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Conspirologist

Theism and Atheism Vs Agnosticism

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Essan
10 minutes ago, BarnCat68 said:

I like that answer.  I once asked my dad his opinion about the 'meaning of life', and his reply was 'the meaning of life is simply to enjoy life'.  To which I said (silently of course) 'stuff and nonsense'.

I would argue the meaning of life is to acquire knowledge and pass it on to those who follow.   An empty life is one in which you have learned nothing that was not already known and/or passed on nothing to others who would otherwise be ignorant.

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Xeno-Fish
3 minutes ago, Essan said:

I would argue the meaning of life is to acquire knowledge and pass it on to those who follow.   An empty life is one in which you have learned nothing that was not already known and/or passed on nothing to others who would otherwise be ignorant.

Then again the meaning of life is the meaning you give it, be it something or nothing.

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Xeno-Fish
8 minutes ago, Essan said:

I would say they are both almost identical - although the former has now almost run it's course (after causing the deaths of many millions) with signs of recovery on the way, whilst the later is only now entering it's most virulent stage.

Fortunately, having lived through Christanity, we may have a better chance of immunity from, and even curing, Islam.

To extend the metaphor.

 

All religions are cults, regardless of what people want to claim. 

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Mr Walker
10 hours ago, BarnCat68 said:

I don't know about this... from what I remember of childhood, I would never have believed in Santa Claus, for example, if my parents hadn't told me about the myth...even so, I doubted what they told me about a fat man in a red suit driving a reindeer-powered flying sleigh. Our house didn't have a chimney, for one thing.  I had seen chimneys at other people's houses, and even at the age of 3, I knew that an overweight elderly gentleman couldn't possibly cram himself and a bag full of toys into that narrow aperture while trying to maintain his footing on a very slippery rooftop.  Observation taught me that my parents and other relatives were the bringers of gifts at Christmastime.  Observation also taught me that children are taught myths in order to divert them from noticing an inconvenient reality.

I was born a doubting Thomas.  These days, I am concerned that I am growing into magical thinking.

While you won't remember the first year or two of your life, many researchers have found this is how the human mind first processes information. It simply does not have the data or information to KNOW things and so it constructs solutions to explain what it observes.  A toy is put away by magic or seeds get into a seed pod by magic (the magic here is imagined entities called agents)  Chidren observer real agents, like parents, doing things and then deduce that all changes must be caused by other unseen agents with purpose and abilty.  This applies to all human children tested and observed across the world  Even the children of atheists demonstrate the same early form of cognition.  Once a child can learn information, especially by communicating with others, it begins to gather enough data to make more accurate conclusions and to get ideas and beliefs from others..

Father christmas is like a particular god and comes a t an older age and is a culturally learned figure. But how did your teddy bear get out of its toy box when you were 12 months old (if you had NOT observed your parents moving it) ?   Because it is our FIRST form of cognition humans remain susceptible to it for life, in part explaining our religious and spiritual beliefs as adults.  Even university students have a tendency to make u reasons for things happening which they have no data to explain. 

Edited by Mr Walker

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Mr Walker
9 hours ago, BarnCat68 said:

That's strange.  The day I become afraid of zombies and ghosts is the day I stop watching horror films.  I have loved those movies all my life, because they are comfortingly unreal.  I could meet a serial killer while out for a walk on a full moon night, but not a werewolf.

That is why i  capitalised idea. It is the mental concept of a werewolf which scares a person    Thus you can enjoy watching a movie and know it is not real yet, get a vicarious thrill. You know you won't encounter one on your street but STILL you enjoy the sensations your mind produces while watching the movie Thus the idea of these things keep the industry going not any reality. One mental construct(zombie) interacts with another mental construct (fear)  This can produce both unpleasant and pleasant results. How scared are you by the sight of a giant snow man or a marshmallow man ? 

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Mr Walker
9 hours ago, XenoFish said:

All religions are cults, regardless of what people want to claim. 

Then you have to alter the dictionary definitions and common understanding of the words religion and cult . You might see them as the same, but they are not defined as the same.  

