiditis. On April 20th I woke up and my stomach was bothering me. I took some gas pills thinking that would fix it. It didn't. Tried to eat and that made it worse. As the day wore on the pain got worse. So bad that I was using a stainless steel mixing bowl to press into my side since a pillow wasn't cutting it for counter pressure. By 4pm the pain was mind blowing and my husband asked if I needed to go to the hospital. I wanted to call my doctor first but it was Friday afternoon and everyone was gone. I waited a little while longer and decided that yes, we should go to the hospital but I was going to take a shower first, well that idea lasted less than ten minutes. My husband sees me packing some things and asks what am I doing what happened to the shower. I told him we are going to the hospital NOW.

    We got to the ER and went in pretty fast. The doctor wanted to run a CT scan so I was given two bottles of bariuim (yum) to drink and then it started. The waves of pain that came were worse than labor pains and just wouldn't stop. While I thought I was quietly dealing with my pain apparently I wasn't, the nurse can running in to see what was wrong. She got the doctor immediately and he asked for 6mg of morphine. What a relief, it was the first time in hours that I didn't have pain. They took the CT scan but all it showed was a blockage but I was admitted because I couldn't eat. For the first week int he hospital I was given medicine in every place they could to make things pass but nothing worked then decided to "power wash," which they did for three days in a row. On the third day they saw that the intestine was ischemic (no blood flow). Now I waited for surgery (another four days to let the heparin wear off). In the meantime I am basically living on ice chips, chicken broth and IV fluids.

    Fast forward to the surgery, they remove 13 inch of intestine. Three days later I end of with an NG tube and eventually on TPN. Finally the doctor comes to tell me what was wrong. Well apparently I not only had a blockage and ischemia cause by adhesions but there were also perforations. Basically I could have died and should have had surgery when I walked into the hospital. Now not everyone may agree but I know that God was with me every step of the way. Had the pain not been so bad I would have ignored it like I do the rest of my pain. All of the "go juice" they gave me could have made the unknown perforations worse, it didn't. All the "power washings" I got could have REALLY made things worse but it didn't and actually led to an answer. I could have ended up with a bag and more surgery but I didn't. Eventually I did end up with an incision infection and though it took a couple of months to clear up, it did and I didn't have to have further surgery to clean it up. So many things could have gone sideways but didn't. I know everything happened exactly as it had to so that I would have a good outcome and it wasn't an accident

    From a support standpoint my friends from church were a huge help. Praying for my recovery and just being there when I needed to talk, though most of my communication was through texting and facebook because it was easier than talking and they all respected it. I am finally healed and know that at least that from this ailment I will have a full recovery. You may want to chalk all this up to coincidence and good luck but no on is that lucky to have all these coincidences fall into place, at least I am not that lucky. There is a poem about footprints in the sand and the man asks God why sometimes there was only one set of prints, where did God go and god says those are the times I carried you. Some one on facebook did it one better. The next question was what is that groove on the ground and God's reply is that is when I dragged you for awhile. That has been me lately getting dragged but with the support of my friends and family and God I know it will get better.

    Pat

  9. #29
    Distinguished Community Member agate's Avatar
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    Thanks for posting your story, Pat. You've been through a terrible ordeal. I'm glad you got through it and came out still able to post on a message board. And I hope you won't have any more crises like that one.
    MS, diagnosed 1980. Avonex 2001-2004. Copaxone 2006-2009.

    "Always put off until tomorrow whatever you think you should do today." --Anonymous



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