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Everything posted by Abigail

  1. Thanks Skyrider. I sort of assumed you didn't fully understand what you were implying when you said those things. I pointed them out to you, because overall you seem a decent enough guy. Typically, I don't waste much time arguing with people like Johniam, because he either can't get it or refuses to. But I thought you would get it.
  2. Well I would suspect somewhere in the great wide internet there are people who are saying the Catholic Church should be shut down. But this particular website isn't centered around the Catholic church, its centered around TWI. Yes, VP is dead, but his legacy lives on in the doctrine he taught. He was not the only sexual predator in TWI. There were many of them, more than you will hear about here. The doctrine itself was rotten when it comes to this issue. Where were the teachings on how husbands should love their wives as Christ loved the church? Where were the teachings on adultry? Where were the teachings on rape? (yes there are verses on that subject in the Bible). There were certainly plenty of teachings on how women needed to submit. There were even teachings about how when you are married your body is no longer your own and that it is the wife's job to meet her husband's need. But how are husband's to love their wives? TWI was pretty silent on that issue. The issues isn't just what VPW did. The issue is the rottenness of the doctrine. Yes, there may have been some good doctrine in the mix that is worth hanging onto. But there was also some really, really bad garbage in that mix.
  3. Amen, JJ. :D That sums it up pretty darned well in a nutshell.
  4. Skyrider, perhaps without even realizing it, you just put the blame squarely back on the victim. Promiscuous nature? Really??? Do you think those boys who were victimized by the Penn State guy were sexually promiscuous? Was Excathedra? Was I? Were the other victims? And even if a victim had been sexually promiscuous, does that negate the right to pick and choose their partners? Does it void their right to say no and have that respected? And did you know, that often women who are sexually promiscuous are that way because they had already been victimized before adulthood?? And then you toss in high morals and character as being a reason someone isn't targeted. Again, I would suggest you think about that statement for a minute and understand just what you are suggesting. Because what you are suggesting is that people who are targetted by sexual predators lack high moral character. Bull..... The viticms didn't lack moral character, the predators did!!! Lets move on to boundaries. You think you wife with her high moral character didn't have her boundaries moved? Was she in TWI? Did she stay in TWI for any length of time? You did yes? You climbed the ladder higher than I did. I can guarantee you anyone who lasted in TWI, anyone who made it through the Way Corps training or worked at HQ for any significant length of time had their boudnaries moved. Their sexual boundaries may have remained intact, but there were boundaries that were moved and at least some of those boundaries speak to moral character. Those who melted someone else's face because of the mandates of TWI either had no moral character to begin with, or their boundaries were moved over time. Those who lived and breathed the words of Martindale or VPW either had no moral character to begin with, or their boundaries were moved over time. Sexual predators do target specific people. They look for weaknesses and vulnerabilities that they can twist and turn and use against the victim. What those weaknesses and vulnerabilities are vary from predator to predator and victim to victim. But it is not about moral character or promiscuity. It is about vulnerability. You think you are invulnerable? You think your wife is? We all have weaknesses. We all have areas in our life that are vulnerable.