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BarnCat68
8 minutes ago, Mr Walker said:

That is why i  capitalised idea. It is the mental concept of a werewolf which scares a person    Thus you can enjoy watching a movie and know it is not real yet, get a vicarious thrill. You know you won't encounter one on your street but STILL you enjoy the sensations your mind produces while watching the movie Thus the idea of these things keep the industry going not any reality. One mental construct(zombie) interacts with another mental construct (fear)  This can produce both unpleasant and pleasant results. How scared are you by the sight of a giant snow man or a marshmallow man ? 

Oh, of course, I know what you mean.  It's like the thrill people get from roller coaster rides.  I don't get much of a thrill from horror films now.  Maybe I've seen too many over the years.  Even when I was very young, I remember what attracted me most to them was not the scary monsters but the dark aesthetic of the castle on top of the mountain surrounded by forests in which anything...anything might be lurking -- which to my child's mind meant that something good might be out there just as well as something horrific.

Interesting that you mentioned the giant snow man...  One of my first ever nightmares was about the Abominable Snowman in Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, of all things.  I don't think I've ever actually dreamed of werewolves, zombies, vampires or other movie monsters.

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Mr Walker
9 minutes ago, BarnCat68 said:

Oh, of course, I know what you mean.  It's like the thrill people get from roller coaster rides.  I don't get much of a thrill from horror films now.  Maybe I've seen too many over the years.  Even when I was very young, I remember what attracted me most to them was not the scary monsters but the dark aesthetic of the castle on top of the mountain surrounded by forests in which anything...anything might be lurking -- which to my child's mind meant that something good might be out there just as well as something horrific.

Interesting that you mentioned the giant snow man...  One of my first ever nightmares was about the Abominable Snowman in Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, of all things.  I don't think I've ever actually dreamed of werewolves, zombies, vampires or other movie monsters.

It is why i asked the question. I have no idea about why so many people are afraid of clowns, for example, but they are, and people develop fears of all sorts of real and imaginary things.

I've only ever been disappointed by my few rides on a ghost train a s a child My mind saw through the props gimmicks and illusions etc. However, in the " maze of mirrors " as a child I became quite concerned i would never find my way out, until i remembered my father's secret advice. " if you keep turning left, every turn, you will eventually come to the exit." Worked like a charm. 

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BarnCat68
4 minutes ago, Mr Walker said:

It is why i asked the question. I have no idea about why so many people are afraid of clowns, for example, but they are, and people develop fears of all sorts of real and imaginary things.

 

I used to wonder why so many people expressed a fear of clowns... clowns always seemed cheerful and harmless to me.  Then one day, a co-worker who worked part-time on weekends as a clown for kid's parties told me: it's that fear of what might be behind the mask.  It's that moment in the Phantom of the Opera, where Christine sneaks up behind her captor and tears the illusion away.

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Stubbly_Dooright
17 hours ago, XenoFish said:

I can agree on this. I do not like the guilt shaming that hooks you into Christianity as equally as I dislike the barbarianism of Islam. I see religion as a spectrum, from 1 to 10 and 10 being the worst. I don't hear much about how a Christian drove a truck into a crowd to kill non-believers, or killed someone over a picture of Jesus, nor have I see where they come into a country and turn it into a **** hole. I can tolerate Christianity because it's not a threat to me. Plus it's not an extreme form of OCD where you have to pray 5 times a day and for everything, where every thought you have isn't controlled by your belief. Islam is the most dangerous memetic virus to date. It's a religion of conquest not peace.

I have to agree with this. I cant argue these differences that you have shown, Xeno. I have found this to be true. On a different note, when I think my share of waiting on known Christians and Muslims, it seems that a lot of the Muslims tend to express good tidings with other's beliefs, while Christians tend to get moody if their own religion is not acknowledged. I have yet to be prosetylized by a Muslim. A Christian, too many times to count. 

12 hours ago, BarnCat68 said:

Wow.  I wish I could say that *I* am ok with the deity question... My upbringing was protestant Xian, and now I identify as somewhere  between agnostic and atheist.  Endlessly fascinating as I find religious/theological debates and conversation, I never feel satisfied by anyone's answers.  I feel haunted by this god that may or may not exist.

It's interesting, or I find it interesting that you say you're haunted by it. Would that be important if you could find out for sure either way?

