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Off Topic :
My personal philosophy is being challenged


 Lionne (original poster member #25560) posted at 3:30 AM on Thursday, November 17th, 2022

by my new therapist. And I need the feedback from the wise people here. We haven't started EMDR yet, still working on background.

When I was very young I was told by a Baptist minister that my Jewish daddy would burn in hell if he didn't accept Jesus as his personal savior. I was seven and going to the church all by myself. I went home and hid under my bed. I cried and thought and thought and figured out in my head that God wouldn't punish my daddy because he was raised in a different culture. He was a good man and God would see that. And besides, Jesus was Jewish, wasn't he? From that belief grew the belief that EVERYONE had the capacity to be good and that evil acts were perpetrated by people who were sick, and God would surely forgive those people too.

I did/do use this philosophy to justify much of my husband's nasty behavior towards me. Through therapy and 12 steps and this site, I've learned to not accept this behavior, but I still do believe that his mental health issues caused him to act in negative ways.

That's not to say I accept these behaviors. I found a religious group for whom this is a basic tenet. We believe there is "that of God in every person" and that we need to look for that LIGHT. We don't deny evil acts, don't deny that punishment and restitution is important, but do believe that good exists, somewhere in that person.

My therapist said I'm taking advice from that 7 year old. And some people ARE just evil. I am perfectly capable of agreeing to disagree and still work with her.

So what do you good people say? Are my beliefs that of a naive 7 year old or of a mature 68 year old optimist?

Me-BS-65 in May<BR />HIM-SAFWH-68<BR />I just wanted a normal life.<BR />Normal trauma would have been appreciated.

posts: 8516   ·   registered: Sep. 18th, 2009   ·   location: In my head
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Superesse ( member #60731) posted at 4:21 AM on Thursday, November 17th, 2022

Lionne, your 7 year old self understood something the hardline "minister" must have missed in his schooling: God's Mercy! Psalm 136 acclaims over and over that "His mercy and love endures forever!"

So your therapist appears to approach people's behaviors from a categorical perspective, which she likely believes has helped clients sort out their situations. I sometimes think therapists 'try out' challenging statements just to shake us out of whatever mental ruts we tend to get into. Doesn't mean what she tries to propose to you is necessarily some ultimate TRUTH.

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tushnurse ( member #21101) posted at 12:36 PM on Thursday, November 17th, 2022

I would ask her why she is pushing you on it.
Maybe she believes it will help you embrace some anger on this whole damn situation, and that will allow you move forward.
Anger helps give you energy and focus on yourself move out of cyclical thinking.

Him: FWS
Kids: 22 & 25
Married for 30 years now, was 16 at the time.
D-Day Sept 26 2008
R'd in about 2 years. Old Vet now.

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 Lionne (original poster member #25560) posted at 3:12 PM on Thursday, November 17th, 2022

Good points, I'll ask her.
Oh, I'm angry. I have nothing against anger. It can be a useful and cathartic emotion unless it stays the only emotion one acts on.

I find it's healthier for ME to believe that people are good at heart and that there is hope for the worst of us.

"In spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart. I simply can’t build up my hopes on a foundation consisting of confusion, misery, and death. I see the world gradually being turned into a wilderness, I hear the ever approaching thunder, which will destroy us too, I can feel the sufferings of millions and yet, if I look up into the heavens, I think that it will all come right, that this cruelty too will end, and that peace and tranquility will return again"
Anne Frank

Me-BS-65 in May<BR />HIM-SAFWH-68<BR />I just wanted a normal life.<BR />Normal trauma would have been appreciated.

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HFSSC ( member #33338) posted at 3:32 PM on Thursday, November 17th, 2022

It is just crazy that you would bring this up today. Because of something I’ll maybe post about, I’ve been thinking about my dad today.

He was a registered nurse and worked almost all of his career in a prison infirmary. He interacted with inmates at every level on the spectrum, from nonviolent offenders to the most horrific, brutal killers. He believed that some of those men were evil. Yet he never felt that anyone was beyond redemption.

Idk if I’ve ever shared this story. And I’m not sharing it to promote my particular faith nor to bring a debate.

He told us one evening that an inmate had bitten another inmate’s nose off during a fight. The biter’s prison nickname was “Pig.” I asked what his real name was and then asked if I could write him a letter. I think I was 8 or 9 years old. I wrote a letter to “Richard” and said I had heard about his trouble and wanted him to know that Jesus loved him. That it seemed like anyone who would bite somebody’s nose off really needed to know about Jesus. He wrote me back and thanked me. I wrote another letter and asked him to promise me he wouldn’t get in any more fights.

