|Subject:||You Can Never Go Home Again|
|Date:||Feb 24, 2008|
|Author:||SLDrone [Note: SLDrone is a former Mormon mission president]|
|Sometimes I Wish I Could Go Home. I had lunch some
time ago with a bright faced young man. He is my friend, he feels like my
son, he was my AP. I've written about him before. He called me the other
day, said he had some news, could I spare some time. Always. I arranged to
pick him up. He opened the door with outstretched arms, a warm embrace, one
without reservation, one full of love.
"I love you president".
"I love you too", "you don't need to call me that anymore you're a grown man now".
"Don't know what else I'd call you!"
"Well, my name is good."
"OK, I'll try president."
"Thanks Elder" I say with a smirk. He repeats my given name with a silly grin on his face.
The restaurant was uncrowded. The lunch crowd has dissipated, and the dinner crowd was a long way off. The waiter was friendly, and patient, it took us a half hour to even look at the menu. It was fun talking to my friend, my son.
"We are pregnant", he blurted out with a tremendous grin. "You're name will be his middle name."
Tears welled up. "Are you sure?, what an honor."
"I want to make sure that you stand in the circle when we bless him".
My heart skipped a beat, and sank just a bit. An old longing tugged at my chest. I didn't answer, instead "how do you know it will be a HIM?"
His face was beaming, his countenance bright, he didn't miss a beat, "because you're name in the middle would be weird for a girl".
There was that laugh I love to hear. The laugh of an all too serious young man. An incredible young man. It's hard for me to admit that the Church has played a large role in his making. Yet I know it did.
He asked again, "so you'll be there right?".
His smile faded a little, "I know you'll be there." He has no idea.
Sometimes I want to go back. Sometimes I yearn for it. Sometimes I've laid awake at night and thought about what I have lost, what might have been had I continued in faith. Contrary to popular Mormon belief, the road out of Mormonism is not the easier path. At least not for me. I often long for the brotherhood, I miss the surety of the meaning of life. I long for the common goals and faith that bound me so firmly to my community, and to my family. I miss the contentment of faith in a benevolent and loving Father in Heaven. There is much to regret on the path out of Mormonism. It is a road often strewn with sacrifice and tears. It is a road that disappoints so many who love me, and I them. I've often wondered if the sacrifice to myself of feigning belief was worth the benefit of the happiness it would bring to those that surround me. But what of integrity, what of truth to thine own self?
And so it is this very longing, this very loss of contentment, this very affront to the truth which rips at my very heart that brings me to despise the lie. The lie that promised me so much, that exacted from me my very soul, and then is revealed a deception with evidence so clear that the honest mind must yield, at least it is so with me. Where once was brotherhood is now only loneliness, where once was surety is now only doubt, were once was contentment is now only disgust, were once was love is now only spite. And yet one is truth, the other a lie.
Oh what might have been? For me the Church has made the lie sweet, and the truth bitter. There is no turning back. There is no way to gain ignorance where it is replaced with knowledge. And yet ignorance was blissful wasn't it? What might have been had a lie not turned my world on it's end. I can never know. I only know I was happier before. Perhaps it's not bad to be a little naive. Alas, I can never go home for it would require a suspension of reason beyond my ability.
|Subject:||Recovery continues for a life time..........that's how I feel.......n/t|
|Subject:||I sometimes feel the same. I often wonder what what I can do to fill|
|Date:||Feb 24 12:49|
|the social void that leaving the Church has created.
Honestly, the social side of mormonism is the ONLY thing I miss. I hated the
lies, guilt, shame, the pressure to conform, the lack of freedom to think
and feel what I like. But it WAS easier to just go along with the crowd and
be one of the nameless Morg drones.
But then I think what a joy the freedom is. I think of my children and am proud to be an example of someone who had the courage to stand up for what I believe, and don't believe in. Being a coward by nature made it more difficult for me than most, but I DID get out. Its something I can hang my hat on and be proud of.
