It occurred to me that religions are using women through forced obedience. One example are Nuns (chaste Harems), who are required to spend every spare moment in prayer, which keeps them from having errant thoughts. These women live mostly in poverty, while some are serving the inner circles of clergy. They are the ultimate servants and victims also by being required to teaching women to joyfully suffer while they serve their fictitious masters who are the puppeteers, living in luxury. Clergy use hard working, self sacrificing women to make them look good, while they live lavish lifestyles abroad and give nothing back to them, other than to remind them their suffering is in the service of god. BARF!
Is anyone on this? Is anyone bringing this to light and doing something about this?
This is a repost of a former article, so those who know me, skip my story. For those who don't know me, I want to add my story to others.
Christianity became a problem for me when faced with family violence that my family could not escape. When my grandmothers, mother and I attempted to get help and counsel from our church communities we were told what I now call the “Passive Gospel”. One of my pastors, Richard C. Halvorson, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_C._Halverson, told me when I am being beaten to “yield, pray, obey, turn the other cheek, love him to the lord, sacrifice yourself daily in imitation of the crucified Christ, rejoice in your crucifixion, of all women, you are most blessed.”
Silly as it seems now, that was the theme of all the ministers from whom we sought advice. Working in battered women’s programs at our local Community College and YWCA many other women heard the same sick advice. It makes me sick to my stomach now, even as the revelation of religious leaders abusing boys and concealing their crimes makes me sick.
Looking back on those horrid days of dependence, passive imperatives and helplessness, I marvel that any woman escaped tyranny and domination of man with the approval of religious leaders.
In the course of my training after leaving my husband, I learned the difference between mentally healthy, mature, adult behaviors and dysfunctional ones. I learned skills needed to function in an adult world and the high price women pay for stepping out on their own, especially with dependent children.
Now, with an experienced eye, I can see how ridiculous those imperatives were and how claims of “one true faith” are a fantasy dreamed up to control others. I have been to 32 nations of the world and talked to women about their lives and found religion is a social construct, a mind-binder that impedes healthy human development.
Some turn to religion for safety and comfort. Battered women find neither in the grips of religious dogma. They discover only delusions and denial of the real nature of healthy functioning.
Bronze Age humans couldn’t understand what happened to them and made up stories to get some kind of meaning about everyday and catastrophic events. Humans are pattern-seeking creatures, making connections between prayers for rain or to stop rain. When events matched prayers, their beliefs were confirmed. When they didn’t match, many thought they had caused catastrophe because of their behaviors. Humans were caught by beliefs that made no sense as we look back at those old cultures. They make no more sense today.
The tragedy of modern life is the ancient beliefs of adults imposed by indoctrination of children. Children are born without a belief or faith and have to be indoctrinated to become some religion that suits their parents. The teachings may be unhealthy, dysfunctional, just plain sick, and yet the indoctrination goes on.
Genital mutilation of both boys and girls is taken for granted by many USA families.
You are the voice of experience! Women seem to be the last on the list of the abused to come forward, but little by little clergy is exposed - not soon enough for me. May I share your story on FB to reach more women? Your voice needs to be heard like a shot around the globe that will turn into collective action for permanent change. Thank you so much for your reply.
Yes, indeed! I agree, women need to tell their stories and join together in mutual support. The good news, there is life after religion, and the strange thing is, the atheist community appears to have higher ethical and moral standards then those who are religious.
I hope you read:
Green: The new Sanctity
Posted by Ruth Anthony-Gardner on July 4, 2012 at 11:41am in Ethics & Morals
Ruth is a powerful writer and critical thinker.