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#265247 - 12/04/08 09:45 PM .
Barkabus Offline

Registered: 05/09/08
Posts: 809

Edited by Barkabus (12/10/08 11:49 PM)
Edit Reason: Deleted for personal safety
My Story

#265254 - 12/04/08 10:36 PM Re: Hebrews 13:17 [Re: Barkabus]
Sans Logos Offline

Registered: 05/31/03
Posts: 5796
Loc: in my own world in pittsburgh,...
interesting topic mike, the concept of hierarchical power structures in institutional systems, both religious and otherwise.

it is my understanding that these models have emerged from androcentric patriarchal templates that had more use within the context of the conditions in which they arose. for me, this restrictive format has been proven time and again to produce a tendency to abuse those whom they would hold in their sway. you would think that it might follow, believeing this way, that i would have lived life as a rebel, but that is not the case. in fact, for myself, i don't necessarily subscribe to the mindless loyalty that these types of power eschelons seem to demand, but i have not felt the need to behave reactively towards them neither.

for myself, i value power bases that are structured more horizontally than vertically. there seems to be a bit more justice and dare i say democracy in that style. i rather think of people in certain positions of power less as authority figures [that is a loaded label!] and moreso as appointed overseers. for me that puts the role into perspective and suggests more of a spirit of equanimity in governance.

i don't fare well with 'bosses' who misuse their position to lord it over others. let's face it, we're all human and as such prone to pride, and given the notion of ultimate power, ie, that the buck stops with 'me', has created more tyrants than we could want to name.

as a person and a father who raised 3 people, and who having had the label of authority figure thrust upon him, i can honestly say, i never used that approach with any of my children, most likely because that is how i was raised. i never demanded blind allegiance to 'my absolute principles', probably because i never felt myself to have all the necessary information to make that kind of demand. i realized somewhere along the way that criteria for making judgments, in order to be fair, had to include other perspectives and opinions.

principles are relative to the circumstances and conditions out of which they arise, and certainly today, while there is a need to refer to these types of fealty relationships for modeling, i feel that we need continually reassess the notion of automatic loyalty to any ideology.

that's just my opinion though, and it's subject to change as necessary. i appreciate the opportunity to reflect on this topic, thanks!


Ron Schulz, MSPC, NCC

#265266 - 12/05/08 12:17 AM Re: Hebrews 13:17 [Re: Sans Logos]
michael banks Offline

Registered: 06/12/08
Posts: 1755
Loc: Mojave Desert, Ca

I don't believe that this verse that Mike is referring to calls on us to place blind obeidence in any authority. But those who are using there position of authority for the common benefit of those whom they govern.

In the Marine Corps I was taught to follow all orders of those who were place in authority over me. Unless those orders were illegal at which point I was require to refuse such orders and report such orders to someone of even higher authority.

I believe a sign of growth and maturity in my recovery is the ability to be able to submit to the authority and rules that have been put into place for the welfare of all.

As a child I was always at odds with authority because I wanted things my own way.
As an adult I have learned to judge each situation that I am place in and when necessary submit my needs and wants for the common good of all.

The idea of a horizontal power sturcture is a lofty ideal but in any group of people you have those who cannot or will not reframe from trying to impose their will,ideas, and traditions on others.

Pure democracy is a wonderful dream but in reality only leads to anarchy.
You will always need some kind of authority in place to keep the playing field level for all.

That's how I see it.

Your Friend,


To own one's shadow is the highest moral act of a human.
-Robert Johnson-

"IT ought never be forgotten that the past is the parent of the future" John C. Calhoun

WOR Alumni Sequoia 2009

#265300 - 12/05/08 03:00 AM Re: Hebrews 13:17 [Re: michael banks]
Pete2004 Offline

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 958
Loc: North Carolina
Michael and Mike and ron:

I agree with you both Michael and Mike. ron, I had trouble follow your logic. I don't think any of us benefits from "bosses" who misuse their authority, and I think it incumbent upon us to appropriately question wrong actions or unfair decisions by those in authority over us. As one who is 'under authority' as well as one who 'exerts authority', it is a system, when motives are sincere, that brings order, peace and prosperity. For those 'in authority' it is a huge responsibility. We are not asked to "blindly" submit to those in authority who mistreat their position as well. If that were the case, the underground railroad, founded by fundamentalist christians, would have been wrong. It wasn't.

In the spiritual sense, when we subordinate our will to the authority we find over us (with prescribed limits), it is an act of worship as we are looking to God and not man to meet all our needs and just wants.

I know for those who have been abused by an authority figure, these are difficult words. I hope that this doesn't open old wounds. That is not my intent. There has been horrendous abuse by those who were and are wolves in sheep’s clothing, cloaking themselves in the authority of the church. There are weeks of biblical study necessary to put this in proper context beginning with the understanding that God loves us, wants to be active in our lives and has a perfect plan for us and the enemy of our souls, the great abuser, would twist this>
There is a destiny that makes us brothers;
No one goes his way alone;
What we send into the lives of others,
comes back into our own. (Edwin Markham)

#265425 - 12/05/08 07:34 PM Re: Hebrews 13:17 [Re: Pete2004]
Sans Logos Offline

Registered: 05/31/03
Posts: 5796
Loc: in my own world in pittsburgh,...
Originally Posted By: Charlie2004
the enemy of our souls, the great abuser, would twist this>
Ron Schulz, MSPC, NCC

#265457 - 12/05/08 11:50 PM Re: Hebrews 13:17 [Re: Barkabus]
Gerald2007 Offline

Registered: 08/03/07
Posts: 157
Loc: Southeastern US
Thank you for starting this thread. Reading the posts has caused be to dig out one of my study Bibles and read a portion of the book of Hebrews. That is something I haven't done for a while.

I spent a good amount of time pondering the matter. I am not quite ready to write down my thoughts on the>
Alumnus: Weekend of Recovery - Dahlonega, May 2008 and May 2009
We are bound together by the pain of the past and our hopes for the future.


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