12 hours ago, BarnCat68 said:

I don't know about this... from what I remember of childhood, I would never have believed in Santa Claus, for example, if my parents hadn't told me about the myth...even so, I doubted what they told me about a fat man in a red suit driving a reindeer-powered flying sleigh. Our house didn't have a chimney, for one thing.  I had seen chimneys at other people's houses, and even at the age of 3, I knew that an overweight elderly gentleman couldn't possibly cram himself and a bag full of toys into that narrow aperture while trying to maintain his footing on a very slippery rooftop.  Observation taught me that my parents and other relatives were the bringers of gifts at Christmastime.  Observation also taught me that children are taught myths in order to divert them from noticing an inconvenient reality.

I was born a doubting Thomas.  These days, I am concerned that I am growing into magical thinking.

This kind of closely relates to me. Growing up secular, and having a period of Atheism in my young adulthood. Yet, now I'm New Age. I guess, there are always forks in the road when it comes to the path of belief and non-belief. 

11 hours ago, BarnCat68 said:

That's strange.  The day I become afraid of zombies and ghosts is the day I stop watching horror films.  I have loved those movies all my life, because they are comfortingly unreal.  I could meet a serial killer while out for a walk on a full moon night, but not a werewolf.

I this also goes to show how some have an interest in it, if they believe it. I believe in ghosts, and feel I have a multitude of experiences. Do they scare me? Maybe not so much, as fascinate me. 

Zombies, on the other, I strongly don't believe, not just because I think they just don't make sense, but I can't identify with them. (It's not because they are disgustingly icky. ;)  :o  ) 

So, I find your post fascinating. :yes: 

11 hours ago, XenoFish said:

All religions are cults, regardless of what people want to claim. 

What if it just has just one follower, like me in mine?

1 hour ago, BarnCat68 said:

I used to wonder why so many people expressed a fear of clowns... clowns always seemed cheerful and harmless to me.  Then one day, a co-worker who worked part-time on weekends as a clown for kid's parties told me: it's that fear of what might be behind the mask.  It's that moment in the Phantom of the Opera, where Christine sneaks up behind her captor and tears the illusion away.

I think Stephen King's "It" didn't help much in that regard. ;)  

 

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Mr Walker
2 hours ago, BarnCat68 said:

I used to wonder why so many people expressed a fear of clowns... clowns always seemed cheerful and harmless to me.  Then one day, a co-worker who worked part-time on weekends as a clown for kid's parties told me: it's that fear of what might be behind the mask.  It's that moment in the Phantom of the Opera, where Christine sneaks up behind her captor and tears the illusion away.

But adults, at least, KNOW what's behind the mask.

I think it is a more complex reaction but, yes, probably related to surprise  and also the in your face actions of some clowns. 

it might even be that a child.s "facial recognition software" is confused by things like makeup and masks, and this confusion  causes anxiety as to what they are seeing.   

Rami Nader is a Canadian psychologist who studies coulrophobia, the irrational fear of clowns. Nader believes that clown phobias are fueled by the fact that clowns wear makeup and disguises that hide their true identities and feelings.

This is perfectly consistent with my hypothesis that it is the inherent ambiguity surrounding clowns that make them creepy. They seem to be happy, but are they really? And they’re mischievous, which puts people constantly on guard. People interacting with a clown during one of his routines never know if they are about to get a pie in the face or be the victim of some other humiliating prank. The highly unusual physical characteristics of the clown (the wig, the big red nose, the makeup, the odd clothing) only magnify the uncertainty of what the clown might do next.

https://theconversation.com/the-psychology-behind-why-clowns-creep-us-out-65936

 

Coulrophobia is the term for an intense fear, or phobia, of clowns. Though the name hasn't really appeared in any official psychiatric texts. Its etymology dates to the 1980s, seeming to suggest that the condition is relatively recent as well.

Many scientists attribute fear of clowns to the uncanny valley hypothesis—the idea that people get creeped out when human features look like and seem like human features, but are just the tiniest bit off. So clowns' mouths look almost like, but never exactly like human smiles. Robots and 3D computer animation are also known to elicit a similar discomfort.