But the loneliness for good friends who don't pray for my soul is depressing. I am reduced to off-hour posts to the Board where I whine about the latest outrage inflicted on me and my family by an absurd belief system that I claim to have left.
In no way do I say this as an insult to anyone else who may read this. This is where I truly am. Others may relate to some of what I say but I write this only to help myself organize my thoughts and determine the next step to improve my life.
I know the possibilities are endless. It's just that for a guy who's had his whole life planned out inside the box of mormonism it's difficult, and frankly a little scary, to figure out where to go once the box is gone.
|Subject:||Your post yesterday really helped me|
|Date:||Feb 24 12:58|
|with my feelings over WHY. I've tried to put into
words so many times why I had to lose my faith.
When my daughter went back to church 18 months ago, I went through a tough time--remembering the good feelings I had when going to church (I am not a social person--so that wasn't the issue). If there was NOTHING else wrong with the church, the fact that my husband is gay is all it took--what we went through--not just him, WE. I knew from the moment I met him that he was someone special (not in the mormon special way). He just has an aura about him. A friend asked me yesterday if he had lost that aura (she hasn't seen him for years--she adored him). I said, "Actually, no. He is better than he used to be. He treats me better and he treats our kids better." They told me he was a monster and I knew otherwise, no matter how bad he treated us when he left.
I can pick between the LDS church and the fact I KNOW who he is.
I lost everything when I lost the church--losing the church just made sense when I finally looked at it. To make sense of our lives--it had to be.
Sure--I wish that what they promised us was true--they promised me that my husband could change (I knew he couldn't), they promised me this was the right way to save him. They were wrong about any part of it.
Losing the church was finally being able to say I lost it because I was true to myself, to my husband, and to my children.
|Date:||Feb 24 13:33|
|I can relate to the feelings. I still desire to
"fellowship" and feel something is out of place in going absolutely 100%
secular in my life but have not yet been able to find a "church home" where
I actually fit without having to stifle myself in significant ways. A church
I really liked that I was seriously considering joining, or at least
attending regularly (Really Big Deal after the debacle that Mormonism was
for me and subsequent other negative church experiences) has decided to
emphasize its aversion to full inclusion (translation: gays not welcome) to
the extent that it is actually schisming (Anglican/Episcopal Church in
Canada). No matter how much I enjoy the rousing sermons, revel in the
classical music, respect the community outreach I cannot sit still and
accept that while we are loving the world that doesn't include gays (or at
least, we can love them but not include them? or something like that). I can
long to be part of the outreach or to attend the riveting discussion groups
or to enjoy the ladies coffee mornings (although I don't imbibe) but I can't
do it in good conscience or comfort, knowing that no matter how good or
great it and its ministry apparently is, it doesn't extend to a subset of
society that has apparently been deemed to be Too Sinful to Save.
Despite the rational portion of my mind (admittedly a miniscule clump of the available little grey cells) insisting that this is just not a goer for me (I can't stand leaving people out or pointing out who "sins" more so deserves censure) my feelings have a mind of their own and often arise involuntarily to make me feel sad and yearny. I know there's a church on every corner (or that life can be great with no church at all) but it's just that after a long search that is the place I finally wanted to go.
I know it's nothing like SLDrone's history and connections with Mormonism but in some ways the feelings and reasons for them are similar. At least to the point where I can "feel" where he's at with this type of encounter.
And just when it was already a very sticky wicket for him, the impending birth of a child to his missionary "son" just complicates things more. To that, I have no solutions.
SLDrone's back story and this post today remind me in some ways of Charles Templeton's story. In brief, he was a well known evangelist, a close friend and fellow preacher with Billy Graham who "lost his faith", became an atheist and was said to cry in his last days over "missing Jesus". Many Christians use this to point out the fallacy of atheism or to say that Templeton reconverted before death or that it confirmed his acknowledgement of Jesus' existence, etc. My interpretation has always been that he was just expressing how it felt to have once held such belief, and everything that came with that, and then come to conclude that for him it didn't hold water. Yes, he missed some things about it but that didn't (necessarily) mean he believed again or that he could overlook all the down side for him and go back to the same belief in the same way.
