Catholic Religion Today – is it a Healthy Option?

Is it healthy to be in a religion today? Or can being in a religion seriously damage our health? I have been exploring these questions with regards to my own relationship with the Catholic religion.

I was ‘recruited’ by the Catholic religion at birth and this was further cemented with my baptism and first holy communion, then by entering a Catholic boarding school at the tender age of six. Even though I made a choice to leave the religion when I was 18 because of the indoctrination I experienced, it has affected me all of my life.

I have lived with a constant feeling of somehow being wrong, never being good enough, filled with guilt, constantly self-sacrificing and full of angst. Worst of all was not knowing who I truly was, or how to love and be loved, which led to my engaging in unloving relationships, smoking cigarettes, drinking alcohol, overeating and partying.

To cap it all, I never learned who or what God truly was/is. I abandoned the Catholic version of God in my late teens and never really found anything that truly made sense to me until 2005 when I met Serge Benhayon, who presented in a different way the truth of who we are and how we relate to God – equally, all of us, not just any one religion.

Since meeting Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine, I have learned that who I am is ok, that I am not a sinner, that we are all equal children of God, regardless of our religion or our way of living, and that we can all feel God’s love within us when we live in a way that is healthy, harmonious and loving.

With Universal Medicine we are encouraged to learn and evolve as one brotherhood, with each of us serving our fellow man in a self-loving way, not a self-sacrificing one.

I asked about religion being a healthy option because many religions preach martyrdom for a ‘just cause’ as a ‘good thing’. Is it? And what is a ‘just cause’? Is it when a devout, religious person believes that a fellow human being is wrong and must be tortured till he or she converts and, if not converted, then be executed? Even worse, some people feel they have to sacrifice their own lives in order to kill those same fellow human beings, as in suicide bombers. The promise of rewards in Heaven is coming from pure illusion, geared by those in power to further their own ends. Hence, in the Middle Ages people could pay money for a ‘pardon’ of their sins.

Throughout the centuries, all over the world, thousands have been and are still being killed in the name of God – why?

Could it be that, despite their belief in God, there is no true love felt, just unhappiness and a deep emptiness within? Is it possible that the lack of fulfillment comes from within the religion itself? And then, rather than look at the truth of what’s going on, the religious fanatic blames those outside of the religion who have different beliefs.

Over the last thousand years the Catholic religion has persecuted millions of people living ordinary lives, who dared to speak out against their dogma or who appeared to live in a different way. In Western Europe, women were burned as ‘witches’ (1), in France the Cathars were wiped out (2), in Italy and Greece, scientists and philosophers were tortured and killed (3)(4), in America the native population were deemed ‘savages’ and many were slaughtered (5). As for the Holocaust, Hitler was a Catholic and had close links with the Pope (6). Even now, crimes are still being committed within the Catholic Church, including pedophilia and corruption. Sadly, the genocide continues today, not so much from the Catholic Church, but this time under the banner of a different religion.

This begs the question, is it the religion or the people? In all walks of life there are murderers and extremists – are they naturally that way or is it the religion and the religious leaders who create an atmosphere of separation, intolerance and hate?

My experience has been that the Catholic religion affected me at a very deep level. I was not brought up with a truly loving God and I was not brought up to care deeply for myself. I am learning this now through The Way of The Livingness, as presented by Serge Benhayon.

The Way of The Livingness is a new religion based on ancient principles. It teaches true Brotherhood, that we are all equal, that we do not harm anyone – not for any reason. This religion presents that even judging another could be considered abusive because judgement is not Love. It teaches that there is one loving God for All of Us – we are all his equal children. With The Way of The Livingness we are encouraged to question everything and to feel our own wisdom from within our bodies, not blindly believe any dogma, or depend on outside influences for our opinions. We are encouraged to live in a healthy way, looking after our bodies and nurturing ourselves.

I’m not convinced that the Catholic religion promotes self-worth (7) or even healthy living but, for me, The Way of The Livingness religion of today is definitely a healthy option!