  5. It doesn't matter if getting mad is appropriate, or even right. As Socks says, it is what it is. Am I to pretend I don't feel the way I do because it may not be right? I can't, that would be a sin against myself, it would be dishonest within myself. Asking why. Yes, I do ask why. I desperately want to know why. I guess on some level, this is all a crisis of faith. That I believe there is a God remains true. That I trust that God, that is the crisis of faith perhaps. When I was a girl, I was not raised with any particular regious beliefs. Despite that, I had this unwavering faith that God looked after me and would keep me safe. Then He didn't. Following that, I spent a number of years living in a very self-destructive manner until I was finally brought to me knees and I begged God to show me the way. I ended up IN The Way. There we were taught the formula for how to get and maintain God's hedge of protection around us. And I bought it. I bought into it and I found myself married to a man that hurt me in every way possible - physically, sexually, emotionally. I left. I got of of The Way and out of the marriage. I built a new life once again. But here I am, all of these years later and that childhood event has come back, demanding that I face it, deal with it, and somehow make peace with what happened and how it effected my life. I have moments these days, when I feel like God is once again trying to bring me to my knees. Once again trying to push me to that place where I come back to Him on my knees and begging. My response? No. I won't do it again. I won't put my trust there again and have my life torn apart the way it has been over and over. But I would like to. I would like to trust that God is there, looking after me and protecting me. But, I don't trust Him. Hi! Good to see you here. Yes, even the devil, if he exists, was created by God, with God's foreknowledge yes? So ultimately, if the glory goes to God, why wouldn't the blame as well? Why is it that God is supposed to get all of the credit and we are supposed to take all of the blame upon ourselves - or shift it to the devil, if such a creature exists?? I totally get not wanting to look. I have avoided looking for many, many years. But it seems now it is time to face it and look, that it won't be ignored any longer.
  6. Is it a choice that we make each day, really? We can control how we behave, but do we really have control over our emotions - other than suppressing them into non-existance like we did in TWI? Hmmmm - okay, let me take another tact. We know there were women who were sexually abused in TWI. The women came to TWI because they absolutely wanted to know God. They were searching for God and they were beaten or sexually abused instead. How does one reconcile that without at some point becoming at least a little bit ticked off at God?? Soul Searcher, I often think prayer is more for us than for God. Even if one believes in God differently than you do - if God is all knowing and knows the thoughts of our hearts, He knows our prayers before we do. Prayer is to bring us to a place of peace, it isn't for God's benefit. That's what I think anyway. :)
  7. I may be derailing my own thread. But perhaps this will help explain my questions. I do believe science and religion can mix. I sort of see quantum mechanics as the spiritual side of things and the chaos theory and the physical world we live in. We are now nearing the end of the Days of Awe and I have really been trying to work my way through some stuff from my past, the specifics of which I do not care to go into. So here is a bit of what I have been reading, that jumpted out at me. Human consciousness plays a major role in determining reality. There are even respectable scientists who state categorically that things happen because we observe them to happen This is Schrodenginer's Cat. I think there is some validity to it, but I don't buy it as an across the board end all truth. Those who work in the field of chaos theory and complex systems point out that a small change in a single atom can ripple through the cosmos, effecting major impact on the macrocosm This is how I see human interaction. As we interact with one another we have an effect on the person and that creates a ripple effect. Someone described it to me as a pool table with no holes for the balls. You use the cue ball and hit another ball and it rolls into maybe 3 or 4 more, etc. Human interaction is the same. Furthermore, this Supreme Consciousness is not to be viewed as some outside force who happened to come across a universe and decided to muck about with it. Rather, that Consciousness is the perpetual origin of all that is. At every moment, all matter and energy is regenerated into being out of the void . . . . . . .So He created a paradox. That's what creating a world out of nothing is all about -- doing the impossible. Creating a world means creating a second reality: The first reality is that there is nothing else but Him. The second reality is that there is a world here that He is sustaining. Both realities are true. In Chabad Chassidut, these two realities are called Daat Elyon and Daat Tachton, literally, the Higher Consciousness and the Lower Consciousness. At every point in a person's life, s/he will find him/herself exactly at the spot G-d desires this little creature should be at this time. Make whatever choice you want, it doesn't change the ultimate outcome. It only changes one thing: Who's responsible for the outcome? Is this mess all your fault, that you should have to clean it up? Or are you the hero who contained the damage from extending further? Whose side are you on and how hard are you fighting? When we get there, will it be through your efforts, or despite them? Will we have to drag you there, or will you come marching in the front line? You'll go through the circuit, but will you make the best out of each ride, milking every experience for all its got? Will you overcome the darkness in a fell swoop of the sword, or will you roll with it in the dust, fighting it until its very essence is annihilated? And this is the part that always leaves me banging my head against the wall and being really ....ed off at God. Because if that is true, then everything that happened was what God wanted to have happen. It is another paradox, God is supposed to always get the glory, but mankind is stuck with the blame and responsibility??? How exactly does that work? :)
  8. Soulsearcher, if the God you believe in is not loving, how do you keep from falling into depression and despair? What gives you hope?