Now, adult me looks back and wonders who exactly I thought I was, lol. But he wrote back and promised. But he broke that promise and got solitary confinement for a while. He finally wrote to me and said he had a teenage son, and that his son had drowned. And no one told him for several months. He got in a fight the day that he received the news. I wrote and told him that God understood because he lost his son too. He never got in another fight and ultimately became an ordained minister.

Sappy? Yeah, possibly. Improbable? Absolutely. But I was there and it’s the truth. A man most people would have called unredeemable became the opposite. He took a life that had been selfish and criminal and destructive and chose a path of kindness and contributing to society.

I it know if this helps you at all but I appreciate the chance to share that story.

Me, 54
Him, 45 (JMSSC)
Married 24 years. Reconciled.

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OwningItNow ( member #52288) posted at 3:37 PM on Thursday, November 17th, 2022

I am going to guess at her mindset since therapy is near and dear to my heart.

She is trying to get at what you DO with the anger and abuse in your life:



Set boundaries and, when broken, cut "evil" people loose?

In my view, people who do too much of the first (because "people are mostly good") and not enough of the second spend their lives in a lot of unnecessary pain. Happy lives require solid boundaries, and cutting toxic people out--without guilt or apology--is the enforcement of those boundaries. Buuuttttt, it sounds as if you might be someone who struggles to do that? And prefers to give people second, tenth, 99th chances to change and show themselves as good? If true, that is a recipe for pain and suffering. (Ask me how I know. sad )

me: BS/WSh: WS/BS

Reject the rejector. Do not reject yourself.

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MIgander ( member #71285) posted at 5:19 PM on Thursday, November 17th, 2022

It's funny we're talking about this, I've been thinking on it too with regards to my mom.

I blocked her completely out of my life after a certain Supreme Court decision that she used as an excuse to verbally abuse me in front of my sisters (on a group chat text- say it to my face, coward!!). I was hurt as hell by her derision, she let me know she utterly despised me and blamed me for anything bad which came from that decision. She revealed something very personal I wrote to her as part of one of my earlier therapist's work. Revealed it to mock me.

Needless to say, our relationship is a complicated one! shocked rolleyes

SOOOOOO... yeah, I know there's good in my mother, she's done good things in her life and I can say that most of the time she tries her best. I forgive her what she did. Only someone deranged by a deep pain would treat their child in that manner. Let alone a stranger in that manner. It's not about me, it's about her. Her entire life was about HER. She taught me to behave that way too. For that, I too can forgive her. She could only give me the things which she already had.

All this to say, forgiveness is different from enablement. I forgive my mom for ME because I don't want to carry hate in my heart for her. I need to keep forgiving her each time I think about how she's hurt me (that's the 77*7 Jesus spoke about). I'm forgiving her again right now as I type this.

However often I forgive her in my heart though, I will not enable her behavior towards me by continuing in an intimate relationship with her. She has shown me repeatedly who she is over the years. She is incapable of admitting fault and incapable of remorse. So, because of that, I do not allow her into my life. No phone calls, no texts, no cards, no emails. The most I can do is unblock her on the group chat with my sisters. I do not respond. I will not allow her the opportunity to hurt me again.

I don't think Jesus talks about allowing people to continue hurting us. He tells His disciples to "shake the dust off their feet" and leave a town where people aren't receiving them and His message. He doesn't tell them to stay and force the townspeople to accept them, to manipulate them into somehow being kind and open to their work. I think it's much the same with us. Religious or not, I think Jesus was on to something when he tells people to leave abusive/dangerous/negative situations. To forgive yes, but by no means keep yourself open to continuing the abuse.

I think your therapist is mistakenly encouraging you to see people as evil (as someone else on the thread said) to get you motivated to change YOUR response to the evil thrown at you. You are NOT required to see people as evil. However, you are NOT expected to keep allowing them to put that evil upon you.

Wishing you the best.

WW/BW Dday July 2019. BH/WH- multiple EA's. Back at it again- bantering w the younger woman. Lied about blocking phone calls and deleted texts. Carried on with her. Financial infidelity again- who says you only cheat with lovers?

