Alzheimer's disease

Discussion in 'Belief and Spirituality' started by Bandit, Sep 6, 2007.

  1. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

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    If God is supposed to know everything about everything, how does God personally know what it is like to have Alzheimer's disease?

    Just wondering.
     
  2. Dondi

    Dondi Active Member

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    Or cancer, or blindness, or gout?

    Does He understand our pain?

    Hey Bandit! Long time, no see. Are you back with us now? Or are you just taking a peek?

    Might I assume you have a personal interest on the subject?
     
  3. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

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    Just a hit and run, Dondi:). Peeking and running. Nice to speak.


    I can relate to the other physical things but mind/spirit is different to me.
    I have been watching my Grandmother change for the worse and she does not know much about God the way she used to. It is just not there. All the scriptures she used to recite from heart are going from her mind. I feel in some ways she has been forsaken though not in a strict sense and I understand it is a chemical issue.

    I have been wondering sometimes if God lives out his limitations through humans and somehow experiences certain things that way as humans live out their limitations. There are some things I do not know if God fully understands except through, by and in humans and some things are impossible for God to do, like, tell lies, get mental illness or fail.

    If it is impossible for God to get Alzheimer's, then it would not be possible for God to know what it is like which means he cannot know/experience what humans do in everything. If God could get Alzheimer's, how would God know that He has it or had it?

    I have concluded that not only are humans limited to certain things, but God/that which is infinite also has limitations and does not know everything or what everything is like. What does that mean? I mean, how can the Great Spirit become ill and forget everything and also know what it forgets?...aside from the universe exploding.

    I will check back in a few months to view others. Agnostic replies and humor are welcome here, not that I am agnostic, I feel they have some realistic answers that stone cold religions do not.

    Gotta run...thanks.
     
  4. wil

    wil UNeyeR1 Moderator

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    Namaste Bandit,

    I've had a few relatives go through this disease, and as I sat with them, knowing how they were in their prime and seeing their reactions at the end I contemplated:

    What if their connection is getting stronger with the spiritual world as it wains in the material world?

    What if the reactions of anger, impatience, are really because that portion of them that held those emotions back is now busy in another realm?

    And truly great to see your name around...
     
  5. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

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    Wil,
    I will keep that in thought as it is comforting everytime I talk with her:). I just wish she could remember that I took her for a ride on the golf cart an hour after we went because she was laughing and having so much fun. Then right back to the porch swing for hours, rocking. Thinking that she is doing crossword puzzles and never writes a single word.

    The pillow fight I had with her was a memory for a keepsake. She still knows me but she just is going so fast and It makes me sad losing her after all these years to this.
     
  6. cavalier

    cavalier New Member

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    Hey Bandit
    Sorry to hear about your grandmother, a few years ago I spent some time caring for patients with alzheimer's and had a taste of the heartache that relatives must go through.

    As for whether God understands, I've always felt that questions like this reuduce God in some way. I can't get past the idea that entire scope of human experience must be within God's comprehension. Maybe we can'tfigure that out, but isn't that just because God is God and we are human?
     
  7. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

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    Hi Cavalier. I would say yes and no to that. God can't even know what it is like to have a guilty conscience. We know what that is like but he does not. If he had a guilt then he would be fallible. He can understand our guilty conscience just as I can know someones elses guilty feeling, but how is it possible for God to understand and KNOW that in himself if He had guilt?

    I can understand Alzheimer's in someone else just as God can but if I ever get it, I wont even know what is happening. God has to be the same. Only difference is, it is impossible for God to get it and that is a limitation. God is limited in many ways but that does not mean the limitation is a bad thing. There are things that God cannot know or do but that does not make Him any less. The only thing I can figure is God knows in advance and the outcome and all that but there are things that are impossible for him to know and do. How does God steal? If God owns everything and everything that is His is borrowed/shared to the people for a time, what is there for Him to steal?
    Is this where humans meet and fulfill what God cannot do or know? Is this some kind of purpose that we can understand if we try? or not?

    It is a very subtle heartache that makes no sense and there is a big message in this if I can understand someday what God is showing me through my Grandma. I could relate to her with cancer or things like that but she does not know what is going on. She thinks Bill Clinton is president and Christmas is next week. She talks about going down the street and buying her own house like she is really going to do it and I would not put it past her to try.

