Why I support the blog, Survivor of Armstrongism

“Why do you support such vitrolic blog, Felix? This person is soo bitter, he has so much unforgiveness. The author is too angry. This person needs to let Jesus help him. Christ forgave those who hurted him on the cross, why can’t he be just as forgiving if he’s to receive God’s blessing of eternal life?”

These typically said words of course from, those who are currently in the XCG’s—or believe it or not former XCGers who just want to shut anybody up expressing their feelings about their XCG experience because they still have some kind of emotional attachment to an XCG.  They may deny it—but deep down they do.  Some of them may think they are trying to help but they are actually being condescending and trying to make themselves feel good at someone else’s expense. I have complained to Douglas Becker, a visitor on this blog here that XCG ministers are not the greatest listeners. For the members, I would say that they are “selective” listeners. Trust me, this is no improvement. in fact, I think it is worse than right out non-listening in which “selective-listeners” DELIBERATELY pick and choose what to hear and totally distort the original context of what anybody meant to say, but that is another story. What I have in common with the blog’s editor who’s pseudonym is Armstrong Survivor (he recently gave out his secret identity, go to his blog to find out) in the sense that we both grew up Worldwide. Believe you me, for those who have grown up in the Worldwide Church of God, we got stories and his story in particular will make you either be very angry and/or make you cry. To feel neither emotion, I am just going to say to you that are simply not human and probably very narcissistic. Strong words, but needed to be said. This young man growing up had to deal with many types of phobias and mental illness which the church systematically brought upon him and his parents in the process, were not making matters any better. Dealt with the sexual frustration and repression that the organization also brought upon him (and I have related to that VERY well). Dealt with loneliness, switching from job to job (and the emotional toll) dealt with those who called themselves “New Covenant Christians” and was intelligent enough to see through the clap-happy shallow PR they presented and so on.

It’s amazing that Armstrongite ministers preached of how anger is a sin. That one should be angry at a minimum and always strive to be happy. Doesn’t work that way. Life is NOT a one big Disneyworld and all must deal with a variety of emotions that are confronted with in everyday situations. Forget that silly semantical phrase “righteous indignation”. It is the same thing: anger. In Worldwide, all emotions were supressed and if any lowly member stood up for him or herself got a real good kicking between the legs. Yes, there are problems with uncontrollable anger in which somebody lashes out at somebody who is not deserving of that anger, let’s say an innocent bystander. That is wrong and is picking on somebody who can’t fight back.  In a positive sense, anger can be empowering—that we are going to decide a different course of direction, a firm unshakable resolution to make  and we are going to fight vigourously against any injustice and cruelty that was inflicted on ourselves and others. But XCG leadership HATED that! They preferred it’s members to be weak, docile and easily kicked around. They preferred members to be very dependent (and even co-dependent) and dis-empowered.

An authoritarian personality and (or) a bully likes “nice” people. Thus they inflict a tyranny. Which is called “The Tyranny of Niceness”. There is a book by that exact name by Evelyn Sommers. I  would highly recommend that you purchase it at amazon.com .  I hope to write a book review about it here. Nice people don’t make waves, they prefer security over liberty but in fact, they are repressed with contradictory feelings and emotions that they were trained NOT to do.

Armstrong Survivor is not “nice”. He is authentic. He is original. The language may offend some (but I say some people need to get pass that and see the message behind it, remember my talk about Tony Campolo?), his emotions and feelings are raw but at least he is honest. He is not going to sweeten things up. Like Buckley’s medicine, it tastes awful but it works.

I will in no way, like some other people trapped in their self-righteousness determine the spiritually destiny of Armstrong Survivor. This is strictly and uniquely the jurisdiction of God. Yeah, of course he’s angry at God (well duh! I get very angry at God myself too! Wasn’t King David angry and please do not condescend to me and say, “Felix, that was the Old Testament!”. I ask a lot of theologically incorrect “whys”) and of course he’s questioning the existence of God.  Actually we both hate the
“g”od of Armstrong, IMHO he is sure nothing like the merciful God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Armstrong Survivor is just simply on a course himself to ask many questions “why”—because he never had the opportunity to ask why before. His post WCG life,like mine is and adventure with all it’s ups and downs—event things turning sidedways but the adventure is worth it because it is to recapture one’s sanity

