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Subscribe for weekly discussions with cult survivors, experts in religious trauma recovery, and other topics related to recovering from religious harms. This show is hosted by volunteers from Recovering From Religion, which is a non-profit organization that works to provide hope, healing, and support for people who have questions or doubts about their faith. Whether you are an atheist, religious, or leaving a cult, we hope you will find this podcast helpful. We aren’t here to talk you out of ...
 
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show series
 
The idea of sex addiction is a religious notion at its root. Since 1983 religions have used the idea of sex addiction as a tool of Purity Culture. In this discussion, Dr Darrel Ray joins us once again to talk about the roots of the concept of sex addiction and how it affects you and our entire culture. This does not mean people don't have concerns …
 
Conspiracy theories and the conspiracy theory mindset is very attractive to folks coming out of religion as a way to help make sense of the world we find ourselves in. No one is immune from ridiculous beliefs, no one. Stephanie Kemmerer joins us to share her story of how she fell into the rabbit hole, how she escaped, and the lessons she learned al…
 
How have the dominant species of religions evolved over human history? And why? Archeology suggests that some religious practices go back tens of thousands of years or more. However these ancient religious practices among hunter-gatherers bear little resemblance to organized religion today. Religions centered around morality emerged in early farmin…
 
David G. McAfee joins us to cover an important topic and a key element of his new book, “Hi, I’m an Atheist! What That Means and How to Talk About it with Others”: interacting with the general public as an atheist. Being open about atheism is different for every single one of us. Some of us might have grown up as believers, and then had issues with…
 
Do you miss those awesome church summer camps, but no longer relate to the religious parts? That's what the Fall Excursion is all about. We sit down with Shanon Nebo, RfR's Treasurer and Excursion Director, to learn all about it. Hosted by Eric Wells, RfR Support GroupOnline Programming Director. For RfRx comments, inquiries & topical questions, em…
 
Cathy Harris will present an explanation for how self-esteem, suicidal ideation, self-harm can follow leaving cult membership behind. Why would this happen after gaining our freedom? How can we cope and move beyond self-destructive thoughts and behaviors? Cathy Harris is a Clinical Social Worker with over 20 years' experience in a variety of settin…
 
Throughout millennia people have been treated like objects, and not as the free-willed individuals they were. We are really not too far removed from the days of chattel marriages and slavery, and those outdated ideas of people as objects still show up in our religious belief systems, our language, and our behaviors. In this RfRx discussion, Glenda …
 
In this week’s RfRx, Tahlia Newland will join us to discuss Tibetan Buddhism. Its practices, beliefs, and leadership may be foreign and exotic to Western minds, making it a tempting religion to join. We’ll learn about its belief systems, its leadership, some history, and the struggles adherents experience within and trying to transition out of this…
 
Got a fear of hell? Coming out to your friends and family? Looking for organizations that support ex-Muslims? Well, RfR has those curated just for you. We sit down with Dan Cancro, the director of the Resources program, to learn more about what's available and what's involved in keeping them relevant. Hosted by Eric Wells, RfR Support Group Directo…
 
Pagans. The word alone can conjure many images to the mind: witches casting spells over a cauldron in the moonlight, ancient Rome with their debauchery and hedonism, Ancient Aztec human sacrifices to appease their Gods, modern Druids gathered at Stonehenge at the summer solstice. Helen Greene, former pagan high priestess, and current educator will …
 
Conversion Therapy is a crime against our authentic selves. Surviving and undoing its negative effects can take years or even decades, and often survivors come out the other side with PTSD. Dr. Mark Eastwood joins us to share his experience going through conversion therapy himself to discuss how survivors can cope with its effects and how others ca…
 
Did you know that Recovering from Religion has a blog? It sure does! We sit down with Kristina Callaway, RfR Blog Director, to talk all about it. Subscribe to the RfR Blog: https://medium.com/excommunications Hosted by Eric Wells, RfR Support Group Director. For RfRx comments, inquiries & topical questions, email us at RfRx@recoveringfromreligion.o…
 
When transitioning out of religion, we may leave more than just a deity behind. Views on any number of social issues can unexpectedly shift from one side of to another. This shift tends to provide the flexibility of seeing the issues from many different viewpoints, which can be both a blessing and a curse. In this RfRx, Gayle Jordan will share her …
 
Transitioning out of religion as a gay person? Are you a new secular individual with kids? Are you recovering from being in a high control religious group, like the LDS church? Then the Online Community may be the place for you. We sit down to talk about the RfR Online Community with the two program directors, Steve Ironside & John Lionheart. Hoste…
 
Suicide is an ever present part of our human experience, be it through an acquaintance, friend, or family member taking their own life, or something even more personal, such as suicidal thoughts and attempts. When faced with suicide, whether it’s as close as someone coming to you for help, or as distant as media reports, it can be daunting to know …
 
