I'm an agnostic atheist, but my mom and some of her friends believe in New Age things such as psychics and crystals that have special powers. As far as I'm aware, a lot of, if not all, New Age stuff is pseudoscience, which would mean that people who sell crystals, charge for psychic readings, etc. are knowingly or unknowingly scamming people.
There is the possibility of people (not necessarily my mom or her friends, just anyone in general) using New Age alternative medicine in lieu of science-backed, proven-to-work medicine, and dying as a result.
I also object to the "Law of Attraction", which states that the good things you experience are directly because of your thoughts and implies that the same is true for negative experiences including debilitating illnesses like AIDS or cancer. This philosophy also implies that the best course of action is to brush negative people off, even if those people are friends/family, and to suppress any negative emotions such as fear or anger (I used to do the latter, and my doctor told me it was bad).
Also, I've heard that many New Age beliefs are appropriated from Eastern cultures (e.g., the New Age idea of chakras vs the original Hindu concept), which seems reprehensible.
In addition to these moral objections, I also worry for my tulpas (I've gained a few since my last letter, by the way). One of them looks like this: http://s7.photobucket.com/user/Yangmio/media/FMA/TuckerChimera_ReferenceSheet.png.html, and two of them look similar to this: http://www.fullmetal-alchemist.com/forums/uploads/1156353980/gallery_38076_736_8798.jpg (this was the only one I could find that highlighted their fluffy-looking coats). Let's say that my mom finds out I have tulpas. I see it as possible that she will make a snap judgement and declare the three "monstrous" ones to be malevolent based solely on their appearances. I hold this belief because I asked a New Age YouTube what he thought of those tulpas' appearances; he hasn't written back yet, but knowing that he ascribes stereotypically masculine and feminine traits to "male energy" and "female energy" respectively, he'd probably say that they're as evil as they look. In addition, I've heard from one source that "negative entities" will pretend to be on your side, can give you headaches*, and generally cause you to experience negative things like nausea or fear**, although there doesn't seem to be a consensus on just what negative entities do.
Possibly, my mom might think that my three other tulpas are malevolent, despite them not looking monstrous in the slightest. I inexplicably think that it'd be impossible to convince her otherwise. If it's relevant, one of them objects to New Age stuff because she feels like it keeps the scientific community from taking tulpas seriously.
Basically, I'm worried that my mom might be headed down a road that could damage her physical and emotional health, morals, and wallet (it may sound selfish, but I feel that any money she spends on New Age things would be better spent putting me through college or paying whatever hypothetical bills need to be paid), and cause her to worry about me unnecessarily (although her jumping to conclusions that I'm mentally ill would probably be as bad as her jumping to the conclusion that I've attracted evil spirits to myself).
Would attempting to "deconvert" my mom from New Age beliefs be the right thing to do, or would I be infringing on her right to freedom of religion?
*I've had minor headaches that I interpret as my brain adapting to housing multiple minds.
**I've sometimes been distressed by irrational worries that my mom secretly knows about/disapproves of my tulpas, but only once by the "monstrous" tulpas themselves (they originated as intrusive thoughts). I felt guilty that one of them, Nina, had to temporarily change her appearance/hide who she was so that I could learn to see her as a person who just happens to look weird, instead of as a monster. I also felt guilty for trying to get rid of them just because I was scared of how they looked.
Alec (age 20)
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Your letter puzzles this old bear. You’re openly hostile about your mother’s beliefs in “New Age” practices, saying, for instance, that is a scam and counter to well-established science, and yet you believe in tulpas, which are most definitely in the realm of mysticism. Furthermore, you complain that her beliefs emanate from Eastern cultures and you find this “reprehensible.” But! Dear Alec, where do you think the idea about tulpas came from? Tibet and other Eastern cultures! So, what’s the deal, hon? Gosh, if that isn’t a double standard, this bear doesn’t know what is.
Fundamentally, you are saying that it’s okay for you to believe in a mystical spirit but if your mother does it, it’s wrong. That ain’t right.
Then you ask me if it would be justified to “deconvert” your mother so she no longer has these beliefs (although how you’d go about that, I have no clue), yet you are frightened that if your mother discovers your tulpas she’ll forbid you to believe in them. Do you not see what’s happening here? You wouldn’t like it if your mother told you “no tulpas allowed,” but you think it might be okay for you to tell her she is wrong about her own beliefs?
You ask if you are being selfish. Um, yes, you are. Your selfishness is also revealed in the statement that you are offended your mother spends money on “New Age things” when she should be spending it on your college education. Lemme tell ya something, me bucko. Your mother is not obligated to pay for your college education. In fact, she was in her legal rights to boot you out the door two years ago when you were 18. Anything above and beyond that she gives you out of the goodness of her heart and her love for you. Maybe you should try being grateful for that instead of being so resentful.
Take a good look at yourself, Alec. Perhaps those images of tulpas are rather ugly because there is something not so attractive in you. The good news is you can fix that. In fact, Papabear predicts that if you would focus on being a selfless, loving, caring son and human being, your tulpas would morph into something quite beautiful.
Think on it,
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