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number4 ( member #62204) posted at 5:59 PM on Thursday, November 17th, 2022

Don't know if this makes sense, but, how about all people can do evil things and good things. Those things they do don't dismiss them as categorically evil or good. At my core, I am also of the belief that people who do evil things are mentally ill. But we still have to hold them accountable. Some of us here have been diagnosed with mental illness (raises hand), but we don't commit evil acts. What that Baptist minister did to you was spiritual abuse, and perhaps you haven't accessed the anger you have toward him for what he did, and the therapist is trying to get you there.

From what I know about 12-step programs, they are remarkable about teaching how to set boundaries, but seven-year olds don't have that experience or language to know how to do that. Does it mean that that minister never recognized his own behavior of abuse? Perhaps he did as he grew; we can only hope his abuse was limited. But I can't help but wonder what happened in his life that he felt it was OK to abuse a seven-year old. Having that optimistic hope doesn't mean we continue to allow ourselves to be exposed to those behaviors as adults that could be hurtful again. I've done things in my life that I'm not proud of, and have caused immense shame on my part. But in therapy, I learned why I engaged in those behaviors, and in learning that, it helped me change. So if that can happen to me, who am I to say it can't happen to others with mental illness? And like you, I believe my H's behavior is due to his own mental illness. In my view, it would be hypocritical to say it was OK for me to be afforded the opportunity to grow via therapy, but not my H. It took a while to find the right therapist for him (the first two were not good fits), but he is engaging in the process in a genuine way, and has made great strides in delving into his childhood. Does that mean I should just erase from memory everything he did to me and write it off as - oh, well, he had a traumatic childhood? No, I remain vigilant for signs that he may be slipping, not necessarily in regards to that behavior which we do not name in this forum, but in other ways that he was dismissive or hurtful to me.

In the end, some people will change, and others will not. It's our job to constantly evaluate how close we allow people to come in our lives. Some people who were abusive, may redeem themselves, but the pain may be too harsh to ever allow them space in our lives. And that's OK. Perhaps it was my old therapist back in IL who, by the way was Jewish, taught me that there is good to be found in everyone. It's been one of the biggest gifts he gave me as a therapist. Only you can decide whether or not your philosophy/beliefs serve you best, but as long as you're setting appropriate boundaries and taking care of yourself, I don't see anything unhealthy with what you're sharing.

I guess I don't understand why your seven-year old self, who seemed to be very spiritually mature for her age (!) to recognize this abuse, also have a voice in your 68 year-old heart? Children can be great teachers as long as we interpret their lessons in our current context.

Me: BW
Him: WH
Married - 30+ years
Two adult daughters
1st affair: 2005-2007
2nd-4th affairs: 2016-2017
Many assessments/polygraph: no sex addiction
Status: R

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 Lionne (original poster member #25560) posted at 2:50 AM on Friday, November 18th, 2022

Happy lives require solid boundaries, and cutting toxic people out--without guilt or apology--is the enforcement of those boundaries. Buuuttttt, it sounds as if you might be someone who struggles to do that? And prefers to give people second, tenth, 99th chances to change and show themselves as good?

Ah. No doubt this was me. First to justify my mother's neglect and general dislike of me and later to justify my husband's nastiness. However, you people, 12 step work, and therapy finally taught me to put myself first. I KNOW my husband's behavior were the result of his illness and dysfunction but I certainly didn't deserve his abuse. And will not ever again.

My mother was a sick, unhappy, alcoholic woman, jealous of my potential that she thought she should have had. She actively disliked me, ignored me or rejected me. But, being a woman of a certain class and age, she taught us to be completely anti racist. Oh, I don't think she would have been comfortable with a non white son or daughter in law, but she cried over Dr.King and taught us his philosophy, told us the stories of Ruby Bridges and the horror of Emmett Till and let us know that all people were equal. She married a Jew after being raised Catholic and encouraged us to learn my father's culture. She had had a hard life, being the oldest of 9 children in an alcoholic, dysfunctional family, and yes, her behavior towards me was a result of that life. All I ever wanted was someone to love me because she clearly didn't. But I recognize her strong points too.

That minister's words didn't stay with me for long. I think I sensed his overall meanness and dismissed his words quickly. I DID have a personal relationship with a "spirit" I thought was Jesus. He told me over and over that it was all going to be alright, and I believed "him." My relationship with a God got more complicated as I got older, but I have always maintained an optimism that comes from my belief in the general "goodness" but "weakness" of people. I ALWAYS look to see the best case scenario, to give the other person the benefit of the doubt. I LIKE that about myself and I am not going to change it.