Those who are worried that he has influenced other blogs (this one no exception) to be a bit more edgier, I say, “Tough!”  Probably Gavin, Aggie,Seeker of Truth, Stan, James Pate, (maybe the cheeful J too),myself and others have been tired of being “nice” to everybody. That is simply not possible. I will try to treat everyone with respect and courtesy and always will –I guess the same goes for my brothers in sisters in the cause  but those who just want to be difficult for the sheer joy of it whether they are XCG or a non XCG, your free ride is over. I have been the Dick Cheney pre-9/11 in general and for those who want to play games I will be Dick Cheney POST 9/11. Go ahead trolls, laugh it off, may your arrogant laughter bite you both in the ass and the balls—excruciatingly! Like Billy Joel said,” I hate bullies.” Also I will follow his advice once in awhile, “Take no shit from anybody.” Again, those who take offence: grow up. Thank you Armstrong Survivor—you have become an emerging leader against the tyranny of niceness, you are taking away the shame and stigma of expressing one’s feelings, now matter how blunt and direct they are. You have said that the purpose of your blog was for therepeutic healing and I am hoping it has been doing that in the process. May your blog be around for sometime to come to help those young people like us who are trapped in all the XCG’s.  To paraphrase Senator Barack Obama, “Their time has come!”

For those who haven’t looked, Survivor of Armstrongism is under my links but I will give you it here.

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16 thoughts on “Why I support the blog, Survivor of Armstrongism

  1. “Why do you support such vitrolic blog, Felix?”

    Translation: Be a good little Xtian and do what I tell you so you can follow the lemmings and stay with the “in crowd”.

    Whoever asked you that was a right bastard Felix. I hoped you ripped them a new one. And I say that with love and overflowing kindness. 😀

  2. Nobody actually did (yet) ask me that question but I doing a collection of comments that I have heard over the years when people who stand up for themselves and want to express their experiences in the XCGs and face self-righteously cruel comments in return. So I guess you can breathe easy for now! 🙂

  3. How convenient for the Armstrongists to forget the command of the Apostle Paul to be angry and sin not and let not the sun go down on your wrath.

    Christians are to walk in the ways of Jesus Christ. He set the example: He called the Pharisees snakes, vipers, hypocrites and whitened sepulchres beautiful outwardly [as attractive as a Young Ambassador], but full of dead men’s bones inside.

    Should we be any less and should we not call the Armstrongists liars, thieves and murderers they are? Would we be exonerated if we did not mark those who cause division from Jesus Christ?

    The truth is that Armstrongists are idolaters. They worship false gods.

    It would not be so bad if they did it in ignorance, but they have had witness to their foul deeds for many years now. They have been warned repeatedly — as befits those who are godly to warn those who fall prey to their own lusts: The lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh, but mostly, the pride of life.

    Arrogant are they. Stubborn and rebellious. If we are to believe Jude, reserved for them is darkness and blackness forever: But these speak evil of those things which they know not: but what they know naturally, as brute beasts, in those things they corrupt themselves. Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core. These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear: clouds they are without water, carried about of winds; trees whose fruit withereth, without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots;
    Raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame; wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness for ever.

    And as befits those of us attempting to persuade the idolaters to turn from their wickedness:

    But, beloved, remember ye the words which were spoken before of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ;
    Jud 1:18 How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts.

    These be they who separate themselves, sensual, having not the Spirit.

    But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost,

    Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.

    And of some have compassion, making a difference:

    And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.

    To paraphrase: Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of GTA, and ran greedily after the error of Roderick Meredith for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Herbert Armstrong.

    Should we not be angry that the Armstrongists are in the bond of Satan, being idolaters, destined for perdition?

    But beware, there comes a time when the Father will end His Warnings.

    Now is an excellent time to repent.

  4. Yeah, well, blogging is a form of free therapy, so I don’t get bent out of shape when someone is edgy. I’m adding Armstrong survivor to my blogroll.

  5. Ft wrote:

    ‘I will in no way, like some other people trapped in their self-righteousness determine the spiritually destiny of Armstrong Survivor.’

    To me the greatest thing that completely infuriates self-righteous Armstrongite followers is the fact that Jesus WOULD sit down with “Armstrong Survivor” and listen to him! Armstrongism’s little god cannot do that. Their god is expected to destroy anyone who questions. In fact, they gleefully WANT their little god to do expressly that!

    As anyone outside Armstrongism knows, the Bible is filled with the stories of broken messy people living broken messy lives. When I posted a comment from a book recently about messy spirituality, a couple of Armstrongite loyalists went into a frenzy that there could not be true Christians who smoked, cussed, where alcoholics, were leather bikers or who exhibited other typical human qualities.

