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Posts Tagged ‘tension’

schizophrenic?

First: Sorry for not showing up on my own blog! I messed it up.

I realized how difficult it is to write and respond regularly on the blog; and so I decided this week (against my initial goals) that instead of constantly having a bad conscience about not writing regularly, I’ll just change my goal: I’ll write when I feel like it and I won’t write when I don’t feel like it (the latter is more likely once I don’t work as much overtime as I do at the moment…)

Recently, somebody opened my eyes regarding my troubles with faith. He observed that the things I say about my faith are anything but unified.
On the one hand, I am extremely critical of Christianity and I feel unable to believe the story. On the other hand, I feel so much drawn to it and I like going to church and when there’s christianity-bashing going on on TV I am outraged and I can talk about theological ideas not only from a detached perspective but as a spiritual insider and when I am in church I feel like I’m in the right place, in “my father’s house” so to speak, and I place much importance on attending church regularly.

Realizing that I’m kind of schizophrenic was almost an epiphany to me.

I always wondered why I have so much trouble giving up faith even though I obviously don’t buy into many of faith’s doctrines. I always thought that I have so much trouble giving it up because walking away from faith would cost me too much (less emotional comfort, broken relationships, …). But now, I realized that my hesitance to give up faith is not only weakness, it’s not just that I stick to something cozy even though I know it’s wrong. No. It’s rather that different aspects of my personality are in conflict as to whether sticking to Christianity is the right thing for me.

The friend who opened my eyes suggested that I aim at unification: If the different voices in me are in tension, I ought to aim at integrating them, bringing them in line, becoming a “whole” person.

Even though I am very fond of this advice, I am only convinced of it to 90%. There’s a 10% doubt in me that asks: Isn’t it a sign of strength and honesty that I am able to endure these multiple voices in me? So many people simply hammer and squeeze the confusing variety of their experience into a neat picture rather than accepting the difficult fact that being open for reality leads us to a perplexing cacophony of impressions and a dazzling variety of evidence pointing into all kinds of directions.

But, all in all, I am very fond of the advice. In particular, bringing the different pulls within me in touch with each other will help me decide where I want to go.

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