But I will not tolerate being wronged or abused or treated in any way that doesn't respect me. Never again. I will forgive, not necessarily for the other person, but for my own soul.

Appreciate all the responses and I'm enjoying hearing of the spiritual journeys of some of the strongest women I know.

Me-BS-65 in May<BR />HIM-SAFWH-68<BR />I just wanted a normal life.<BR />Normal trauma would have been appreciated.

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Bigger ( Attaché #8354) posted at 1:02 PM on Friday, November 18th, 2022

I’m not Catholic but if you go to Youtube and search for

"Pope Francis consoles a boy who asked if his non-believing father is in Heaven"

You will find an amazing recording that might answer your 7 year old’s question. Now – I guess the Pope and the Baptist minister both proclaim to have the correct understanding and maybe even the "only right" understanding. I personally doubt that – but despite coming from a Lutheran background my present view of God is a lot closer to what the Pope says in the above clip.

I think your present views are spot on. There is the capability of good and evil in everyone. To take two extreme examples:

I guess we can all agree that Adolph Hitler was an evil person. Yet most of modern animal-protection laws and regulations are based on what the Nazis decided in the 1930’s. So we have the bad (total war, Holocaust…) and we have the good (laws protecting pets). I somehow think even the most ardent animal activists would NOT claim this got Hitler a place in whatever heaven looks like. I like to think he’s getting the treatment shown in Adam Sandler Little Nicky…

We probably all think of Mother Theresa as a kind, compassionate woman. A saint. There is no denying the sacrifice and the good she did. Yet contemporaries describe an angry, inconsiderate tyrant. Behaviors that in another situation and another place would probably have her in the hot section of afterlife. Yet we probably envision her at a high-table up there…

Edited to add NOT... "animal activists would NOT claim this got"

[This message edited by Bigger at 1:21 PM, Friday, November 18th]

"If, therefore, any be unhappy, let him remember that he is unhappy by reason of himself alone." Epictetus

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MIgander ( member #71285) posted at 1:13 PM on Friday, November 18th, 2022

Bigger- HAH! Little Nicky is EXACTLY how I picture Hitler's afterlife! I'm glad someone else connected with that image! laugh

WW/BW Dday July 2019. BH/WH- multiple EA's. Back at it again- bantering w the younger woman. Lied about blocking phone calls and deleted texts. Carried on with her. Financial infidelity again- who says you only cheat with lovers?

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sisoon ( Moderator #31240) posted at 4:48 PM on Friday, November 18th, 2022

I'm a follower of Transactional Analysis (Eric Berne, the Harrises 'I'm OK, you're OK), and I was lucky enough to do therapy with some of his earliest followers.

For the last few decades, I've believed everyone is born lovable, capable, and potentially, at least, loving. That is, everyone is born 'good' and 'OK'. Almost everyone is also born with free will, and many of us use that free will in very not-OK ways.

Now I'm not so sure. I think most people who do evil do so because of decisions they make throughout their lives - a kid who's never good enough and is emotionally abused may become a narcissist and hurt and blame others for the rest of their life. But now I think some people may actually be born evil, by some trick of chemistry.

It doesn't matter, though, whether some people are evil or simply do evil. They need to be confronted, and they need to change if they want to stop doing damage. Personally, I'd rather see remorse and compensation to victims instead of prison for the guy who drove into the parade in Milwaukee and killed 6 people, but people who do evil need to be stopped, whether they were born evil or were born good and chose to do evil because of poor coping mechanisms.

It's not easy to separate a person from their behavior or a behavior from its source - a history for abuse, for example. Many abusers were themselves abused. I just can't figure out how that sort of thing computes.

Bottom line: I think your best bet is to ask your IC how she thinks you'll benefit by accepting that some people are born evil,

fBH (me) - on d-day: 66, Married 43, together 45, same sex ap
DDay - 12/22/2010
Recover'd and R'ed
You don't have to like your boundaries. You just have to set and enforce them.

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humantrampoline ( member #61458) posted at 6:14 PM on Friday, November 18th, 2022

Such an interesting topic.

I'm also curious of your therapist's thoughts and intents on this.

In my view, there's nothing wrong with your personal philosophy. Your therapist must think it is negatively impacting your real world, day-to-day life. How?

