Do you believe in guardian angels?

(367 Posts)

MNHQ have commented on this thread. Read here.

I have an 2mo DD and recently I have been finding white feathers in her cot, pram, Moses basket ect. I mentioned it to my mum and she suggested it could be an angel, I'm a little sceptical but I must admit it is a little bit strange.

So do you believe and have you had any experience of this?

TheBreastmilksOnMe Wed 14-May-14 21:55:41

Whilst I absoloutly believe in there being more than we can see with the naked eye, I would first look to a more realistic reason for their being feathers everywhere such as a feather pillow losing it's stuffing, or living by the sea so lots of seagulls etc!

deepinthewoods Wed 14-May-14 22:07:36

I find feathers everywhere. We have a lot of birds nesting under our eaves and in the garden just now.

I don't have feather pillows/duvet ect and i have hens and nesting house martins but these feathers are unlike any I've seen before they are perfectly white and formed. I find one every 2/3 days the last on was yesterday and it was inside DD's grow bag so highly unlikely it floated in through the window...

I don't but I think of all the things that could be possible it is the loveliest idea smile and I really get why people want it.

heather1 Wed 14-May-14 22:27:08

Yes I do. I don't believe they show their presence with feather though. Although it's possible. We each have our own guardian angel watching over us.

t875 Wed 14-May-14 22:43:22

Yes i do believe in feathers, they are fluffy white feathers, or a single feather on its own. Ever sice i lost my mum suddenly i get random feathers on and off when special things go on. But also when we lost our dog after 14 years after we got back from the vets after we had him pass there was a white feather on his rug there was no windows open.

I do see them as a sign from a loved one to say they are around/thinking of you.

Misfitless Thu 15-May-14 01:51:40

Yes. I believe in guardian angels. Hope you are finding some comfort from all the feathers x

AcrossthePond55 Thu 15-May-14 02:59:00

From the 91st Psalm.

11 For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.

12 They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.

Of course there are guardian angels.

Lookingforfocus Fri 16-May-14 19:29:24

Jesus said "see that you never despise any of these little ones, for I tell you that their angels in heaven are continually in the presence of my Father in heaven" Matthew 18:10

sunshinemmum Sat 17-May-14 19:19:22

I do believe in angels in the Christian sense but I don't believe that they leave feathers. I think that they are higher spiritual beings who exalt God and have specific missions.

IndigoBarbie Mon 19-May-14 21:07:54

YES. I absolutely believe - Without any doubts whatsoever, and I too have found feathers everywhere smile
May I just be so bold to thank you for asking on here, as in this day in age there are thousands of people who will still not ask for fear of being ridiculed.

Misfitless Mon 19-May-14 21:13:01

When I was younger, I thought they were mythical, make believe imaginary creatures, on a par with the tooth fairy, pixies and unicorns. I thought that everyone else thought that, too. But I completely believe that everybody has a guardian angel, whether you have faith or not. If in danger, or fearful, have a word with your guardian angel, or at any other time, for that matter. x

IndigoBarbie Mon 19-May-14 21:22:56

misfitless, YES. I have had my life saved by mine, and I am extremely grateful. You make good points.
I also speak to my child's gaurdian angel, and as part of my energy healing work I forged relationships with many angels, including conversing with my client's angels.
They are real. They love to be spoken to. They love leaving quirky little signs, and not just feathers. All you have to do is ask. Then listen. and observe.

gertiegusset Mon 19-May-14 21:24:29

No.

QueMierda Mon 19-May-14 21:33:51

I believe everyone has a guardian angel.

SantasLittleMonkeyButler Mon 19-May-14 21:33:55

Yes I do. I am perfectly aware that it may just be something I believe as a coping method, rather than something real - but I definitely do.

I have believed in it since the day, a few months after my dad had passed away, when I was crying my eyes out & incredibly stressed that my then 6 year old DS1 was in trouble at school again. I went outside and a pure white feather was on the front doormat. In an enclosed porch. In mid winter.

I still find white feathers now, but always when I am stressed or upset about something - otherwise never. I have found them in odd places (like INSIDE the car!).

I may be mad, but as stressed as I am when I find one, it always calms me down & makes me smile. So, whether there is anything in it or not, it helps smile.

hiddenhome Sat 31-May-14 19:35:11

The guardian angels that belong to the asylum seekers who spend their time squashed and dying, must be pretty poor at their jobs sad perhaps they're just trainee guardian angels which begs the question, are they suffering from the decline in educational standards that this country is.

Are not feathers a choking hazard? You need to find out where they are really coming from.

I also second what hiddenhome said.

TheOneAndOnlyAlpha Sat 31-May-14 20:42:44

No. It's a lovely idea. But no. I find feathers too, and they come from our one feather cushion. They get everywhere.

As Hidden says, if they did exist then they are doing a pretty piss poor job at watching over those who really need them.

IndigoBarbie Sun 01-Jun-14 10:23:01

Yes, it can be a touchy and harrowing subject regarding those who die and those who don't and those who are 'saved' and those who are not and suffer tragic life events.
I wouldn't say I have always believed in angels, but years ago I started speaking to mine and time after time the proof has been there. I would even recommend starting a dialogue with yours and just see what happens.
The feathers thing is just a way of communicating their presence, until you can hear them or see them (if that is your wish) and accept that they are real.

Misfitless Sun 01-Jun-14 11:23:20

This sounds fascinating, Indigo. Can you share some experiences, or is it all too private?

Sorry for being so nosy, completely understand it you don't wish to share x

sunshinemmum Sun 01-Jun-14 13:06:30

We have just done a Christian study on angels, it was interesting though fairly basic. I think that they are higher beings spiritually, who are sent with direct purposes, such as to proclaim, protect people in peril or to move people to do something physically, when they haven't been led to this by the holy spirit.

I am interested by those who channel angels, do you believe in a higher power and if so what would prohibit you from speaking directly to that deity? It is a fascinating thread and am genuinely interested in different perspectives.

MollyGetsHerWandOut Sun 01-Jun-14 13:11:31

There are bad ones as well as good ones, like humans you can't tell by looking at them which they are.

I would put your faith in the createor/God.

sunshinemmum Sun 01-Jun-14 15:34:35

That is a good point Molly. If you believe in good angels, do you also believe in bad or fallen angels. Also if you channel angels directly rather than speaking to a higher power, how could you discern between the two and their influences?

MollyGetsHerWandOut Sun 01-Jun-14 15:39:21

As for the point made by hiddenhome, I am sure those that died and suffered had help from God, it may not have been in the form of feathers left in babygrows.

juule Sun 01-Jun-14 15:46:19

Bad guardian angels?hmm

Nulliferous Sun 01-Jun-14 15:51:54

No. Of course not. Feathers come from birds.

I think I may be too /literal/ for this thread.

elfycat Sun 01-Jun-14 15:54:50

Once during a meditation, while trying to settle some unpleasant life events and regrets, I felt someone place hands on my upper arms. Kind of like you would if you were comforting a non-huggish friend. I sort of sat there thinking. 'OK that's weird. And interesting. And erm... still there!'

A few years later at a woo-event someone I knew from the World of Woo told my that my particular guardian was a father from a past life. I don't really believe in past life stuff too much but it went into my 'file for later' brain. The sense of the hands on my arm certainly could be a paternal one.

I don't think every feather I see shows an angel has been past, but it reminds me of them. Mainly it reminds me that if you need support or comfort you can find it from somewhere, personal reserves, real people, God, Guardians. Those hiddenhome posted of could find it. Even if, sadly, it doesn't change their circumstances.

expatinscotland Sun 01-Jun-14 15:55:48

No.

MostWicked Sun 01-Jun-14 16:41:46

No, it's a load of nonsense.
Feathers float around in the air so end up in all sorts of places, they don't mean anything in particular.

Why do only some people deserve a guardian angel when there are others in the world who clearly need it more?

CoteDAzur Sun 01-Jun-14 22:47:52

No. I'm not 5 years old.

I can't think of many things sillier than an adult looking at bird feathers and thinking they must be from the wings (what?) of a mythical spiritual being.

headinhands Mon 02-Jun-14 13:12:22

it doesn't change their circumstances

So there's actually no point or benefit having an angel? You're better off relying on things like common sense and medicine etc. Guardian angels/god/spirit guides and whathaveyou care a lot less for poor people in developing countries then those of us who have access to health care and education.

IndigoBarbie Tue 03-Jun-14 20:13:56

There are definitely benefits to having an angel, especially when you are in trouble and you REMEMBER to ask them to help or intervene.

It's definitely worth a shot of asking for assistance - in any situation, life threatening or not.

Can someone on here prove to me that angels do not exist? I don't think so. Just like I cannot prove they do exist. For me, in my reality angels have literally been a god send.

I started a dialogue with my 'angels' around 10 years ago, when I wasn't really sure if they actually were real. Doreen Virtue books allowed me to explore this in what I felt was a safe manner. I'd seen shadows and invisible entities and been extremely sensitive to energies all my life, and now I was asking these so called 'angels' to come and give me a sign. And I left it at that. That was all, just a sign. I had purchased a pack of Angel Oracle Cards and left them on my bed...(yehhh feather heaven!!!) and when I got back after dinner that night there was a perfectly placed feather on the deck, where I either had to question my sanity OR, accept it as some kind of sign. I still have that feather to this day.

So, I took it from there and I asked them to give me consistent signs in groups of 3 - for example, If you are hearing me speak to me, please give me the same sign that I cannot dismiss 3 times. Meanwhile I was driving and kept just happening to glance and see car number plates with 333, 444, 555 etc on them. After a while I came to realise that this was one of my signs. Especially when on one very short journey I would see every combination from 111 up to 999 in the one 10 minute drive. OR, I would hear the same song 3 times in the same day with specific phrases that meant something to me.

It all just went on like that until I started seeing them in my mind's eye, and outside as sparkly lights in varying colours. I then heard them speaking to me in my mind. As part of the energy healing work I do, I connect in with other people's angels and pass on messages pertinent to that person at the time.

In recent years I started to drive home in a snowstorm and my car slid off as if it were about to hit the offramp central reservation, but it kept on going sliding down the offramp. I actually thought I was about to lose my life and then I was like - Oh freak...Angels angels angels angels. My car and me went into some kind of slow motion and it came very gracefully (while the back end was spinning out) to a halt right at the end of the slip road before a large roundabout. I will never forget that, they most definitely assisted me that night. At the time, I realised I had dreamt about my own head hitting the car windscreen just one week prior. It was the car I hadn't been driving, so I thought the dream was strange.

Angels can't text us or lift the phone to say hi....therefore they have to be very creative to communicate and do so when you start to speak with them and build up a trusting relationship. You are not handing any of your power over to angels, but you are thanking them for assisting you in this life, and for helping you to achieve certain things. Also, if you require emotional comfort or healing, all you have to do is ask.

You have to ask, that is all.

Then observe and let them know when you get their signs. It's an adventure that you will never forget, and in many cases you will be led directly to things that make your heart smile, and not just get parking spaces, you might ask them to give you the vibe on where you might find that special dress, or you may ask them to watch over your child as he or she sleeps at night. You may be lucky enough to see the room where your child sleeps filled with sparkly lights of a beautiful purple colour, and just say thanks for their presence there. Meanwhile, your optician agrees: you don't have eye problems because retina issues don't present as sparkly magenta/purple/yellow/green/golden/etc lights seen by both eyes.

I couldn't quite explain to my parents what exactly I was seeing or sensing from people when I was a young girl, and now I can communicate with my father from wherever he currently is in this universe. It wasn't sparkly lights back then though, I felt fearful of things and could sense vibes from others. Children can and do see angels, as they can see passed on loved ones. You don't have to be 5, it doesn't matter what age you are.

My point is this, and always has been: I love each and every one of you for being here - I would never disregard or make fun of your beliefs, as I have never been in your shoes, and I have never been you. I am here, sharing my story like many others, and if you feel drawn to angels, then just you start chatting to them.

See what happens, that is all.

IndigoBarbie Tue 03-Jun-14 20:17:35

sunshinemum
Angels don't stop you communicating with anyone else. I know there is a higher power, but you wouldn't have to chat through angels to get your message further up the vibration list if you see what I mean.

Angels can give a sense of touch, smell, feelings thoughts and signs as is seeing repetitive cues. However, the more you tune into your own intuition and body, the better the receiver you are for any communication you wish to embark on.

IndigoBarbie Tue 03-Jun-14 20:22:02

Molly, on your point re feeling the differences. It's a bit like sensing the vibration and trusting your heart to know the difference. Different energies do feel different and you come to recognise the energy signatures.

However, on the topic of guardian angels, their vibration is specifically aligned to their charge (ie human) and we each have at least one assigned to us for our lifetime here on earth. Therefore, when we make a connection to our own angel, there will be no interference with that communication as they speak on our soul vibration. This is my experience.

ashtrayheart Tue 03-Jun-14 20:24:55

No, nor Father Christmas or the tooth fairy!

headinhands Tue 03-Jun-14 21:00:04

Sigh. It's for you to show they do, not the disbeliever to show they don't.

IndigoBarbie Tue 03-Jun-14 22:42:54

headinhands! I've missed you!

It's not for anyone to prove or disprove - it's for each of us to have our own experience and interpret from that. The observer observes. Maybe the observer changes things. Who knows. What's real for me is not real for you.

This isn't prove yourself science, or repeatable actions to be measured - it's experiments with your own perceptions and reality. I speak my truth, and you speak yours. I deep bow to you holding fast to yours.

I am so glad you are on this thread, as you've given me much to think of on all of our previous dances together.

Iflyaway Tue 03-Jun-14 23:00:01

Yes!

Every morning I acknowledge God, the Goddess, Angels and Ascended Masters to be with me and everyone else.

Much more preferable than being a miserable old cynic.... grin

hesterton Tue 03-Jun-14 23:06:34

IndigoBarbie, out of interest, do you have paying clients?

IndigoBarbie Tue 03-Jun-14 23:09:11

hesterton, I am an energy healer. Clients do pay and they benefit greatly from my work. I don't offer an angel reading service if that's what you are aiming for here. When I spoke of angels, I was speaking from my own personal experience. Not one which I try to 'sell' to others.

hesterton Tue 03-Jun-14 23:14:44

Thanks- I did wonder.

KatieKaye Tue 03-Jun-14 23:15:02

I most definitely believe in guardian angels, and I know who one is....
After nearly 26 years of marriage, ex-h came home one night and said he was leaving. No warning at all. And I was just out of a week long stay in hospital, needing an urgent hysterectomy and told I had another disease with a 20% chance of surviving more than 5 years.
I thought my world had ended and there was no pint in living without him. I was 17 when we met, married at 20 and would have done anything for him.
After a couple of days I managed to go to church and was praying for help in just keeping going. And then the psalm was announced. Not one I'd ever sung, but the faviurite of my best pals mum, who died before I met her. And I felt this sense of peace, that there was someone up there who was stretching out her hand to me and telling me it would be alright.
That gave me the strength to go on, to make a new life. And it was nearly 5 years ago, I'm still here and I'm healthy. I went into spontaneous remission and the doctor said it was a medical miracle (his exact words).
You might think all this was just chance, but I do believe my guardian angel saved me, because I was very close to suicide.

CoteDAzur Wed 04-Jun-14 08:27:29

"I am an energy healer..."

grin

What happens is you wave your hands over the bodies of gullible fools, claim you have 'healed' them with an imaginary 'energy', and said gullible fools part with their money.

CoteDAzur Wed 04-Jun-14 08:29:52

"guardian angels, their vibration is specifically aligned to their charge "

Stop. Please. Can't breathe. grin

Hakluyt Wed 04-Jun-14 09:32:46

You would have thought that a guardian angel would leave a feather that couldn't just as easily anve come from a cushion, duvet, pillow, down jacket or seagull. A silver one would be nice. Or pink?

Seriously. White feathers are everywhere. I can actually see one from where I'm sitting now,

Hakluyt Wed 04-Jun-14 09:35:25

"
It's not for anyone to prove or disprove - it's for each of us to have our own experience and interpret from that. The observer observes. Maybe the observer changes things. Who knows. What's real for me is not real for you."

But if you make categorical statements you have to support them. Particularly if you then use them to part people from their money. "I am an energy healer" is an excellent example of such a statement.

lottieandmias Wed 04-Jun-14 11:40:59

Indigo, I think my daughter sees angels - she sees a white man accompanied by the sound of chimes. Does this sound familiar?

sunshinemmum Wed 04-Jun-14 11:44:54

Indigo, since my understanding of angels is limited, I am interested to know, is there a particular philosophy behind your belief, or is it a kind of personal, perceptual feeling around angels?

CoteDAzur Wed 04-Jun-14 16:16:15

My understanding of unicorns is limited. Does anyone know the frequency on which they vibrate?

