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MMR: High on Life, Low on Games

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July 24, 2006 1:10:02 PM

Is video game addiction a true medical condition? Are 20% of gamers really unable to put down the controllers and keyboards? And do the treatment options and support groups really offer solutions to excessive World of Warcraft play?

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July 24, 2006 1:31:34 PM

Great article. This all comes back to one word: responsibility. Who's fault is it that people are addicted to games, or any other substance or thing? The person who's addicted. And possibly their parents (depending on their age).

I have been an avid gamer since I got my first Nintendo in 1989. Yes. I have made some mistakes along the way and perhaps played games instead of do my homework. But I obviously didn't totally fuck up since I made it through college with a degree in Software Engineering.

Did I ever choose to play video games instead of go out with my girlfriend though? Or skip class for a week because I'd rather play a video game (well I would but no I didn't)? A guy I lived with did but even he still got through college because he was smart and at least went to his tests and passed them. Video games are like any other thing out there. If the person is weak, depressed, and/or lacks confidence, they can fall into it. But its not the video game companies fault for a person's choices. They made a great game that other people shouldn't say should go away just because of the personal failures of a few individuals.

If you get addicted to video games and choose them over your wife/husband and two kids, then you didn't deserve them in the first place and its your fault you lost them. Not Sony/Blizzard/Square Enix/etc. Because in the end it comes down to people will sue if they can and have in the past over people getting addicted or dying allegedly because of a video game.
July 24, 2006 2:07:19 PM

Quote:

Personally, I think games like EverQuest and World of Warcraft eventually run their course on most folks. They realize at some point that they spend entirely too much time on the game and gradually cut down their playing or leave the game altogether


I'll agree 100% with this.

For several years, I played the HELL out of Asheron's Call. I was entirely obsessed with the game. I'd logon before I went to work, I'd go to work and read message boards and walk-throughs about the game...I'd come home from work and play all damn night and into the morning.

Long story short, I eventually realized that all of the time and effort I was dumping into the game was pointless...it was a never-ending saga to try to have "the best character ever"...and for what?

It seems to me that many of the MMORPG's are the same way. It's all about advancing your character and many people get so caught up in this that they spend their real life trying to advance an entity trapped inside of a game RATHER than doing something to advance themselves...i.e. college.

Ultimately I don't see alot of harm in playing the game too often. One kid committed suicide...so what? Look at how many million play who enjoy it? It's a personal decision.
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July 24, 2006 2:30:20 PM

You're definitely right on the "try to be the best thing".

Regardless of how much you play or how good you are, like in life, theres always someone better than you. Thats also why I don't enjoy games like that. I play FFXI. Sure theres importance on leveling up and having good gear. But theres greater importance on strategy and teamwork. Also the storyline of the game is compelling and drives you to want to see what is next. Its not a game like WoW or EQ where the sole importance is hitting max level and doing the same freakin instances over and over for the sole purpose of getting better gear. Sure in FFXI theres some instanced fights that people do over and over to try and get a particular item. But you don't always need the item. Its just a good piece of gear that you want to have cause its really good or want to sell for cash. And a lot of those pieces, you can't sell so the only reason is if you want it.

People whine and complain that FFXI is difficult. But thats what keeps it interesting. And having to rely on other people to level up creates a greater level of respect in the community. You can't just be in your linkshell (the somewhat equivalent of a guild), solo your way to max level, and screw everyone else in the game. Because your reputation will get around and no one will want to party with you.
July 24, 2006 2:31:19 PM

Great Article, I'd go further and say that the religous "right" are preying on people that have an addictive personality and have gone looking for help.

Valor.
July 24, 2006 3:11:13 PM

It sounds to me that they took a page out of the Alcoholics Anonymous book. Before smacking it as the religous right, you might note that there is no specific 'religion' given, just reference to a 'higher Power'. They don't tell you to go to the nearest Catholic church or you'll never be able to quit. In fact, the idea of a higher power is used by many addiction programs. It helps people find strength to quit playing or using, becuase they are told that the power is coming from somewhere else, so they're no longer responsible for having the ability to quit. It may seem crazy to you, or you may think it smacks of the religious right, but it works for a lot of people, and you can't argue with that.
July 24, 2006 3:32:24 PM