I also think people are basically good or have an inherent capacity for goodness and that mental health issues are a cause of hurtful behavior. I agree infidelity can arise with mental health problems. As someone else mentioned in another post, the whole thinking around infidelity seems a bit twisted and sick. I genuinely have pity and feel bad for them. Its not a detached and beneath me feeling of pity either.

I find myself tweaking or refining my personal philosophy when something doesnt fit or needs clarification. It's a bit of ah-hah, I never considered that situation, moment.

In the last few months, I've had encounters with family members with mental health issues that have refined my ideas. They both have serious mental health issues.

One has a brain injury. We drove 6 hours one way to pick them up in a hospital on Christmas eve when they became incoherent and lost and drove until they ran out of gas. On Christmas morning i found them outside yelling at my neighbor's houses and telling me that the neighbors had replaced their tires with different ones and that we were in on it too.

The other person , we're not sure what the problem is yet. They are currently in the hospital for cutting their arms when they saw spiders crawling on them. When my sibling went to their house to get clothes, they foubd the tv and windows were covered in tinfoil.

Both of these people can seem charming and fully normal. They have a capacity for manipulation and deception. They can outright knowingly lie to get their way. Yet I had to have people point that out to me to see it was happening.

People can be mentally ill and also understand right and wrong and deceive and be manipulative. I guess I knew that. But I was never protecting myself from that adequately.

I wonder if your therapist thinks you might have some blind spots.

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 Lionne (original poster member #25560) posted at 1:34 AM on Saturday, November 19th, 2022

Bottom line: I think your best bet is to ask your IC how she thinks you'll benefit by accepting that some people are born evil.

Good point, I will.

I wonder if your therapist thinks you might have some blind spots.

That's possible, but she doesn't know me well, is just learning my history. In which I clearly had blind spots, was passive aggressive, in denial and had learned to be completely codependent. Those were all behaviors that were learned as defense mechanisms to survive, first my childhood and then a marriage to a sick, bipolar depressive. I've unlearned those behaviors and don't "blame" myself for survival. I'm actually rather proud that I raised two extremely good men, completed two master's degrees and had a successful 37 year career, managed to save enough money to have a comfortable retirement and despite the internal stress that is occurring internally, I have managed to take care of myself physically through physical and spiritual exercise.

Funny you should mention Hitler. As the child of a Jew, and proud of it, Hitler was the epitome of evil to 7 year old me. It was he that I thought of while wondering what God thought of bad people. God made people. If people were evil then clearly something went wrong and God would surely not doom people for mental sickness.

Don't quite know how I feel about some of the evil people of the current day. That is clearly a task for my current spiritual musings.

Me-BS-65 in May<BR />HIM-SAFWH-68<BR />I just wanted a normal life.<BR />Normal trauma would have been appreciated.

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humantrampoline ( member #61458) posted at 2:44 PM on Saturday, November 19th, 2022

It changes my opinion a bit if you are still getting to know her. I have stopped seeing therapists after a few appointments if I see major differences that make me uncomfortable. The first couple of appointments are like interviews for both parties.

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id 8765939

WhatsRight ( member #35417) posted at 3:07 PM on Saturday, November 19th, 2022

What that Baptist minister did to you was spiritual abuse

This is just about the truest thing I’ve heard in a very long time.

Having been raised as a southern Baptist in a southern town, I have no trouble believing he said (and believed) such a thing.

Thank goodness you were able to let that go, but I’m so sorry for whatever effect it had on you whether or not temporary.

My son is awaiting sentencing. He knows right from wrong. But for a few years now he has not chosen right. But I know he is good inside. And my prayers are that he will realize who he really is, and choose to behave accordingly.

As many remorseful waywards on this site can attest to, and are proof of, good people can choose bad things.

If I felt qualified to advise you, I would say that if you are just starting out with his counselor, and you have some different basic life perspectives, I would think long and hard about continuing with her. Best that you have someone that you feel some simpatico with.

Whatever you decide, I’m praying it all goes well for you.

[This message edited by WhatsRight at 3:13 PM, Saturday, November 19th]

"Noone can make you feel inferior without your concent." Eleanor Roosevelt

I will not be vanquished. Rose Kennedy

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humantrampoline ( member #61458) posted at 4:17 PM on Saturday, November 19th, 2022

The more I think this, the more I agree with WhatsRight about seriously considering working with this therapist. She should be able to work within your paradigm and even your current situation.