Hakluyt Wed 04-Jun-14 16:23:01

Lottie- no, your dd does not see angels. She has an imaginary friend. Which is lovely- and, if he is anything like the ones my own dd had- will be a tremendous support and comfort to her. He will vanish, like my dd's did, when she no longer has need of him. smile

lottieandmias Wed 04-Jun-14 16:41:35

That's nice smile my post was to Indigo. And I don't care what unbelievers think.

ajandjjmum Wed 04-Jun-14 16:49:31

I don't know whether white feathers signify anything, but I think of my Dad when I see one. DD had her 21st garden party recently, and as we were checking the final arrangements, there was a white feather on the lawn. It made me smile and feel that my Dad was there joining the celebrations. And I don't care if it came of one of the millions of pigeons flying overhead - it made me smile. This has happened over the past 11 years, on random occasions, and makes me happy. No harm in that.

MostWicked Wed 04-Jun-14 16:53:29

Why do Guardian Angels leave white feathers?

Why don't they leave a note to say "Hi, GA here, please ask if there's anything I can help with (unless you're poor, then give a spiritualist/faith healer/energy healer etc a call"

But of course, they couldn't do anything that obvious. They're only real to those who believe (bit like Father Christmas)

CoteDAzur Wed 04-Jun-14 16:55:57

I'm curious - Do you people think angels have physical wings of bird feathers? Or that angels go about plucking feathers off birds so they can leave them around for you?

Hakluyt Wed 04-Jun-14 16:58:02

Ah. OK, Lottie. So it wasn't a genuine question, then. Maybe we could have an "only people who will say yes- of course you're right in your beliefs should answer" emoticon. It would save other people trouble.

Bassetfeet Wed 04-Jun-14 17:19:43

It comforts. I don't believe in guardian angels really . But But ...white feathers do appear sometimes so randomly . Yeah most have a rational answer re my feather cushion and pesky but well loved birds around my home . BUT sometimes in deepest distress I find one pure and white on my doorstep . Whether it comes from an angel or not I find it comforting somehow and feel ok and not so alone . Actually writing this it says to me you are part of the universe and nature ..not alone at all .

CalamityKate1 Wed 04-Jun-14 17:24:58

I don't believe, no. And even if I did, the feather thing wouldn't make sense.

When do the feathers become visible? When they fall out of the angels wing?? Why then do we never see the moment it falls out and becomes visible - ie a feather appearing in thin air?

Why has nobody ever had an angel feather analysed?
If someone HAS had one analysed and it's turned out to contain angel DNA why do we not know about it?

It's all just so silly!

lottieandmias Wed 04-Jun-14 17:28:06

I didn't say it was a general question. It was a question to someone who has experiences with angels. I really don't care if other people don't believe in angels or a spiritual world - that's up to you. Maybe I wouldn't believe if I didn't have direct experiences. But what I do object to is dogmatic posters thinking they can bend everyone to their inflexible way of thinking - by rudeness, ridicule or worse. Think what you like and I'll think what I like.

Oh and my dd is 11 so way past the age for imaginary friends.

Hakluyt Wed 04-Jun-14 19:44:01

" But what I do object to is dogmatic posters thinking they can bend everyone to their inflexible way of thinking - by rudeness, ridicule or worse. Think what you like and I'll think what I like.

Oh and my dd is 11 so way past the age for imaginary friends."

<shrugs> I wasn't rude, didn't ridicule "or worse". I answered your question. If the only answer to "is what my dd talks about an angel?" you wanted was "yes" then you should have said so. Oh, and 11 is not too old for imaginary friends.

lottieandmias Wed 04-Jun-14 20:12:03

I was asking Indigo - I did make that clear in my post if you read it. I don't want to get into a debate about the existence of angels - it's not what I go on this board to do. If you want to do that fine - you do it with other people who want to.

I wasn't really suggesting you were rude but plenty of people have been rude and obnoxious and nasty to me on these threads before and they always end up the same way. And it's boring. I don't try and force anyone to accept my view of the world.

CoteDAzur Wed 04-Jun-14 20:15:36

lottie - This is a public forum. If you have a question to a specific poster that you want nobody else to get involved with, send her a PM.

lottieandmias Wed 04-Jun-14 20:20:08

You don't need to send a pm - that way everyone gets the benefit of the contributions. Some people on the thread obviously do want to debate angels existence - that's fine. Mine was a quick question to another believer and I got the usual uninvited 'I am right and you are wrong' response with no 'in my opinion' that has become typical on here and is rude.

lottieandmias Wed 04-Jun-14 20:21:04

If people were to say 'In my opinion' I would not have a problem with anything they said at all. But that isn't how it is and we all know that don't we?

PigeonPie Wed 04-Jun-14 20:50:40

I do believe in guardian angels, but not necessarily in the feathers.

I know that mine is my great grannie (whom I'm named after) but I've never asked for help or support. She just seems to know when I need it and I've felt supported at times in my life when I've desperately needed it. I do feel her about at other times too though, just 'being'.

I think that my DSs' angel is my grandfather whom DS1 knew but DS2 wasn't born or even conceived when Grandpapa died (funnily enough both of them have one of his names too). I've felt him about at times when they've needed support (even though they're still quite little) and he was at DS2's baptism which was such a comfort as that was the one sadness - that he would never know my DS2 - in a splendid celebration.

For me they guardian angels are there to support. I don't go round specifically asking my GGrannie to find me things or sort things out, that's for me to do. But I have so benefitted from her love and support for instance, when I had a very tough time after a sad loss and when I've been ill. It's very difficult to explain and is different from the physical love of a spouse and children.

CoteDAzur Wed 04-Jun-14 20:58:21

"If people were to say 'In my opinion' I would not have a problem with anything they said at all"

Do I have to say "*In my opinion*, unicorns don't exist"?

If not, why not?

IndigoBarbie Wed 04-Jun-14 21:37:55

Living in a reality where there is so much more to what you can physically touch with your hands is so normal now, I think I should actually be challenging those who don't perceive this....and wonder....why don't they prove to me that their opinions of their experiences are the real deal? They can't sense energies? Hah! How very silly of them..........But no, I really don't think making attacking and ridiculous comments online is how I roll.

I have lived almost half a life where none of this existed, and the better half where it does. Without one, I would not have had the other to contrast or determine a frame of reference for my life experiences.

We are all living realities which only we can perceive.

I'm pretty bored with all the naysayers, can't you just keep your opinions to yourselves? Why do my experiences irk you sooooo much that you have to bring me down and prove me stupid? Can't you just allow those of us who wish to discuss and share, just discuss and share???

YES this is a public forum, but there is such a thing as respect for others, and some of that has been very much lost on this thread.

CoteDAzur Wed 04-Jun-14 21:45:34

"Living in a reality where there is so much more to what you can physically touch with your hands is so normal now"

Have you been reading too much young adult sci-fi?

IndigoBarbie Wed 04-Jun-14 21:51:19

@Cote "I am an energy healer..."

grin

What happens is you wave your hands over the bodies of gullible fools, claim you have 'healed' them with an imaginary 'energy', and said gullible fools part with their money.

Cote - Does your heart beat with imaginary energy?

IndigoBarbie Wed 04-Jun-14 21:53:21

Feathers are of the material world - angels are not. They use the material world objects these as 'signs' angels appear to us in a way that is in keeping with how we would recognise them, and this has been shown throughout history as beings with feathery wings.
Just the same way as if your grandfather appeared in your bedroom, he would probably look like the way you remember him. Just so you know it's him.

headinhands Wed 04-Jun-14 21:56:39

so you know it's him

And use words you understand to convey an unambiguous message (or just faff about with taps and keys if he's forgotten)

IndigoBarbie Wed 04-Jun-14 21:59:18

sometimes they just appear with nothing to say.........
But maybe if you heard your passed on loved ones rattle some taps - how can you be sure it was them, and not just lacking in water pressure?

CoteDAzur Wed 04-Jun-14 22:19:27

Oh please. Are we really going to do this? smile

OK, I'll bite.

There is no imaginary energy in my heart. All energy in my heart and other organs is real and can be measured.

Yours, too. Unless you are claiming to be some other (mutant?) species with magic beating energy in her heart and magic healing energy on her fingertips.

It's a pity that none of this magic energy can be measured and we have to take your word for its existence.

IndigoBarbie Wed 04-Jun-14 22:28:49

Cote, I don't bite at you - you bite at me.

I was being serious. You were making comment about me and my 'imaginary' energy - I was merely pointing out that the energy that beats in your heart/organs etc is not imaginary, it is real and can be perceived by machines and by humans. Humans who are sensitive to energy. That is all.

I never said I could heal anyone. I do transmute energies for others who cannot, allowing them to heal themselves. The term energy healer is slightly misunderstood. We each can only ever heal ourselves.

I'm sorry Cote, I will never be able to prove any of this stuff. Or, if I could then perhaps maybe some scientist type person on MN might assist me to do so? Now, that would be a great experience. Cote, I can't let you see or feel what I can see or feel. It's literally as simple as that.

CoteDAzur Wed 04-Jun-14 22:40:40

This is not biting. This is a reality check. Everything I say can be proven and verified. It is fact.

All this stuff you talk about, the frequency of a guardian angel etc is fiction. At best, you are making it all up. At worst, you actually believe all this rubbish. In any case, none of it is real.

"I will never be able to prove any of this stuff"

I agree with you there. You know why you can't? Because it's not real.

elQuintoConyo Wed 04-Jun-14 22:50:06

Yes.

He watches over me while I'm sleeping so I can 'be safe'.

I've seen him: pure white skin, alabaster beauty that sparkles in the sun.

I wish I could write about my experience so others can feel so happy, so connected.




Oh, tits. Stephanie Meyer beat me too it.

elQuintoConyo Wed 04-Jun-14 22:52:32

Damn, rogue 'too' up there ^^

And Cote I think I have a huge not-felt-since-Matt-Goss-sized crush on you grin

Ruralninja Wed 04-Jun-14 22:59:05

When someone asks if anyone believes in angels, apparently the only correct response is 'yes'. If the OP wanted people to come on here and peddle their feather-wrangling stories, why not just say so? And by the way, the most likely answer is usually the most likely answer, e.g. if you see a white feather somewhere is it more likely that the feather came from a) a pillow, a bird, a cushion or b) a supernatural being only available to some religions? Answer a.

ballsballsballs Wed 04-Jun-14 23:30:49

No.

The appearance of white feathers in this house is usually accompanied by a smug expression on my cat's face.

CoteDAzur Wed 04-Jun-14 23:36:10

elQuinto - Now I'm worried grin

lottieandmias Thu 05-Jun-14 01:50:51

I agree that people are often disrespectful on these threads. There are certain posters who seem to trawl this board specifically to trample on the beliefs of others. Why do you care so much that not everyone in the world thinks the same way as you? I respect other people's opinions and if they can't respect mine then that is their problem.

In any case, I remember asking ages ago on one of these threads whether anyone could prove they loved their child, for example. None of us can prove that but we all know it to be true.

Hakluyt Thu 05-Jun-14 06:29:41

Disagreeing is not disrespectful.

Hakluyt Thu 05-Jun-14 06:31:56

Neither is pointing out that white feathers are everywhere because most of the feathers in soft furnishings are white, many birds have white under feathers and there are a lot seagulls around, even inland.

Hakluyt Thu 05-Jun-14 06:33:26

And it is certainly not disrespectful to expect anyone who claims to have extraordinary powers, particularly if they charge for them, to offer some supporting evidence for their claims.

headinhands Thu 05-Jun-14 06:34:13

The notion that all beliefs should garner respect is both ridiculous and dangerous. How about the couple who have now killed two children because they preferred prayer to medicine and neglected to seek treatment? Should their beliefs be respected? Believe in angels all you want but don't start taking money off of hurting and confused people in the process.

IndigoBarbie Thu 05-Jun-14 06:56:30

Hak-quite often people disagree, but they don't stick speculation and made up opinion of others in the process.

Head-I don't have supernatural powers and don't think I've said that-nor do I condone not seeing a Dr, just in case your comments were somehow, randomly aimed at me.

IndigoBarbie Thu 05-Jun-14 07:00:03

Apologies head-second part was also for Hukyult.

It's interesting that instead of something positive it's always speculated negative slurs-when clearly you have no experience to share.

Hakluyt Thu 05-Jun-14 07:21:45

"It's interesting that instead of something positive it's always speculated negative slurs-when clearly you have no experience to share"

I don't understand this. I see nothing negative about offering alternative natural(ie overwhelmingly likely) explanations for things rather than overwhelmingly unlikely supernatural ones. Particularly where there is a child involved.

I also see nothing negative in questioning somebody who says they are an energy therapist and charges people money for it. Because there is no such thing. Somebody saying they feel better after a "treatment" is absolutely no proof that the "treatment" does anything.

sunshinemmum Thu 05-Jun-14 08:03:03

Indigo you have every right to talk about your belief system here. We have different understandings of angels and healing, but I am still interested in hearing your point of view. I tend to ignore those who try and derail every discussion on these boards.

lottieandmias Thu 05-Jun-14 08:54:29

Yes ignore the derailers. It's the only way.

Hakluyt Thu 05-Jun-14 08:57:19

So. Thread title is "do you believe in guardian angels?" The OP asks whether the presence of white feathers round her baby indicates the presence of a guardian angel.

And anyone who says "no" and/or offers another explanation for the white feathers is derailing??

I am constantly amazed at the closed mindedness of believers in the supernatural.

CoteDAzur Thu 05-Jun-14 09:03:37

"you have every right to talk about your belief system here"

Of course she does. As long as she is clear that it is a belief system, much like a religion. And what she does is a feel-good woo, like prayer. Yes, it makes people feel good about themselves. No, it doesn't actually heal an illness or some other physiological problem.

What Indigo doesn't have a right to is to claim that it is all real. Just like we would also be hmm about someone who claims her prayers heal the sick and charges money for it.

lottieandmias Thu 05-Jun-14 11:45:17

Ah you see there goes the arrogance again 'it's not real'. To you maybe not - do not tell other people your opinion is fact.

These threads are like vaccination threads. If someone says let's agree to differ another says 'no I will not agree to differ!'

Hakluyt Thu 05-Jun-14 11:52:25

But the energy fields Indigo claims to harness are not real!

CoteDAzur Thu 05-Jun-14 12:06:54

"'it's not real'. To you maybe not - do not tell other people your opinion is fact."

Something is either real or it is not.

Opinion has nothing to do with this.

It is not "arrogance" to say something isn't real.

If you think it is real, show me some evidence. If you can't, accept that you have no basis in reality for your convictions.

lottieandmias Thu 05-Jun-14 12:15:48

Different people have different realities. You cannot say that you have lived anyone else's life or had any life experiences but your own. Nobody should have to point that out to anyone really. And what do you think you will achieve in brow beating other people? You won't change anyone's mind to your way of thinking.

Can you prove love is real? I'm sure you can't but you would not dispute that it exists. Because it your own reality of life you've most likely experienced it.

lottieandmias Thu 05-Jun-14 12:17:33

It's obvious too that a lot of people on here don't even know what energy healers actually do. Otherwise you wouldn't be talking about laying on of hands or supernatural powers.

CoteDAzur Thu 05-Jun-14 12:21:51

"Different people have different realities."

Wrong. I am referring to the reality, as in the world or the state of things as they actually exist.

"Can you prove love is real? I'm sure you can't"

Wrong, again.

I can prove love in a laboratory, easily with MRI scans.

lottieandmias Thu 05-Jun-14 12:21:52

All the energy healers that I've ever encountered also do a lot of work for free. The only reason they charge is when you have regular sessions of their time. Just like you would a psychotherapist. You could argue that psychotherapy doesn't necessarily work because you cannot see concrete proof that a person's brain has somehow changed, and yet a lot of us, me included would argue that it worked for us. And yet, some of these therapies do a lot for some people and nothing for others. Because we are all so different.

lottieandmias Thu 05-Jun-14 12:22:22

How exactly can you prove love exists with MRI scans?

CoteDAzur Thu 05-Jun-14 12:22:56

"a lot of people on here don't even know what energy healers actually do. Otherwise you wouldn't be talking about laying on of hands or supernatural powers."

Please enlighten us. What 'energy' are we talking about here that is not supernatural?

CoteDAzur Thu 05-Jun-14 12:23:27

lottie - Google MRI love and you will see loads of examples.

lottieandmias Thu 05-Jun-14 12:23:52

Côte - that is nonsense. You think everyone see the world exactly as you do, has the same likes and dislikes, the same emotional responses to everything as you do and the same experiences? Really?

Oh, wait..........!

CoteDAzur Thu 05-Jun-14 12:24:38

What is nonsense, lottie?

I'd really love to see what appears to be nonsense to someone who believes anything and everything grin

sunshinemmum Thu 05-Jun-14 12:25:08

People who teach and practice yoga talk about chi or energy, those theories have been around for thousands of years, as has medicinal healing. Even if you had categorical proof that it doesn't exist it is another leap to suggest what healers do is harmful.

Personally, I am uncomfortable with any kind of 'laying on of hands therapy' Christian or otherwise, but regular visits to an osteopath, have reduced the number of migraines I get and the medication I use. Others insist this is quackery, but even if it is all psychological, it is costing the NHS less.

lottieandmias Thu 05-Jun-14 12:25:46

Actually I've googled it before. What I read in no way actually proves the existence of love. You can't even physically quantify what love actually is.

lottieandmias Thu 05-Jun-14 12:27:19

What is nonsense is that, as you suggest cote everyone experiences the world the same way and has exactly the same perceptions, likes and dislikes.