Currently I'm playing Guildwars. I've been playing it for over a year. I get a lot of enjoyment out of playing. I truely enjoy playing with the people in the Guild I'm in. I've had a few people I know IRL(In Real Life) join Guild which makes it even more fun, but it's not going to superceed my life.
As mentioned in the article, I may eventually decide I've had enough and move on, I play computer games instead of watching TV. I look at this as a choice.
Partially because I don't find sports entertaining, and there aren't a lot of shows on TV that I find interesting. I'm not completely against the TV, I have a fairly large DVD collection :-p.
Of the two choices, 1.) Sit and Veg in front of the TV (A little exagerated :wink: ), 2.) Play GW (Strategy, Tactics, interacting with people, figuring out puzzles, etc.) I choose 2 the more often that not.
One of the intesting side effects of GW is, because there's no monthly fee, I'm probably saving money (or at least spending less :)  ). I used to buy new games just to take a look on a monthly basis. I've haven't done this in a while because I found one I enjoy enough to not be chasing the next one.
I do find the focus on addiction to "computer" gaming focus ironic as it completely ignores personalities.
Not to start a flame war, but isn't football an addition for the majority of the US? How much do advertiser's spend for Superbowl Sunday commericals? How often does the house revolve around the football schedule? How often does it take priority over other things? (I admit a bias against football)
How much time is spend during the Backetball playoffs watching all the games?

It seems however that society is turning a blind eye towards some things, and I wonder how much this has to do with money, and how much it has to do with concern about the individuals involved in the activities.
July 24, 2006 7:30:30 PM

I have played EQ for about 5 years and have taken some long vacations during that time. I know it is not true that your online friends can not be real friends. MMORPGs do give you a larger exposure to other people then most other activites. The games are designed to promote team work. After a few year to talking, interacting, and have to rely on others in these games, you can build a friendship and a trust. You also meet a large number that you can't build a friendship with. Not far from real life.

One other aspect that really strengthens the bonds between players is voice chat. Some players have adopted voice chat for tactical reasons. I have found myself spending a fair amount of time verbally communicating with others. You can tell a lot more about someone by the way they talk.

Like others have stated, addiction is a powerful term that is misused and abused. I think of young athletes that have killed themselves over losing a big game or injury that prevents them from playing. To much of anyone thing will change you. Some of those changes may mean death, like from food or drugs, while others simple physical changes.

Now like any friendship, when the method of communication goes away a distance grows. This normally happens when a player leaves the game. Some stay in contact via forums or email. Even those that I have lost connect with over the past few years may reappear over places.
July 24, 2006 7:34:23 PM

You didn't expect the 12 steps to have religious overtones and mention being powerless to quit?

To write that is to admit that you do not know anything about addiction, treatment, or 12 step programs. Now, to be clear, I do not endorse 12 step programs, have never participated in one, or anything like that.

My point is that if you write an article on addiction, one would think that there would be a tad of research on addiction and treatment done.
July 24, 2006 11:09:03 PM

I think he's just saying that most 5,7,10 or however many step programs rely on an anonymous "GOD" or "HIGHER POWER" and one of the steps is giving your will over to that power to help you quit, showing that you understand that you were powerless to quit on your own and that you need help from someone mightier that you.
I thought the article was fine, I was just bothered by the religious crutch comment.
July 25, 2006 1:00:38 AM

Quote:

I thought the article was fine, I was just bothered by the religious crutch comment.


Exactly... I personally don't agree with 12 step programs requiring anyone to believe anything other than the fact that they have an addiction, but the editor needs to keep the religion bashing out of these articles.
July 25, 2006 1:34:34 AM

Let the religion bashing begin!
July 25, 2006 3:54:11 AM

why must they resort to religion? so if u do anything rong apparently its not ur fault, the devil makes u do it, that jus means we no longer hav to be responsible for anything

or another point where the person is so weak we need a higher power to stop an addiction? come on

its almost like that arguement politicians use against games as well as ppl who commit crimes say, well im gonna blame it on digital media, i nvr hav to take responsibility every again, hell i jus escaped the death sentence or life in prison and i got to kill cops while im at it.

if u really want to be "in control" of your life, take some responsibility, stop playing after a few hours a day and u wont need to go to a clinic for something this stupid
July 25, 2006 6:55:57 AM

Indeed, I agree with the article, religion is a "social crutch".

But this is suppsed to be a debate about addictive gaming, not about the perils of organised religion!

