Yep, every now and then (but it's becoming rarer), when things are looking very dire, I find myself mourning the loss of that sweet, but false hope, that some all-powerful, loving and righteous god would take action to correct the evils and restore harmony.
Do you sometimes bemoan the LOST idea, or Belief, that Someone Powerful was going to set all things right?
There was a mourning period once I fully let myself face the fact that I had spent my life engaged in magical thinking.~ Pete ZaHut
"Mourning Period" describes it well. This was the most difficult revelation to have to come to terms about. With so much (real) injustice and unfairness in the world, I really longed for the time that all matters would be "set straight". Now I see that's never going to happen. It is what it is. Kids with cancer. Good people injured and in wheelchairs. Etc. No magical Great One to fix it.
I mostly regret all the things that I "put off" for later to pursue "Kingdom Interests". For one thing, now that I realize that no one really gives a sh!t about with whom or how often a person is having sex, I'd have f***ed my eyes out as an older teen/young adult. No making up for those times that have passed. In a more practical way I would have put greater emphasis into investing for the future rather than thinking everyone was going to throw the money into the streets.
The other difficult thing has been that since my wife has awakened she realizes that she is NOT going to get me "when I'm Perfect" (in the New World). She's tolerated a lot of "imperfection" through the years and frankly she's probably sorry she didn't "move on" when she was younger, healthier and had "more future" to move on to. Now we're kinda stuck here "until death do you part" because it's more practical than doing anything else.
There's a short and very sad little poem by James Russell Lowell called The First Snowfall
To borrow a line from the poem, I would love to believe in "...the good All-father who cares for us here below."
But such a being wouldn't hide from his children would he?
This is an excellent topic you have raised. Many Witnesses come to this website, or others like it, in search of truth and freedom from the Watchtower. Something that seems to be lacking is support or definitive direction to help with experience of having reality crash all round you.
It is truly a serious thing, but I think even more for those waking up to the truth about the Truth. One of the reasons for this is many Witnesses right now are like myself - not only born in, but raised as a Witness during a time when Watchtower publications spent a significant amount of time trying to prove other belief systems as false.
A psychologist once mentioned that when a person's belief system crumbles around them all belief systems crumble. This can lead not only to nihilism, but also neurosis. Witnesses are already primed for this. The Watchtower destroys all other belief systems. So, once the world according to the Watchtower has dissolved as well a person may believe that life is pointless or is just good for experiencing selfish desire.
PistolePete, I recommend Dr. Viktor Frankl's book Man's Search for Meaning. It really helped me out of the mess I went through.
Childish fairy stories where a hero arrives and magically fixes everything are really compelling - who wouldn't want that!
And it's not just children that love these stories. Every Marvel super-hero movie is effectively the same thing.
Of course it's not real and not going to happen. The Avengers aren't going to show up to save us any more than Prince Charming, or Jehovah.
They are all just story characters to make children sleep at night.
You hit the nail on the head. A psychologist recently commented on the current influx of super hero genre of movies. In short, he states that people want someone else to be their savior. It is basically the victim mentality because being a victim is easy - it requires absolutely no effort or action.
First it was some supernatural power, a god or gods, are going to save us. Then it is the government. We live in a society where the masses put responsibility of saving people on the government and suddenly everything is a right. It's not our job. Our taxes pay for salvation and someone other than ourselves should pay those taxes.
In my prior post when I wrote "5866" I meant to write "586", but you folks probably new that.
When it comes to having a belief system or worldview, after no longer being a believing JW, I opted for a naturalistic worldview grounded in scientific knowledge, the scientific method, and personal experience. I study science to build understanding of the universe and how the 'parts' of the universe are interrelated. A good book using that approach is the Epic of Evolution: Seven Ages of the Cosmos (copyright 2006) by Eric Chaisson. I also read science books and science articles on more specific topics. I just wish I remembered so much more of what I have read.
https://www.naturalism.org/worldview-naturalism/naturalism-in-a-nutshell . A basic code of ethics can be derived from such a view, including the principle of a variant of the "golden rule".
- 'The “moral instinct” is part of who we are, it’s a defining characteristic of being human. We don’t, therefore, need commanding to be good; it happens quite naturally as a function of our evolved nature. We are, overall, happier, more productive, more secure and more interpersonally fulfilled when we act according to the golden rule and other ethical maxims. So the naturalist’s one-liner in response to the question “Why be moral?” might be simply: acting morally is essential for human happiness and flourishing within a community.'
Chaisson's book the Epic of Evolution, in its Epilogue, mentions that ethics are important "... because global citizenship and a planetary society are crucial factors in the survival of our species."
We don’t, therefore, need commanding to be good; it happens quite naturally as a function of our evolved nature.
True, even babies understand early what is good and what is bad to some extent.