• Baking Can Ease Depression

Baking Can Ease Depression

British movement uses baking to fight depression, mental health issues

Feeling Depressed? Maybe You Need to Knead

Psychologists Explain The Benefits Of Baking For Other People

Can baking make you happier?

5 Reasons Baking is Good for Mental Health

Therapists Now Encourage Cooking and Baking as Cures for Depression


A new report in the Wall Street Journal explores the development that therapists and mental health professionals in clinics across America have been instituting cooking and baking classes as a means to help people who suffer with depression.

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• Toxic Masculinity – What It Is and What It Is Not – How Most Conservatives Misunderstand What It Is

 Toxic Masculinity – What It Is and What It Is Not – How Most Conservatives Misunderstand What It Is

I am a conservative. Until about 2 or 3 years ago, I was a Republican (since my teen years). I’m currently un-affiliated with any political party.

While I am empathetic towards some causes of feminists, and although I even agree with them on some subject matter some of the time, I do not consider myself to be a feminist, nor do I use the label to describe myself, primarily because the term has been co-opted by politically and socially left wing (liberal) women, and I remain conservative (right wing).

I’m embarrassed at how frequently other conservatives misunderstand or misrepresent some liberal or feminist views points.

I have actually spent time reading what liberals say on their own web sites and trying to understand their views, rather than only relying on a second-hand summary of their views by well-known conservative talking heads such as Rush Limbaugh, Laura Ingraham, and Tucker Carlson.

I’ve found that the famous conservatives often misunderstand feminists on many points, including the phrase “Toxic Masculinity.”

When your average conservative hears the phrase “Toxic Masculinity,” they assume it means that all masculinity is toxic and that all men are bad or evil.

However, that is not what the phrase “Toxic Masculinity” means.

I do wish that my fellow conservatives would stop creating straw-man arguments about the concept of Toxic Masculinity. Stop misrepresenting the term and mocking it – you’re often not even mocking what the term actually means. You’re mocking your misunderstanding of the phrase, and as someone who is a conservative, I find that very embarrassing.

Here are other sites whose authors explain what Toxic Masculinity is and what it is not:

My Kingdom for A World of Such Men: 3 Hallmarks of Healthy Masculinity

By Rachel Asproth

… But what is “toxic masculinity”? Without a more detailed explanation, the term can leave us with a bad taste in our mouths. It can inspire defensiveness, largely because it’s been misunderstood to mean that all masculinity is toxic. But it actually refers only to negative cultural expressions of masculinity that encourage violence, aggression, misogyny, and entitlement in boys and men.

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• This Is Not About All Men. Don’t Make It About You.

This Is Not About All Men. Don’t Make It About You.

I’ve noticed any time a woman (or women collectively) step forward to openly discuss their struggles – especially against “male on female” sexism – immediately, many men, or their female anti-feminists allies, hop into “defense mode” to either insist loudly and often that “not all men” are sexists (or are not sexual abusers), or, they like to try to derail a topic by arguing that (some) women are just as bad as men.

It’s repulsive to me that even situations that are of concern to women, that largely impact women more harshly, more often, or more severely than men, are always distorted and twisted to be turned into how these topics affect men.

Because as a society, I suppose we’re all supposed to care far, far more about men and the needs and feelings and jobs of men – than we are of women and women’s jobs, feelings, and needs.

I quite frankly do not care how the “Me Too” movement, or other women-centric causes, impact men, negatively or otherwise.

My level of concern is about confined only to the area that men who are currently sexist, or who sit around denying how rampant sexism is, will have their eyes opened to how common-place sexism is, even in a wonderful nation such as the United States.

Talkback caller’s heartfelt poem about violence against women resonates with listeners

by Nicole Mills

[Below audio sample on the page:

“Do not usurp my story / don’t tell me what to do / This is not about all men / Don’t make it about you”

Carmel shared this powerful poem about violence against women. Turn your sound on and take a moment for this.]

… But one caller to ABC Radio Melbourne has done an amazing job of uniting a huge number of women and men, who agreed her poem about society’s response to violence against women summed up their own feelings.

Carmel is a psychologist who works in the domestic violence field. She said she was fascinated by how “good, decent men often jump in to defend men, rather than listen to what women are saying”.

(By Carmel):

When I say I’m afraid of men who mean me harm,

You tell me not to make a fuss, there’s no need for alarm.

That not all men are like that, not to stress my pretty head,

Or talk about those other men just look at you instead.

But what of women suffering, a slap, a punch, a shove,

A life of menacing oppression from a man they love.

Not all men are sexist, not all men disrespect,

Not all men are the man who harms what he should protect.

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• The Intelligence Trap by Edward de Bono – On Being Wrong or Being Right

The Intelligence Trap by Edward de Bono – On Being Wrong or Being Right

In my opinion, much of the content I’ve placed in this post below is applicable to religious topics.

I’ve seen both Christians (liberals and conservatives) as well as atheists who are guilty of what these authors discuss.

Some of my long-held views about politics and religion changed a few years ago once I began asking myself if perhaps I was mistaken about things.

I took the time out to read the views of my intellectual adversaries more closely, and with an open mind – as opposed to reading their material in a defensive mindset, looking for errors or thinking of ways I could argue against their views if I had to debate any of them.

This does not mean I uncritically accepted each and every thing they wrote or said, however.

One result of all this is that I am now more “okay” with being wrong, or with thinking “there’s a possibility I am wrong about thus and so a topic.”

I’m now okay with not having certainty about everything, too.

Back when I was a full-on, conservative Christian (note: I’ve not completely left the faith at this stage), I had a need or desire to be certain about faith, about who God is, how God operates, why do bad things happen in life, and so on and so forth.

So another result from my re-evaulation of just about everything I believed is that some of my opinions shifted.