How do you find a mental health professional who you can trust knows how to deal with religious trauma? We sit down with Travis McKie-Voerste, PhD, the Co-Director of RfR's Secular Therapy Project to learn about just that. Hosted by Eric Wells, RfR Support Group Director. For RfRx comments, inquiries & topical questions, email us at RfRx@recovering…
 
In this fifth video in the All About RfR series, we sit down with Eric Wells, the RfR Support Group Director, to talk about the Support Group program. Hosted by Dr Kara Griffin, RfR Online Community Moderator. For RfRx comments, inquiries & topical questions, email us at RfRx@recoveringfromreligion.org. Any time you are struggling with religious do…
 
Finding a mental health professional who is evidence-based, as well as a good fit for you, can be difficult at times. In this RfRx discussion, we will talk about what it means for a therapist to be a “good fit”, best-case scenarios, strategies for finding a mental health professional, and identifying limitations that can make this search a difficul…
 
The Recovering from Religion Helpline is available for folks struggling with issues stemming from religious doubt & non-belief 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We sit down with the program director, Erik Huckvale, to learn more about who can use the service and how it's ran behind the scenes. Hosted by Eric Wells, RfR Support Group Director. For RfRx…
 
Healthy relationships, including family, friendships, partnerships, coworkers, and leader/subordinate relationships, can be difficult to maintain in the best of situations. It becomes impossible, however, when one person in the relationship is committed to behaviors that are coercive, deceptive, destructive, and/or self-serving. These unhealthy tra…
 
What does the RfR Volunteer Program look like and how can people volunteer for Recovering from Religion? We sit down with Shana Rubio, the RfR Board Secretary and Volunteer Coordinator, to learn more!https://www.recoveringfromreligion.org/volunteerHosted by Eric Wells, RfR Support Group Director.Shana Rubio was born and raised in Colorado as a Jeho…
 
Transitioning out of religion isn’t easy. Many of us have built our personal identity around our religious worldview and community, but what to do when that’s gone or slipping away? We may be left feeling perplexed, confused, depressed and anxious in the aftermath of departing long held faith practices. This RfRx discussion will focus on strategies…
 
In part 2 of this video series we sit down with Dr Darrel Ray, RfR's Founder & President, to learn about how this awesome organization got started. Hosted by Eric Wells, RfR Support Group Director. The primary focus of Recovering from Religion (RfR) is to offer hope, healing, and support to those struggling with issues of doubt and non-belief. This…
 
Rebuilding our identity after divorcing religion can feel like a daunting task. At some point, we must determine our post-religious values and confront identities which were placed on us by our parents and religious community. Once we have established who we are not, it is time to consider whom we wish to be and take steps in that direction. At thi…
 
In this very first video of the All About RfR multi-part series, we get to meet Gayle Jordan, the Executive Director of Recovering from Religion (RfR) to talk about what RfR is and the need it serves. Hosted by Eric Wells, RfR Support Group Director. Please subscribe to the podcast for episodes which will describe how Recovering From Religion funct…
 
Nudist life, what it is, what it isn’t and how to explore it. The discussion will also include key aspects of nudism and how these can be healing from shame. Gwen Blodgett spent the majority of her life in a fundamentalist evangelical background living and teaching extreme religious ideas, was a missionary, pastor‘s wife, Christian bookstore owner,…
 
Explore what it means to be "spiritual" or live meaningfully without the outmoded accessories of religious trappings. Rachel Roberts will offer definitions of terms that illustrate how ancient human inclinations, such as spirituality, are still relevant but need to be recontextualized in the 21st century. She will also provide examples and ideas fo…
 
We are innately sexual creatures. What should come naturally gets mutilated and destroyed by shame, fear, and ignorance. We crave emotional intimacy, yet dare to risk letting others know who we really are. In this RfRx discussion, Dr. Steven Davidson will discuss why we get trapped in denying our sexuality and how we can overcome it and be that muc…
 
In the United States, laws have been created and upheld which favor religious freedoms over the health and well-being of United States citizens. In this RfRx, Torah Bontrager will return to discuss the supremacy of religious rights over other basic human rights, including education (a theme of the Amish Heritage Foundation’s work and the topic of t…
 
If you grew up in a deeply religious household, were homeschooled or went to a religious school, you might have been given some serious disinformation about American history. Christian Nationalism has demanded the creation of myths and the revision of history. In this RfRx discussion Andrew Seidel will discuss what it is, the role it plays in socie…
 
There is safety in religious beliefs such as rules to follow, clear consequences, and structured relationships. When we step out of our religion into the big wide world, it’s a struggle to release the rules, to ignore the dogma we’ve been raised to trust. June has learned to recognize that rules-based voice, challenge it and embrace life without th…
 
Many people who leave religions struggle to overcome the inaccurate ideas they spread about sex. In this talk, Dr. Darrel Ray discusses how to overcome some of these issues in order to live a fuller life. RfRx talks are recorded every Monday at 7pm Central Time. Please consider joining us live. Information about upcoming shows and a link to join th…
 
