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This is Previous-Essay <== This-Essay ==> Following-Essay Click HERE on this line to find essays via Your-Key-Words. {Most frequent wordstarts of each essay will be put here.} ========================================================== %CHAPTER VERSE QUOTE SCRIPTURE 930714 To religious addicts and their codependent supporters, the religious scriptures, rituals, and traditions are just tools (fixes) which can be used and abused in keeping with the demands of their collusive paradigm; rather than being accepted as the means by which God can reach them, redeem them, transform them, and heal them. Such people will often abuse scriptures by quoting chapter and verse in carefully selected ways to serve their own manipulative purposes---as they try to gain control over aspects of human lives and relationships which cannot be controlled. Their use (abuse) of scriptures and other aspects of their religious lives does not promote openness, honesty, true security as the freedom to be open and honest, reconciliation, dialogue, listening, conflict, resolution or healing---and often inhibits all such healthy desiderata. This is the case because all such healthy desiderata threaten the apparent coherence of such people's systemic patterns of dishonesty. In the absence of this recognition, it is exceedingly difficult to respond to such people's manipulative maneuvers with personal or communal integrity. This makes it important for us to recognize the nature of such people's addictive attitudes, values, ideals, and behavior patterns---and how they are expressed within religious context. Chapter-and-verse religious leaders are usually fundamentalists who present themselves as being truly committed to the essential fundamentals of their religious traditions and scriptures, and by virtue of that fact as being better than other people. In fact often such people have as their ultimate concern the selecting of fundamental from their scriptures and religious traditions in terms of which to judge themselves as being among God's best people, and all others as unworthy of God's favorable consideration. Given the ultimate concerns which drive fundamentalists, it is not surprising that they will not work to promote any of the aforementioned healthy desiderata, and will often work in collusive ways to undermine the efforts of healthy people who work to promote the healthy desiderata. We cannot cope meaningfully with chapter and verse fundamentalists so long as we let them determine the focus of our attention and discourse. They will evade the disintegration issues and subvert any honest discussion of what the issues are and how the issues might be resolved with integrity. So long as fundamentalists control the agenda for our dialogue with them we cannot be honest about their disintegrative attitudes, ideals, values and behavior patterns. Control is one of the central issues to addicts e.g., chapter and verse fundamentalists. They desperately want to appear to be in control and so try to control appearances. They want to appear to be better than other people to compensate for how little true love, acceptance and affection they have enjoyed. They lack true self- esteem because they have not been esteemed by others as unique persons. Since true control of what they want to control is not possible, the only alternative is to appear to be in control through dishonest games of mutual self deception, i.e., collusions. (c) 2005 by Paul A. Smith in (On Being Yourself, Whole and Healthy) ==========================================================