By Carmel Reid, Somerset UK

References:

  1. http://www.historic-uk.com/CultureUK/Witches-in-Britain/
  2. http://www.heretication.info/_cathars.html
  3. http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/galileo-is-convicted-of-heresy
  4. http://www.badnewsaboutchristianity.com/gbh_philosophers.htm
  5. http://historynewsnetwork.org/article/7302
  6. http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/nazi-germany/the-catholic-church-and-nazi-germany/
  7. http://catholicexchange.com/lord-i-am-not-worthy

Further Reading:
Who or What is God?
The Way of The Livingness – It’s My Religion
Life is Religion. What does that Mean?

622 thoughts on “Catholic Religion Today – is it a Healthy Option?

  1. I’ve had little issue with accepting The Way of The Livingness as a religion. When compared to the mainstream religions I am surrounded by, it hasn’t anywhere near the backlog of abuse, nor in practice does it support or tolerate any form of self-abuse. The title of this blog is a no brainer really when one reviews the religion’s practices.

  2. A phrase that I remember very clearly from my early life going to church is “I am not worthy”. This is said during the mass, which I attended weekly with my family. The other thing that I recall is that we are born sinners. I began to question this as well as many other things. I also left the church as a teenager at that time to have Saturday evenings with my friends, but there was a deeper reason also in that it no longer felt true for me.

  3. When we consider ourselves sinners do we damn ourselves to hell for the mistakes we have made forevermore – or can we actually learn from the so we can heal and correct them.

  4. ‘the indoctrination I experienced, it has affected me all of my life.’ This is a huge statement because often we walk away from a religion but do not realise that the ‘indoctrination’ is still in our bodies and clouding our perspective of life.

  5. The fact that we have so many supposed religions that prophesise a righteous way of living but do not actually foster a living way that is implused from our innate connection to God as such is unifying and harmonious, exposes just how much we have bastardised the meaning of religion and what it truly represents. We are the Sons of God and through our connection to our Soul our relationship with God is at hand in which every breath we can live the power of who we are as such our innate way of being is one that is religious in nature.

  6. Our disconnection with God allows all the religious institutions in our societies to exist and makes the churches filled with people to congregate for the surrogate of the love and the truth they long ago retracted from.

  7. When I was a baby I also was ‘recruited’ being bapthised without considering the option of asking me some years later if I wanted to be part of such a religion. I’ve never been asked in the church, ‘how you feel about of all of that’, it seemed like we had to be there because it was what everyone else was doing it. I grew up very lost, without a sense of who I really was, I just learned to fit in and to don’t question any of the reality I lived. Thankfully years later I came accross Universal Medicine and I could give voice to a inner part of me which was buried and denied for so long. I could understand why my body eneded up numbed after listening the priest or how bored I’ve felt because I couldn’t find my place there to contribute and to express myself. I could realize how full of vitality I was when I was a little girl and how I started to turned off my light as soon as I understood that I had to be ‘good’…

    Giving myself permission to listen and feel me again have empowered to decide what feels right for me and what’s not in my day to day, what makes my life more fullfilled than ever, what really supports the beautiful woman I am…It’s my choice walking in this way today because it makes sense and my body says ‘yes’.

    1. Thank you Inma – you could be writing your own blog here! I agree, we were never asked our opinion, or invited to ask questions in a sermon, or invited to contribute our own findings and experiences, we had everything dictated to us from a very early age. When I was married for the first time, we deliberately did not have our children christened or baptised, saying it was completely their choice when they were older. Interestingly neither has chosen any church or religious activity but they are both honest and what we could call ‘Good Citizens of the World’.

  8. As a student of the way of the Livingness I’ve never been told what to do or how I had to behave to be accepted in the ‘flock of God’. In opposite, I’ve always been treated as an equal and felt really held and supported in moments when I needed most. I appreciate having Serge Benhayon in my life, for the inspiration he is, but also for all what his presence reminds me, the fact that the same greatness, harmony and joy is inside me and all of us.

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