That list of questions in the article, I would have to answer "yes" to all of the questions exept the two about "do you lie about how much time you spend gaming" (I'm pretty honest with my self and people I know about my hobby/habit) and "do you spend too much money on phone bills due to gaming" ( this is a subjective and with the advent of broadand pretty outdated question).

So I guess that means I'm addicted to gaming? Yes I probably am, I tell myself I can stop at any moment, and I can stop, for an hour or a day or so. I recently stopped for 2 weeks whilst I was on holiday. But gaming is the first thing I think about when I wake up and the last thing I think about when I go to sleep.

Do I blame the game? No, not at all, I have an addictive personality, for as long as I can remember I've obsessed over 1 thing at a time, to an unhealthy degree. Sports, TV Shows all kinds of things have featured on my list, Games just make it easier, and more controlled.

When I stopp playing a game I feel depressed, I'm looking for the next obsession. Thats a dangerous time for me, not because of the depression (a word used entriely too much these days) but because my new addiction could be something a damn sight more dangerous than gaming!

I play over 40 hours of World of Warcraft a week, and yet I manage to hold down a full time job (which I thoroughly enjoy) and I have a very understanding Girlfriend whom I see 3/4 times a week.

I'm addicted to Gaming.
I'm not "failing at life".
I'm enjoying my life.
I dont want to stop!
I dont need the "illness industry" telling me I have a problem they can fix with pills or therapy.

Valor.
July 25, 2006 2:55:34 PM

Ok, I’ll play devils advocate here. I did play WoW for quite a while. But when I reached 60 and didn’t like the whole 40 man raid attitude, I quit, plain and simple. But, those raids were a great part of why I quit. You do realize that there are some really addicted people out there right? They demand that you get on their team speak server or Ventrillo server and then mute all of you. We can talk but you just have to listen to us ramble on. Oh yeah, that is what I pay $15 a month for… to listen to some “junkie” tell everyone how wrong they are doing things. It is my money, if I don’t enjoy playing, it is simple, I quit.

But there were quite a few I met on there, and am still in contact with even though I have not played WoW for about 9 months now. One in particular that comes to mind really scares me. She is a wonderful person, but at the same time I have heard her almost in tears about the game… Ok for me, that is where this whole addiction comes into play. I am watching a, and I stress this point, friend get frustrated to the point where she is no longer having fun with it. And yet, she still goes back for more. And in my travels, I am beginning to see more and more of that behavior.

There is a new trend out there coming fast, which has been discussed in articles here. FREE online games. I have been beta testing BOTS and have found the same type of crowd there. It doesn’t take long for them to ruin the game for me. You have those that have to put in countless hours everyday just to be the best. And now from what I am reading, the game itself is going to (after release) offer big tournaments and giveaways; giveaways along the lines of an Ipod.

As FITCamaro made me laugh when he said he has been gaming since his Nintindo, I have to admit, my gaming experience stretches even further back than his. Yes, I was an Atari addict, then an Apple IIe gaming addict, followed by the IBM gaming addiction. I have been guilty since the original Wizardry; trying to outdo my friends and get that Blade of Cuisinart.

Many years I have been gaming, and yet, here I am with a 14 year old son (whom I raised), a computer tech position at a college campus (have to love government postions) and a Project Coordinator for a little known company named Ford. :p 
July 25, 2006 3:13:37 PM

We couldn't afford an Atari. :tongue:

I only got a Nintendo because it was a Christmas gift from my uncle. After that I didn't get another system until the Playstation.
July 25, 2006 3:22:07 PM

OMG, maybe it's just girls who really get addicted then! One girl in my classes last year missed a final and term-end presentation because she was playing WOW. I feel bad for her. I still see her up on campus, but she's no longer in any of my classes. I haven't asked if she's dropped WOW yet.
July 25, 2006 4:16:00 PM

Up at college I knew a guy that played a minimum of 40 hours a week of WOW, usually more than that. He was doing pretty good at school, getting A's and B's and he decided with a month left in the semester that he was just tired of classes and it wasn't worth it when he could be playing WOW more.