  9. Okay, I'm with you Waysider. I also believe in God, but do not believe in the Devil. So, lets go with randomness and stuff happens and this brings me full circle to the whole anger at God thing. Why would an all loving God allow random acts of tragedy to occur? Why would God fail to protect someone who believes in Him and believes He will keep them safe? Oh and Waysider, I'm not talking about protecting someone from TWI. At some point we all drank that Koolaid for various reasons. I'm talking literally about a sudden and unexpected event that could not have been forseen or prevented.
  10. But what about when it is really, really bad stuff? The kind of bad stuff that changes the course of your life and throws it completely off track? Does that go into the category of "stuff happens" too? Do you still believe in God Waysider? What about the devi;?
  11. In TWI we were taught never to blame God. We were taught all bad things come about because of the devil. We were taught that ultimately, most of the bad things that happen in life happen because we were somehow "off the Word" or "out of fellowship" and had "stepped outside God's hedge of protection." In the OT, there were men and women who got angry with God and who even argued with God. Do you ever get mad at God? How do you understand the bad things that have happened in your life now that you are outside TWI?
  12. That's not why the stay. They stay out of fear and low self esteem. Hmmmm, yet another parallel, no?
  13. Waysider said: There are lots of incidents of psychological abuse, sexual abuse, violence and, yes, even murder, that were simply never reported to the general populace of The Way. Many of them were brought to the attention of upper management at The Way. (Alaska and Alabama seem to ring a bell for me.) In some cases, The Way chose to resolve the problem by relocating the individual to another area where their indiscretions would not be known. In some of the others, the perpetrators were tried and convicted. Part of the purpose of this site is to expose those incidents, not sweep them under the carpet like The Way did. I encourage anyone to search these pages for more detailed information. It's here if you really want to find it. Far more incidents than have ever been discussed here, I am sure. Part of the problem was leadership who wanted to sweep things under the rug, lest "the ministry be blamed." Another problem were leaders who were in over their heads and simlply had no idea how to handle such difficult situations, in conjunction with the ministry line that you didn't seek outside/wordly counsel. What I went through at the hands of my ex . . . it wasn't a secret. People knew. I remember when it first started and I went to my twig coordators - people I loved and trusted and to this day still believe were genuine, well-intentioned people. I honestly believe they wanted to do right, but were in way over their heads (pun intended). Unfortunately, what they said, the counsel they gave made everything worse. It amounted to putting the blame on me, something I was all too willing to accept -because that is what women who are abused do. They blame themselves. And then they blamed me too. The whole thing made me feel crazy. I have no way to describe it to someone who has never experienced it and I am so thankful that there is a place (here) where there are women who do get it. I'm not happy that they experienced anything aking to what I did, but I am relieved to know there are people who understand.
  14. Abigail


    I'm not sure exactly what you are asking in this thread, my squirrely friend. But this I do believe, it absolute does depend on the humans in the interaction. When I look at my life frmo the perspectve I have now, it isn't so much what I have done, but who did I share the experience with. That is what makes all the difference in the world. I have also realized that post TWI, finding people I am comfortable enough with - that I can trust enough - to have great experiences with is very difficult. I think post TWI I have a lot of difficulty with trusting people or allowing people to move into a place in my life that really matters. I am finally starting to work on that though.
  15. Thanks, Socks. For as long as he has been here, I have tended to take him seriously and to honestly try to understand his viewpoint. Perhaps you just hit the nail on the head. Maybe it is all just one giant mind game. And even if it isn't, perhaps it is better if I just never do understand some people.