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Superesse ( member #60731) posted at 5:44 PM on Saturday, November 19th, 2022

I really think Owning It Now may be close to the mark:

She is trying to get at what you DO with the anger and abuse in your life:



Set boundaries and, when broken, cut "evil" people loose?

This is my sense, too. Because the goal of your therapist is to work with your expressed and unexpressed issues, not to serve as The Oracle of Delphi, as it were! (How many therapists themselves have marriages we would not want to settle for...I've heard of many.)

Of course it's always easier for outside observers to pass judgments on a relationship.

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 Lionne (original poster member #25560) posted at 1:47 AM on Sunday, November 20th, 2022

Well, my goal for working with her is specifically because she is the only game in town for EMDR around here and comes highly recommended for that, has worked miracles for several people. I'm okay if she doesn't agree with my philosophy-she's my peer not my superior, and I can accept our differences. But discussing it here, with people I respect and admire, is useful.

I consider that Baptist minister to have behaved in an evil way, even though, in his mind, he was living his beliefs. Same thing goes for many religious-political-other extremists. Imposing my beliefs on others in anathema. Of course, that DID get me into trouble as my H successfully convinced me that my expectation for him as husband who came home when he said he would, who refrained from secret relationships, who did other things that were toxic to a healthy marriage. I was caught up in the belief that it wasn't my right to insist on certain things, to set limits on another adult was wrong. I know the difference between controlling others and insisting upon respect and boundaries. It was a long lesson.

Me-BS-65 in May<BR />HIM-SAFWH-68<BR />I just wanted a normal life.<BR />Normal trauma would have been appreciated.

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pureheartkit ( member #62345) posted at 2:00 PM on Sunday, November 20th, 2022

You all know how I feel. I think we are all luminous beings here to live in our bodies and learn and exercise free will.

I believe we are not born to evil. We are trusting, open babies who want love and connection. So at the core, I think we all still want to live like this. Good example is the man who bit the person in jail. Pain and stress are hard on humans. We expect people to bear it. I think we expect more than is reasonable. There's so much stress. There's too much pain. I don't think we were meant to have this constant heavy load along with toxic chemicals interfering with our fine tuned biology.

Some will become damaged and act destructively. We need to make sure they don't hurt others. Some can find a way to healing and peace.

I see it as a range, not absolutes. No one purely evil although some seem to relish plotting to do harm. We got rid of all the competing predators so people can walk around and not fear bear or wolf attacks but we can't find a way to help our society. Why don't we teach people what to do with anger?
Why do we make entertainment out of death violence and pain? Why even show kids this stuff? What about gratitude empathy and cooperation?

Why all this reality shows of competition and humiliation? Who's not good enough? Who's going home disgraced? We're going to celebrate that?

Groups against groups, Who's a winner, who's a loser. It all makes us split apart. We never celebrate what we have in common. We can't solve our larger problems when we're stuck on the small stuff.

People struggling to get by can't have the time and mental space to work on personal growth let alone raising society up to a better place. The TV keeps us locked into a narrow mindset of using. Using people. Using resources. Wanting and taking, not giving. Look these people went bad...shame shame...then tomorrow it's the same but with different people.

I believe people can make great changes. The brain is amazing that way. Most people want peace and harmony and mutual respect. It only takes a few to make things miserable. I'm an optimist. I refuse to give up. Do we want a better world or not? It's possible if we speak up and agree to discuss how to get it done. There will be disagreement. However we need to hear the ideas. Thats why I think internet censorship is a bad idea. Yes censor child porn and other toxic stuff like that but not ideas. Ideas are good even if they irritate. Ideas will save us.

So here we are talking about your ideas and experience and what your therapist and preacher said. And we can discuss how we feel. You can consider what you think is right and your view on people and society. I say as long as you can go forward and use the past to help you grow and share love and generosity in the world then whatever pain was 8n the past you learned something and can move on. Go and bring the best of who you are and what you know and be happy.

Experiencing pain can help us to have compassion. Some will be hardened and angry and destructive.

When I was younger I felt the pain and sadness of my life was a great malady I had to live with. It felt unfair. I couldn't understand why others were spared and I had to suffer. It made no sense. I still struggle with suffering although I'm coming to see suffering as a largely man made condition now that we have mostly got control of most environmental hardships. If suffering is mostly man made these days then humans can solve it. That's why I'm an optimist. I see our friends beyond the physical sphere cheering us can do can solve it. For them there is no suffering. Only light and love and joy. They know it's only temporary for us.

Thank you everyone for your wisdom and healing.

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