More anecdotally, some psychologists and members of the clown-fearing public posit that an underlying fear of clowns is really just an uneasiness with the painted faces or plastic masks the performers wear. Discomfort comes from the idea that the clown is exhibiting a false expression (happy) while they could in reality be presenting vengeful, angry or sad faces to the outside world. 

 

http://www.allday.com/the-psychology-behind-fearing-clowns-2180788579.html

 

Edited by Mr Walker

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Dhurfjooydig

Clowns once played an important role in maintaining sanity and clarity in society by unrooting the delusion of certainty. An example:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heyoka

Some modern day clowns still consciously do this, and more generally clowns represent uncertainty as Mister Walker describes in the post above. The fear of clowns is a repressed fear of uncertainty.  

Edited by No Solid Ground
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BarnCat68
14 hours ago, Stubbly_Dooright said:

It's interesting, or I find it interesting that you say you're haunted by it. Would that be important if you could find out for sure either way?

This kind of closely relates to me. Growing up secular, and having a period of Atheism in my young adulthood. Yet, now I'm New Age. I guess, there are always forks in the road when it comes to the path of belief and non-belief. 

I this also goes to show how some have an interest in it, if they believe it. I believe in ghosts, and feel I have a multitude of experiences. Do they scare me? Maybe not so much, as fascinate me. 

Zombies, on the other, I strongly don't believe, not just because I think they just don't make sense, but I can't identify with them. (It's not because they are disgustingly icky. ;)  :o  ) 

So, I find your post fascinating. :yes: 

What if it just has just one follower, like me in mine?

I think Stephen King's "It" didn't help much in that regard. ;)  

 

Yes, it would be important to me to find out about whatever it is that 'haunts' me.  I have unresolved concerns/worries regarding religion and the afterlife. 

I don't know yet whether I believe in ghosts or not.   It seems as if every other day I have some sort of experience that is difficult to explain to anyone.  Even just this morning, I had a bizarre and unexpected experience with a funeral procession. :\  All I can say is, you would have to have been there. 

Now Stephen King's 'It'....that gave me quite the case of deja vu.

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Stubbly_Dooright
2 hours ago, BarnCat68 said:

Yes, it would be important to me to find out about whatever it is that 'haunts' me.  I have unresolved concerns/worries regarding religion and the afterlife. 

I don't know yet whether I believe in ghosts or not.   It seems as if every other day I have some sort of experience that is difficult to explain to anyone.  Even just this morning, I had a bizarre and unexpected experience with a funeral procession. :\  All I can say is, you would have to have been there. 

Now Stephen King's 'It'....that gave me quite the case of deja vu.

I hope you resolve it. I hate to think you are going through these frustrations. If they are, that is. I am thinking of you. :) 

Now, I still feel that I keep having strange experiences, but I like to look at it through of a balance of seeing it as extraordinary and that it's also an ordinary possibility. I feel at peace looking it at both view points. I think that we're suppose to ride through it, learning bit by bit along the way. :D 

 

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BarnCat68
1 hour ago, Stubbly_Dooright said:

I hope you resolve it. I hate to think you are going through these frustrations. If they are, that is. I am thinking of you. :) 

Now, I still feel that I keep having strange experiences, but I like to look at it through of a balance of seeing it as extraordinary and that it's also an ordinary possibility. I feel at peace looking it at both view points. I think that we're suppose to ride through it, learning bit by bit along the way. :D 

 

Thank you!  I wouldn't call the situation frustrating so much as sad and sometimes frightening.  There are times when it's difficult to know whether to call the psychiatrist, the psychologist, the ghostbusters, or the police.

I like what you said about 'riding through it'...as if this is just a (psychic) storm that will pass.

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Xeno-Fish
14 hours ago, No Solid Ground said:

The fear of clowns is a repressed fear of uncertainty.  

I've got one word for you; Juggalos.

topstorypic.jpg

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Stubbly_Dooright
4 hours ago, BarnCat68 said:

Thank you!  I wouldn't call the situation frustrating so much as sad and sometimes frightening.  There are times when it's difficult to know whether to call the psychiatrist, the psychologist, the ghostbusters, or the police.

I like what you said about 'riding through it'...as if this is just a (psychic) storm that will pass.