CoteDAzur Thu 05-Jun-14 12:28:43

Placebo effect is brilliant.

And I never said woo is harmful. Except when gullible and vulnerable people are being made to fork out their cash to woo merchants. And except if you have something seriously wrong with you, someone like Indigo says they can heal you, and you turn your back on your treatment.

CoteDAzur Thu 05-Jun-14 12:29:40

"What I read in no way actually proves the existence of love."

You can look at the MRI scan of someone who claims they are in love and see if the 'love' area light up. That is proof.

Maybe you should read some more.

lottieandmias Thu 05-Jun-14 12:29:50

Where has indigo said she can heal someone? You probably know nothing about what she actually does.

CoteDAzur Thu 05-Jun-14 12:30:25

"What is nonsense is that, as you suggest cote everyone experiences the world the same way and has exactly the same perceptions, likes and dislikes."

Now you are just lying hmm

I have said nothing of that sort.

CoteDAzur Thu 05-Jun-14 12:31:05

IndigoBarbie Tue 03-Jun-14 23:09:11
I am an energy healer. Clients do pay and they benefit greatly from my work.

lottieandmias Thu 05-Jun-14 12:34:30

She doesn't say what she does though. You've just assumed.

I've read plenty thanks. Maybe you feel threatened that other people have belief systems that don't fit with yours. Otherwise I can't possibly see why you would feel the need to post so rudely? grin

lottieandmias Thu 05-Jun-14 12:35:28

I said everyone has a different reality. A persons reality is their perception and experiences of life.

CoteDAzur Thu 05-Jun-14 12:37:40

It is not rude to point out that you are lying. And you are, when you say "What is nonsense is that, as you suggest cote everyone experiences the world the same way and has exactly the same perceptions, likes and dislikes."

I have not said anything of that sort. You made that up.

This is where you show where I have said what you claim, or apologise.

CoteDAzur Thu 05-Jun-14 12:40:03

"A persons reality is their perception and experiences of life."

When I said "It's not real", I was obviously referring to THE reality. As in, "the world or the state of things as they actually exist, as opposed to an idealistic or notional idea of them.".

You make stuff up and then attack those statements that nobody said. Am I supposed to respect that, too?

lottieandmias Thu 05-Jun-14 12:40:12

Oh come off it. You said I was wrong that people have different realities.

I will not apologise because I don't think I have said anything I need to apologise for.

So we'll just agree to differ. smile

lottieandmias Thu 05-Jun-14 12:42:31

I haven't attacked you for your beliefs but you have continually made sarcastic comments to others for no particular reason just because they don't agree with you.

Hakluyt Thu 05-Jun-14 12:48:24

"Oh come off it. You said I was wrong that people have different realities."

Can you have different realities? Different opinions, or points of view, or beliefs, of course. But realities?

lottieandmias Thu 05-Jun-14 12:54:30

Yes, a person's reality is what is true for them so clearly this can differ. Reality refers to individual experiences as well. IMO but this is where i think our opinions differ possibly.

sunshinemmum Thu 05-Jun-14 16:44:03

Can you actually prove that we all have the same sense of reality? Are there categorically accurate narratives of historical events, or at any given event would you have differing accounts, depending on bias, viewpoints, politics, propaganda or spin?

Viviennemary Thu 05-Jun-14 16:44:53

No. But I'd like to believe. It's such a nice idea.

headinhands Thu 05-Jun-14 16:52:55

But we're not talking about the interpretation of a situation we're talking about an actual thing. How do we know zebras and daisies and clouds are real? They exist outside of us regardless of what we call them.

What do guardian angels do? Why don't they stop child rapists? Is it the same reason god doesn't? Why are angels so bad at their job in poor countries?

headinhands Thu 05-Jun-14 16:53:36

Do we all have guardian angels? Even child rapists?

sunshinemmum Thu 05-Jun-14 17:22:25

That's interesting, would you expect an entity that you don't believe in to have a role in policing humanity? We have a police force, however sadly that does not stop people from committing crimes against children.

lottieandmias Thu 05-Jun-14 18:14:03

When you're talking about 'actual' though it's never a clear cut thing.

For example - do we all see colours the same way? There is no way to prove that we do. We all agree that x= red but the way any of us see red cannot be proven to be the same.

IndigoBarbie Thu 05-Jun-14 21:34:35

CoteDAzur Thu 05-Jun-14 09:03:37
What Indigo doesn't have a right to is to claim that it is all real.
Actually Cote, I do. It is real for me, I never said anything about anyone else.
The thing is though Cote, ALL energy is real and NOT supernatural. The universe is all energy, everything that exists is.

Hakluyt Thu 05-Jun-14 11:52:25
But the energy fields Indigo claims to harness are not real!
Hak - Which energy fields and where do I claim to harness unreal energies? Huh?

We are each accessing different vibrations therefore the real is not just one 'THE REAL REALITY' as we view our lives through lenses of what has shaped us. Remember the whole observer changes the outcome in the quantum field slit experiment, well, in a way our real life perceptions are quite like that. For example: I say I see Angels and feel their vibrations - and you call me a liar, because you can't perceive the same. Your dreams are in colour, and mine are non-existent - doesn't mean I call you a liar because you access your consciousness in sleep state.

Can you think of moments where you felt like time speeded up, and your day went by very fast, but for someone else it was the longest day ever? I am trying to give you real life examples to relate to, since I have never ever said that any of this 'stuff' was supernatural - It's not, it IS natural, it's just too many of us are not exploring our own intuitive sides, we spend days in front of TV's, stress ourselves out with life and work and families in general, and drink wine to unwind and block it all out. That's what I mean.

Completely not getting at anyone. Just so interested to see how my posts can be taken out of context and other people are saying I said things that I didn't.

Since I was little I could sense energies, peoples moods etc Now I have trained and learned myself over many years, I can utilise my skills to assist others. I don't have supernatural gifts, I've just tried to embrace them instead of stuff them down with drugs, alcohol etc. Turns out that has been a good thing, and for those who come to see me for energy healing work - they feel helped. I can assist them because I am seeing into their energy fields to see which particular event in life/emotion etc etc etc is giving them issue on the physical. I can clear negative energies from their fields and this can allow them a healing space to heal themselves. I can not or never will accept responsibility for 'healing' anyone - energy healer is a label. Each person holds the responsibility for their own body, and their own healing - whether they believe that or not. Our body is the only thing we came into this world with, therefore we own it and need to look after it.

In the past on mn their have been some missing people and children, therefore I put my skills to good use to assist in locating them. I have honed my craft over the years just like many of you have done for your 'REAL' jobs.

I deserve no less respect than anyone else on here. Please - I am not interested in battles online whereby I keep having to waste my energy by explaining over and over and over again. This is my REAL life, it has taken me years to try and integrate this into what is perceived as 'normal' and not feel outcast for sensing things differently to others.

CoteDAzur Thu 05-Jun-14 21:47:29

What is the energy you think you use to heal people, Indigo?

It's not heat.

It's not electricity.

It's not nuclear (I hope).

What is it?

Hakluyt Thu 05-Jun-14 22:09:06

"In the past on mn their have been some missing people and children, therefore I put my skills to good use to assist in locating them."

Could you say some more about this?

headinhands Fri 06-Jun-14 06:26:07

accessing different vibrations

Evidence please.

headinhands Fri 06-Jun-14 06:28:35

you felt like time speeded up

Yeah, when I'm busy. Please don't tell me you posted that with a straight face.

headinhands Fri 06-Jun-14 06:32:23

block it all put

Seriously? Whereas third world countries that don't have the stresses of TV and wine are all super happy, healthy and thriving?

CoteDAzur Fri 06-Jun-14 08:56:09

"We are each accessing different vibrations therefore the real is not just one"

I don't "access" any vibrations.

"Remember the whole observer changes the outcome in the quantum field slit experiment"

Ooh, I was hoping you would start talking about Quantum Physics grin

(1) Observer doesn't change the outcome in the 'slit experiment' [sic]
(2) You mean double-slit experiment
(3) You don't test "quantum field" but individual particles. Electrons, in the case of the double-slit experiments.

smile

lottieandmias Fri 06-Jun-14 09:14:14

Does anyone use the Doreen Virtue cards? How do they work? Just wondered as my daughter has asked about them.

Hakluyt Fri 06-Jun-14 10:16:31

I'm happy to talk about Doreen Virtue and her cards, but I'm assuming you only want positive comments?

Softlysoftlycatchymonkey Fri 06-Jun-14 10:49:46

Such nastiness on this thread. I really do wonder why posters feel the need to fight it out.

CalamityKate1 Fri 06-Jun-14 10:51:18

I love you Cote grin

Idontseeanyicegiants Fri 06-Jun-14 11:03:37

Ok, I've been directed here from your other thread in site stuff and much of this is sitting badly with me. You do know that offering services of this kind especially in exchange for money is not thought of kindly in most circles don't you? I've been Pagan for many years and have mostly avoided getting into the ins and outs of this but you are using a gift to get the hopes up of people at dreadful times in their lives! The rule of thumb in Wicca States 'as it harms none, do as you will'.
Emphasis on 'As It Harms None'
How does scrying (or similar I assume) for a missing child when the parents are at their most desperate and vulnerable harm nobody?
Sorry but you are not helping anybody and on a purely selfish level giving the rest of us a bad name .

IndigoBarbie Fri 06-Jun-14 11:38:27

Actually cannot believe the amount of speculation and sentences misconstrued.
do you even know what I am speaking about? Oh dear oh dear oh dear.
Guys, you win. I've had enough.

IndigoBarbie Fri 06-Jun-14 11:41:51

Wow. Money changing hands for what someone said is selfish and scrying? I do no such thing.
Forget it peops. If you ever needed help with anything I've spoken of on here you can contact me in other ways.

CoteDAzur Fri 06-Jun-14 11:47:09

I didn't misconstrue your sentence on Quantum Physics. I quoted it. Sorry, Indigo - it was broken when I found it grin

Are you now running away? I thought we would have a nice informative conversation about Quantum Physics. I'd like to hear all about this slit experiment of the Quantum field where observer changes the outcome smile

Hakluyt Fri 06-Jun-14 11:51:21

Indigo- you said ""In the past on mn their have been some missing people and children, therefore I put my skills to good use to assist in locating them"

Please could you say some more about that?

IndigoBarbie Fri 06-Jun-14 11:51:23

Idontseeanyicegiants

I have no idea where you have come up with the opinion that you have. Could you please explain what you are speaking of? What circles? What I am doing that doesn't sit right?

"How does scrying (or similar I assume) for a missing child when the parents are at their most desperate and vulnerable harm nobody?
Sorry but you are not helping anybody and on a purely selfish level giving the rest of us a bad name"

And how exactly have you come to this conclusion? Why would you presume I follow your pagan beliefs about harm nobody? Why would you judge me based on your beliefs. (even though I never harm anyone)

You know nothing of what I do.

How is assisting to find missing people selfish? I can see things that most people cannot, therefore using my natural skills is helpful, and saves time and effort and money by other services. Something I have never been paid for, do not contact the parents. If it takes hours of my life to do this then I am giving of myself freely - and my energy levels. I am literally shocked that you would judge me like that.

IndigoBarbie Fri 06-Jun-14 11:53:08

Hak - yeah of course, there will be some mn'ers who will know what I speak of. Not outing the details online I'm afraid.

Cote, not running away. Pointless to continue in this manner. Can you get me a scientific trial going and we can investigate my work together?

CoteDAzur Fri 06-Jun-14 12:17:39

You are running away.

You made a nonsense statement about Quantum Physics. I showed that you managed to make three mistakes in one sentence. Now you are legging it.

Idontseeanyicegiants Fri 06-Jun-14 12:32:30

First things first I did not accuse you of taking money to find lost children. I merely stated that giving false hope to desperate people is wrong.
Second I didn't assume you are Pagan, I said I am. The rede is a rule I follow and it's a bloody good one. This is why I said it doesn't sit right with ME.
Third a healing gift is just that. A gift. Received and given freely with no money changing hands. If you have a genuine gift IN MY OPINION (apologies, on app and I can't bold, so am not actually shouting) it should he given generously and for free.
My whole post was how it feels to me personally, and yes, because believers in what is termed 'woo' tend to be lumped in together then yes it does give the rest of us a bloody bad name!

Hakluyt Fri 06-Jun-14 13:05:32

So, can we get this absolutely straight, Indigo. You are saying that you have found missing children through your "gift"?

Hakluyt Fri 06-Jun-14 13:06:51

" Can you get me a scientific trial going and we can investigate my work together?"

I would be happy to. PM me your name and address and I'll get it set up.

lottieandmias Fri 06-Jun-14 13:14:22

Idont - I am not sure about people charging but surely everyone uses the gifts that they have to earn a living? I don't necessarily see it as wrong when someone is giving up hours of their time to charge for their time, much like a psychotherapist as I said before.

That's not to say that there are no charlatans are out there but I wouldn't always assume that people who do charge are unethical.

BoreOfWhabylon Fri 06-Jun-14 15:47:27

Idontseeanyicegiants

Huge respect to you for your posts here and on the other thread flowers

Idontseeanyicegiants Fri 06-Jun-14 18:06:31

Bored it's been a pleasure.
smile
I'm hiding both threads and getting back to the rest if the boards though, these 2 are making me irrationally irritable!!

headinhands Fri 06-Jun-14 18:17:46

I can see thing that most people cannot

If that's true get that $1000000 from The Randi Institute and donate it to my local kids hospice. They need a new wing.

MostWicked Fri 06-Jun-14 21:21:26

Such nastiness on this thread. I really do wonder why posters feel the need to fight it out.

So people pushing for evidence and proof is nastiness?

Preying on vulnerable people, taking money from people for services that have amazing claims, yet have not one shred of scientific evidence supporting these claims. I think that warrants a strong challenge.

If these energy healers / angels / faith healers etc, were even a tiny bit effective, surely it would be in their interest to prove that they could do what they claim to do? What are they not queuing up to prove their effectiveness.
If I could heal people by holding my hands over them and directing the energy, I would be straight on the phone to James Randi, telling him to set up a trial. I would go out of my way to prove that I wasn't a con-artist.
Why have none had the confidence in the own abilities, to prove it? Because they know they will fail.

Softlysoftlycatchymonkey Fri 06-Jun-14 21:53:06

Yawn

Hakluyt Fri 06-Jun-14 23:36:05

I have to say that I am -disconcerted, to say the least- that all the "pro-woo" (inverted commas because I absolutely hate the word woo) people are studiously ignoring indigo's outrageous comments about finding mumsnetter's missing children. Is nobody prepared to comment?

Softlysoftlycatchymonkey Fri 06-Jun-14 23:52:36

Yes me!

Read my earlier posts.

Scousadelic Sat 07-Jun-14 00:09:48

Some people on this thread should be ashamed. It should be possible for grown adults to have a discussion and, even, disagree without the sort of vicious sniping seen here. Shame on you.

headinhands Sat 07-Jun-14 06:46:07

Grown adults should expect to be asked for evidence if they claim to have superpowers.

If I walked into work on Monday and told my colleagues I could fly would they just agree to disagree? What if I said they had to pay me before I would let them see me fly?

Hakluyt Sat 07-Jun-14 08:05:48

"Yes me!

Read my earlier posts."

I've searched back,softlysoftly but I can't find any comments- have I missed them?

OneEggIsAnOeuf Sat 07-Jun-14 10:41:54

Softly did retract her support for IB, but it's on the other thread.

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 10:42:27

Nobody claimed to have superpowers - that's your spin on it.

Hakluyt Sat 07-Jun-14 10:46:49

So seeing things that other people can't see, being an energy healer and finding lost children from a distance aren't "superpowers"?

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 10:50:26

Seeing things that other people can't see - no not a superpower. The energy healers I know don't claim to have super powers.

The stuff about finding missing children relates to one poster doesn't it?

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 10:52:32

But nobody on MN should link to their website, whoever it is IMO.

Hakluyt Sat 07-Jun-14 11:08:24

"Seeing things that other people can't see - no not a superpower. The energy healers I know don't claim to have super powers.

The stuff about finding missing children relates to one poster doesn't it?"

Surely being able to harness energy that other people can't and which according to conventional science doesn't exist is a super power? And seeing things that other people can't see? What constitutes a superpower for you?

And yes, the missing children thing does apply to one poster- but you don't have to go far to find many other people who say similar things. And she was largely unchallenged by the "woo" supporters on this thread (inverted commas because I hate the word, but don't want to type "believers in the paranormal/supernatural" every time. BIPS maybe?)

sunshinemmum Sat 07-Jun-14 11:55:37

Regardless of the issues that people have with IB, those with strong atheist opinions have made any debate about the subject matter original OP impossible.

We have also seen a deluge of derisive comments and the following of a poster from thread to thread, as has been the way of many discussions around faith, alternative therapies or in fact any belief which isn't perceived to have a scientific basis.

Whether a poster agrees or disagrees about 'woo' or 'religious' experiences is neither here nor there, it has been impossible for people to have a discussion thread without it being bombarded by the same people. I struggle to see how this continually happens, without it being seen a breach of the talk guidelines.

