Safety in Optimism as a Learned and Re-Learned Skill

by Cindy Kunsman cross posted from Under Much GraceAll images by Cindy Kunsman and Under Much Grace used with permission. Earlier posts looked at the grand picture in life concerning our expectations for safety in a world where things exceed our control. Camus defines well that we are stuck in the human condition which requires struggle and disappointment that doesn't end. Catherine Marshall looks to the acceptance of what Camus describes but differentiates hopeful acceptance from the pessimism of resignation that seems to be it's own kind of premature death. Today, I'd like to tighten that broad focus on uncertainty down to a more basic and immediate one. … [Read more...]

Stumbling

by Mari cross posted from her blog Mari's MusingsEditor's Note: Written from the perspective of someone that has managed to keep their faith after being through spiritual abuse.I was talking tonight with a friend of mine about ridiculous things that have happened to us at the hands of pastors and elders and whatnot from “Christian” churches.I don’t think that a lot of what happens in churches and between clergy and congregants is necessarily something that Jesus would condone and I don’t think He would be pleased with a large chunk of it. … [Read more...]

Finding Safety in Myths? Camus as Futility’s Starting Point

by Cindy Kunsman cross posted from her blog Under Much GraceAll images by Cindy Kunsman from Under Much Grace and used with permission I am by far a greater fan of Master of the Absurd, Franz Kafka, who laments in his writings about the nature of man and his limitations, but I could not help but think of Albert Camus' essay about The Myth of Sisyphus concerning the subject of futility and expectation. Can his writing help us find some footing in recovery from trauma so that we can build some type of stability? Trauma robs us of our sense of safety, causes us to feel isolated, and it obscures our memories of stability if we truly had any as a starting point. Trauma causes us to realize … [Read more...]

‘Bloom Where You’re Planted’ as a Thought Stopping Cliche

by Cindy Kunsman cross posted from her blog Under Much GraceAll images by Cindy Kunsman at Under Much Grace and used with permission. Article is 4 pages long.I'd heard that phrase before, but even now and even with my positive experience with the concept many years later, the phrase still connotes something negative for me.The last post detailed my very good experience with the sage advice of determination to bloom and grow, even if it's not where you want to be or the conditions are not that favorable.ion … [Read more...]

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In the Midst of It?

by Ellen cross posted from her blog When Church HurtsSpiritual abuse.  Sometimes, even when you know you are being victimized, it’s hard to break away, or walk away, or run away.  If you’ve found yourself here because you know what you are experiencing is spiritual abuse but you are caught and can’t let go, this page is for you. … [Read more...]

The Good Aspects of ‘Bloom Where You’re Planted’

by Cindy Kunsman cross posted from Under Much Grace Platitudes can be helpful when they're used well and when both parties understand what they're meant to communicate. Much like pictures, they can encompass and encapsulate more meaning that just the words in-and-of-themselves. They're verbal shorthand that can sometimes be more direct and concise than long discussions, and they're especially helpful when one party doesn't have a lot of emotional energy to stop and listen to a long explanation. We can all imagine a tenacious flower like a dandelion that grows in a tiny bit of soil that has inadvertently collected in a crack in a sidewalk. Sometimes life requires our tougher nature to … [Read more...]

Safety, Ambiguity, Expectation and Balance

by Cindy Kunsman cross posted from her blog Under Much GraceThis is part of a series Cindy Kunsman has been writing on recovery from spiritual abuse and trauma. All images by Cindy Kunsman of Under Much Grace and used with permission. As a child, in an effort to comfort me, an elderly woman at my church would encourage me to read what the Apostle Paul wrote to the Church at Philippi. Basically, he says that he learned how to be contented with whatever situation he faced. One of the primary ways of coping with bad situations, according to what he wrote, involves thinking about good things as opposed to dwelling on the bad ones. … [Read more...]

For New-Found Victims

by Ellen cross posted from her blog When Church HurtsEditor's note: Ellen is speaking directly to new readers at her blog, but the same words apply here as well. Welcome to new readers here who've been spiritually abused, victimized by religion and are discovering that they are not the only ones.Welcome.Perhaps you found this blog because are just realizing that what you or someone you know is experiencing is “just not right.”  There are many websites and blogs that have information on spiritual abuse.  Some are very comprehensive and detailed … [Read more...]

My Healing Continues

by Living Liminal cross posted from her blog Living LiminalIn recent years, I've become accustomed to certain people pretending that I don't exist. If I won't shut up and go away or roll over and play dead, the only option left, apparently, is for them to refuse to acknowledge my existence.There was a time when it used to upset me. Eventually, I got to a place where it mostly amused me. … [Read more...]

Elie Wiesel Would Have Been Disappointed in You

by Ellen cross posted from her blog When Church HurtsI haven’t posted in awhile.  But the death of Elie Wiesel brought to mind this quote the spirit of which has always been at the forefront of my thoughts on my experience with spiritual abuse.“We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.” – Elie Wiesel … [Read more...]


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