Nurturing Spiritual Health For Lasting Inner Peace
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by David Hayward
1w ago
How healthy are you? I'm not talking about apple-eating-healthy, I'm talking about taking-care-of-your-soul healthy.  "The same pattern applies to all sports: When you restore position, you restore function. When you improve position, you improve function”   This is from Dr. Kelly Starrett's Becoming a Supple Leopard: The Ultimate Guide to Resolving Pain, Preventing Injury, and Optimizing Athletic Performance. The above quote about physical health also applies to all other areas where health is important, including spirituality. If we are honest with ourselves, most of re ..read more
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10 Ways to Make Friends After Leaving The Church
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by David Hayward
1w ago
As many of you know, one of the worst aspects of leaving the church is losing all or most of your friends, and the difficulty of making new ones. We may experience extreme loneliness after we leave the church, and some of us fall into the rut of accepting that loneliness as our way of life from now on and forsake the idea of having good friends ever again. Lisa and I experienced exactly this after we left the church in 2010. We lost almost all of our friends, kept only a few, and experienced long stretches of loneliness. But now, some years later, we have a pretty healthy list of friends. W ..read more
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How To Unlearn Harmful Purity Culture Beliefs
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by David Hayward
1w ago
This is about Purity Culture and sex, and about the conflict religion creates between spirit and body. I never did this literally but I did figuratively. I prioritized spiritual concerns over bodily ones.Now, I’ve come to realize that I am not a body with a spirit or a spirit with a body, but that the two are one and inseparable. Like consciousness… that mysterious thing that is both cellular and transcends the cellular. You can’t be conscious without brain cells! I believe we can’t be body without spirit, nor spirit without body but religion pounded into me that I was either one or the other ..read more
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What Is Religious Trauma Syndrome?
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by Robyn Mays
1w ago
Religious Trauma Syndrome refers to the psychological and emotional distress that can arise as a consequence of religious trauma or spiritual abuse. The term was a term coined by Marlene Winell in 2011. Although not included in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, this term has been increasingly recognized and acknowledged. Acknowledging The Pervasiveness of Religious Trauma Acknowledging the pervasiveness of religious trauma is crucial for understanding its impact on individuals and communities. Many people have experienced psychological distress as a ..read more
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Love, Desire, and Consent: Rethinking Purity Culture Narratives
nakedpastor
by David Hayward
1w ago
You Can Never Say No I hope this isn’t too triggering for some of you. But I bet it might be because this theology is so prevalent in the church. It is in society too where men just think it is their right to take a woman’s body. Religion and purity culture takes this patriarchal, male-dominant idea to a whole new level by weaponizing scripture, theology, and spiritual authority to govern and afflict women. (Download a digital copy of this cartoon by clicking on the image or HERE.) This man is in for an important lesson. And it is this: This woman has autonomy over her body, she knows it, and ..read more
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3 Signs That You May Be In A Toxic Group
nakedpastor
by Robyn Mays
3w ago
Breaking out of toxic friendships is hard. Recognizing when something is toxic when it looks different from what we’re used to is hard too. Below are some “not always obvious” red flags to help you identify and escape groups that are unhealthy for you. These three signs can also help you know when to leave the Church. They Slowly Start Crossing Your Boundaries It can start subtly or even happen in a sweetened, gentle way that makes you feel guilty for saying no. Little nudges here and there that you feel too polite or awkward to mention, where someone crosses your boundaries. When it doe ..read more
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Why Purity Culture's Number One Tool is Fear
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by David Hayward
3w ago
How many of you have heard this one? Purity culture's number one tool is fear. I call this cartoon The Spirits of Past Relationships. (Click on the image or HERE to get a digital download of this cartoon.) Purity Culture wants you to be afraid to think, feel, or do anything to spoil your virginity for your wedding night. It is claimed, and I believe it, that this is especially targeted to women. Purity culture is a patriarchal endeavor to produce and provide virgins for its men. I was told, when I was young, that if you masturbated, hair would grow on the palms of your hands. Stupid ..read more
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Why Do Some Church Leaders Think They're the Messiah?
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by David Hayward
1M ago
I was a pastor for about thirty years. And I’ve been a member of some churches and ministries too. During this time, I discovered something very eye-opening and shocking… Many religious leaders have a Messiah complex.   And this behaviour is often supported by their congregation. This is because there is a symbiotic relationship, a mutual complicity, between Messianic leaders and people who want a Messiah. For those of us who started to question our relationship with the church and maybe even left the church already, this is one of the most difficult realizations to reconcile. We willing ..read more
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How to Deal with the Loneliness of Deconstruction
nakedpastor
by David Hayward
1M ago
Deconstruction and Loneliness Deconstruction, like most other experiences of changes, can make people feel lonely because it questions meanings, rejects fixed ideas, and focuses on personal views, creating a sense of isolation as individuals deal with uncertainty and complexity. When I started my deconstruction journey I had no idea how lonely I would feel. ( This image is available for download and licensing) Understand that Loneliness Is A Normal Part of The Journey Although deconstruction can be lonely I claim this is a good thing. Sometimes, the community we leave behind isn't good for u ..read more
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Understanding The Loneliness Associated with Being Authentic
nakedpastor
by David Hayward
1M ago
No one warned me how lonely freedom and authenticity that came with my deconstruction process could be.  In Moorjani’s book “Dying to be Me” she shares a near death experience that changed her. Maybe you experienced a near death experience in your spiritual life that changed you. I call it deconstruction… when we see the light and come back different. A big change in Moorjani’s life is that she’s lonelier than before her experience: “… although I have made some new friends… I seem to have difficulty reconnecting with many of my old ones. I’m not as social as I was in the past, and I ..read more
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