Hakluyt Sat 07-Jun-14 12:07:27

So the only people who should contribute to a thread with a title like "do you belive in guardian angels?" are people who say "yes"?

And I would normally agree with you about following people from thread to thread, but in this case the poster concerned is a very well known and "authoritative" contributer who has on this occasion said things which should not have been left unchallenged. And who, once challenged has slunk off.

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 12:18:15

People are rude and obnoxious on religion threads as well though.

Eg 'Do you think prayer helps?'

Various answers that go like 'No of course I don't because I'm an adult - grow up!'

I doubt many sane people walk into churches and shout 'you're all idiots'. What would be the point? It's easier to poke fun at people from behind a screen though isn't it?

This is not just about energy healers who frequent this forum or any other. I am not an energy healer. I do not see things outside of normal range, generally. However, I have been subjected to rudeness and nastiness before on these threads.

sunshinemmum Sat 07-Jun-14 12:19:44

But this isn't just one instance. It happens time a time again on these boards even if the post is from people who want to start a discussion around a shared faith. It happened on a thread I started asking for inspirational Christian readings and I see it on countless other threads, which was immediately pounced on. I wonder if people speak to others in RL in the same derisive disrespectful way that they do on here.

I have many discussions with friends who are atheists, I was one myself until adulthood, but I have not encountered the amount of vitriol I see on here. There is no sense of a balanced discussion, more of a collective, ritual humiliation. Very tedious!

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 12:21:52

Oh and I should say - the rudeness is always the same people. And usually I don't even remember usernames.

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 12:23:41

Exactly Sunshine. I very much doubt that people are so rude in RL to anyone.

Some posters on MN are open about not respecting religions so MNHQ has a problem on its hands as basic netiquette about respect cannot apply unless a strong line is taken and I suspect that there is a policy decision by MNHQ not to take that line.

msrisotto Sat 07-Jun-14 12:27:42

There is no proof of supernatural beings, winged or otherwise so no. I don't believe.

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 12:28:52

The problem is though, green - it's ok to not accept religions or spirituality but on this board it always crosses over to personal, eg

'Why do you think..... Although I don't know what kind of response I could hope to get from someone who....'

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 12:32:28

Another one is

'I think you are lying'

Not acceptable - it implies the poster is basically a troll and that they are posting with malicious intent. That really makes me angry.

Whereas they could have said 'I think you must have imagined it'

Flowerfae Sat 07-Jun-14 12:49:30

Hi, yes I do and I get white feathers sometimes, I have kept them all.

I usually get white feathers during stressful times, I thought they were just bird feathers at first (although they are totally white) I'd find them in in odd places... like one in the middle of the carpet in the living room, another on top of a pile of washing (we don't have feather pillows). The one that convinced me though was one that dropped out of the air onto my knee (it didn't blow sideways or anything so I doubt it had come in through a window.. it just dropped downwards).

I used to be with a group who did paranormal investigations and hadn't been out with them for a while, but last year I went out with them one time and there was a lady there who was a medium, and she told me who they were from (a friend who died when I was younger...) she said that he was looking out for my children, and a lot of other things to do with him which really wasn't possible for her to know as I don't discuss them with anyone. I'm actually quite sceptical about mediums, I think a lot of them just read the person rather then speaking to a spirit... she was the only one (and I've met quite a lot) who I did believe. The following morning my little girl came downstairs with a big white feather... saying she'd found it on her pillow.

He did actually say they were angel feathers, and that they were a gift, but that they were not his, as angel's are separate entities and were never human smile

sunshinemmum Sat 07-Jun-14 13:42:40

I think that you have hit the nail on the head Green

SquidlyTunes Sat 07-Jun-14 14:09:15

The most serious concern for me is the lack of respect and care shown for others as real human beings in some people answer their posts, especially when they don't believe their spiritual views.

We should always remember that there are REAL people behind the posts, and the manner in which we respond to them and the words and tones we use can really hurt and bring them down far beyond the press of the "post message" button.

Let me draw a parallel with this to some other scenarios: like that of firing a missile from a long distance away by pressing a button, or dropping a bomb from a plane high up, or firing a weapon from behind a cover. In all these cases where you can't see the people on the receiving end, the effects of the weapon are not lessened, and nor is the responsibility of the person firing the weapon. They still wound, maim, hurt and destroy, or cause traumatic stress, long after the button pusher has moved on to something else, perhaps even laughing at the perceived stupidity of the receipent(s).

As others, such as sunshinemmum and lottieandmias, have said, ask yourself before you post something negative about an individual's belief or viewpoint, whether you would use such a tone and language to a good friend you cared for who was standing in front of you, even they happened to express a viewpoint with which you didn't agree? If not, then don't post that message! Instead, rewrite it in a very different way - one which simply expresses that you don't agree with it and why from a personal point of view, and completely refraining from adding statements of personal derision and attack.

I do not personally believe such white feathers are angels, nor are left by them as a sign. But I would be happy to have a friendly dialogue/discussion with someone who did, explaining my viewpoints and hearing theirs. But I would never dream of attacking or putting them down personally. As others have pointed out, there are good, non-personally attacking ways of doing this, and those are the only ones that should be used in any such discussion, whether online anonymously or in person.

Remeber that you never know what state, background or situation the anonymous person you are posting about is in. Something personally negative that you say, maybe even without much thought, could really hurt and push them into depression, etc. They've probably come onto this forum in an unsure state seeing support in the first place.

SO REMEMBER BEFORE YOU PRESS - there's a REAL HUMAN at the other end of that button!

Always have love, care and respect for one another, whether you know them or not, and in so doing, some form of heaven (whatever your beliefs or not!), will then exist on earth and be shown through you.

msrisotto Sat 07-Jun-14 14:12:59

Some people just dislike it when people disagree with them. The op asked a question and got mixed replies, lets not FTFO.

Scousadelic Sat 07-Jun-14 14:30:41

mrsrisotto I think you are missing the point.

I have no particular axe to grind on this, I find both sides of the discussion interesting and am open-minded but a bit cynical (if that makes sense!). What I object to is the rudeness and lack of respect. There is a difference, if a poster asks "Is this an angel feather?", between saying "My opinion is that it is unlikely as science says angels don't exist" or "I think you are wrong but if that makes you feel better..." and saying "You are simple-minded and gullible. What kind of pathetic fool believes in angels?" and returning with insult after insult whenever anyone has an alternative opinion. You may think the latter but the former would be more polite and allow a discussion to continue rather than frightening people away. It's that kind of dogmatic viciousness that gets MN a bad name at times

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 14:34:14

I don't have any problem with people disagreeing with me, in fact I expect it to happen.

What I do have a problem with is nasty, personal comments directed at me and my family and my parenting.

sunshinemmum Sat 07-Jun-14 14:45:42

Instead, rewrite it in a very different way - one which simply expresses that you don't agree with it and why from a personal point of view, and completely refraining from adding statements of personal derision and attack.

Yes exactly, this has nothing to do with disagreeing and opposing view points. If someone wants to start a discussion about angels, ghosts or inspirational Christian writing, then they should be able to do so without the personal attacks that we have seen on this thread. Many threads have become a farce because of bear baiting dressed up as 'debate.'

sunshinemmum Sat 07-Jun-14 14:57:39

And if you'd like an example of this Mrs Risoto. Look at the difference in the way that my thread on uplifting Christian literature (I have bumped this) has derogatory comments, versus the way that posters on Atheists.... opinions please thread have been left to have a conversation in peace.

I think that there should be some intervention from MNHQ (rather than the divine wink to stop the harassment on certain threads, by certain posters.

headinhands Sat 07-Jun-14 15:36:53

serious concern for me is the lack of respect

What's going to happen to me if you don't respect my view? What if I post that I think god hates gay people. Will you pussy foot around me in case your differing opinion offends? Beliefs don't need respecting. The idea that we should automatically respect them is both dangerous and silly. However, I will uphold your right to hold whatever view you want, I won't respect it unless I consider it worthy ie it fits with reality and isn't ridiculous.

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 15:46:53

Headinhands - so you think personal attacks are ok?

Please do not compare belief in a spiritual world with racism or homophobia which cause direct harm to others.

Hakluyt Sat 07-Jun-14 16:12:32

The trouble is. I'm not sure what you mean by personal attacks, lottie. You thought I was being disrespectful when I suggested that the person you says your daughter sees is an imaginary friend because it turns out you only wanted to hear from people who will say "yes, that's definitely an angel". You asked about a Doreen Virtue cards- but obviously didn't"5 want to hear about her multi million dollar business and her fake PhD.

If you actually ask a question, then you have to expect both sides to answer you. I never post on a Christian prayer threads, for example, because they aren't asking questions, they are praying together. But if somebody asked "do you think prayer works?" I would reply with the massive body of research that shows it doesn't.

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 16:17:16

Hak your posts weren't personal attacks. I don't think I've said they were? You know what personal attacks are and I have given examples recently in the thread so please read those.

Hakluyt Sat 07-Jun-14 16:23:28

So if it's only a couple of people doing the personal attacking, why not ignore them? People seem to be able to ignore facts, evidence and challenges to particularly outrageous statements, so a couple of over excited rationalists should be a piece of cake.

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 16:25:04

Wrt the Doreen Virtue cards I asked if anyone used them that's all - you obviously don't.

Hakluyt Sat 07-Jun-14 16:26:54

But if you know she's a fraud surely that's all you need to know? Why would you want to persue it use it any further?

GarlicJuneBlooms Sat 07-Jun-14 16:27:57

Can we have some pictures of angel feathers, please?

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 16:30:32

I didn't think it was personal for you to say my dd probably has an imaginary friend of course not but there are a few people who do go on almost all the threads on these boards posting derisive and personal comments and it does become quite tiresome.

I think these people don't like there to be a board about spirituality at all and would like it to be shut down because it's 'not real' and therefore they hijack every thread with sneering. I can understand people wanting to debate the existence of god or not etc but it's clear certain posters despise the notion of any such thing. In that case I can't see why they deliberately seek to find posts about the very topic they can't stand. So the only conclusion I can come to is that it's to be deliberately inflammatory. I hope that isn't the case - maybe they feel particularly strongly because they've been damaged by coerced religion? Who knows?

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 16:31:28

A lot of people don't think she's a fraud. You obviously do but there are a lot of people who don't share your opinion.

Hakluyt Sat 07-Jun-14 16:33:12

Yes. But the people who don,t think she's a fraud are the ones who are too closed minded to actually look at the evidence.

Hakluyt Sat 07-Jun-14 16:35:40

It is very frustrating to see people being gulled into parting with their money,nor being given false hope or just generally being scammed/hoaxed into believing stuff that it provably not true. And it particularly frustrating when children are involved.

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 16:36:37

I may be wrong but...I don't think people think angel feathers are an actual physical sign that angels exist - they would not be found to have angel DNA. But people see them as symbolic - things to look out for. I often see signs that I would say give me answers - songs that come on the radio for example or a reading at church that is relevant to my situation even though I don't go a great deal. Some people take these things as guidance and others would say they were a coincidence.

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 16:37:30

Personally I think it's closed minded to assume people haven't had experiences just because you haven't had them yourself.

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 16:41:18

'Too closed minded to look at the evidence'

The whole point is that some people don't need evidence to know something is true for them. And if that bothers you then maybe you need to ask yourself why.

I think they are a lovely idea, especially for those of us who have experienced a significant loss. I sometimes feel I have a guardian angel now that my DNephew passed away recently.
I'm hoping he will be helping me do even better at "winging it" since he and I both have a natural affinity for that skill anyway smile
I talked with some of his good friends about my guardian angel before I went for my interview recently - they said he'd definitely sort it for me just like he just had for one of them - and I did get the job smile
Hopefully healing stuff all round, but maybe you have to be a little careful that you have a shared understanding on what is behind your words. That is for me it's more of a beautiful and comforting idea than something I truly believe.
I wonder if your Mum is putting the feathers near your baby as it's her idea where they came from?
I would find it all a bit mysterious too I think.

Hakluyt Sat 07-Jun-14 16:42:05

but they don't say that. They say "this is an angel's feather" which is plainly absurd.

My mother loved robins. When I see a robin it makes me happy because it makes me think of her. But if I said "every time I see a robin I know that it's my mother coming to see if I'm OK" that would be absurd.

Hakluyt Sat 07-Jun-14 16:44:02

People are entitled to their own opinions, but not to their own facts.

If something is true, it's true. Truth is not subjective.

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 16:53:04

I think some truths are subjective.

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 16:58:13

By which I mean truths relating to one persons perception.

headinhands Sat 07-Jun-14 17:04:25

assume people haven't had experiences

I'm sure they've had experiences. It's how they interpret them that is the issue at hand.

headinhands Sat 07-Jun-14 17:05:23

Either angels are real or they aren't, that's philosophy, determining reality.

Scousadelic Sat 07-Jun-14 17:06:30

Hak On your point of vulnerable people being tricked out of money, obviously that is vile but shutting down discussion on anything psychic or spiritual is not going to solve that and, possibly, bringing things out into the open might make it more difficult for charlatans. As a society we have approached the issue of vulnerable girls being pressured into sex by empowering them with openness and information, would that approach not work here too? If someone has seen discussions of why some people believe and others don't they may make a more informed decision whether to be involved with these practitioners.

I also think the "given false hope" argument is difficult. I can think of situations where I would sooner have hope than not even if it was ludicrously optimistic. If an outcome is inevitable, would you force reality on someone if hope gave them a more positive outlook that made their life easier?

I admit I don't know the answer to these questions but think we have to be careful before imposing our own judgements on others

SquidlyTunes Sat 07-Jun-14 17:25:19

headinhands, you've misunderstood and incompletely quoted my previous post to alter its meaning (from respecting people to respecting beliefs). You should've quoted that line in full:

The most serious concern for me is the lack of respect _and care shown for others as real human beings_

And thus in replying with: "Beliefs don't need respecting. The idea that we should automatically respect them is both dangerous and silly", you are mistakenly answering something I never said and a point I didn't make smile.

Of course some beliefs are very dangerous and lead to hatred towards others, such as the example you gave, and thus your statement about not automatically respecting every view is valid, and measures should be in place to address and curb those, and indeed there are such things (eg. anti-racism and hatred laws, etc.). If expressed in the context of an online forum like this, I would expect such views to be deleted by the moderator and the poster possibly denied future access.

But as I say, all that's completely missed the point I and others have been saying. Which is, that it IS fine to express disbelief and different views, but HOW you do it is very important and personal attacks on someone (others have given examples of this) are NOT acceptable.

Hope that makes it clearer. But if not, consider this: If your boss or good colleague at work made a suggestion on how something should be done that you thought utterly ridiculous, how would you answer? Presumably you would rightly say you didn't think it was a good idea and explain why....but would you also make personally attacking statements about him/her (eg. telling them that they're stupid, an idiot, etc. for thinking and suggesting it)? I would hope not.

But hopefully you get the point and appreciate the distinction smile

sunshinemmum Sat 07-Jun-14 17:52:29

I sat with my Grandmother and her sister at different points during their final days. Both spoke of seeing messengers by the bed who had spoken to them about heaven/another world. My Great Aunt had been two elderly and ill to visit her sister, so they hadn't influenced one another. My Grandmother told me the exact day she would die and she described where she was going.

Both were on pain relief, both experience can be explained away by hallucination. It wouldn't have entered my head to tell them categorically that they were seeing things and that when you are dead that is it. I'm not trying to prove that angels exist or don't exist, but I think that you can be respectful of people who hold these beliefs.

I wouldn't dream of barging onto a clearly marked Atheism thread, such as Atheists ... opinions please and imposing my Christian perspective and yet, other than the prayer thread, people insist on deriding people on threads which have a clear Christian context.

Hakluyt Sat 07-Jun-14 17:57:09

It's interesting that we are filling up the thread with stuff about one or two posters who get bit overexcited in their scepticism, but completely ignoring the appalling abuse that the peddlers of "woo" perpetrate. Personally, I would rather have a sceptic who takes it a step too far than a person who claims to be able to find lost children psychically. I find the fact that the "woo" brigade have signally failed to challenge the person who made that claim deeply worrying.

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 17:59:18

What 'abuse' are we talking about? confused

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 17:59:39

Most of us probably agree that trying to get business on here is not on.

Hakluyt Sat 07-Jun-14 18:07:04

Have you heard of Sylvia Browne?

No more comment about the poster claiming to have found lost children?

sunshinemmum Sat 07-Jun-14 18:11:22

one or two posters who get bit overexcited in their scepticism

I think you'll find there is a core of people who seem to patrol the boards regularly to put the boot in, whilst also enjoying threads of their own philosophy, without the same harassment. On the other hand you want to talk about one poster, who isn't even the original poster.

I'm not going to call Indigo on her posts, because we don't have the facts here. I don't know what she does, or what she charges for, but I do know that people pay for Reiki and such. I have experienced this and didn't think much of it, but I have friends who find this treatment healing.