So he stopped going to class and was putting in 60 hours a week. He didn't have a job, and his only social interaction with people was through the game. He got kicked out of his guild for some reason or another and he was distraught for about 2 weeks and he could barely handle it. I think certain people are inclined towards addictions to different things. They've found a gene that makes you more prone to be addicted to cigarettes, maybe they'll find one that makes people be more inclined to be addicted to games.
July 25, 2006 5:19:13 PM

Indeed 'the best gear I can get' seems to me pretty much how WoW works. Seriously, that's all I play for...I play to lvl, I play to get better stuff...Actually...I've got a character of each race and class because once I hit 60, I DON'T feel like running an instance over and over again for one damn sword that has 4.5 dps more than mine.
The other problem with a game like WoW is it takes time. It takes actual devotion to accomplish anything in it...So playing for one lousy hour doesn't get much done. It almost makes you HAVE to play for 2 hours or more to get anything done. I admit, WoW definately takes my full attention away from life when I play it, but that can be a good thing some times. I play it every weeknight for maybe 3 hours or so...Every now and then I get sick of it and don't touch it...I imagine at some point i definately will drop it all together (and save $15 a month too)
As far as OTHER games go, like first-person shooters or war strats, I don't think the same rules apply. I can play BF2 for 5 min or 5 hours...it doesn't really rely on "the best gear" (except for maybe some unlocks)...everyone has just as good a chance as the next...So there is no pressure or time needed to do so. MMPORGS are the main 'devil' if you want to call it that, but thats it. Like everyone else said though, its the persons own fault if it ruins their lives. Darwinism my boys...let it take its course. :-)
July 26, 2006 1:50:00 AM

I would like to point out that sometimes people who become friends in game can become friends in real life. Sometimes those in game friendships can even go further than friendships established in person.

Here is an example from the World of Warcraft forums. I do play WoW, and this was not my post.

WoW Post Regarding In Game Friendship
July 26, 2006 8:21:21 AM

This person did not speak to me about our organization (OLG-anon) or about my son's death, before he wrote this article. The information he has is partial. The way he states it is inaccurate.

We (at OLG-Anon) tell people to do more than just "break their CD's".
Read this post - http://p198.ezboard.com/folgafrm3.showMessage?topicID=237.topic

And if anyone wants to fully recover in their real life, they DO need to address their spirituality (which is not the same as being religious.)

He also stated:
Quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
However, Shawn Woolley reportedly had been previously diagnosed with depression and a schizoid personality disorder.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This is true. But he failed to state, this personality disorder did not happen to him, until AFTER he started playing Everquest.

Liz W.
On-Line Gamers Anonymous
www.olganon.org
Check out the Message Board http://p198.ezboard.com/bolga
e-mail: olga@olganon.org
OLGA Hot line: 612-245-1115
July 26, 2006 10:28:15 AM

You are insensitive.

Spirituality does come from within.....that is where our spirit is. So many people today do not even know they have a spiritual life within themselves. They do not feed it. They do not experience it, and they have no idea the strength they can get from it.

This is the definition of addiction = Between stimulus and response is our greatest power - the freedom to choose. When that freedom is gone, than it is addiction.

You may not realize that once you are addicted to something, you no longer have A CHOICE. For people who are into these games so much that they do not get a foot hold on their own real life - they do not have a choice.

Where is the responsibility of the Game designer? I am sure you will say they have NONE. Just like a drug pusher has no responsibility because they do not FORCE the drug addicts to take the drugs. Same with the cigarette companies.....
July 26, 2006 11:31:28 AM

Quote:
You are insensitive.

Very constructive. A really good way to open your response that - insulting the other person.

Quote:
Spirituality does come from within.....that is where our spirit is.

Only if you believe in a spirit. A lot of us don't.

Quote:
So many people today do not even know they have a spiritual life within themselves. They do not feed it. They do not experience it, and they have no idea the strength they can get from it.

Quite. They just get on with life without relying on a belief in mystical nonsense. What exactly is your "spirit" anyway? What are it's properties? How does it manifest itself?

Quote:
This is the definition of addiction = Between stimulus and response is our greatest power - the freedom to choose. When that freedom is gone, than it is addiction.

I totally agree - our freedom to choose is a very important power. I don't believe that you need "spirituality" to be able to choose. I certainly don't.

Quote:
Where is the responsibility of the Game designer? I am sure you will say they have NONE. Just like a drug pusher has no responsibility because they do not FORCE the drug addicts to take the drugs. Same with the cigarette companies.....

