It has been impossible to communicate about problems with the peers and authorities in my church or spiritual organization; I'm unable to air and discuss grievances and differences.

We know how frustrating it is to not be able to honestly share your feelings with the people who have been your intimates, friends, and advisors on the spiritual path. You may have even found, as many people in faith crisis often do, that you have NO ONE you can talk to -- NO ONE inside OR outside your church or spiritual group whom you can count on for a fair-minded consideration of the issues that bother you. To help correct that common situation is one of the primary reasons this web site was created.

Whom should you turn to? Theoretically, one might think that a person in your position would be best off seeking help from friends and counselors within their church or spiritual organization -- particularly in a matter as weighty as a crisis of faith. But unfortunately, members of a spiritual organization -- especially those who serve in the role of counselors -- can tend to be dogmatically, if not passionately, provincial in their views. Often, not even your closest friends and confidants within the organization can be trusted with your confidences at a time like this. The response you get may be one of concern, disapproval, even argument. And if that isn't bad enough, the problem will most likely be communicated to higher authorities in the group, leading to further counsel, intervention, and the like -- much of which may prove traumatic and unsupportive. Therefore, in the case of spiritual crisis, people in the organization are usually not consulted -- or they are not consulted more than once!

Thus, disconnection from your former confidants may sometimes be appropriate, even though it is painful -- not only to you, but probably also to them. The best you can do is forgive THEM for their inability to really help you, and forgive YOURSELF for choosing not to confide in them. Then, look for support where the hunting is more favorable.