Indigo also says that she used her gift to help find a missing child. Again we have no more details on this, because she was railroaded off the thread. I don't think I can make an informed comment on this, or agree that it has an abusive context, because we just don't know what she is talking about. If you feel that it constitutes an abuse Hak then you should report it to MNHQ.

I have said up thread that I am uncomfortable with any kind of spiritual healing personally, which use the laying on of hands.

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 18:28:48

Indigo has helped me in the past with no suggestion of wanting to do so for a fee. I've also had another energy healer who gave us hours of her time for free in RL.

Hakluyt Sat 07-Jun-14 18:28:55

"Again we have no more details on this, because she was railroaded off the thread."

Can you think of any possible way that her categorical statement that she found missing children using her gifts is an acceptable thing to say?

An I am happy to link to proper academic studies showing that Reiki performs no better than placebo.

Hakluyt Sat 07-Jun-14 18:29:34

Lottie she said she had found missing children.

sunshinemmum Sat 07-Jun-14 18:38:37

I have said that I can't comment on that Hak, I don't know why she said this or what the evidence. I can agree that it sounds spurious, whether it is dangerous, abusive or just plain unacceptable, would depend on what else she has to say.

I am a Christian, any experiences I have had of the supernatural along the way, have bee dubious and I personally would not dabble with them. However, there are spiritualist churches out there with a following and people who believe that they are mediums, just as I have my belief system. I don't really see why this had to become a one woman witch hunt.

HermioneWeasley Sat 07-Jun-14 18:38:56

To answer the OP, no I don't believe in angels but I do believe in birds. I suspect they are more likely to be the source of your feathers.

sunshinemmum Sat 07-Jun-14 19:01:50

If she came to you with any kind of evidence of her healing or other gifts, you would call in anecdotal wouldn't you?

sunshinemmum Sat 07-Jun-14 19:02:44

I should have added 'perceived' to her gifts.

Hakluyt Sat 07-Jun-14 19:14:29

On the other thread she asked somebody to set up a
scientific test of her powers. I said that I would and asked her to pm me her details. She hasn't posted since.

It's not a witch hunt. She has made very specific claims and therefore should expect to be challenged on them. And I find it worrying that apparantly the 'woo believers' are happy for her to make such claims.

But anyway. Back to discussing the best form of words for a non believer to express her views without causing offence, might I suggest "you know hun, I' m not absolutely sure I agree with everything you say but I m probably wrong. What do I know after all- and what do those silly old scientists know"

HermioneWeasley Sat 07-Jun-14 19:23:10

hakluyt I think I love you

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 19:23:37

She hasn't made specific claims though.

sunshinemmum Sat 07-Jun-14 19:24:06

Hak I don't think that anyone is suggesting that approach. Yes, in this instance the thread asks for a debate, but IB did start off by saying 'I believe.' There should also be room for support threads for people who share the same values or beliefs, to be able to do so without bombardment.

On the other thread about having a dedicated section for 'woo' poster promised to be right there with IB. I'd suggest that this is being done in order to target and humiliate an individual personally.

lottieandmias Sat 07-Jun-14 19:30:03

I would be the first to admit that I have had experiences of religious organisations who behave in a damaging way to individuals. I once lived with a girl who was apparently a Christian at university. Her views were abhorrent for my way of thinking. She thought gay people were better off dead so they could be with God. The local Christian Union promoted similar views.

But it's not fair to assume that all people who believe in a spiritual world are damaging other people. Most of the time they are not.

sunshinemmum Sat 07-Jun-14 19:34:21

Hak can you show me your scientific evidence for and against the existence of angels please?

Hakluyt Sat 07-Jun-14 20:05:12

"She hasn't made specific claims though."

She said she had used her gifts to help find lost children. Seems pretty specific to me.

SquidlyTunes Sat 07-Jun-14 20:11:03

Ultimately a faith and belief in God comes from an open heart (even if only a fraction) and a personal revelation. Therefore by definition it can't be used to prove it to someone else. If someone chooses to seek, they will find. If they actively don't then they won't, and no amount of discussion will convince them otherwise. But we can all choose to respect others whatever they believe as long as they're not spreading hatred.

HermioneWeasley Sat 07-Jun-14 20:16:59

Why should I respect views that go against all known science and are supported by no evidence? Why should we respect views no matter how ridiculous?

sunshinemmum Sat 07-Jun-14 20:23:23

I agree with Squidly I don't think that science can be used to categorically proved or disprove matters of belief. You could perhaps put forward a theory for visitations/hallucinations but I can't see either side being able to 'prove' this as a concrete fact. There was the mass sighting of an angel on a battle field, during the first world war, which may be explained away by mass hysteria... or not.

As Lottie has said this makes the matter subjective. I am bowing out though, it would be great if there was some way of separating the sections in to specific support and bunfight /debating areas, as suggested by Green on another thread.

GarlicJuneBlooms Sat 07-Jun-14 20:37:53

I dunno hmm On the Site Stuff thread, MrsRTea proposed a thread for psychologically helpful strategies, which would include stuff like meditation and visualisations. I'd like this; I use it all the time and am an avid follower of neuroscience - the scientific sort! - to inform & motivate my thinking (I have severe depression: I need to use MH management techniques, but they are the same ones used by business and athletic coaches.)

When I've occasionally started a thread, or posted on another's, to discuss & share ideas, my posts have always been misinterpreted by both woo and anti-woo respondents as referring to woo shit. This board should be the ideal place for such a thread. The practices encompass both philosophy and 'spirituality' with a smattering of quasi-religion and a lot of science. In practice, though, the only thread that wasn't hijacked was in Mental Health, where a poster wanted to know how psychotherapy can possibly work.

It gets on my nerves when people refuse to see the difference between imagining and believing. As I keep saying, it's a very long stretch from "I found a feather, and it reminded me of the beauty in the world" to "I found a feather and knew my angel was with me." But people keep insisting on making that stretch. Not only that, but they come over all sarcastic when I reply the feather was quite enough at that moment, thank you, I don't believe in supernatural beings!

I have to work quite hard at not feeling anxious for the evidently huge amount of people who're ready to attribute explicable phenomena to inexplicable sources. I'm already anxious enough. Fuck it, I WILL try starting a thread in Mental Health and abandon it when it goes all woo. Just really posting this because I know some of this board's regulars do get it ... you know who you are flowers

BoreOfWhabylon Sat 07-Jun-14 20:52:29

There was the mass sighting of an angel on a battle field, during the first world war, which may be explained away by mass hysteria... or not.

There really wasn't any mass sighting though. The Angel of Mons is legend based on a fictional story about ghostly archers appearing on a battlefield, written by a newspaper reporter called Arthur Machin. The legend sprang up afterwards.

Wikipedia has quite a good summary.

sunshinemmum Sat 07-Jun-14 21:06:32

Yeah realised I meant to type 'alleged' mass sighting, as soon as I posted. It is a bad example. I am sceptical myself at times with some of 'healings' at super natural type behaviours that I have seen at New wine, but I can't discredit every experience on the basis of scientific disbelief.

BoreOfWhabylon Sat 07-Jun-14 21:26:03

It is understandable that people wanted to believe at the time. Beliefs can be very comforting.

firstchoice Sat 07-Jun-14 21:30:13

IF I have a guardian angel then he/she could sure do with sorting things out a bit???

I wonder about 'bad' ones?

I was once told I had a 'black shroud dripping down over me' by some charmer? sad

firstchoice Sat 07-Jun-14 21:31:28

sorry, should clarify the 'charmer' wasn't someone I had consulted, just a random person (the janitor at my Uni Halls, many years ago)

GarlicJuneBlooms Sun 08-Jun-14 03:55:00

Janitors are often weird wink I suspect they end up doing that job because they don't have to interact much with other people! The wise response to "There's a black shroud dripping over you" might be "There's a blocked toilet on the second floor." Shrouds don't drip, anyway grin

headinhands Sun 08-Jun-14 08:45:43

I don't think that science can be used to categorically proved or disprove matters of belief.

They can when those beliefs involve claims like 'I have a gift that I use to find missing people'. We could look at the evidence of them finding a missing child and any evidence for there being a natural explanation and so on.

sunshinemmum Sun 08-Jun-14 09:27:34

HIH can I ask another question? If you flick through the back of lots of women's magazines, or channel hop through the TV channels, there are dozens of adverts for people offering services as psychics and mediums. Unless you have been locked in a science lab for twenty years, you should be aware that this is out there, so I don't really understand the outrage around this. There is an assumption being made that IB, is charging vulnerable people for her services and yet Lottie has said that she has been helped by IB in some way, without being charged.

I don't know but guess that IB comes from the US, where this seems to be more mainstream. There are also people who have their charts read and or visit tarot card readers. I personally would never visit or use these services because of my faith. These people are asking for a place on the boards to be able to discuss these topics.

Obviously, I can understand people challenging IB statements of fact around finding missing children. Posters is calling for people flag this up as an abuse, whilst at the same time expecting the free reign to ridicule the religious belief of others. It seems a little hypocritical to me.

sunshinemmum Sun 08-Jun-14 09:30:32

I didn't ask the question grin Why is it unacceptable for IB to post what she does (or believe she does) on an internet forum? Surely it is better to challenge her views individually, than to insist that others accept your point of view.

headinhands Sun 08-Jun-14 09:45:51

free reign to ridicule the religious beliefs of others

Absolutely. I will ridicule the ridiculous. You think it would be good if we couldn't?

Hakluyt Sun 08-Jun-14 09:52:07

"I don't think that science can be used to categorically proved or disprove matters of belief.

They can when those beliefs involve claims like 'I have a gift that I use to find missing people'. We could look at the evidence of them finding a missing child and any evidence for there being a natural explanation and so on."

As I said earlier, IndigoBarbie asked someone to set up a scientific test to investigate her powers. I said I could, and asked her to PM me her details so we could organise it. She hasn't posted since.

sunshinemmum Sun 08-Jun-14 10:01:54

Absolutely. I will ridicule the ridiculous. You think it would be good if we couldn't?

Thank you, you have answered my point without answering my question. You say that have every right to be have in a derogatory way towards people of faith and yet Hak calls for others to accept her point of view categorically because their is a 'perceived' abuse. So on the one hand we want absolute freedom to post, but not for those who have views that we personally find unacceptable. I should imagine that there are a number of people who find themselves as being 'vulnerable to abuse' from these kind of services condescending.

sunshinemmum Sun 08-Jun-14 10:02:22

there not their wink

CoteDAzur Sun 08-Jun-14 10:05:29

Everyone does have absolute freedom to post their ideas.

As do others who tell them what they think about those ideas.

Attacking people is not allowed. Attacking ideas is called "debate".

sunshinemmum Sun 08-Jun-14 10:17:00

*"guardian angels, their vibration is specifically aligned to their charge "

Stop. Please. Can't breathe. grin

And you think this is debate?

Hakluyt Sun 08-Jun-14 11:05:49

"Hak calls for others to accept her point of view categorically because their is a 'perceived' abuse. "

No I don't.

sunshinemmum Sun 08-Jun-14 11:14:41

You repeatedly asked others to challenge IB on both threads, because you believe you have proved your viewpoint. I think it is fine to challenge her and to offer a chance for a study. I don't understand your outrage that she should post her views on a discussion forum, particularly as the OP invites a view point about the existence of angels.

sunshinemmum Sun 08-Jun-14 11:15:54

It's interesting that we are filling up the thread with stuff about one or two posters who get bit overexcited in their scepticism, but completely ignoring the appalling abuse that the peddlers of "woo" perpetrate.

Hakluyt Sun 08-Jun-14 11:22:08

Sunshinemum-it is not her belief in angels that I am challenging.

It is her assertion that she has used her gifts to find lost children. I think it is entirely reasonable to expect anyone to agree that making a claim like that without any supporting evidence is unacceptable. So yes, on this point I do expect other people to agree with me.

CalamityKate1 Sun 08-Jun-14 11:36:34

Sorry but anyone who claims to have found lost children with their "gifts" deserves every bit of derision aimed at them. Disgusting lies to peddle.

lottieandmias Sun 08-Jun-14 11:44:04

Ah but people don't attack ideas - they make obvious attacks at the people posting them.

Hakluyt Sun 08-Jun-14 11:45:31

Lottie. Ignore them. There are only a couple of posters who do that. Ignore, and carry on the debate.

What was it you were saying about IB and her ability to find lost children?

sunshinemmum Sun 08-Jun-14 11:51:25

I agree Lottie, I do think that IB was attacked from the outset. There are widespread groups of people and spiritualist churches, who no doubt hold the same belief around supernatural powers or intuition. IB may believe what she says, we don't know anything about these claims.

I think you can either have a board where people can post whatever they wish, including insulting comments about what people believe, or a situation where a poster is told that what she has written is totally unacceptable, because you don't believe that she is telling the truth or believe what she has to say.

lottieandmias Sun 08-Jun-14 11:54:47

Hak - yes you are probably right. The problem is that some of the unpleasantness I have encountered has made me (unfairly) prickly towards people who are just putting their point of view and have a genuine debate. I shouldn't assume everyone is the same.

But wrt IB, she didn't elaborate on exactly what she meant or her interaction with any parents. It's therefore a bit unfair to assume anything about her and what she does.

Scousadelic Sun 08-Jun-14 11:55:55

I agree Lottie This thread and the other seem to have degenerated into witch hunt by a couple of posters.

Attacking people is not allowed. Attacking ideas is called "debate". Absolutely agree but would you call free reign to ridicule the religious beliefs of others. Absolutely. I will ridicule the ridiculous debate? I don't see much debate there, just insult. Debate encourages thought and discussion, it is not debate to simply insult another's viewpoint

I am bowing out of this now as it is clear that some posters are close minded, think they know everything categorically and feel entitled to browbeat others with it but I think it's important to note that, clinically, pain is defined as "an unpleasant physical sensation which may be accompanied by mental and emotional distress". Most therapies, psychics, etc aim to help people. If reiki, homeopathy, angels or anything else ease that distress for people then it is not for anyone else to deny them because it doesn't fit with their view of scientifically explainable

lottieandmias Sun 08-Jun-14 12:00:58

When the religion and philosophy topic started out it was reasonable iirc and people did just used to post alternative views without being rude. Absolutely fine. But since then it has definitely degenerated into making suggestions that people are crazy, ill, stupid or bad parents. It's not tolerated anywhere else on the site so it should not be here. There are unfortunately some people who really don't care whose feelings they hurt. Consequently, a lot of people including me just don't post stuff on here any more because we know what the outcome will be. Even if it is just one or two posters it's enough to put you off. Which is what they want.

headinhands Sun 08-Jun-14 12:29:45

making suggestions that people are crazy

If you see specific posters breaking posting rules you should report to MNHQ for their attention. Fwiw I've had some pretty nasty things implied about me with all manner of threats of divine punishment, does it hurt my feelings much? Not really. I'd probably clear off if I couldn't cope with it.

Earlier I made the suggestion that we wouldn't respect homophobia. Until recent history such views were mainstream. Ultimately someone will be hurt by any opinion. Not debating because of the fear of hurting feelings is ridiculous. If I had beliefs that were so easily shaken and I wasn't interested in having them examined I would avoid airing them, I wouldn't even read the message boards.

Hakluyt Sun 08-Jun-14 12:38:23

"But since then it has definitely degenerated into making suggestions that people are crazy, ill, stupid or bad parents."

Presumably you have reported this? What did MNHQ say?

lottieandmias Sun 08-Jun-14 12:39:05

No Headinhands it's perfectly possible to have a debate without getting personal and nasty and accusing people of being bad parents.

Yes you can get the comments deleted. But it's the same nastiness on nearly every thread and I do think it's a deliberate attempt to stop people posting.

headinhands Sun 08-Jun-14 12:40:28

Wouldn't it just be better if we challenged the perceived attacks? That's what I have done when it's happened to me. Someone says 'god's going to punish you for saying he's not real' and I've said 'how do you know? Why would he do that? How is that justifiable?' And so on. Use debate to counter the insults by asking why/how etc. To be honest when people say 'ouch, you hurt my feelings when you don't believe what I do' it just sounds like 'go away, your reason and logic is spoiling my game'.

Hakluyt Sun 08-Jun-14 12:41:00

Lottie- people really do seem to regard any dissent as an attack. I have not seen accusations of bad parenting- is this something that happened to you?

lottieandmias Sun 08-Jun-14 12:42:01

Yes Hak.

lottieandmias Sun 08-Jun-14 12:43:36

My overall general point is the the tone on this board has definitely changed and become more and more aggressive and there is no need for it.

After I encountered personal comments about me I was pmed by at least a few people each time who said that they had had to put up with the same thing.

Hakluyt Sun 08-Jun-14 12:45:40

Presumably you reported their poster?

You were rather talking as if it happened a lot, rather than one poster having an issue with something you said.

Also- if a poster genuinely thought that something you were doing was bad for your children, surely they have the right to say so?

GarlicJuneBlooms Sun 08-Jun-14 12:47:43

Not debating because of the fear of hurting feelings is ridiculous.

Exactly this, Head.

When people experience attacks on their opinions as personal attacks, it means their opinions are so precious/fragile that they can't defend them. Instead of insisting critics should shut up, they'd do better to find out how to defend their position. There are some full-on muslims & christians here, for example, who are very capable of robust discussion without any loss of mutual respect. Woo believers, in general, seem unable to cope with it.