For some, compromise is possible. For others, not. It all depends on our individual characters, what is important to us and how big a bite we can swallow of the thing that makes us uncomfortable.
Here's a little bit about Templeton. He reportedly said on his near-deathbed, "I miss him" referring to Jesus (to Lee Strobel, author/interviewer, who some may consider to be too biased to give full credence to. Indeed, the account he wrote of his Templeton interview strikes me as remarkably insensitive and lacking in understanding - not even included here due to blatant and unhelpful bias). To me, the "I miss" part is what I can relate to and what I "hear" in Drone's post. It doesn't say anything about one's beliefs but is all about how one feels, in my view.
"[Templeton is] A former evangelist and close colleague of Billy Graham who has authored the book Farewell to God: My Reasons for Rejecting the Christian Faith (Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, Inc.:1996). Templeton pursued a career as a minister and evangelist back in the 1940s and 1950s in close collaboration with Billy Graham. However, unlike Graham he retained a strong spirit of intellectual inquiry, which led him to investigate more closely the claims of the Bible. His studies led to doubts, which eventually led him to leaving the ministry and the Christian faith. Templeton now describes himself as an agnostic and a humanist."
A memorial site by his son:
"As he reached 80, Alzheimer's was already affecting him. Yet he managed to publish one last book at that age, a non-fiction work called Farewell to God. Sort of an updated Why I am not a Christian it went into great detail about all the reasons he had departed from his earlier career. He wrote it because he felt there were a large number of people out there who were struggling with a faith that was pushed on them as a child. He thought these people, who largely attended church out of habit if at all, would seek out something that could release them from this implanted faith.
… he wrote that the most compelling argument that drove him from the church was not the presence of evil and cruelty in the world, but the presence of needless cruelty."
Templeton’s story from one EV’s point of view (Very EV slanted but in the mix is some interesting info about Templeton’s life and writings:
To Drone, I say many thanks for posting at least every once in a while. Always very thought provoking and helpful to many. I hope you find some solution to the present dilemma, although it is seemingly impossible. I hope we hear some updates from you every once in a while.
|Date:||Feb 24 13:41|
|and your right, sometimes the thought of going home,
surrounded by loving arms, cozy, warm and familiar makes it hurt all over
But then you remember the lies, the arms that won't hold you unless you live up their standards, and just like today, a cold drizzly day here in my town, the reality jumps up and bites you on the butt. There is no home to go to anymore.
|Subject:||If you had to choose, which would you rather be...|
|Date:||Feb 24 13:50|
|Author:||Adult of god|
|A lion or tiger free in the wilds or in a zoo
enclosure, sure of your next meal and what the next day will bring and a
long life and a peaceful euthanasia at the end?
And by the way, zookeepers are trained to give their big cats little episodes of play (without personally interacting with them) to remind them of who they really are.
I have rarely had the joy of a comfortable, loud guffaw at a RS or Ward dinner (morg playtimes), but I have them frequently with friends over a pizza and a beer.
We who come to this board are obviously choosing the adventure of thinking for ourselves and discovering the great wild world. It's what the human mind was meant to do. The allegory of the cave comes to mind.
|Subject:||The great gift of the freed|
|Date:||Feb 24 14:40|
|Adult, your comment reminds me this Sunday morning of
how grateful I am for the strength that leaving the Morg has given me.
Mostly for the confidence in my own judgment. Something that Mormonism
constantly eroded. I see the women my age (senior) walking around like they
are doing time waiting to die, zoned or something. Never smiling.
Ray Charles on TV, cup of coffee on the table, every day feels like my life starting bright and new, full of possibilities. I love my life more than anyone I know because... I almost lost it to the Morg.
|Subject:||You are right|
|Date:||Feb 24 15:02|
|The path out of Mormonism is not the easier way.