    I showed her a picture of Jesus walking on water and asked her who it was. She said it was Jesus. Then I asked who is the man falling into the water and she says that is his oldest son sinking in the water. It was kind of funny but I cannot have a real conversation with her any longer. I used to learn so much from her wisdom. Where id all that wisdom go? Is it still there only different now?
    I said the man in the water is Peter and she said- I can't remember who all these pictures are. It is kind of comical to hear her say a memory verse and she gets all fumbled up but that is how she remembers it now.

    The memory/mind is there but it is jumbled and mixed up. You know what I mean as you have been around it and thanks for your reply. I would agree that God understands what others go through but cannot see how God knows himself what certain things are like as in personal experience such as this. It would make him finite, weak and confused to have alzheimer's. God does not have such needs like this that I can think of, so would his needs and desires be different from ours in some areas?

    I desire to have my Grandma back while she is still breathing and laughing. Obviously God has other desires with her.
     
  8. wil

    wil UNeyeR1 Moderator

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    There is an analogy oft used that puts our soul/spirit as the driver of a car. Driving through life's experiences, around the curves, up and down the hills, breaking down, getting damaged, occasionally being in or causing wrecks, getting rebuilt. Implication was we are not our bodies, we are the drivers.

    I don't think I ever fully appreciated the analogy until I had grandparents with disease and dementia... I was able to separate the soul I knew that sat me on her lap, and told me stories from the person that is in front of me. It helped me deal with the loss, and enjoy the memories.

    Re the discussion of G!d not being able to experience x, y, or z. I think there is a lesson there as well. We often do the same thing. We have an experience, awful, embarrassing, whatever while we are in it. But then we look back and see the learning, or however embarrassing it was 10 years down the line it becomes one of our favorite stories to tell. All the embarrassment is washed away, or all the troubles relating to the accident or lost job are washed away and we see the personal growth that we achieved due to the occurrence. I think G!d only sees the good and potential in all we do....not the embarrassment not the issues we see...and our lesson is to laugh in the moment, grasp the lesson and not the pain.
     
  9. Francis king

    Francis king New Member

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    God did know, but he forgot...
     
  10. Dondi

    Dondi Active Member

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    Something to think about. If the Holy Spirit dwells in the heart of man, as scripture suggests, then how do you know that God is not experiencing Alzheimer's disease through the people He indwells? If you mother was spiritual, perhaps God's Spirit knows what she is going through.

    I don't think the mind is the only place the human spirit dwells. I believe the spirit is larger that that. Perhaps, as someone else has said somewhere on these boards, maybe the mind is a hinderance to the fulc capability of the spirit, and upon death, the mind and body releases the spirit to wherever unfettered by the chains of the fleshly brain. I have no idea what kind of subconcious mind you grandmother has, but my feeling is that as soon as she is gone, she will become aware again, but that right now her spirit is intact, depite her limitations to understand.
     
  11. InLove

    InLove at peace

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    Hi Bandit. Welcome back. :)

    My heart goes out to you as well as your grandmother. The memories are still very fresh for me, watching my dear sweet young mom lose some of her capabilities from a massive stroke in the brain stem. And there was the time that my my eight-year-old's dad could no longer recognize her--that was hard! But I also noticed that through it all, these loved ones of mine also seemed to gain something--that being that some of the either/or opinions to which they had always clung kind of went out the window, and in many ways they were happier. Of course I can't explain it, but it was almost as if they had been freed from some lifelong dogmatic conclusions and were met with simpler answers from a sweeter place.

    One such instant had to do with an artist's rendering of Jesus that had always hung on my mother's bedroom wall. Even though Mom had always said that noone really knew what Jesus looked like physically, she still liked the picture because he was represented at a very contemplative moment, and she liked the look on his face. Anyway, after her initial stroke (we didn't know what it was at the time), it was often her habit to try and identify things and people around her. One day, she looked at the picture of Jesus that had gone with her throughout her lifetime, and said, "And that's [here she gave my son-in-law's name}!" My daughter said, "No, Nanny--that's Jesus!" And my mother said, "I know, but it's [and she said my son-in-law's name again] and smiled the biggest smile she could manage and gave a wink. What I think my mother knew is how good my son-in-law had been to our family and to my daughter, and while they had had their troubles in the past, Mom wanted her to know that she was glad they were together and to keep on letting him be good to her. It may not seem like much to someone who didn't know my mother, but for her to say that about that picture of Jesus--well, she just never would have put things that way before. This wasn't the only time she managed to communicate some things in a different way than she had always done. Some things I did not realize until after she passed, and then they became extremely clear. So while I don't know a lot about Alzheimer's, I would say to you that if your loved one cannot communicate with you as they always have, it helps to try and hear them in a way you have never listened. And from what I've been reading from you on other threads, I know you are good at that! Hang in there, Bandit--lifting you up in Love.