When I was little, one of the neighbour's children used to insist on being given a head start in races - and on a no-overtaking rule! She'd throw massive tantrums if we said we wouldn't race under conditions that guaranteed her winning. Eventually we gave up on her and she had to 'race' on her own. These discussions feel like that to me.

lottieandmias Sun 08-Jun-14 12:47:53

No they do not have the right to say so - they know nothing about my situation or my children. And the comments were deleted. You are always going to get some heated threads where comments are deleted but it's not usually the same people saying the same stuff.

lottieandmias Sun 08-Jun-14 12:49:15

You're missing the point Garlic - mumsnet does have a policy of basic netiquette and a philosophy regarding how to treat others.

Hakluyt Sun 08-Jun-14 12:49:55

So MNHQ deleted the posts concerned. Surely that shows the system is working?

lottieandmias Sun 08-Jun-14 12:51:35

I've said plenty of times and so have others that it's fine to attack an idea or belief but not to make rude and personal comments directed the poster themselves. It would not be allowed on education or feeding threads so it should not be allowed here.

It's not a hard concept to grasp. I'm going to hide this thread now because I've more than made my point.

Hakluyt Sun 08-Jun-14 12:55:56

But everyone's agreeing with you!

SquidlyTunes Sun 08-Jun-14 13:06:44

I agree with sunshine, lottie and the others who clearly understand that it's perfectly possible (and correct) to challenge views, beliefs and ideas and explain why you disagree and have a debate around that, without resorting to personal attacks against a person, their intelligence, character, etc. The latter is never acceptable.

As a firm and very grounded long-time Christian, I'd have no problems debating with someone of another faith, a "spiritualist" or atheist about the rights and wrongs of different beliefs and thoughts of spiritual matters (or even lack of in the case of an atheist). But I'd never attack them as a person! In debating, my aim would be to explain from my point why I thought their views weren't right with my understanding (or dcould even be dangerous in certain spiritual matters like the occult, etc.). My hope would be that my thoughts might mean something to them, whether now or in the future. Likewise, I'm sure they'd be hoping the same.

And on the aspect of science disproofing the existance of God, etc., you might be interested to not that I'm both a scientist (degree in Physiology) and IT manager. I'm very much into reading and understanding the latest theories of the origins of the cosmos, the material world, quantum physics, etc. I really enjoy that stuff and seeing the wonder of understanding God's creation in it. The two ARE perfectly possible and don't have to be contradictory!

SquidlyTunes Sun 08-Jun-14 13:10:14

meant note that, not not

Hakluyt Sun 08-Jun-14 13:14:04

Can I respectfully suggest that focussing on the bad behaviour of a couple of posters like this is very efficiently shutting down the discussion? Much more so, I suspect, than the posts of the aforementioned bad guys?

Scousadelic Sun 08-Jun-14 13:37:20

I'm glad there is some agreement here, now all we need is more people posting the 'how do you know? Why would he do that? How is that justifiable?' type responses like headinhands says and less of the personal attacks that some posters have suffered

sunshinemmum Sun 08-Jun-14 15:10:46

Well, what I wanted to say about angels was, that they seem to be a universal source of comfort and inspiration, regardless of faith. It gave me great comfort to think that both my Grandmother and her sister saw/felt the presence of angels and a sense of home coming, during those awful final days.

I often feel moved by/in awe of the beautiful works of art depicting angels and sometimes find a sense of peace, when I come across on one unexpectedly.

CoteDAzur Sun 08-Jun-14 15:59:29

Do you think it is possible that there are no such things as angels?

sunshinemmum Sun 08-Jun-14 16:27:46

... such as these that were strangely arresting against such an ancient backdrop. I know that these are art or symbolic, but they were actually quite awe inspiring. I feel similarly about images of the annunciation.

www.bbc.co.uk/wiltshire/content/image_galleries/salisbury_cathedral_nativity_gallery.shtml?12

I'd be interested in hearing from those who do believe, (regardless of belief system) what their experiences are and why they are inspired by angels.

CoteDAzur Sun 08-Jun-14 16:43:58

Re "debate" - We have tried to have a debate and it hasn't happened. Do you know why? Because there have been no replies to any attempts to have a conversation. The reason why debate just doesn't happen on woo threads is that woo people don't engage in debate and instead go "Waah, you don't respect my beliefs!".

See below. No replies to any of them.

CoteDAzur Thu 05-Jun-14 21:47:29
What is the energy you think you use to heal people, Indigo?
It's not heat.
It's not electricity.
It's not nuclear (I hope).
What is it?

CoteDAzur Wed 04-Jun-14 16:55:57
I'm curious - Do you people think angels have physical wings of bird feathers? Or that angels go about plucking feathers off birds so they can leave them around for you?

CoteDAzur Wed 04-Jun-14 20:58:21
"If people were to say 'In my opinion' I would not have a problem with anything they said at all"
Do I have to say "In my opinion, unicorns don't exist"?
If not, why not?

CoteDAzur Thu 05-Jun-14 12:22:56
"a lot of people on here don't even know what energy healers actually do. Otherwise you wouldn't be talking about laying on of hands or supernatural powers."
Please enlighten us. What 'energy' are we talking about here that is not supernatural?

CoteDAzur Sun 08-Jun-14 16:44:40

sunshine - Do you think it is at all possible that there are no such things as angels?

Scousadelic Sun 08-Jun-14 16:56:19

Nicely phrased Cote grin I don't think it is possible to say absolutely definitively if angels exist or if there is no such thing, to my knowledge there is no absolute proof of their existence but that does not prove they do not exist, we can only say what we believe. People also think of angels differently; a white robed "biblical" angel with wings or a stranger who is there unexpectedly and often inexplicably in a moment of need

I think it is lovely that people get comfort from angels or the idea of angels and agree that their depiction in art is often very moving

Hakluyt Sun 08-Jun-14 17:03:55

"Why are you so sure these feathers aren't coming out of your duvet?"

"Why don't angels leave less ambiguous signs of their presence?"

"Why does this sudden interest in angels seem to coincide with the appearance on the scene of multi millionaire Doreen Virtue (she of the degree mill PhD)?

"What do you mean when you say have you used your gifts to find missing children?"

"If you really are interested in a scientific exploration of your powers, why haven't you responded to my invitation to arrange it for you?"

CoteDAzur Sun 08-Jun-14 17:20:47

"I don't think it is possible to say absolutely definitively if angels exist or if there is no such thing, to my knowledge there is no absolute proof of their existence"

Good. We are getting somewhere smile

So, you are aware that "angels" might just be fiction and therefore that their existence is dubious.

Why would you say there is no doubt in the statements of many here?

Why don't we ever see "I hope there are angels watching over me" or " If I have a guardian angel..." etc?

CoteDAzur Sun 08-Jun-14 17:22:19

I thought the below questions by headinhands would have also led to a good debate if anyone cared to answer them (nobody did in the last 3 days):

headinhands Thu 05-Jun-14 16:53:36
Do we all have guardian angels? Even child rapists?

headinhands Thu 05-Jun-14 16:52:55
What do guardian angels do? Why don't they stop child rapists? Is it the same reason god doesn't? Why are angels so bad at their job in poor countries?

Scousadelic Sun 08-Jun-14 17:22:20

Hak Just out of interest because I am genuinely curious. How would you scientifically investigate somebody's powers? Is the person asked to submit to that damned if they do and damned if they don't? Do you think "absence of proof is not proof of absence" applies here in any way?

Hakluyt Sun 08-Jun-14 17:32:16

IB says that she is an energy healer. It is perfectly possible to construct a double blind experiment which will show whether anything is actually happening. It has been done lots of times to test reiki, therapeutic touch and other therapies.

Scousadelic Sun 08-Jun-14 17:35:39

Cote Don't make me the spokesperson for woo here, I'm more of a devil's advocate myself grin and have no certainty but on that premise:

I agree there is no proof of angels but that does not prove definitively they don't exist. Up until recently there was no proof of various particles like the Higgs Boson but scientists believed in their existence. If somebody has a faith of some sort maybe their belief in angels is similar to that?

And, in the interests of debate. If you believe in guardian angels, maybe the child rapist has a guardian angel but chooses not to listen. Is this an example of man having free will?

Scousadelic Sun 08-Jun-14 17:36:54

How? Do you measure the energy, the quantifiable results or the perceived results?

Hakluyt Sun 08-Jun-14 17:41:24

"various particles like the Higgs Boson but scientists believed in their existence. If somebody has a faith of some sort maybe their belief in angels is similar to that?"

Scientists believed in the Higgs Boson because their experiments had shown that the was a "gap" in the pattern. "All" they had to do was find the necessary jigsaw piece. The difference between science and anti science is that scientists aren't worried about the gaps- they know that eventually discoveries will be made that explains them. Anti scientists fill the gap with "woo".

CoteDAzur Sun 08-Jun-14 17:42:17

I assume a test of powers would be the same as any scientific test:

Placebo-controlled
Randomised
Double-blind

Example:

In one room there would be Indigo. In another, there would be just anyone, with no claims possessing healing "energy". About a hundred people (more, if possible) with the same symptom/condition would be sent to either Indigo or to this other person. List would be randomised, of course, so people sent to them would be totally random. They would go through exactly the same motions (Indigo would show these to the other person). In the end, the subjects would be polled to see how many claim their condition got better and to which degree. Statistical analysis would be done on results.

Then we would see if Indigo did significantly better than placebo (i.e. someone who wasn't doing energy healing at all but acting).

Hakluyt Sun 08-Jun-14 17:42:43

How? Do you measure the energy, the quantifiable results or the perceived results?

If somebody says they are a healer, then there will be some quantifiable or perceived "healing".

HermioneWeasley Sun 08-Jun-14 17:44:27

Scousadelic, there is a difference between scientific discovery (one if the great things about science is new things are always being discovered and if they challenge current thinking they are explored rather than ignored) and hypothesis (that we believe something must exist because of the way things work, but haven't discovered it) and just randomly believing things for which there is no evidence or scientific theory.

"Angel feathers" can be easily explained by birds. There is no need to hypothesise a creature outside all knowledge of the natural world to explain them.

Hakluyt Sun 08-Jun-14 17:44:30

Making sure, of course that the subjects did not know which was the supposed healer.

CoteDAzur Sun 08-Jun-14 18:30:54

"I agree there is no proof of angels but that does not prove definitively they don't exist."

We don't have to (and really can't) prove that something doesn't exist. The onus of proof is on those who claim the exist. And they can't, because they have zero evidence.

This is what woo is - irrational belief, based on no evidence at all.

"Up until recently there was no proof of various particles like the Higgs Boson but scientists believed in their existence. If somebody has a faith of some sort maybe their belief in angels is similar to that?"

No similarity in those instances at all.

Scientists calculated the existence of the Higgs Boson - i.e. they discovered it mathematically.

Just like Paul Dirac discovered the existence of antimatter through mathematical calculations many years before it was possible to observe antiparticles.

"maybe the child rapist has a guardian angel but chooses not to listen"

I believe headinhands' question there was whether a child rapist has a supernatural creature watching out for him, helping him in his endeavours (abducting & raping children) etc. You know, if each of us have a guardian angel with their "vibration specifically aligned to their charge", as was Indigo's claim that had me in stitches.

CoteDAzur Sun 08-Jun-14 18:31:57

"of course that the subjects did not know which was the supposed healer."

Yes, as I said, double-blind - i.e. not only the subjects, but also the people running the test on the ground would not know who the supposed healer is.

Hakluyt Sun 08-Jun-14 18:38:39

Sorry, cote- I just wanted to be sure people understood what "double blind" meant.

Scousadelic Sun 08-Jun-14 20:27:08

Oh I see I misinterpreted the question head had raised. I'm not very good at arguing this as I don't have strong views either way on it, like I said I'm a bit of a devil's advocate but clearly not a very good one on this subject as I admit I am not hugely well informed, must read that Doreen Virtue book! grin

I suppose ultimately though my position is if people want to believe in something, it makes them feel better and doesn't harm anybody else why piss on their parade?

SquidlyTunes Mon 09-Jun-14 10:30:02

To catch up and answer a few of the questions about the nature of angels from my perspective. I do not believe that everyone has an individual guardian angel. I believe in the biblical teachings about angels, namely that they are God's messengers and He can send them to deliver a message or help out in particular situations as needed. Whether these are very rare events or frequent ones where the angels just appear as a normal human to others and so aren't generally known about, I'm not sure. As I understand it from the biblical context and teaching, angels either appear as normal humans (so we wouldn't necessarily know whether and when they're with us), or else on very rare and special occasions (such as the birth of Christ), they appear in a very dramatic and radiant form, presumably deliberately to be known and recognised beyond doubt by the intended audience (eg. the shepherds).

So I don't believe that white feathers are angels, nor that they leave them as signs.

Of course, not all angels, or spirits, are good in my Christian understanding. And, of course, I'm sure a good percentage of claims about them are hoaxes, etc. But that's not to deny their reality from a Christian perspective as scripture does give some teachings about them.

For me, it would be very important to test any perceived message that someone said they had from an angel or other "spiritual" source against scripture. It is vital (for Chrisitians) to test and discern both hoax and evil messages from the truth as we understand it. One of the main tests for us is whether the message supports the nature of Jesus Christ as the Son of God, and does it convey the love, grace, mercy and redemption message as taught by Christ. If such a message failed these basic tests and went against any of them, then it can be instantly rejected as either hoax or bad, etc.

As I say, this is how I believe and understand angels and spirits in very basic terms as a Chrisitian. If anyone was interested in particular bits of scripture to understand where those understandings come from, I'd be happy to share that.

So, hopefully that covers my own understandings smile

skolastica Mon 09-Jun-14 11:24:51

On believing in angels - the problem clearly is that angels, whilst we all think we know what they look like, are not very visible. I haven't seen one. Ever. But I do like the idea of angels.

Yet, religious history is littered with angels - all those huge religious pictures. Are they collective myth? Whose collective myth, East or West - is there a history of angels in China? Do the Australian aborigines acknowledge angels?

Some people do claim to have seen angels. I know one or two. One was clearly shocked, they hadn't really believed it possible.

So, in a discussion about something you that nobody can see, where and how can you take a position?

Many people are clear - they won't believe in something they can't see. Fair enough.

Others are a bit more fey - there's clearly more to the world than meets the eye.

I'm in this latter camp. I can't defend it, I can't explain it, I can't prove it. I don't want to prove it and I don't want to be pushed to prove it. I just want to say 'I believe in angels' and be left alone, it's a statement of my position. Of where I stand. Anyone who pushes me further than that, is attacking me.

The demand to 'prove it' means nothing to me, it isn't in my world view. I can't understand people who need proof. Possibility is enough.

sunshinemmum Mon 09-Jun-14 12:58:41

Interesting Squidly, though in the Catholic Church Pope Clement X (AD 1670-76) made the doctrine of angels official. Before that Ambrose, Bishop of Milan was quoted as saying "The servants of Christ are protected by invisible, rather than visible, beings. but if they guard you, they do so because of your prayers."

sunshinemmum Mon 09-Jun-14 13:11:00

guardian angels I should have said.

The demand to 'prove it' means nothing to me, it isn't in my world view. I can't understand people who need proof. Possibility is enough.

I agree with you Skolastica, it become a circular argument.

headinhands Mon 09-Jun-14 13:55:22

I suppose it partly comes down to the problem of suffering again. If there exists powerful spiritual creatures that protect us then why didn't they protect children who are murdered? It's logic that puts a spanner in the works too not just a lack of evidence.

And don't get me wrong I wouldn't be saying this to a RL friend who spontaneously told me that their belief in angels kept them going, but on a discussion forum where someone asks if I believe in them? Well of course I'll be honest and say no and point out why it's ridiculous because the poster is inviting examination. Like the prayer threads I know when and where to dismantle it.

SquidlyTunes Mon 09-Jun-14 14:41:34

sunshine yes that's good example of extrapolating beyond scripture. The best verse I can see on which that might be based is Matthew 18:10:

"See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven."

From the commentary in one study bible (Reformation): "Though this verse is sometimes interpreted to mean that each believer has a personal angelic guardian, this popular belief goes beyond the biblical evidence."

However, it is clear from many bible scriptures, both in the old and new testament, that God can and does send Angels for guidance and protection at certain times. And that's a core belief and encouragement to Christians.

So for me, whether that's one personal specific angel assigned to each person for all their lives, or whether different angels are just sent on different missions when their particular form of help is needed most in a situation (ie. not designated to anyone in particular all the time), is a very interesting point to debate/think/ponder on, but not one to get too hung up on as a Christian. It's one of those things that'll be interesting to wait and find out about in due course smile.