Leaving behind the safe and familiar is terrifying, and often heartbreaking. The possibility of not attending my beloved daughter's temple marriage was agony for me. Being estranged from my Mormon family is misery.
But there is too much in Mormonism that is antithetical to living an authentic life.
As I build a new life for myself outside of Mormonism I am learning to find happiness in new places, and in ways I would never have thought possible before.
As I learn to trust myself I find contentment, if not surety.
Thank you for putting words to some of what I've been going through lately.
|Subject:||Re: You Can Never Go Home Again|
|Date:||Feb 24 17:18|
|Your posts are illuminating. You are probably a lot
more tempted to return than most.
Your experience in mormonism was almost the opposite of mine. I won't go into detail, but the mormon church was the worst thing in my life, and in my childrens' lives. I was BIC to a prominent mormon GA family, and ended up being a divorced single mother, and my children became products of "a broken home." There at the bottom rung of the "Ladder-day Saint" ladder, the children and I were the brunt of prejudice, mysogyny, judgment, and gossip. My children were treated so badly, that I told them they didn't ever have to go to church unless they wanted to, and they stopped attending. I had no choice to step in and rescue my children, regardless of what I half-believed.
I was very relieved to find out that the church was false, and that God did not support the false judgments of the mormon priesthood holders. The only "sin" I ever committed was to not pay my tithing for a few months.
You were lucky to have such a great experience in the church, and I understand that this must have made it very difficult for you to leave. Much of it is nostalgia, and we do look back through a filter that diminishes the bad and emphasizes the good.
The security, the feeling of belonging, the support you got from the mormons--I never felt that. You know it was all false, don't you? There are stories of people who have lost their jobs, and have had sickness, and even who have needed welfare, and the church was not there for them. They sell you a false sense of security. You will discover that more and more of your "friends" will gradually disappear.
Did you wonder how your former AP will treat you once he knows you are "out"? Do you feel you must tell him the truth about your beliefs before he names his BIC child after you? I think he and his wife deserve to know the truth.
You are still a bit brainwashed--as are most of us--and you give the church too much credit, as you were taught to do. It is NOT because of the church that you have had a good life, and that you have provided a good life for your family. You are a great soul, and we can sense that by just reading some of your posts. You would have been innately good, anyway, without the church. You may have joined another religion, or maybe just lived by your own sense or right and wrong, justice, and fair play. You have a good loving heart, and I guarantee that the mormon church did not give that to you. You have too much integrity to be a mormon.
You wrote that the church deserved some credit for that AP growing up to be so fine. This is not true, and you know it. I know you met him because of the church, but you said he is very serious, and he might have been much happier never being a mormon.
As a victiim of mormon abuse, and knowing what I know, I can congratulate you on saving your family, for generations to come. Who knows, a daughter might find herself and her children alone and vulnerable. A son or grandson might decide to not go on a mission. Think of your grandchildren being brainwashed by those little primary jingles, "Follow the Prophet," and "We Are As The Armies of Helaman" All this has misery has been avoided because you followed your heart!
"To follow the heart is the truest wisdom." Leo Tolstoy.
You have done more good than you possibly know, with just your few posts. I know you will continue to stand for honesty, and maybe lead more of your loved-ones out of the darkness of lies and into the sunshine of love and acceptance.
|Subject:||forestpal, I think a lot of us single mothers experienced|
|Date:||Feb 24 18:14|
|or had seen what single mothers experience if they
stay active. I went inactive when I knew my ex was cheating so that my kids
wouldn't be ostracized. I had been ostracized as a child because my dad was
only partially active.
I went to a funeral this week. It went well when those who are inactive or had been inactive most of their lives were speaking. Then the "holy" ones got up and started quoting scriptures. They talked of this person as though he had lived two lives--one in captivity and one in freedom. I have been to GC and watched GBH's funeral and was not "touched" in any fashion. I was TORN as this hit close to home for me and I had to keep reminding myself WHY I'm out.