The Amish Heritage Foundation is a history-making nonprofit committed to empowering Amish women and children through education past the eighth grade, so they can choose their own futures. They provide services including cultural literacy training to institutions and individuals as well as raising public awareness about the crises hidden in Amish so…
 
The holiday season can be a time of strong emotional reactions, and not just because of the usual religious overtones. Feelings of disconnection and loneliness can be experienced due to the pressure of traditions and social expectations, even when around loved ones. In this RfRx we’ll discuss how holidays affect us, from personal and social influen…
 
Dave Warnock is a former conservative Evangelical pastor and church leader of 40 years, who began to question, examine and investigate his Evangelical Christianity faith claims 10 years ago. He came to the conclusion that those beliefs came up short and it took him several years to work through how to live without belief. He realized that this was …
 
Growing up in fundamentalist religious households, the trauma that children experience due to the belief systems of their parents can last a lifetime and be very difficult to work through. Alexis will talk about how she got herself out of the fundamentalist belief system and the path she took to discovering her own identity. She will provide helpfu…
 
Substance and alcohol abuse is so prevalent around the world that very few people have not succumbed to its temptation or know someone who has. There is substantial evidence that we and our ancient relatives used substances as antimicrobials and antiparasitic agents. A byproduct was these substances' ability to disable our prefrontal cortex, inhibi…
 
American Atheists is a national civil rights organization that works to achieve religious equality for all Americans by protecting what Thomas Jefferson called the “wall of separation” between government and religion created by the First Amendment. They strive to create an environment where atheism and atheists are accepted as members of our nation…
 
As an offshoot of the Mennonites, the Amish have been around since the 17th century and are well known for their public-facing quaint and austere lives. However, along with their historical and religious cousins, the Mennonites and other Anabaptists, those who are on the inside know it's not at all an idyllic life within these isolated religious co…
 
Are humans 'hard-wired' for religion? Dr. Mark Reimers will describe recent evidence from neuroscience, genetics, anthropology, and psychology about the human propensity to be religious. Dr. Mark Reimers is a computational neuroscientist at Michigan State University where he researches how animal brains work and how human genes affect brain functio…
 
During the decade when Evangelicalism was coalescing with politics, a homegrown cult, known as the Shepherding Movement, reached its zenith. A religious pyramid scheme that bilked people of their money, identity, and freedom quietly penetrated the Southern United States. Rachel Roberts escaped the cult and the 80s, and fortunately outgrew both, jus…
 
Everyone grieves in their own way and according to their own timeframe, the accepted wisdom tells us. But those in mourning rarely find comfort in knowing this and those looking to support someone in mourning can do little with this advice, leaving them with a sense of helplessness. As a mental health professional and someone who has dealt with her…
 
A foundational piece of fundamentalist thinking is black/white, us vs them, view of the world. Often, even having left the structure of religion behind, we still maintain that either/or worldview. In this RfRx discussion, David will work through why this is still so enticing, even without a god, and how to expand beyond it when engaging with other …
 
Our brains evolved on the African savannah well enough to allow Homo Sapiens to survive in that harsh, unforgiving environment, and go on to populate the planet. But the thinking organ which developed to prevent our death at the hands of predators and the elements is far from perfect. We are primed to trust the opinions and anecdotes of those in ou…
 
Trigger warning: Images of Self Harm are in the presentation Regular RfRx guest Dr. Andy Thomson, M.D. will summarize key findings from the psychological science research into happiness and well-being, and how it all connects to our evolutionary history. Additionally, the presentation will discuss a useful model known as the “AAA battery”: Agency, …
 
Since 2014, Kansas City Oasis has provided a community for secular families, believing the human experience is better when shared. Our goal is to cultivate an environment where you will find new friends and a place to belong, regardless of your beliefs, gender identity or sexual orientation. Our Core Values define our community and help shape our i…
 
In many Muslim majority countries doubting Islamic teachings, leaving the faith, or same-sex love can result in harsh punishments, ostratization, toture or even execution. As you might imagine, these repercussions result in fear and deep psychological trauma. In this RfRx discussion, Yasmine Mohammend will share with us how the nonprofit organizati…
 
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (also known as Mormonism) is a relative newcomer to the religion scene having been around for less than 200 years having been born out of violence and deceit. Over that time it has predictably adapted to changing social views and failed prophecies. In this RfRx Shannon Grover and Bryce Blankenagel wil…
 
Professional clergy” such as pastors, priests, ministers, rabbis, and imams, face some unique challenges when transitioning out of religion. Their livelihood relies on leading their flock, but when their faith is gone, they may be “stuck in the pulpit” usually without the skills or connections to simply walk away. Charles, Hill, former minister and…
 
Want to learn more about Black Nonbelievers, and how to support our work? Mandisa Thomas will discuss the organization’s mission, why BN is needed, and how you can contribute. Black Non-Believers is celebrating their 10 year anniversary! Watch their anniversary video here: https://youtu.be/nMRAtsDE1og Mandisa Thomas is the Founder and President of …
 
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