    God expects people to question. How else can people have a relationship with God without questioning? Anyone outside Armstrongism who has ever looked at the lives of spiritual men of women over the centuries see people who have been angry and lived lives totally empty of God and were mad at God, yet through that anger and emptiness God was standing right beside them. They did not know it at the time, or even feel it, but realized it later on.

    Brennan Manning and Mike Yaconelli are two people who have written lots of books about people with messy lives and how Jesus meets those people right at that very messy moment in their lives. They know first hand the bitter condemnation and the vitriol that was spit at them by so called perfect Christians. In spite of these self-righteous Christians, Jesus met them on the road they were on, in all their messiness and brokenness and sat down to eat with them AND listen.

    Armstrongites can spit and snarl all they want about messy broken people being outside the boundaries of God’s love, but those people are actually closer to God’s heart than they are! And THAT truly is a glorious thing!

    What this world needs are more people like Compolo, Yaconelli and Manning, who truly know a God that loves messy people instead of the degenerate, filthy, and perverted lies of Armstrongism.

    I am glad Survivor is honest about his journey. I am even more glad that it infuriates Armstrongites. Maybe through his honesty they can see through their self-righteous bullshit and learn to live lives as messy Christians and listen to other messy broken people with TRUE Christian love.

    I also don’t expect Survivor to accept what I have just said. and that is totally ok! I for one though, am glad for his honesty and messiness!

  6. Armstrongites want robots, zombies, and machines as their followers (in the form of sheep) because robots, zombies and machines don’t have emotions. They just do as they’re programmed to do. If a robot would do anything outside the realm of programming, they are immediately fixed or destroyed. A zombie is someone who is in a catatonic state (albeit in movies they are the “un-dead”) and has no conscious thought outside of involuntary actions. Machines only do as they are built to do, perform a service.

    We are human beings, human beings with emotions and a human spirit. Every human being on this earth has value and nobody has the right to devalue any human being. I’m beginning to wonder if diehard armstrongites are even human. Their human spirit has been stripped away and they have been left as robots, zombies and machines.

    How sad. How so very, very sad.

    Thank you, all you anti-armstrong bloggers out there.

  7. There is one thing totally lacking from Armstrongism: Any context in which God is seen as a totally concerned, loving Father.

    This is the real trouble with the Church Corporate: It’s all about the figures and the bottom line. The only concern is performance. What is it that you did for God’s Work today? If you can’t come up with at least 7 really good things, then you are a worthless fool.

    God’s love becomes quite conditional upon your performance under the Armstrongist regime. Did bad? God is angry. He will punish you. And the punishment will linger on year after year after year, because He is a jealous God who never forgets the bad things you do, but certainly has more than just Senior Moments when you do anything good. In fact, you can’t do anything good to please God. He is the only Good thing in this Universe. All the good things you do are but used toilet paper to Him.

    It’s not like your child making up a father’s Day card in crayon because you love him. That’s corny and sentimental. Maudlin. You have to do great important things for Him and His Work.

    Or more accurately the End Time Apostle who has been put on this earth to do His Work. The money you send into headquarters or the home office? That all belongs to God in the first place and since you can’t give 110%, you just can’t really please God.

    Forget faith. You can’t please God with faith. He cares about what you do. You have to prove yourself every single day by giving yourself totally to the Top Guy on earth in the government of God! If you give anything less of your total time and devotion to the Vicar of Christ, you will have a curse that day that you slip up.

    Children are to be perfect. Children are to be seen [under special circumstances] and not heard. Children must work at hard labor in sweatshops to please their masters. In this case, we are mere orphans who should be grateful that the cultmeister has taken us in. After all, we deserve nothing. Everything is a gift. And if we get anything extra, we have to turn it over.

    Under Armstrongism, God is implacable and unknowable. He is strict. He has impossibly high standards.

    In fact, we’re not certain why anyone would ever be allowed into the Kingdom of God, since the righteous are scarcely saved. Where will all us unrighteous and great unwashed appear, since we are totally evil continually?

    That is the Armstrongist god.

    Seems like idolatry to me.

  8. I’m beginning to wonder if diehard armstrongites are even human.

    That depends upon whether or not they are narcissists, for narcissists have no empathy. That certainly is not human. Moreover, narcissists don’t actually exist at all and need other people as a mirror to confirm that they are there at all. That is why Herbert Armstrong needed so much high maintenance attention: He would not have even existed without it — at least in his own mind.

    People like Herbert Armstrong need an audience or they shrivel up and blow away on the wind. Abusing people, yelling and shouting, accusing others, demanding attention and always bragging how “I made them eat their words” (as appears several times in the Autobiography), are outgrowths of a very sick personality.