After the funeral, my sister said to me, "We knew him all our lives and he never lived TWO LIVES. He stopped smoking and drinking and started going to church--but he was always a good man BEFORE and AFTER he went back to church."
She was right. That made it SO CLEAR to me after I had been sucked in a little.
I found out later some of the things these "holy" men had done to cause problems for the person who suffered the greatest loss over this death--not the "inactives," but the "holy" men.
It showed me yet again how they set themselves up as being holier than the rest of us. What a time to try to make themselves look special?!? and at whose expense?
At times like that, I definitely don't want to go home again.
|Subject:||The name/title power trip has always bugged me.|
|Date:||Feb 24 19:14|
|For many years after my mission, I'd have occasion to
call my former mission presidents about once a year, and every single time
it was "Elder Dunn" this and "Elder Dunn" that. Never did they call me
"Tyson", not even after I was well past 30.
I've sometimes wondered how they might react to me calling them "Dutch" or "Rulon", but I don't have any reason to call them anymore. I would have to imagine I'd get a tongue-lashing for my lack of proper respect though.
|Subject:||I had a similar experience to the one you describe.|
|Date:||Feb 25 06:35|
|Googled the name of a former priest in my Aaronic priesthood class - a boy I was very close to. Discovered that he is now a lecturer at a university and decided to email him. He was delighted to hear from me and thanked me for being the right person at the right time in his life. I didn't come right out and say it but I think he guessed , from the tone of my ensuing messages, that I was no longer an active member............and I heard no more from him. My reaction was very similar to yours.|
|Subject:||Re: You Can Never Go Home Again (Long read)|
|Date:||Feb 25 08:06|
|But you can always keep that home in your heart where
ever on God's green earth ya' go!!
My first year of lds placement put me on an small farm in south east idaho,
dad bought a small calf for me and my older "sibling" (his youngest son my age), or rather, dad gave us each a cow he'd eventually sell and let us keep the$ to use later for financing of our future church missions,
I remember her well.
an speckled holstein calf, Pink tongued and on brown eye, and one black eye (theIrises, not the hair color) and one ear was blacker than the other,
and with her black & white coat, I recognized her year after year as she grew, then one day she was gone.
gone to the stockyard I heard, and my beloved lil' holstien calf was reduced down to a small envelope with my name on it.
and inside was an checkbook of sorts, an bank name on it, and serial numbers and a small balance, $100
No more was she, my lil calf, there to lick my hand of grain as I fed her and the rest of the herd,
when all other cows stayed away, she walked on over to me, cos she was my lil buddy,
Once she was small like a rocking horse, gangly and exploring the stockyard on wobbly legs by her mother, and soon she was slowly walking alongside "everyone else",
soon she was bigger than the family upright piano!! yet she still patiently stood as I was close and patted her, chewd her cudd and closed her eyes,
i think of her from time to time whenever I eat at an McDonalds!! d:oP
My older brother and I, would walk a mile away over to the other stock yards, on our 2 by 5 mile farm, and would feed the cows and horses there after supper and before evening time,
now a days, at 40yrs of age, an hour goes by really fast and I blink, where has the time gone!?
Cos when I was little, I had time to play with my toy motocross cycles in the dirt and by the highway,
and with my gi joe dolls we were frogmen sneaking around in the water ditches throughout the farm and we saved the world
(btw, all you cute female exmo's here owe me thanks big time!! *wink-wink-nudge!!*)
the dry, stalks of the tumble weeds and dry willow that grew abundantly throughout southeast idaho was my infantry rifle, or was my sword and spear,
life was great back then,
One time I fell asleep in the hay just after finishing feeding the livestock when I was all by myself a mile from the farmhouse.
darkness fell and I stayed put,
cos I thought dad would come get me,
lights from surrounding farms and homes miles away, near and far slowly went on, and an occasional yard light,
then, the pickup lights went on and I saw them drive up the lane,
then they moved along the highway and turned to head out south,
close to the main 20' stack of baled hay, were loose bales lying around, I got comfy on one bale and then soon moved to the ground,
the smell of hay, the warmth of the bales, the gentle breeze of spring time, the earthy tone of manure and grain,
got me sleepy.