The only side to caution about if one does decide (as a Christian) to believe in personal guardian angels, is that one should not be tempted or diverted into praying to them and asking them for help etc. Scripture is fairly clear that Jesus (as the part of God who came down to us in human form to meet and serve us where we are and show the way), is the only intercessor we should ever have, need or try to use in our prayers to God. Ask God for help and guidance, and leave it to Him to answer in whatever way He knows best. That might be by guiding our thoughts, decisions or actions, or it might be by sending an angel - but the thing is to trust in Him to know the best way to answer any particular prayer/help request...and even when we forget to pray somtimes! smile

sunshinemmum Mon 09-Jun-14 15:13:18

Yes, squidly I had wondered about that reference and Psalm 91:11

For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways;

It does also mention feathers of course later on wink

*He will cover you with his feathers,
and under his wings you will find refuge;*

It all depends on how you view the Psalms of course.

KateSMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 09-Jun-14 15:46:38

Hello everyone,

Can we all remind you about our talk guidelines? Even if you don't necessarily agree with another posters' beliefs, we would ask you all to post respectfully.

SquidlyTunes Mon 09-Jun-14 16:16:36

Yes another good verse sunshine that gives scriptural evidence that God uses angels to help guard us. Whether that's one on one, many to one or one to many isn't specified, but doesn't much matter either way, apart from intellectually. The main comfort is in the fact that there is guidance and guarding without us having to worry deeply about it or even request it.

Actually, reguarding the protection (which I think some others were asking about), yes that can clearly be physical in particular cirucmstances (like St. Paul being released from his prison cell by an angel so that his vital mission in forming those earliest churches could continue, rather than being killed too soon). But I'd suggest that the most primary role would be in guarding the spirit of the human. When we accept God and Jesus of our own free will, our life is eternal, far beyond these "mortal coils". This is the joy we have in Him. God protects us and will not let our spirit be lost again, no matter what other negative spiritual forces are out there, over which we ourselves would be powerless as humans (you can't really fight a canon with a stick!). But the gift and preservation of every human's free will while alive on earth is paramount to God, as our decision to turn to Him is meaningless unless we have the power to give it freely of our own accord:

If you force a child to say "I love you" through control, it is meaningless. If, on the other hand, it turns to you and says "I love you" of its own will, it means everything in the world and beyond.

Woah that's getting deep! But I love that later verse about covering you in feathers - personally I think I'll take that slightly figuratively if you don't mind - don't really fancy being completely buried under a ton of feathers dumped on top of me as I go about my business grin

CoteDAzur Mon 09-Jun-14 16:38:52

"The demand to 'prove it' means nothing to me, it isn't in my world view. I can't understand people who need proof. "

How strange (to me).

It's as if we are not even the same species. That is how far I am from understanding the above.

SquidlyTunes Mon 09-Jun-14 18:06:36

Cote, I wouldn't wish to answer for anyone else, but whilst i understand where you're coming from in terms of the scientific/physical world (being a science/technology person myself), I think (correct me if I'm wrong) we all agree that the existence, or lack of, a spiritual dimension cannot either be categorically proved or disproved in a scientific sense. But following on from that, I would pose these thought in answer from my point of view:

If some proof had been made (like supernatural powers healing people), would we necessarily recognise that and accept it? The human nature is to disbelieve anything like that, that they haven't seen themselves. So to be more specific, I read in the bible that Jesus performed miracles (blind people seeing again, lame people walking, etc.) AND that the people there who saw it, were convinced and believed. They were "lucky enough" you might say, to see direct proof. BUT even then immediately after the word started to spread of such miracles, some believed what they heard, but others did not. And if people in those times who didn't see it themselves didn't believe, it obviously would never be enough for the whole world afterwards as the information spreads.

And if answers to pray were occuring to people now and throughout the ages on a personal level, that can be proof to them. The revelation, if you like, is personal to each person. If I or anyone were to tell you or someone else of such "proofs" or revelations, it mostly like wouldn't convince you, and nor would I really expect it to, because it was personal to me. Which is how I understand God to work, ie. at the individual level.

So, for someone who doesn't believe to be convinced, they'd need to have a similar personal experience/proof. And I believe that would happen, if they genuinely opened their heart at least enough to ask and seek if there is a God there, and if so to reveal Himself to them. Now I believe that would be answered, not necessarily on some immediate timescale they might desire, but in God's time, when the time is best.

And therefore I think that brings us back to the real crux of it: which is that a belief in God is ultimately and most importantly a matter of faith, not physical proof. For Christians, there are some key scriptural verses that explain this.

For me, Jesus himself explains it to "doubting Thomas" far better than my rubbishy ramblings can: "Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed." (John 20:29).

So God Himself recognises that no matter how much mass proving he was to do, all humans would never just believe it. It does need to be that personal seeking and revelation.

All this is, as always, my beliefs and understanding. Hope it helps.

CoteDAzur Mon 09-Jun-14 21:09:59

"we all agree that the existence, or lack of, a spiritual dimension cannot either be categorically proved or disproved in a scientific sense"

Disproved, probably not, since proving a negative is usually impossible.

But if such a "dimension" exists, it can surely be observed & documented - hence proven.

"If some proof had been made (like supernatural powers healing people), would we necessarily recognise that and accept it?"

We would repeat the experiment as many times as necessary to believe it beyond reasonable doubt.

When Galileo proved that the Earth is not stationary and moves around the sun, it took a while for everyone to believe it because it was counter-intuitive and the Church was vehemently (and murderously) against it. Still, proof after proof accumulated, independent observation confirmed heliocentricity, and it was recognised & accepted.

If there were indeed a "spiritual dimension", we should see a similar progression. Technology has advanced tremendously in the past couple of decades. We can now manipulate and observe subatomic particles. So where is the proof for this "spiritual dimension"?

"Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed. (John 20:29)."

Well, he would say that, wouldn't he grin

SquidlyTunes Tue 10-Jun-14 10:56:26

"But if such a "dimension" exists, it can surely be observed & documented - hence proven."

Not necessarily (it fact highly likely it can't). Just keeping "spiritual" dimensions out of it for a moment and sticking with the physical world and empirical observation and measurement, what we can observe and document is necessarily limited to the confines of the dimensions in which we exist. So as I'm sure you know, we exist in 4 dimensional space-time; 3 of space (with axes at 90 degrees to each other) and one of time. It doesn't matter what instruments we use to examine and measure the physical space in which we exist, whether on the tiniest of scales or the largest, you won't be able to observe anything out of them. That's because to do that, information would need to be able to enter/leave our 4 dimensions to come to/from the other dimensions. And if that could happen, then we'd already be aware of them and accessing them.

One classical illustration is to imagine a 2 dimensional creature living in a 2 dimensional world, that is, with axes of only up/down and left/right (or if you wished to add time, you could make it 3 dimensions). There is no depth or even concept of it at all. To imagine such a creature and universe, think of a stick man drawn on a sheet of paper (infinitely thin paper of course). He can move left/right and up/down on it, but that's all he knows. As hard as he looks with instruments, he can see and observe nothing else. If we were looking down on that sheet of paper universe, he'd have no idea. He's not able to send anything out of his universe and nothing enters it (unless we allow it). If that sheet of paper was to be wrapped around a cylinder, then he'd not even be aware that he was walking in a curve when he goes left/right, because to him it's just a straight line (and seem infinite). It's only curved from the view point of more dimensions (ie. our 3).

Now to expand that to our universe. I don't know if you're aware, but there's a very hot debate among physicists over the last few decades over string theory verses classical particle physics models. There are some serious problems with classical physics models, especially around explaining and understanding gravity (on the large scale) and how you get from the fuzzy probability world at the quantum level to the definite positional world when you get to atomic/molecular size and above (eg. my coffee cup is always where it's left and can't be in many places at once until observed, unlike things at the quantum level where that is the norm!)..

..well, string theory is one conjecture to try and help solve some of these problems. BUT for that to work, it actually requires the existence of many dimensions (I think a minimum of 8 or 9 and in many varients, often many more from 11 to 17 I think!). And these are physical space dimensions. Now where do these exist and why can't we see them? Well, if they existed, we'd never be able to observe them because we can't access them - we can't send information in or out of them. IF they exist, the conjecture is that they'd have to exist infinitely small and curled up and be all around and in us!

Likewise the big problem with the force of gravity is why it is so weak, in comparison to the huge strength of the other three fundamental forces (namely, the electromagnetic, strong nuclear, and weak nuclear). These all work at the atomic scale (electrons are captured by protons, etc.). However, gravity only begins to be really observable as we start to approach very large scales, like planets, etc. Well, once again, one conjecture by some physicists, is that the majority of the gravitational force actually "leaks out" into other dimensions which we don't know about, leaving only a small amount left in our space-time to observe.

So that's a lot of science rambling to answer the question of why we couldn't observe dimensions outside the 4 we live in. We can only propose their existance to help explain what we can observe within our universe and our understanding of them can only exist in mathematical equations and theories and conjectures. And believe me, when other dimensions come into it, the scientists are usually in furious debate with each other themselves - I believe I read once they'd actually got into personal attacks on each other between the string and non-string theorists!

And so it would be the same with a spiritual dimension. We could only observe and be aware of it, if something from it entered our space-time and caused an effect we experienced, no matter how technologically advanced our instrument become. Like the 2D paper man would only begin to puzzle about something "higher" if we decided to enter and affect his world eg. draw a tree in front of him for him to discover on his next walk wink. What he then made of that and where he thought it came from would be up to him - was it caused by something in his world, or is there the possibility of a "higher being" having created (drawn) it?

"We would repeat the experiment as many times as necessary to believe it beyond reasonable doubt"

This assumes that we are the experimenter and are in control of the conditions! In this case it would mean that we are in control of God and could make him appear and do things to our will to prove himself! I'm not sure many creators would wish to be controled by their creations and told when to jump by them wink.

But more practically, I believe these proofs from God were, and have been, repeated many times. We read in scripture that Jesus didn't just perform one miralce, one healing, etc. but many, in all the places he went. And large groups of people (including those doubtful at the time), followed him and witnessed them more than once until they were proved. And there were more miracles he performed than are documented in the bible - as one verse says, there were many more than could be written about. And beyond that, throughout all biblical time, God and his angels have appeared and interacted with the world directly. Again, those who saw were amazed and believed, but most of those who didn't and only heard by word being passed on, didn't believe or misunderstood (or were afraid of giving up their own ideas of what God was about and so would lose their power and control over people, like the pious religious leaders of the time who had twisted their mission to gain some power and control over the people - a permanent fault for most humans when put in authority sadly)

So it comes back to most people only believing in something so extra-ordinary as another dimension if they get a personal experience of it that touches and means something directly to them, which I posted about before.

There's no way we can force an observation to suit ourselves - except, perhaps, by asking God with our heart for a sign and some understanding, and waiting and looking out for that.... smile

Hakluyt Tue 10-Jun-14 11:12:59

Can I ask if anyone knows to what MNHQ's post yesterday at 15.46 refers? I can't see anything that could possibly offend anywhere near..............

SquidlyTunes A good description of the difficulties of examining other dimensions and perhaps we will never be able to examine them. However we can observe the result as you say. We may not be sure it's the reason gravity acts as it does, but we can see how gravity acts.

Likewise it's possible to imagine a god who has no contact with our universe. He created it and then left it alone. Everything works according to the system and rules he set up so is internally consistent and therefore no evidence of god can be found.

But that leaves us with the problem that believers claim god is meddling all the time. He stopped the sun moving for Joshua, he heals people (some and not others) he puts idea or words into the heads of believers (which means he makes a change to their brain) and so on.

Those claims can be tested.

For example there are religious people who claim that god sends bad weather (hurricanes and such) where there are homosexuals.

Not only can we test that we can take advantage of it. Invite lots of homosexual people to a place that desperately needs rain and wait.

We have tested the healing power of pray as it happens and it showed that it didn't heal anyone.

An action that changes something in our universe can always be detected by the change it made. Imagine an invisible man making footprints in the sand.

We've found no such evidence.

While we naturally can't prove the non-existence of that hypothetical god we can easily show that the particular gods (and angels) described by most believers are fictional.

Oh and I get that god could say "I'm not going to do it because they are watching for me to do it for proof I exist", but since believers are claiming he did the 'miracles' in the bible to prove he was god that's not a good argument.

Also many claim they can produce supernatural effects or god-powered effects at will. They can send healing waves etc. Clearly those could be tested.

sunshinemmum Tue 10-Jun-14 17:56:02

I struggle as I imagine many Christians do around the subject of pain and suffering.

Philip Yancey draws on Romans 8*:19-20-22

" The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed. For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by it's own choice, by the will of one who subjected it. ... We know the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present times.

He refers to C.S Lewis;

"God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains. It is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.'

I personally don't believe that God would single out one group over another when dealing with humanity and sin, but the idea of labour pains from a planet we are spoiling/exploiting definitely makes sense to me.

headinhands Wed 11-Jun-14 06:34:21

information would need to be able to leave/enter

So you don't believe in a god who communicates with humanity? Your above point works if you are arguing for a god that's hands off but the bible makes claims of a god who is involved. The next problem being reality shows no such involvement.

headinhands Wed 11-Jun-14 06:36:49

it is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world

And he uses that megaphone with gusto on the third world. He holds back a lot more if you live in a developed world with access to health care and education.

Hakluyt Wed 11-Jun-14 06:58:47

"it is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world"

You know, if I were I Christian, I would find that more offensive than anything else anyone has said on this thread...........

headinhands Wed 11-Jun-14 07:07:40

My dd is a nightmare to wake up in the morning. It hadn't occurred to me to use pain to rouse her. Hmm, which disease shall I inflict her with?

(Referring back to a comment I made on Saturday that's me ridiculing the ridiculous. As Hak just illustrated the notion of a supposed loving god choosing to use pain as communication is barbarous, it needs ridiculing to highlight its downright barbarity)

Hakluyt Wed 11-Jun-14 13:18:23

I keep on coming back to that CSLewis quotation- it's really chilling. Can't get it out of my mind............

SquidlyTunes Wed 11-Jun-14 15:23:39

headinhands and Hakluyt, you've misunderstood/misread the CS Lexis quote. It's not saying God is using pain to communicate with us in terms of him inflicting/causing it!! No, almost the opposite! He's given us the ability to sense/feel pain so that we know when we're in danger or something is wrong and we need to take action or change something.

So, when the body is in pain, it's telling you that there's something wrong and you need to take action to sort it, whether that's just resting for something mild, or more critical action is needed, like going to see a doctor, stopping bleeding, removing yourself from the cause of pain (eg. if you're being attacked or you've touched something hot, etc. etc.), or you're sick, etc.

That applies equally to the world, populations and creation too as a whole. Humans cause massive harm to each other, through disagreements, fights, wars, greed, not helping each other, etc. The results of all these are that some people are hurt/devasted/subjected to cruelty/killed, etc., while the perpetrators get what they want (power, money, food, resources, land, control, etc.). In third world populations, they experience things so acutely because the development of their societies and infrastrucutre are greatly held back by....the greed and power of man...which is at every level, from local tribal fighting, to corrupt local governments in those countries, right through to greed and corruption of the first/western world and their companies by not giving access to cheap drugs that could save lives, by not sharing food and resources, and so on and so on. Our companies exploit their cheap labour for food (coffee, etc.) and precious minerals and then sells in for high prices elsewhere and pocket the profits. At all these different levels we holding those countries back from developing.

God isn't causing or inflicting that damage, it's happening in the world through greed and evil. The pain we experience as individuals and populations (and indeed the wider creation, suffering of animals, destruction of natural habitats, etc.), is indicating to us, alerting us, speaking and shouting to us that something is very wrong with what we're doing and we must stop and help/love/care for each other instead of hurting and exploiting each other!!

Just as pain shouts at you that something is wrong, so God is talking to us urgently through the pain to wake us up and make us see the need for change.

He has granted us free will on earth so that we're not robots or slaves to him being controlled like puppets. But with freedom comes responsibility. Responsibility to care for each other and our environment and not exploit each other and the natural resources.

The greater we feel pain, the louder that shout of urgency is to wake up and take responsibilty and change! God is not causing or sending the pain - we are doing that to ourselves - God has given us the sense to hear and understand.

This is what C.S. Lewis is saying. Hope this helps.

headinhands Wed 11-Jun-14 15:57:40

God has given us the sense to hear and understand.

He also gave us the ability to feel pain, the pain a child feels when it's has a fatal congenital disease. Or the emotional pain a mother feels when her children are swept away in a monsoon.

If god utilises pain to communicate how does he feel about pain relief?

Why can't he use words instead of pain? If my husband seems distant I talk to him, it doesn't occur to me to exploit any pain he might be in to remind him of our relationship. It's just a bizarre notion you wouldn't use anywhere else. Why can't he just turn up and say 'hey, I'm here, I need you to love me'

As for the puppet thing, will we be able to sin in heaven? Would god have been disappointed if Adam hadn't screwed up because we were just automons? Does god have free will? Why bestow the power to inflict so much pain on creatures he knew were flawed. It's like throwing a child in the lion enclosure at Colchester Zoo and blaming the lion for what happens. And he gets away with it and yet satan and us are the bad guys. It makes no sense. (Anymore)

headinhands Wed 11-Jun-14 20:12:20

God is talking to us urgently through the pain to wake us up and make us see the need for change

What happens if we don't have pain? Also it's largely those who are helpless to effect change that feel the most pain. So god expects us to sort out his imperfect creation but doesn't do anything himself? It's all very noble chiding people for moaning about inequality and suffering if they've done nothing but a, people do do things and b, gods supposedly supernatural, it's gotta be a lot easier for him to roll his sleeves up. Apparently he made a universe, we have only relatively recently discovered electricity and all our progress is down to us, we don't have god to thank for that.

headinhands Wed 11-Jun-14 23:00:24

Imagine I manufactured lots of robots to keep me company. Imagine they malfunctioned and some of them were doing really really bad stuff to others. Am I totally guiltless? Imagine I explain it's not my fault, that the robots are the guilty ones.