  16. In Judaism it is said that God intended for man to eat of the tree, but that the eating of the tree was to take place at a certain time. Man ate from it too soon and the knowedge he received caused chaos. Judaism doesn't teach we are now all born with sin nature. Rather, it teaches that we are to do our part (and our part varies from person to person) to help restore order.
  17. Did you actually know this woman personally or are you basing your opinion on one side of a WOW war story? Because when I read this story what I see is someone seriously violating someone else's personal boundaries in a way that would be unacceptable in almost any society (except perhaps among 2 year olds). Then again, there is a logic to it that does fit. A large part of what took place in TWI was about violating someone's personal boundaries to the point that they no longer had any. Much easier for leadership to dictate someone else's life, to get someone to the place of "spiritual maturity" such that they can violate them emotionally, spiritually, sexually, etc - by teaching them it is somehow wrong and shameful to have personal boundaries. But it was okay cause it was all in the name of "lightening up."
  18. Ya know, I have tried really hard to see your perspective on things. In the end, I can only conclude you are one truly sick and twisted puppy. And yeah, it is a personal attack and the moderators can go ahead and smack me for saying it.
  19. It also appears as if his mother-in-law - Rev. Giles' wife - was up to her neck in this thing. Whether or not she knew the dealings were illegal, that I don't know.
  20. Just another hukster trying to sell something and make a buck. Perhaps his doctrine changes not because what he believes changes, but because he is trying to draw in more people who will send him money and kiss his a@@?
  21. Excuse my while I go lose my breakfast. I'm with you MStart - very condescending.
  22. Considering what she gave up - her children - I can see where it would be very difficult to admit she might have been misled or wrong. That would be an incredibly difficult thing to come to terms with.
  23. Skyrider's thread on psychological trauma prompted me to do a bit of research on the topic. Along the way (so to speak) I came across some information on rape trauma syndrome and thought I would share it here. The main link is HERE The various responses to the initial assault fall into two categories; expressed and controlled. Survivors engaging in expressed responses are open with their emotions and are in an emotional state. Examples of expressed responses are crying, yelling, showing anger, or agitation. The second type of response is known as the controlled. Survivors engaging in this style of response contain their emotions and focus more on keeping their composure. These responses are a result of the survivor "regrouping" after the situation that has occurred. Again, neither response is superior to the other. They are both responses to trauma. During the Reorganization Phase, the survivor attempts to reorganize his or her life and create the world that she or he once knew. Despite best efforts though, this phase is often riddled with feelings of guilt and shame. The survivor's attempt to get back to his or her routine is often plagued with feelings of anxiety and fear. She may attempt to return to normal social functioning (i.e. go out to social engagements), yet may find herself unable to do so. His or her attempts to re-establish in relationships may be hindered by lack of trust. Long term reactions to sexual assault may also include the inability to find peace within this world. Sexual assault can change the individual forever as well as the world as they know it. The end result is a constant state of turmoil. At times, the survivor may not even recognize what is happening within. Sexual assault causes the body to be an unfriendly environment leading the survivor to at times feel dirty and ashamed. These feelings cause the individual to disconnect from their body entirely. Without a connection to their body, the survivor is unable to listen to internal states which assist her in navigating through the world. This contributes to a feeling inherent in many survivors, the feeling of being "lost." Additional "rules" and guidelines lay within the human mind. These rules are called "cognitions" or "beliefs." They are beliefs about oneself which are perceived to be true based on one's experience. Some common beliefs are that people are good, the world is relatively safe, sex is pleasurable, and we are in control of our environment. A sexual assault can change these beliefs at the core of the human being. These beliefs infiltrate the survivor's life without the conscience being aware. The beliefs then morph into the feelings that people are bad, the world is not safe, sex is something that hurts, and the environment is out of control. These beliefs about oneself and the body then polarize the survivor from their body or their world. However, rarely are survivors able to articulate that they feel their body is an enemy. Instead, they present with eating disorders, substance abuse, or self injurious behaviors. There is more information at the link above.
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