I looked out over the fields and saw the pickup lights moving again, and fell asleep for a few minutes,
soon, my world was halogen white, dad was driving and saw me lying there by the bales,
I yawned, got up and ran to the lights and moved into the cab with dad, my older brothers,
they thought it humorous to see me sleeping,
I thought you said to feed the cows and you'd drive on over dad!!,
something came up sam, next time, just walk home.
In winter times with this family,
mom & dad would wear their jammies as we all decorated the christmas tree and put up mom's christmas village,
year after year she put up the same village,
if anything from that first lds placement family, I learned safety and comfort was often found in sameness and what previously worked for you,
I guess it applied to pretty much ALL of the church members through out the world too, what the leaders told them , told me to do and how to behave, and how to think, etc.
Often dad would be in the living room or adjusting something that mom put up on the wall and I'm on the floor underfoot, playing with my toy cars or reading homework,
and I look up and admire dad's hairy armpits and hair arms, and could see that even though he wasn't an body builder, he had good muscle definition.
he worked in an office by day and drove his cattle and grew crops and bucked hay bales well above his head into his 60's I hear,
it was men like this, good christian men in my life that helped guide me in life,
dad and mom hugged me, they scolded me when I needed it,
and aside from mormonism, I always heard them say to remember my native heritage, which I did,
no matter where you came from,
no matter whom raised you, or no matter how much you love those lds loved ones,
things are different now because of the choices you made,
though I don't see mom and dad in the light of mo ism like I see pretty much everyone else tbm-as,
I know that they are good people,
hell. They're great people.
And to my knowledge they never went to the temple monthly or yearly, but they did everything else a tbm does,
the last time I saw them, was a few years after my mishon.
and I was driving through the area, and had to stop and see how they were doing.
to my surprise, they were at home, and nothing out of the ordinary was going on,
mom shared some simple soup, and ham & cheese sandwiches, and they regaled over my tales of my recent mishon experiences and how life was since I last was in their home as a grade schooler,
dad had retired from the community electric company and was farming full time, nothing on the farm had changed,
aside from the small things, a new tree planted, new fences put up, new livestock,
nothing had changed,
their sons and daughters were gone and no one was at home, but that would soon change, as grandkids would come live with them and go to the small town school and pretty much learn about life like I did,
by farming, driving tractor, baling hay, feeding cows and playing in the ditches all before evening time,
I'll never go home again,
Not to memories or even to people like this at all.
Not to that small community school, and not to my old teachers,
my calf is long dead and eaten!!
the dogs are long gone, even the farm cats,
even the horses I once rode are dead,
but the memories remain!!
and all my 12 siblings have moved on with their lives,
and their kids are also moved on now,
Mormon memories like this,
we take with us, of much simpler days when we all shared a common belief,
Just move on in the world and make a home for yourself elsewhere and be free!!
honestly, I don't think my relationship with mom & dad would have gotten better or worse even if I'd stayed with the church,
cos they never really were huggy, touchy people.
and looking at their solutions to most problems in life, based on church and scripture,
wouldn't fit or even apply to most problems now adays out here in the real world.
when a friend and her kids get booted out of house and home, what to do, what to do!?
help them, even though nothing is going on betwixt you and female friend,
just help them,
and when one other friend has to convalesce for a couple of weeks due to some surgery, what to do?!
