The deepest truths in life are lived, not Boolean affirmative or negative. People will go to extreme measures to keep these truths intact. This is why people (including Christians) largely control their beliefs by who they let into their lives. A truth as deep as whether or not God is involved in one’s life is either experienced or not experienced. The best way to stay Christian is to keep your distance from the people for whom this incarnated truth is a falsehood. This is why youth directors’ worst album is Nine Inch Nails’s Pretty Hate Machine. Because that is about a man seeking God and truth and finding nothing.
Modern Christianity largely transpires on the seat of the emotion, not the intellect. This is especially true in denominations that promote praise and worship music. The problem with this is for some people (particularly those who are emotionally stunted due to mental illness or other pathology) it’s more difficult to feel God is real even than to know he is. The experience of worship really only keeps working if one has the emotional bandwidth to keep feeding them self stories of God saving and sustaining them over and over again. This is also why Christians are so concerned with one’s “heart” being right and one not being bitter. Because there is so much of an emotional component to the whole thing and once something goes awry with the emotions the faith will often follow suit.
A lot of prayer runs up against zero sum situations. God answering your prayer for that job necessitates that another person vying for that job has theirs go unanswered. So much of modern life revolves around competing for a limited amount of resources so praying is akin to asking divine blessing to outbid someone else for scarce resources (like a house in a good neighborhood, a good job, a man with a good job, entry into a selective school, etc..). It’s like a Mario Kart power up. That star will get you ahead but that necessitates others falling behind.
Experiences of God are heavily mediated by the brain. This is why there are millennia year old institutions that tell us who God is and none of them seem to agree. Scientific truth on the other hand is easy for scientists to agree on. It is also why science based treatments for mental illness work so much better than religious ones. Once the brain goes, so does God.
Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4
say what you want about stick up men
and the dirty deed they perform
but at least they’re honest
if asked they would tell you they’re not here to dialogue
some of my friends on the right need to learn from stick up men
a threat to life and livelihood is not dialogue
there is no dialogue to be had about taking people (especially women’s) healthcare away
there is no dialogue to be had about making immigrants and refugees live in fear
there is no dialogue to be had about removing people’s right to love who they wish
there is no dialogue to be had about poisoning our air and water
there is no dialogue to be had about letting special needs kids languish
there is no dialogue to be had about leaving the planet uninhabitable for our children
I’d be happy to dialogue things that warrant it
but don’t use the “let’s dialogue” trope
to make your threats seem more dignified
i’m not going to stay quiet
over what I’m not allowed to believe
(life is relational, not Mario like individualistic, for example whether one works
hard has more to do with how many good bosses they had than anything else)
(reply time is inverse proportional to concern for you)
(i’m treated like a product and expected to believe i’m a person)
(virtue gets you so much less of you are oppressed)
(therapists exert a tremendous amount of power over their clients but are disingenuous about this fact)
(jobs for all but those with stellar work histories come from
connections, not any other process
[needing to be known by the Reformed Dutch people to procure employment])
(being ignored because of being low status)
(negative thoughts exacerbate depression but don’t cause it and playing cognitive tricks to get rid of
them is like trying to stave off a flood with a metal pail)
(what you do is who you are)
(if you are a man over thirty without money you are *nothing*)
(being treated bad because you look different)
(putting yourself first gives you the happiest life)
outing unwritten rules will earn you tons of blow back
outing the mere fact that they’re outable won’t make you many friends either
(the people writing the unwritten rules are the ones who rule the world
[keep that salary quiet!])
(tragedy is distributed very unevenly throughout the populace)
the truth is a lie’s greatest threat!
And this rubric on the left verses the right outlines beliefs of both sides. Trust me I have gotten in trouble for breaking taboos on both sides.
The Redpill movement bemoans the fact that personal virtue doesn’t get you anywhere with women. So their strategy is for men to act more like assholes to get them. But this doesn’t work simply because vice works just as well as virtue. The reason assholes are getting all the women is they have something to offer (looks, money, status, charisma). If they were saints they would have the exact same amount of luck. People like to denigrate incels (men who can’t get women at all) but incels are not worse than regular men, it is just they don’t have anything to offer so all one sees is their character.
The whole point of modern psychology’s imperative to have a positive self image is to oppress. If you are a peon and you think of yourself as a peon you are more likely to push back against those oppressing you (by collective bargaining perhaps). However, if you think of yourself as this amazing person while still being a peon you are more likely to put up with whatever comes your way. This isn’t always true obviously, peons with amazing self image may fight back against their oppressors but as a general rule it holds.
An exercise that happens all too often in mental health circles is exercise guilting. They tell people physical exercise can treat depression (without giving any details about how much) and then when it isn’t working (generally for people with more severe depression) they move the stakes and say things like “you’re doing it wrong” or “you haven’t been doing it a long enough time”. You are not allowed to question which depression treatments work even if they don’t work for you because when you are depressed you are generally also on the bottom.
For me the things that often co-occur with exercise are helpful with depression (interaction with people, being out in nature) but exercising alone gives me no benefit. Another reason people say exercise treats depression is, when people exercise, they want them to get the placebo effect where they think it’s working. For me it is just the opposite, I get the nocebo effect from exercising because I have put it to the test so many times and it has failed.
I have no hope because I know modern psychology can take one man and make him a trillion.
I have no hope because modern psychology pathologizes not having hope calling it “depression” whose treatment often is only effective for three years. Hopelessness is stigmatized as being too negative or illogical when a lot of times it is an accurate assessment of what is in front of you.
I am have no hope because modern psychology has made life all about empowerment and personal happiness which has only resulted in the personal happiness most powerful being important.