That is possible the worst, most ridiculous, most fatuous, and downright detestable argument I've read in a long time.
People can get addicted to ANYTHING - there are recorded cases of people becoming addicted to carrot juice, for example. Would you ban carrots? Should my greengrocer set up a support group? Maybe my vegetables should come with a disclaimer on them?

There's only so far that society can babysit people - ultimately individuals have to take responsibility for their own actions and not blame everyone and everything for their failings. The vast majority of people play computer games without becoming addicted. The problem is not with computer games, but the individuals themselves.

Don't get me wrong - I'm not saying that these people should not be given all the help we can. But we can't go around blaming games designers if a small minority of the people who purchase their product get addicted to them.
July 26, 2006 4:20:37 PM

Quote:
You are insensitive.

Spirituality does come from within.....that is where our spirit is. So many people today do not even know they have a spiritual life within themselves. They do not feed it. They do not experience it, and they have no idea the strength they can get from it.

This is the definition of addiction = Between stimulus and response is our greatest power - the freedom to choose. When that freedom is gone, than it is addiction.

You may not realize that once you are addicted to something, you no longer have A CHOICE. For people who are into these games so much that they do not get a foot hold on their own real life - they do not have a choice.

Where is the responsibility of the Game designer? I am sure you will say they have NONE. Just like a drug pusher has no responsibility because they do not FORCE the drug addicts to take the drugs. Same with the cigarette companies.....


First off, my condolences for your loss. I can only imagine what pain you have had to endure. Watching both my grandfather and my father endure deaths of their children (my mother and my half-brother), I do have some idea of the loss.

I have to agree with Lizwool here on the spiritual beliefs, but I also have to point out that I don't agree with her on where the blame lies.

Believe it or not guys there is something within you called a spirit. I am not religious by any means, but I am spiritual. There is a big difference.

I have been addicted to marajuana (14 years), chewing tobacco (12 years), games, cigars, chocolate (yes, hard to believe i know), Magic the gathering card collecting (when it first came out), along with many other things. But every one of them I have been able to defeat alone.

I don't blame drug pushers, cigarette companies, candy companies, game companies, cigar makers, or collectable card manufacturers for my own failings. Blame lies squarely on the shoulders of the one that made the choice in the beginning.
July 26, 2006 4:26:40 PM

Quote:

I don't blame drug pushers, cigarette companies, candy companies, game companines, cigar makers, or collectable card manufacturers for my own failings. Blame lies squarely on the shoulders of the one that made the choice in the beginning.


Ahh, and therein lies the key to your success. By blaming others for your own actions, you take a great power away from yourself.
Certainly, a rational person can see that creating a fun entertaining video game is not the same as selling an illegal drug.
July 26, 2006 4:41:15 PM

Quote:

I don't blame drug pushers, cigarette companies, candy companies, game companines, cigar makers, or collectable card manufacturers for my own failings. Blame lies squarely on the shoulders of the one that made the choice in the beginning.


And the courage you have to admit that is why you managed to quit.
August 29, 2006 7:16:03 PM

This is EverCrap - true addiction results from physiological changes in the body, to which the addict adapts, and experiences genuine physical distress when the addictive influence is removed. Nothing like that has ever been shown to happen from video game play. This is simply another way to demonize games and gaming - the anti-video game nuts can't prove games induce violent behavior in the real world, so they fall back to the position that games are addictive and damaging socially.

I also have to object to some of the questions on the list; they are quite leading, and leave no room for a variance in the strength of the response. For example, I can get irritated when my wife or my children need me in the middle of an instance run with some WoW guildies - I don't want to get off and leave my party in the lurch, but I know what is most important, and I get off and do what my family needs. Gaming is always secondary to life, and I both know and practice that philosophy, but to honestly answer that question I would have to check the box. I also would check the box about gaming late at night - I have a busy life and 3 young kids, so often the only time I can find to pursue my hobby is after everyone else goes to bed. This does not make me an addict, it simply means I am prioritizing my life with family and work first, gaming second.

We have enough REAL problems in the world that require attention, and I am eternally frustrated that so much time is spent addressing this non-issue. You CANNOT become physically addicted to games; at most you can lose sight of your priorities for a while, which happens to lots of people periodically without them being labeled addicts.
August 29, 2006 8:49:34 PM

Actually you can become physically addicted to games. It's a well known fact that while playing games your brain releases pleasure-inducing chemicals. I read a couple of reports on it maybe two years ago. Lots of research and behold playing video games caused your brain to respond in very similar ways as having sex or using heroin.
I'm too lazy to look up the links, but don't think that just because it's not a drug or a physical substance that you cannot become addicted to it. Look at all the porn addicts out there.