Stand off from afar and pray and mope?!
or do you visit them and help out their family?!
and just buckle down and work extra days to get a few dollars more income!?
none of my tbm family's or none of the tbm people I knew ever taught me such things, they all kept away and prayed, and judged the sins of others,
|Subject:||It's the end of a perfect dream.|
|Date:||Feb 25 08:33|
|Thanks for sharing. I think many of us feel this way
at times. I liked how you said, "Contrary to popular Mormon belief, the road
out of Mormonism is not the easier path." It is a hard path for many, and it
takes integrity and courage. Often TBM friends and family think you have
chickened out, when in reality you have done the hard right thing. It is at
this time, that you need the support of friends and family the most, but you
lose that support when you make the decision.
TSCC creates a make-believe, yet simple plan to follow. When you leave, the plan changes, and then you feel lost in your direction. It's like finding out that Santa doesn't exist when you're five years old. The struggle comes when you know that it's not true, and if you remain you are ultimately lying to yourself.
|Subject:||My tbm wife thinks I'm just taking the easy way out,|
|Date:||Feb 25 10:42|
|she thinks it is too hard for me to stay in the church
because of all the meetings etc. I tell her it is much easier to stay in and
do every calling, meeting, and obligation then to be true to myself.
She tells me how I'm not the same person she married. I made promises in the temple and convenants, now I don't follow them. I tell her over and over again, "It's not my fault the church isn't true. It's not my fault I found that out".
It isn't my fault, but now I pay the price of being a second class person in the mind of my tbm family.
|Subject:||Re: Reply to Dan.|
|Date:||Feb 25 12:46|
|Amen..... I relate to your comments. My wife says that I have lost my status in the community. I am no longer the man of whom she was once so proud. I feel the sting of humiliation for the sympathy that I know she receives from fellow members of the ward due to her unfortunate circumstance of being married to a man who has lost his testimony. Occasionally it takes all the self-control I can muster not to explode into a tirade against the glaring falsehood of it all. For a TBM not to see the truth takes a willful decision to ignore reality and live in a fog. Last night I failed and blew up with the same predictable results, tears, hurt feelings and a long-suffering sense of enduring to the end. Some times life seems to short for such nonsense.|
|Subject:||Re: You Can Never Go Home Again|
|Date:||Feb 25 10:51|
|This post reminds me of a time after I lost my mother.
When something important happened in my life, good or bad, I had the urge to call her. Many times the thought was so fast that I actually picked up the phone and started to dial before I realized she would not, could not answer the phone. It felt like being told she was dead all over again.
But like you for that split second there was certain happiness to be in that particular company I longed for and wanted to believe was still there, followed by immense sadness and loss, but there is no going back.
I was usually in disbelief when someone told me "time would make it all go away", I still don't believe that. But I have learned that the statement "Time changes things" is more truthful. Time has changed my grief into something else much easier to live with. It changed my loss into a desire to live as much as I can while I can, changed my sadness into rememberance, changed my anger.....ok I'm still working on that one!
Point being I see where you are standing, and I hope time changes things for you.
|Subject:||Great quote about truth|
|Date:||Feb 25 11:01|
|Someone posted this here at RfM a while back:
“Knowing can be a curse on a person’s life. I’d traded in a pack of lies for a pack of truth, and I didn’t know which one was heavier. Which one took the most strength to carry around? It was a ridiculous question, though, because once you know the truth, you can’t ever go back and pick up your suitcase of lies. Heavier or not, the truth is yours now.”
(Kidd, Sue Monk, “The Secret Life of Bees” pp. 255-56, Penguin Books, 2002).
|Subject:||Jews aren't forced to believe like we are and I love it.|
|Date:||Feb 25 11:45|
|Obviously, Jews are different in that they share DNA
and most are part of a race as well as part of the religion and traditions.
I have two very close Jewish friends who are basically, almost atheists, non
believers, and yet they enjoy being part of the Jewish traditions and are
still Jews. I went to the Bar Mitzvah of one of their sons up in Park City
recently. It was a long and fairly complicated Hebrew/English program,
standing up, sitting down, reciting praises to the God of Abraham and
Alelujahs to the most high, etc. etc. And after was a great kosher lunch and
later an expensive party over at the JCC near the U of U campus. This boy
saw a lot of love and support from the whole Jewish community and I'm sure
his confidence and love is running at a high right now.