I have no hope because modern psychology has helped make everyone hyper individualistic so being dependent or interdependent is stigmatized. Of course when the people on top offer each other help it doesn’t get stigmatized but once you are on the bottom every interaction those higher up perform for you is seen as sacrificial and altruistic.
I have no hope because the things I want are so easy to procure but the things I need are out of reach.
I have no hope because religion gives me an imperative to hope without any reason to. Somehow reading some text and performing magical thinking will smoke and mirrors negative assessment of the future away.
I have no hope because when I go to a party with my sister’s friends I get ignored while everyone else gets talked to.
I have no hope because I even get turned down for a ride to a Quaker meeting house.
I have no hope because there is no one or nothing I would quit an addiction for.
I have no hope because I recognize hope is social—something you can be in or left out of. This definition offends people because they know it’s true and additionally they know they are hoarding hope and not offering it to anyone else because it is a scarce commodity which lessens the worse the world gets.
I have no hope because I recognize that for me and many others hope in God comes only after having a full bodied faith in him; once there are cracks in your faith the hope dribbles out.
I have no hope because the times I’ve been cut off and abandoned this year. I realize people who cut me off know something bad about my future that I do not yet.
I have no hope but I’m not a suicide risk because I don’t have the means to actually do it.
I have always understood psychology to be an enemy if not the enemy.
From an article on how digital media is messing up kids:
As a child and adolescent psychologist myself, the inevitable conclusion is both embarrassing and heartbreaking. The destructive forces of psychology deployed by the tech industry are making a greater impact on kids than the positive uses of psychology by mental health providers and child advocates. Put plainly, the science of psychology is hurting kids more than helping them.
Psychology has no conscience, it will give you the opposite thing depending upon who is paying whom. I do not agree with all the things Redpill believe but I do believe they subscribe to a psychology that more correctly aligns with experienced reality.
Bluepill vs Redpill psychology rubric
|Business to Consumer Psychology
Disseminated to person by proxy of therapist or book
You are enough
|Business to Business Psychology
Sold to companies to manipulate consumers, affects person through levers of advertising and mobile apps and video games
Buy our junk or you’re a loser. Stay on our app or you’ll miss out on friendship.
|You possess innate worth
||Your worth is based on how you look and what you do and how rich/high status you are
|Grounded in Sociology
||Grounded in Anthropology
|Non reply of email isn’t telling
||Non reply of email is telling (Eric Schmidt)
|“The Secret” Law of attraction – your thinking has huge influence on the way you’re perceived and received
||Your looks, status/wealth, and the image you project are what influence the way you’re perceived and received
|“Healthy” means becoming an atomized individual
||Healthy means prospering and becoming interdependent with virtuous people (and ideally being virtuous yourself)
|You are culpable for your emotions
“Bitterness” being unhealthy
|Emotions are points of weakness ripe for manipulation
|Psychologize actions to keep the moral high ground
I won’t date him because he has low self esteem (when it really was his low status)
|Cloak the fact that you are using psychology to get what you want
|Man is basically good and with ample education will choose to do the right thing
||Man is a moral agent but starts out bent
|What is going on in your head is what is making your life go wrong
||Bad actors and circumstances making your life go wrong
||Gordon Livingston books
|Everyone is equal and we should strive to express the outworking of that in society
||Baked in hierarchies, lobster hierarchy
|If you are different it’s incumbent upon society to become comfortable with said difference
||If you are different it’s incumbent upon you to make society comfortable with said difference
|Self esteem at the expense of truth
||Truth at the expense of self esteem
|How you feel is the most important
||How those in power over you (boss, parent, teacher) feel is most important
|More attuned to women’s lived experience
||More attuned to men’s lived experience
|Feminism uses it
||Men’s rights use it
|Ramped up in 1980’s
||Lots of it is old fashioned
The point here is with a lot of these you can’t mix and match. Redpill and Bluepill psychology are diametrically opposed even though they are both psychology.
Hope is social. You can tell how much hope you have by which way the people are moving in relation to your life. If people are dropping out of your life you know that you are in a hopeless situation because people are instinctively averse to hopelessness and they signal this by the way they act. Churches actually talk about hope a whole lot but when it comes down to it you can find out what they believe what constitutes a hopeful existence by the way they treat you. Generally if you have enough “life gems” (looks, decent job, car, house, SO, etc..) they will surmise you have hope. If not, not so much.
Christians generally have a public and a private position on the phenomenology of the faith. The public position is God giving blessings and never forsaking you, etc.. The private position is, not so much. It is understood, even by strong Christians, that God is vastly oversold. It is also understood that if he wasn’t, there would be a lot less Christians because let’s face it, in America everything is oversold. That’s why most people embellish their resume (because everyone else is doing it so one must to land an interview). People who don’t “experience God” are suspect, but there are a heck of a lot more of them (even strong Christians) than one would like to think.
The idea that “life is a gift” doesn’t apply to adults, particularly adults with disabilities. As an adult with a disability I know my life is certainly not a gift. I know this because if my life were a gift it would be received as one. This is why I’m an antinatalist (against humans propagating). If I were to have a child it would likely have one or more disabilities. I know from my own experience that as an adult it would be treated like crap in church. I get that Christians are natalists and pro life but it’s hypocritical to bring people into this world and then, if they happen to have a disability, let them languish.
Authenticity is an existential threat to Christianity. Generation Y and Z are not afraid to ask 3am questions at 8pm. This spells trouble for the church, especially because most churches are like a real life version of social media where we present our highlight reel while shoving our behind the scenes under the rug. Christians claim life works a certain way and God does certain things. But when your lived experience flies in the face of this Christian fellowship becomes a lonely, isolating place. When you are off their map you have to try to build a completely new map with a completely new social circle and this takes a lot of work, hurt, and effort.
Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 5