Hakluyt Thu 12-Jun-14 10:09:14

Oh, it's that omniscient, omnipotent, all loving , fatherly God who is unable to intervene in the lives of his creation again. Except to perform a couple of dubious miracles to ensure a pope gets fast tracked to sainthood..........

SquidlyTunes Sat 14-Jun-14 20:56:56

RL is pretty busy just playing catch up....

Also many claim they can produce supernatural effects or god-powered effects at will. They can send healing waves etc. Clearly those could be tested.

Absolutely BackOnlyBriefly, anyone claiming to be able to do such things at will to order could and should be tested. In the understanding of the Christian faith, they'll fail because God will not be put to the test and "made to jump" by our will, as I mentioned in one of my earlier posts. Only God has the power and authority to do such miracles, no other spiritual beings (eg. Angels couldn't even if they were to want to try). Even Jesus, God's son himself on earth when tempted by Satan to throw himself from a cliff because God would surely save him, refused, quoting that God should not be tested in such a way.

So you don't believe in a god who communicates with humanity? : Yes, headinhands, absolutely I believe in a God who loves and communicates with humanity, as indicated in an earlier post. In elucidating about the nature of other dimensions, whether physical or spiritual, I was respondng to the earlier statement that if other dimensions existed we would be able to test for them, and explaining why that was a false assumption/statement. As I said later in that same posts, I explained how and why I believed God had and is interacting with us. Having done it publicy (and got it documented) for a demanding and disbelieving world, personal experiences are really the only way uncertain people will truly believe, but they need to open their hearts to seek, ask and wait.

If god utilises pain to communicate how does he feel about pain relief? : Again, headinhands, still some misunderstanding there. We hurt not because God is doing it to us! We hurt because of the way we are, the way we rebel and what we do to each other.

A vital key to keep in mind is that God is there waiting and desperate for us to turn to Him and invite Him to talk to us, to help us, to comfort and be with us. Many, many, many people who have done so will tell you of the comfort, peace, strength and healing they have had from God to get through situations so bad that they wouldn't have been able to do so without him. These are some of the real personal experiences I've talked about in previous posts. Also he works through us on earth, when we care for and comfort someone through love for that person. God is love in simple essence, love comes from God and is God's greatest gift to us (after life itself). When we love, we are helping bring and spread God's kingdom on earth right now. As well as acting directly, he acts through us.

Why can't he just turn up and say 'hey, I'm here, I need you to love me' : Hey guess what? - He's done just that!! Excellent point headinhands! If you say that to someone, you can only stand and wait for their response. You can't control what they do, only wait to see if they come to you and want to love you back, or turn and walk away, not wanting to know and rejecting you. If they reject you, what can you do? Either go away yourself and give up on them, or wait patiently forever to see if they'll change their mind (perhaps after finding themselves lost), or chase after them to try and make them. The former is fickle and short-lived love. The latter is pointless and will only annoy them and push them further away. The middle option is the only real one. It is demonstrating the purest and truest of patient loves. Waiting forever and never giving up. That is what I believe God is doing with each of us. Those who turn and seek Him, experience Him and know. Those that don't are waited for and many do eventually turn back, but some don't and choose to reject God all their lives. The thing is, it's their choice because that's the only real way to be in a meaningful relationship.

As for the puppet thing, will we be able to sin in heaven? : That's kind of a non-question really as there'll be no inclination or desire to sin, the cause or "Tempter" not being there. We'll be there through our own choices in this life and our responses and desire to be there and to accept the "free" salvation offered (free to us that is, but infinitely painful and costly to God Himself - He paid the price for us - He came to bridge the gap that we chose to create). Pretty deep theological stuff really that a few lines can't do justice to.

What happens if we don't have pain? : It's not only our pain which helps alert us to things going wrong. We've been uniquely created and blessed with consciousness, intelligence, empathy and understanding. When we're tuned into the world and awake to others' plights, we see their pain and suffering and it calls us to respond and care.

it's gotta be a lot easier for him to roll his sleeves up : That kinda denies the need for any of us to take any responsibility for our actions. Just a little deeper thought and reflection shows some major flaws if that's followed. In a very simplified example though, imagine some very rich parents. Now imagine their older (shall we say later teenage?) children start rebelling, going a bit wild, messing up and destroying things, fighting, etc., etc. What should a loving, responsible parent do? Let them carry on doing whatever they wish, trashing things at will, because they have the attitude that the praents are really rich and can afford to replace everything and put their devestation right with all their money, it would barely make a dint in their millions after all. And should the parents just keep on giving them whatever they ask for and demand? How would they learn responsibility to make their own way in life and build correct, functioning relationships with others as they grow and move out into the world? You don't have to ponder for too long on such scenarios and extrapolate to begin to realise that having free will and freedom actually requires individuals to take personal responsibility for their part in the world and for responding to their parent in the right way to maintain a good, working personal relationship. That kind of argument always makes me think of the little spoilt brat doing and demanding whatever he/she wants and being upset and surprised when the loving, caring parent does the right thing and says no at such times. They explain why, but it doesn't sink in to the kid. But hopefully (and thankfully often), it eventually does and they grow and mature at that point.

Imagine I manufactured lots of robots to keep me company. Imagine they malfunctioned and some of them were doing really really bad stuff to others. Am I totally guiltless? : No you wouldn't be, and exactly my point. They're robots, without the consciousness, capability and understanding necessary for self-judgement and having free will. If you made such limited things you are responsible for what they do in your world. If I keep a dog, it is my responsibility to look after it, clean up after it and stop it causing damage to other people and things, it's not got the mental or physical capability to do that when living in a human world and environment. However, when my children are grown-up adults and move out, I can't be controlling their lives in the same way as when they relied utterly on us for everything while growing up. I can only love them and be there for them and help them if and when they decide to be in contact and ask for help. To force help upon them would only alienate and push them away.

Oh, it's that omniscient, omnipotent, all loving , fatherly God who is unable to intervene in the lives of his creation again : Hak, that last part especially also doubles as an answer to this....or perhaps, more tongue-in-cheek, I should answer with something like: "Oh, it's that old 'I should be able to do whatever I like, whenever I like and God should sort it all out for me and I shouldn't have to take any responsibility' thing again... ;-)

headinhands Sun 15-Jun-14 06:48:03

I believed God had and is interacting with us

It calls to mind the female bishops issue. You've got some heavyweights of the CofE voting a simple yes or no, and these people are like full on 'walking the walk' Christians and even then god is unable to effectively communicate a simple yes or no to them clearly. What chance do the rest of you have!?

Having done it publicy (and got it documented)

Sorry not sure what you mean?

for a demanding and disbelieving world, personal experiences are really the only way uncertain people will truly believe,

You say demanding and disbelieving like it's a bad thing. It a very good thing. You see, using your model of 'believe it because someone told you/you got goose bumps when you thought about xyz' is there is nothing to stop you believing anything. I could use your model and become a believer in any faith or belief system that exists. Any at all. I'd like a system that was a little more reliable and the best one is an evidence based system.

they need to open their hearts to seek, ask and wait

headinhands Sun 15-Jun-14 06:52:33

they need to open their hearts to seek, ask and wait

What's your faith Squid. Is your heart open to other gods too or just the god you believe in? How do you know if your heart is open? Can I have it open to every god just in case? I'm not even sure I understand what having an open heart means but I am open to examining new evidence for a supernatural claim, can't say fairer than that.

Hakluyt Sun 15-Jun-14 09:39:02

"Oh, it's that omniscient, omnipotent, all loving , fatherly God who is unable to intervene in the lives of his creation again : Hak, that last part especially also doubles as an answer to this....or perhaps, more tongue-in-cheek, I should answer with something like: "Oh, it's that old 'I should be able to do whatever I like, whenever I like and God should sort it all out for me and I shouldn't have to take any responsibility' thing again... ;-)"

I don't think I should be able to do whatever I like. I don't expect God to sort anything out for me (what with me not believing he exists that would be a bit unreasonable of me). But if I did believe, I would want to know why he doesn't behave like any good father I know. And why he never, despite specifically promising, answers prayers.

headinhands Sun 15-Jun-14 10:06:27

we hurt because....of the way we rebel

Like I said earlier those who suffer the most helplessness are those who are incapable of rebelling. Also people are very capable of believing in a god and hurting people. Even people who claim to have a relationship with god are every bit as equally capable of dreadful things. Also, if this relationship with god is so great why do Christians commit suicide pretty much as often as non-Christians? It seems to offer no discernible benefit over and above other forms of support. You'd expect it to no?

Hakluyt Sun 15-Jun-14 10:35:24

I hesitate to post this- and I will ask for it to be deleted if people think I should. But there was a well known Mumsnetter whose child died. For ages beforehand there had been prayer threads, people sending light and thoughts- literally thousands of people all over the world were praying with all their hearts for that child. But she died.

One post stuck in my mind, and is still there. Somebody said "We're lifting her up on prayer so God can see her" Now if an all powerful all knowing all loving God (the one for whom "not a sparrow falls......") needs one of his creation to be "lifted up"before he sees her, and even then turns his face away then isn't it better that he doesn't exist? Because if he does exist, what kind of a monster is he?

headinhands Sun 15-Jun-14 11:05:21

Hey guess what? - He's done just that!!

When? If you're referring to the bible and have taken words in a book as proof then what's to stop you believing the claims of the other 15 or so religious texts?

headinhands Sun 15-Jun-14 11:10:33

Now imagine their older (shall we say later teenage?) children start rebelling, going a bit wild, messing up and destroying things, fighting, etc., etc. What should a loving, responsible parent do? Let them carry on doing whatever

No they shouldn't tolerate it. But if their child was dying in front of them they'd do all they could to help them, my god you know it. They wouldn't watch their child be beaten and murdered, nether would they watch one be murdered while giving another one all care and concern.

LynetteScavo Sun 15-Jun-14 11:14:29

I believe in guardian angels.

I'm not so sure about the feather thing, although I did find one when I unpacked the hospital bag after ds1 was born, which was lovely.smile

headinhands Sun 15-Jun-14 11:18:57

That kind of argument always makes me think of the little spoilt brat doing and demanding whatever he/she wants and being upset and surprised when the loving, caring parent does the right thing and says no at such times.

Sometimes that spoilt brat (ugh) is actually a frightened abused child. People shouldn't be blameless, its right that we have a justice system and that, where we can, we hold perpetrators accountable. But sometimes people are not responsible for what happens to them, all the examples you give are of people suffering the consequences of their own foolish decisions, and even then i think a little mercy is a good thing. Also, its not a level playing field. Some people have damaging childhoods that make them more likely to cope poorly in society, don't get me wrong, people should be prevented from hurting other people but we don't all start off with the same.

What loving parent would say no to their starving child?

headinhands Sun 15-Jun-14 11:22:55

If you made such limited things you are responsible for what they do in your world

*^_Which is the point I'm making^*_. If we were 'fit for purpose' we wouldn't be doing what we're doing would we?

MostWicked Sun 15-Jun-14 11:45:16

they need to open their hearts to seek, ask and wait

I did that. Many years ago, I joined the church. I was involved for years. I studied the bible, went away on retreats, embraced god and asked him into my heart. The thing is, the entire time I was doing it, I was waiting to feel something. Waiting to feel that special love that everyone around me was describing. I felt absolutely diddly squat. I had fun, I enjoyed the company of others, but I never felt any religious connection at all. Not so much as a flicker. It felt like I was failing because no matter how hard I tried to be religious, I just couldn't. So I walked away. It was the most wonderfully liberating feeling and within minutes, I actually felt free to be me. I began questioning again. I realised how absurd the bible was and how controlling the whole religion was - not necessarily overtly, but in the need to belong.
It was like walking away from an abusive relationship, I never looked back and never regretted it. Now I realise that I was quite needy and vulnerable at the time. I lacked the confidence to be able to live my life according to my own values. Walking away gave me that confidence. It was one of the best decisions I ever made.

God will not be put to the test and "made to jump"
Such a huge cop out. He'll do miracles, but only when no-one is looking, and he won't do them all the time for everyone who asks, and sometimes he will do them for people who don't ask and sometimes they will happen for good people and other times they will happen for bad people. It's called RANDOM!

Hakluyt Sun 15-Jun-14 12:02:07

"God will not be put to the test and "made to jump"
Such a huge cop out. He'll do miracles, but only when no-one is looking, and he won't do them all the time for everyone who asks, and sometimes he will do them for people who don't ask and sometimes they will happen for good people and other times they will happen for bad people. It's called RANDOM!"

And he will only do miracles that involve curing people of things that tend to go into remission anyway, or which haven't been properly diagnosed in the first place. As in the "properly attested miracles " attributed to the two latest Catholic saints.

headinhands Sun 15-Jun-14 12:09:22

And his miracles will spookily match what medicine can achieve anyway. Why do christians pray and ask god to guide the surgeons hands when a loved one is having an operation? Surely with the creator of the universe getting involved they could do away with the need for the operation altogether and god could just heal them, which would cancel out the patient running the risk of post operative complications. Alternatively if god is effectively doing the guiding why bother with the surgeon attending medical school for 7 years, they could drag any old person in off the streets, it wouldnt matter would it.

DioneTheDiabolist Sun 15-Jun-14 20:40:56

Jak, will you ask for your post to be deleted please.

DioneTheDiabolist Sun 15-Jun-14 20:41:43

Sorry, that should have Hak, not Jak.

Hakluyt Sun 15-Jun-14 21:34:01

Dione- I will. But I would be grateful if you would tell me why.

DioneTheDiabolist Sun 15-Jun-14 22:03:32

Because I feel very uncomfortable reading it. And it has caused me to think a little less of you. It is not a good post and it saddens me.

Thank you for asking to get it deleted.

Hakluyt Sun 15-Jun-14 22:35:57

I can live with you thinking less of me. However, I don't think you can just say "it is not a good post" without saying more. It is sincerely what I think and feel. And It was what I felt at the time. It might be uncomfortable for you to read as a Christian, but I have a right to my feelings.

DioneTheDiabolist Sun 15-Jun-14 22:58:37

It did not offend my religious sensibilities Hak.

DioneTheDiabolist Mon 16-Jun-14 11:14:32

Hak, what made you hesitate to make that post and why did you offer to have it deleted if someone asked you?

Hakluyt Mon 16-Jun-14 11:55:50

I'm sorry, Dione- I think you should answer some questions before you ask any more.

I have asked Mumsnet to adjudicate on whether my post should be deleted. I realised that I wasn't prepared to delete my sincere thoughts and feelings just on the strength of you saying you wanted me to. I did ask you to explain why before I made this decision, but you declined to.

DioneTheDiabolist Mon 16-Jun-14 12:07:54

Hak, I answered your questions. What further questions do you have?

Hakluyt Mon 16-Jun-14 12:10:26

You said "it is not a good post". I asked you what you meant.

DioneTheDiabolist Mon 16-Jun-14 12:23:52

I meant that I felt uncomfortable reading it and that it made me think less of you that you would take a post from a thread supporting a dying child's family and use it this way. I meant that it made me think less of you. That is why I did not think it was a good post.

Why did you hesitate before making the post and why did you offer to ask for it to be removed?

Hakluyt Mon 16-Jun-14 12:53:09

Ah, right. Then as I said, I can live with you thinking less of me. I am surprised you think anything of me at all.

I hesitated, and said I would delete in case any of the people directly involved wanted me to, or if the mood of the thread was that I was wrong to post. But it was a very important moment for me because if I had any lingering desire to believe, or "respect" for Christianity, that moment extinguished it, finally and completely.

DioneTheDiabolist Mon 16-Jun-14 13:08:02

The fact that that was the moment when you lost your "desire to believe" is immaterial. It would have been possible to explain yourself without stooping as low as you did. You have said that you respect support & prayer threads and don't post on them a number of times. Are you now going to add that you lurk and will take posts from those threads to use to make the rather ridiculous point that a non existant god that you don't believe in is a bad god?

Why are you surprised that I think anything of you at all? I read your posts, I take time to answer your questions and I advocate respect for people regardless of belief status, colour, gender, sexuality etc.

DioneTheDiabolist Mon 16-Jun-14 13:37:20

Did you think that the respect I spoke of did not extend to you?

Hakluyt Mon 16-Jun-14 13:52:23

I did not lurk on those threads. There were many people contributing, not just Christians. They were not specifically prayer threads.

I have no idea what you think, believe or respect. Because you never give anything of yourself at all to any thread I have seen you contribute on. You come across as seeing yourself above the fray, questioning, but not contributing, conducting but not playing.

MostWicked Mon 16-Jun-14 14:07:17