Posted by JahL on October 10, 2006, at 7:00:27
In reply to Re: what is useful » Dr. Bob, posted by rayww on September 18, 2006, at 11:03:45
I don't really know what I'm letting myself in for here. I'm a confirmed aetheist and I'm not totally sure why I'm reading this board. Probably has something to do with the fact that I can't sleep (run out of sleep meds + buzzing off Parnate).
Anyway, I feel I just have to comment upon what Ray said.
> Gambling may be another [form of spiritual suicide], where you learn to value getting something for nothing. Its antidote would be work.
Hmmm. I'm too ill to work. Far too ill. So what do I do? Rely upon the state to provide me with a miserly income and endure a poor standard of living, a misery compounded by the terrible quality of life my Bipolar dictates I have?
Or do I use the skills I learnt while studying Economics at university to benefit both myself and society?
Yes, I am a professional gambler, and a fairly successful one at that. Gambling enables me to:
1/ Pay taxes.
2/ Pay my own way, maintain my independence and not rely upon state handouts, which others need more than me.
3/ Pay for the kind of psychiatric care which the state - in the guise of the NHS - cannot and will not provide, and which my condition demands.
4/ Explore new treatments (ie buy drugs) not available in my country.
1 & 2 mean I am a net contributer to society. I am not a drain upon the state's finances, which are a finite resource that exist for those that really have no way of supporting themselves.
3 & 4 mean I am still alive (I would have shot myself long ago without the self-financed meds I rely upon). 3 & 4 also give me a shot, so to speak - possibly - of one day leading a genuinely happy and productive life.
So in my case at least, gambling is a thoroughly productive pursuit.
Yes problem gamblers exist, and increasingly so, but that's no reason to condemn gambling per se, in the same way that the existence of alcoholism does not stop drinking from being a relatively harmless and enjoyable pursuit for most. For many people gambling's just a bit of fun at the end of a long, hard day's work. Nothing wrong with that in my eyes.
I always tell myself, if I can't live a happy life then at least I can lead a relatively comfortable one. All thanks to gambling.
> All three of these: pornography, gambling, murder, are like commiting spiritual suicide, and if people can't find their spiritual side...
Maybe some of us aren't looking for our 'spiritual side'. I know I'm not. I just exist in the here and now. That's enough for me.
On a side note - I really don't see the direct connection between porn and murder. I would hazard a guess that most young males, for example, at least occasionally glance at a little internet porn. Doesn't make them all killers in the making.
Right, that's my first, and most probably last Faith post done.