You're welcome. And I know what you mean about it being said and sometimes frightening. I really relate to that. I still get that from time to time. That is where, I use the 'ride through it' philosophy. I have to. Because in the past, it has brought on really bad uncontrollable anxiety attacks. 

I think, that sometimes the best person to talk to, is probably someone who feels and have the same attitudes, understanding, and interests in the same thing. Though, I wouldn't bank on that too much, because if it's something a professional can only help, then one does what one must to do to help themselves through it. 

I also read up on it, a lot too, of others who have had similar experiences too. Kind of makes me feel, I'm not alone. :)  

4 hours ago, XenoFish said:

I've got one word for you; Juggalos.

topstorypic.jpg

To me, looks like a reject of the KISS army. :wacko:

 

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Frank Merton
5 minutes ago, Stubbly_Dooright said:

You're welcome. And I know what you mean about it being said and sometimes frightening. I really relate to that. I still get that from time to time. That is where, I use the 'ride through it' philosophy. I have to. Because in the past, it has brought on really bad uncontrollable anxiety attacks. 

I think, that sometimes the best person to talk to, is probably someone who feels and have the same attitudes, understanding, and interests in the same thing. Though, I wouldn't bank on that too much, because if it's something a professional can only help, then one does what one must to do to help themselves through it. 

I also read up on it, a lot too, of others who have had similar experiences too. Kind of makes me feel, I'm not alone. :)  

To me, looks like a reject of the KISS army. :wacko:

 

Someone who feels they need medical help about a mental problem should first talk to their GP or and internist or someone like that, taking references or prescriptions from them if called for, but it may be there is need for a neurologist.  You don't want a psychologist (they are academic, not medical) nor of course anyone not medically qualified and licensed. 

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Stubbly_Dooright
25 minutes ago, Frank Merton said:

Someone who feels they need medical help about a mental problem should first talk to their GP or and internist or someone like that, taking references or prescriptions from them if called for, but it may be there is need for a neurologist.  You don't want a psychologist (they are academic, not medical) nor of course anyone not medically qualified and licensed. 

You're right, and I'm glad you posted this. I just didn't want to come off that it's right or wrong one way or another. I just want to be there and be a friend. .............................................who understands. :) 

That's all. 

Edited by Stubbly_Dooright
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Frank Merton

It's good to have understanding friends who don't judge you what you tell them.  Compassion, non-judgmentalism, friendliness and sympathy (of the supportive, not condescending kind) are hard to find, but if one finds one (or even someone somewhat approximating all that), then of course spill out your heart to them.  However, I have learned to be careful with such situations lest I do more harm than good, so if the person makes you feel worse, don't blame them but don't blame yourself either.

More than likely they will help you find and get to an appropriate doctor.

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Mr Walker
6 hours ago, XenoFish said:

I've got one word for you; Juggalos.

topstorypic.jpg

Fay to go . :)    whoop whoop ! 

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Mr Walker
1 hour ago, Frank Merton said:

Someone who feels they need medical help about a mental problem should first talk to their GP or and internist or someone like that, taking references or prescriptions from them if called for, but it may be there is need for a neurologist.  You don't want a psychologist (they are academic, not medical) nor of course anyone not medically qualified and licensed. 

That might depend on the country. it is a bit different in australia 

A psychologist generally holds a minimum six year university obtained masters degree in which the first four years are spent obtaining an honours level degree in psychology and the final two spent in postgraduate theoretical and practical training. Their undergraduate degree encompasses such subjects as cognitive, developmental, personality, social, neuro, psychology subjects as well as research design and statistics training. Masters level training aims at specialising the practice and courses are offered in the subspecialties of forensic, clinical, clinical neuropsychology, organisational, sport and exercise, educational and developmental, and counselling psychology. 

To become a psychiatrist you need to train as a medical practitioner (doctor) and then specialise in psychiatry. A medical degree will usually require six years at medical school. A further two years will be spent in general medicine and surgery as an intern and only then can one enter a psychiatry training scheme run by one ofthe psychiatry colleges - the professional bodies with responsibility overtraining and standing as a psychiatrist.