I’m not as right wing as I once was – I’m more moderate – and I’ve come to the conclusion that both the “liberal” and “conservative” interpretations of the Bible are incorrect on some points.

I’ve learned it’s okay to be wrong about things, it’s okay to make mistakes about things.

I above all believe that some of what I copy below from various web sites about De Bono’s work, and from other sites discussing the work of other authors, is applicable to Christian Gender Complementarians.

Many complementarians refuse, absolutely refuse, to question if perhaps their perspective of the Bible and of women is in error.

I believe this may partly be due to sexism (though complementarians will never, ever admit to being sexist), to cultural norms (that is, complementarian reading of the Bible is being influenced by cultural norms about women), and from reading the Bible in a certain, limited manner (that some may refer to as “biblicism.”)

Complementarians could benefit from reading Pete Enns blog and the book The Blue Parakeet, or this blog post from Diary of an Autodidact.

Here are links about De Bono’s work, or related:

Can you be too intelligent? by Julian Baggini

Our brains are incredible but you can be too smart for your own good. History often warns against what reason alone commends

The Intelligence Trap – from Quick Think site, author – Frank Connolly


According to Edward de Bono, we all run the risk of falling into the “intelligence trap.” It is assumed that intelligence goes hand in hand with thinking.

Too often however, intelligent people are in danger of becoming poor thinkers.

They are in effect, trapped by their own intelligence. That is, they use their intelligence to entrench themselves in support of one point of view, and because they are genuinely intelligent they can mount some very convincing arguments for their position.

… Resistance to change and new ideas by intelligent people, is one of the main reasons change management and improvement initiatives don’t always get traction.

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• The No True Scotsman and Christians’ Version of Atheism – Regarding Christian Deconversion

 The No True Scotsman and Christians’ Version of Atheism – Regarding Christian Deconversion

I have been thinking about doing a post – or series of posts – about deconversion from Christianity.

I do not identify as an atheist, but am somewhere between being a Christian and being agnostic (or possibly a deist).

I see Christians routinely mishandle how they discuss or talk to people who have left the Christian faith (or who may be considering leaving it).

One of the most common – and annoying and disrespectful – approaches they use when talking to or about someone who has left the faith is to say the person was never a “real” Christian to begin with.

This may or may not be accompanied by the No True Scotsman Fallacy, where an ex-Christian or a doubter may point to all the hypocrisy or abuse committed by self-professing believers, and the Christian will retort by saying “thus and so was not a “real” Christian,” or, “so and so who is now an atheist was never a ‘real’ Christian'”

Here is a blog post, hosted on an atheist or agnostic blog, about this (there are maybe one or two points in this essay I am not in complete agreement with, but most of this is spot on):

The No True Scotsman and Christians’ Version of Atheism


by Captain Cassidy

…Everyone, Meet the Scotsman. He’s Very True.

The No True Scotsman is a logical fallacy. Technically, it’s an ad hoc reinterpretation of a situation to prevent contradictions and refutations of one’s position. As that link reveals, it’s also a circular argument.

Christians adore it. Within their own culture, it’s a devastating way to quickly negate a fellow Christian. They also use it to dismiss and invalidate ex-Christians.

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• 26 ‘Habits’ Of People With Depression by Sarah Schuster

26 ‘Habits’ Of People With Depression by Sarah Schuster

26 ‘Habits’ Of People With Depression

And because depression affects everyone differently, these little habits are different for everyone, too.

Apr 14, 2017
Written by Sarah Schuster

While depression can be in some ways the absence of action, there are still little habits, little routines, a person may pick up on when they re-enter a depressive episode.

These habits can be small indicators you’re beginning to feel depressed again.

They can even be positive things — habits developed to help you survive. And because depression affects everyone differently, these little habits are different for everyone, too.

To find out what habits people developed when they were experiencing depression, The Mighty asked their mental health community to share one thing they do when they’re depressed.

Here’s what they told us:

1. “I turn into a hermit. I just want to stay in my home and not go anywhere or see anyone. It’s my safe haven, and I just don’t want to leave it.” — Deanne R.

2. “Avoid everything. I ignore my phone, skip appointments or plans, don’t leave my house, stop paying bills, try to avoid talking to anyone. I’ve totally screwed up my life this way ― failed classes in college because I couldn’t leave my room.” — Sarah S.

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• From Roger Olson: A Challenge to Evangelical Complementarians

From Roger Olson: A Challenge to Evangelical Complementarians

You will need to click the link below to read the entirety of Olson’s post, because I don’t want to copy 100% of his post to my blog page here.

The comments below his post are also of interest, so please take a look at those.

You will notice in all the replies to Olson’s question that complementarians put foward a nominal complementarian response. That is, their response is complementarian in name only – it seeks to preserve the “male headship” malarky (as taught by comps) and in so doing presents a functionally egalitarian marriage.

From Roger Olson: A Challenge to Evangelical Complementarians

by Roger E. Olson

…I now see that it is possible to interpret the evangelical seminary dean’s comments about Eve being “cursed in her role before the fall” as NOT implying that she was cursed before the fall.

The syntax of his sentence is tricky. I’d like to give him the benefit of the doubt here because it seems to me to say that Eve was cursed before the fall would be very strange indeed (if not a bit crazy).

As I said in response to one comment here, however, it does seem to me that at least SOME evangelical complementarians’ view of women implies that Eve was cursed before the fall.

What is permanent, docile, subordination and submission if not a curse?

To any doubter of that, let me pose a question: Suppose you knew that, in your life, you would always be like a child in relation to someone else no matter what your IQ might be, no matter what knowledge you gained, no matter what skills you acquired, etc. You would forever (at least in this life) be required to obey UNQUESTIONINGLY someone else. What is that but a curse?

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