    InPeace,
    InLove
     
  12. cavalier

    cavalier New Member

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    Hey Bandit

    Thanks for your reply. I have been thinking over what you wrote but still can't get past the idea every aspect of human experience is within God's grasp. I also know however, that my understanding could be very flawed.
    Anyway, thanks for the reply and I hope that you continue to have the strength you need.
     
  13. mee

    mee Interfaith Forums

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    Alzheimer's disease, this is one of the most difficult things for family members to witness, one of my sisters of 57 has very bad dementia , in the 4 years that she has had it, it has been a very sad decline. and now she is in a very confused world .her memory span is nothing, and i mean nothing, it is the saddest thing ever.every monday i bring her to my house to give her husband a break, i pick her up from a day care centre at 2.30 and take her home at 8,00 and it takes me most of that time to help her to eat and go to the toilet , she is in a world of her own and is like a baby going backwards .:( she used to paint some great pictures in oils and water colour but now she cannot do even the basics of normal living, when i picked her up from the daycare this week they said that she had been dancing to some music and was having a laugh , it seems that this is the only thing that she has left , but the problem is that when she laughs its as if the emotions are confused as well ,because she starts crying . she loves to clap her hands because its the only way to comunicate , because her speech has gone . and she is nolonger able to even write with a pen. she is like a shell and my sister has disappeared. i am looking foreward to the time when no sickness will be on the earth , and things like these will be a thing of the past . and i am quite sure that my sister will be in the memory of God when the great resurrection takes place.
    And no resident will say: "I am sick." The people that are dwelling in [the land] will be those pardoned for their error.ISAIAH 33;24JOHN 5;28-29
     
  14. mee

    mee Interfaith Forums

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  15. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

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    Thank You INLove. Coming from you this means a lot as I can see we relate thru similiar experience. Much obliged & I am looking at it in a different way as you have mentioned.
     
  16. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

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  17. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

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    I have thought about all that as well. the mind/spirit will be different when the body & fleshy brain dies & the spirit is released. What that will be like, well, who knows. But what you say about God experiencing it through the people...we are on the same page there, but not in another way.
     
  18. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

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    Then God would not know the pain people suffer if that is all true & if God only sees the good & not the problems which would make him kind of ignorant...after all, I have not heard much about people being healed from Alzheimer's disease...so maybe He does not know what it is like.

    well then that puts god back into limitations & yes God has limitaitons other wise he would be able to tell lies & break promises. Can God die?...

    if God does not know people have it then he does not know to heal them...& that does not make sense either. So we are back to what does God really know it is like & what does he not know. Does God learn? My hunch is he always knew my Grandma would end up with AZ, but God does not have a clue what it is like to have it him/itself.

    Sure, God makes humans with bones that break & minds that fail... & if it is true God made everything then he knows that our bones are capable of breaking because he made it that way on purpose & would know every intricate detail.

    but God does not know what it is like to have smashed faces, broken arms & legs blown off in war nor what it is like to have 30 years of constant pain being in a prsion camp as a beaten slave 24/7 wishing it would all end.

    Who knows? Nobody knows.

    At any rate it was a positive post we are almost on the same page, Wil, & thanks.
     
  19. wil

    wil UNeyeR1 Moderator

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    True that.

    Namaste Brother, it is a challenge, part of our journey is seeing how we react, how we cope, how we grow from the challenges. I'm betting on you.
     
  20. juantoo3

    juantoo3 ʎʇıɹoɥʇnɐ uoıʇsǝnb

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    Hey Bandit!

    Sorry to hear about your grandmother, I missed this thread earlier.
     

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