This is an extremely serious and important discussion going on here and it makes me feel so warm inside to have found such a wonderful bunch of people. Not sure if I can describe this coherently--but I'll try!---this topic has all kinds of ramifications and speaking as one who is more Catholic than anything else, I am acutely aware of the gross, persistent and malignant abuse of young people by priests that went on for decades. And then it was all covered up for years.
But my take on it---and perhaps this might help a wee bit to find a safe place in our minds for those who use various tenets of christianity to justify their abusive behaviour----is that all big organisations go to great lengths to protect the organisation, it gets like a living creature after a bit. And the urge to survive kind of pushes out morality.
This is not trying to justify sexual, physical and emotional abuse by priests and nuns and so-called christian brothers in my church. Not even asking for forgiveness for them---I was never sexually abused by them, i leave it to the victims to decide if they can forgive or not.
No, what I am talking about here is sorting out motivations. There is a huge downside with any major belief system. Be it communism or any religious sect. All belief systems can be used to justify abuse of others. I agree that very few of them actually codify abuse in any shape or form but since they mostly involve hierarchies, there is scope for abuse of power within them.
I too have seen various so-called christians and christian sites trying to justify abuse of children, abuse of partners, abuse of other groups and races. All kinds of abuse. It makes me sick, sometimes. I live in N ireland where we have had our years of trying to kill each other for reasons that never made much sense. Religious labels were used for convenience but the conflict here was certainly never about minor differences in how we worshipped, it was--as always!--about power.
I have gone on too long here! Only other thing I would say, with reference to the horrid thoughts we all get from time to time, which can lead some to think they are mentally ill or multiply personalified or dissociating or suffering PTSD flashbacks, is that quite often they are just that. Thoughts. Intrusive thoughts. Couldn't tell you the frequency off-hand but intrusive thoughts are pretty common. The problems arise when we take them too seriously!
Love to you all