    Unfortunately, those caught up as narcissistic sources to Herbert Armstrong, are deemed to be nothing — hence the treatment as automatons / robots. Since the narcissist is the center of the Universe, no one else counts and everyone is trivialized. The “Great Work” to which everyone is subjugated, is merely an outgrowth of the ego of the narcissist which represents him or her as an icon to serve as proxy to the pride of life of the narcissist. That it is also a giant cash machine is sometimes beside the point.

    But then narcissists like to be surrounded by nice things and “important people”.

    Herbert Armstrong misrepresented God, mostly because he was God — at least in his own mind.

    And think of the abuse that flows from that.

  9. I’d like to explore this “bitterness” thing a bit. First, I know by personal experience that God loves us, and has the keys to open our minds. He returns again, and again, sometimes in blatant ways, and sometimes in subtle ways, not willing to give any of us up to the enemy. God knows how to “get to” even the most hopelessly bitter person, and to turn that person’s life around. All that is needed is time, circumstance, and that person’s vulnerability or receptiveness. And, God can even use our hot buttons, life’s circumstances, or things which hold deep meaning to each of us personally, to create that vulnerability.

    So, the appropriate action for a Christian, or someone claiming to be a follower of Jesus Christ, is to pray for these so-called bitter people, not to deride them and write them off to the so-called Third Resurrection. I’m going to go out on a limb here, and to state that I personally believe bitterness, although it was an overused term in Armstrongism, does in fact exist! And, it is not a pleasant state to be in. Justified? Yes, most definitely! Is it a desirable state of mind, or something which one would wish to be a permanent condition? Most certainly not!

    We know that physical ailments are often caused by or exacerbated by our thought processes. On the blogs and forums, I’ve observed the comments and reactions of several identifiable types of people. As they relate to Armstrongism, one type consists of the folks we might describe as being in their bitterness state, while the other type has either avoided this, or has found a way past all of it to a new relationship with the real God (not the one the Armstrongs used as a boogeyman). I’ve noticed a marked difference in the ways in which the two groups of people handle life’s challenges. For sure, there is sickness and calamity in both groups’ lives. That is random, and natural. Amongst the bitter, though, there is also depression, sometimes anxiety or panic attacks, and a general feeling of hopelessness, or resolution. But, those who have corrected their relationship with God will often request prayer, express enthusiasm that God will help them, and then report positive results, encouraging everyone! I just love the internet, because it allows one to observe different people secretly, and scientifically. You can observe patterns, and it helps you determine what works and what does not work!

    Bitterness should be a temporary or transitory state of mind. Some people experience it, while others don’t. It is not a universal reaction, but some must go through it as they process what has gone wrong in their lives from listening to, or being manipulated by the wrong people. But, this bitterness is something that God can heal! Jesus Christ tells us woe unto those who would offend one of these little ones! (paraphrase or synopsis of Luke 17:1-2) I believe Jesus knew the entire anguishing thought process or syndrome which affects the minds of those who have been betrayed, exploited, or taught false and, therefore, unworkable teachings. In fact, today, He’d probably be on some of the “bitterness” forums ministering to and helping people. Actually, I know for a fact that He actually is doing this. But, He does it through the words of some of the people in whom He is living, who are also on the forums.

    There is no question that true Christians will pray for those who are in mental agony. Knowing what a horrible mental state some of our former fellow brethren are in, how could a compassionate person not? How could someone claiming to be a minister, let alone a Christian, stand up and point the finger derisively at angry and hurting people? Don’t these people know that the God who made our minds can transform people from their misery, and restore them to a healthy and productive state of mind? How many times have we heard the ACOG mantra, the blanket misapplication of Jesus words, to anyone who is not an ACOG member in good standing, “Let the dead bury the dead”? I don’t believe that Jesus intended this to be a catchall phrase. Not my Jesus, who is the Good Shepherd, concerned for prodigal sons, and/or willing to go to extraordinary lengths to rescue the one sheep wandering off from the 99!

    A healthcare professional once told me, “Bob, as long as they’re alive, there’s hope! Never give up!” I’ve come to realize, through many of life’s experiences, that that is the epitome of a Christ-like attitude.
    I like to see bitterness out in the open, and discussed freely. A person who exposes his or her bitterness is not holding it bottled tightly inside of them. He or she is sharing, and that is the first step to recovery!

    BB
    BB

  10. Hello!
    Very Interesting post! Thank you for such interesting resource!
    PS: Sorry for my bad english, I’v just started to learn this language 😉
    See you!
    Your, Raiul Baztepo

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