Another thing: why are so many people angry that others are discussing this real problem. To paraphrase a very wise man: The guilty take the truth the be hard because it cuts them to their core. If you're an addict, stop playing. If you're not, don't worry about. But if you play a lot and don't think you're addicted, quit fooling yourself.
I haven't played a game in three weeks now, due to actively choosing other things and just being too busy to really want to play. Can anyone else railing against the game-addiction-is-real camp say that? Of course not. You'd go nuts after the first couple of days.
August 30, 2006 6:20:55 PM

Quote:
To paraphrase a very wise man: The guilty take the truth the be hard because it cuts them to their core.


And apparently the Devil can quote scripture to further his own ends. :evil:  What you are talking about is dependence, not a physiological addiction like that caused by legitimately addicting drugs (heroin, cocaine, etc.). People become vulnerable to dependence for many underlying causes (depression, loneliness, anxiety), and blaming the game for the dependence obscures the root of the behavior and takes responsibility for fixing it away from the only person who can - the affected individual.

As far as those brain chemicals are concerned (I assume endorphins are what you read about), ANY plesurable activity releases them to a greater or lesser degree, and that degree is important. I have never seen credible evidence that gaming produces an effect that is anywhere close to that of a narcotic drug or even the effect of a sexual climax. "Addicted" gamers have let a habit get away from them, and while they may need help to realize what they are doing and alter their behavior, calling them addicts marginalizes them, and is insulting to those struggling with genuine addictions.
September 1, 2006 6:14:58 PM

Sure, I'll bite.

First, all 12 step programs use the same 12 steps only slightly modified and they all reference God. These programs have notoriously low success rates and extremely high recidivism rates. They only work for those who have an addictive personality and are inclined to have a strong faith.

Basically you would be replacing their current "addiction" with an "addiction" to faith. Unfortunately these people often appear to be the most faithful for a period of time and then fine a new "addiciton" to obsess over, often one that is far more destructive than the first because they have a giant mess of tenets and beliefs to rebel against as well.

Next up, Gaming "addiction" is more akin to gambling "addiction". These are NOT chemical addictions. True addictions are a reliance on a chemical reaction and facilitated by the altered mental states that these chemical reactions induce.

Now gaming and gambling addictions are more based on psychological desires rather than chemical dependancies. Random reinforcement and accelerated gain are the principles at work there. In games you do not always succeed to the same degree and it is very possible to fail (at least in the most addictive games) but failures are not extremely costly and successes are VERY profitable (within the game). This exagerated and skewed reality is very appealing to humans. Some people have too low a willpower to know when to quit or force themselves to do so.

Think about RPGs for instance. In an RPG you start with (in some cases) a wooden sword and some cheap tattered clothes. Within 60 hours of gameplay you have the legendary super dragon fwakoomer blade of legends, Mithril plate of godly heavens and invulnerable might, and a band of similarly equipped do gooders.

That is some impressive profit gain.

Compare to the real world. You can draw your own conclusions.

SOME people (and I do stress SOME not most) DO need help breaking away from their addictions. Most people can do it on their own or were never so dependant on the game as to be considered "addicted" to begin with.

As for spirituality... I have studied many religions, I have debated the virtues of faith, I have spent countless hours discussing the successes and failures of organized religion. My conclusion is that I am stronger without spirituality. My convictions are much more solid, my understanding of the world around me is much more grounded in reality, my goals are achieved for my benefit and the benefit of those around me.

I feel much more self confident than I ever could following a religious dogma. Is this true for everyone? Of course not! Many people need religion to give them a purpose and a protector, real or imagined. It is not my place to say whether there is anything to their faith. Both the existance and nonexistance of God(s) has yet to be proven by science or faith. To that I remain devoutly agnostic.

Wow, that went a bit longish, wonder how many people will actually bother to read it....
September 1, 2006 8:09:59 PM

Nice post, and length be damned. While I agree with you on the subject of faith, I do feel that it can be a source of strength to many, and as such can be a beneficial tool. It just doesn't really work for me...

Also nice to see a fellow Texan on here - Dallas was my old stomping grounds :D 
!