Treatment modalities of a psychologist encompass broadly both cognitive (thinking about thinking) and behavioural (doing) strategies. Clients are encouraged to identify and discover a new understanding about dysfunctional thinking patterns and behaviours which may underlie psychological distress and by using various techniques assisting them to modify theirthinking and/or recondition their behaviour(s). Common treatment areas include depression, anxiety, eating disorders, trauma, grief and loss - to name but a few

As can be seen from the above, many of the functions can be carried out by either a psychiatrist or a psychologist, albeit often with a different emphasis and style. The one function that clearly separates the two fields is the prescribing of medications and other medically based treatments such as electro-convulsive therapy (ECT). It is the medical training that psychiatrists receive that makes it possible for them to prescribe medication for patients and when it is deemed necessary to administer electroshock therapy treatments also known as electro-convulsive therapy or ECT. This function in particular should guide the courts in their requests for expert reports.

According to Australian statutory law, both psychologists and psychiatrists are eligible to conduct mental impairment assessments. Some States and Territories have stipulated psychologists as the professionals entitled to conduct these assessments and others have not specified a preferred profession.2

 

As former Chief Justice Martin noted3 it is not the profession of the expert witness that is important, rather it is the expertise of the individual witness which can be gauged by the specialised knowledge, training or experience of the individual professional concerned. His Honour said: once the question of medical treatment of mental illness is put to one side, there is no reason why a psychologist may not be just as qualified, or better qualified, than a psychiatrist to express opinions about mental states and processes 4

http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/journals/BalJlNTLawSoc/2010/60.pdf

Thus yes, IF you have medically induced mental illness, eg caused by a chemical imbalance,  a psychiatrist might be required, but if you are suffering from the more common mental illnesses without  chemical foundation ,such as many types of depression, anxiety, ocd, neuroses, or post traumatic stress, a psychologist might be more helpful. 

Totally agree that the person must be fully qualified (and the best you can afford), and with the need for a full physical checkup, including advanced MRI scans, and blood tests,  as well. 

Edited by Mr Walker

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Sherapy
On 5/16/2017 at 6:15 PM, BarnCat68 said:

I used to wonder why so many people expressed a fear of clowns... clowns always seemed cheerful and harmless to me.  Then one day, a co-worker who worked part-time on weekends as a clown for kid's parties told me: it's that fear of what might be behind the mask.  It's that moment in the Phantom of the Opera, where Christine sneaks up behind her captor and tears the illusion away.

John Wayne Gacy dressed up a small a clown by day and was a pervert killer by night. True story. 

Clowns creep me out. 

Edited by Sherapy
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Stubbly_Dooright
1 hour ago, Frank Merton said:

It's good to have understanding friends who don't judge you what you tell them.  Compassion, non-judgmentalism, friendliness and sympathy (of the supportive, not condescending kind) are hard to find, but if one finds one (or even someone somewhat approximating all that), then of course spill out your heart to them.  However, I have learned to be careful with such situations lest I do more harm than good, so if the person makes you feel worse, don't blame them but don't blame yourself either.

More than likely they will help you find and get to an appropriate doctor.

Yes, I believe that is true. 

24 minutes ago, Sherapy said:

John Wayne Gacy dressed up a small a clown by day and was a pervert killer by night. True story. 

Clowns creep me out. 

Oh that's right! I forgot about that. 

 

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Davros of Skaro
On 5/16/2017 at 5:27 AM, XenoFish said:

I can agree on this. I do not like the guilt shaming that hooks you into Christianity as equally as I dislike the barbarianism of Islam. I see religion as a spectrum, from 1 to 10 and 10 being the worst. I don't hear much about how a Christian drove a truck into a crowd to kill non-believers, or killed someone over a picture of Jesus, nor have I see where they come into a country and turn it into a **** hole. I can tolerate Christianity because it's not a threat to me. Plus it's not an extreme form of OCD where you have to pray 5 times a day and for everything, where every thought you have isn't controlled by your belief. Islam is the most dangerous memetic virus to date. It's a religion of conquest not peace.

Also keep in mind that millions of Christians, and Muslims (that do not say a word about the militant ones) both pray everyday for their God to come down to clean house. 

When a belief is the problem solver? What good is it either way?

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