Although the religious teachings were every bit as crazy and forced and old fashioned as any of ours, almost as bad as the temple ceremony, they still enjoy it and it's part of their lives even though many don't literally buy any of it. Yet they're welcomed in full fellowship and wouldn't have it any other way.
Our guys are still ex-ing and dismissing people who have an honest difference of opinion with the official church position, only to find out years later that there was merit to what that now ex-ed person was saying.
So, I agree with you in many ways. It would be nice if we could take the position of Sterling McMurrin and be like many of the Jews and realize that it isn't really the literal truth, but that there is a lot of great tradition and good things there that all should be part of, including marriages, blessing and many other things.
|Subject:||I Mostly Agree With You Except...|
|Date:||Feb 25 12:37|
|Jews are pretty much everyone on earth; they are most
definitely NOT a "race" nor do they all (or even "mostly")share common DNA.
There are Jews from nearly every racial group on earth, and these are
ancient peoples (like the Ethiopian Jews, as a very easy example). Since
every Jew is either a convert themselves or the descendant of a convert, and
since conversions to Judaism have taken place constantly since Abraham (the
first Jew), there are Jews from just about any "group" anyone could choose
In some parts of the United States, it's easy to assume that all Jews are Ashkenazi (descendants of Germanic and Eastern European Jews), because Ashkenazim are the majority of Jews in that area and because what non-Jewish Americans consider stereotypically "Jewish" (primarily from the media) is actually Ashkenazi. (Chicken soup, matzo balls, lox on a bagel, Yiddish slang and accents...all Ashkenazi.)
Observant, "believing" (in a Jewish sort of way) Jews are a small minority within Judaism and are far outnumbered by those Jews who aren't. (Significant numbers of Jews are atheists and agnostics. Significant numbers of CONVERTS to Judaism are atheists and agnostics!)
Thank you for your kind words. They are much appreciated.
|Subject:||Leaving is just the beginning of a new life.|
|Date:||Feb 25 11:54|
|At times I miss the old fellowship. I have been blessed to have transitioned to a new life over the past couple years. I will be 55 this year. New love (definitely the love of my life), new community (very liberal place, Port Townsend, WA), new friends. Making new friends is vital, and discovering new ways to meet and be involved with others.|
|Subject:||SL Drone, Thank You for your Post|
|Date:||Feb 25 12:09|
|I have had the same feelings as you many times since
The loftiest calling I had was High Councilor, never MP, or anything such as you have experienced.
Reading your post reminded me how bittersweet the memories of TSCC are.
Many good memories, of many good and loving people.
Many good memories of childhood and teenage years in YM and the scouting program.
For the most part I experienced good and loving leaders. No abuse of any kind to report, except the usual "M" question on being advanced in the Aaronic PH.
I also am saddened by the thought of what could have been, but angered because the truth is withheld.
I sometimes long for the social connection, the camaraderie if you will, of being with like minded people.
But then I do a reality check. I left because I could no longer live a lie or testify to something I knew not to be true.
Integrity keeps me where I am. And for that, I am extremely grateful.
|Subject:||I am certainly grateful that I cannot go "home" again. The memories of good times|
|Date:||Feb 25 13:01|
|will stay with me for a long time, if I don't loose my
memory in old age.
I wouldn't want to go back. I have no longing for those days of simple naivety and overwhelming burdens.
They are done, complete, finished.
I went to a 50 year grade school reunion a few years ago. We went back to the old school, shared memories, talked about friends and reminisced about funny, good, goofy, sad, times.
Maybe it's just the way my mind works, but I never really want to go back. Never, ever. Sometimes I am thrown into a situation like the reunion where I go "back" but it's not for me. It's like seeing an old movie. It's on the screen, but it not real.
The titles in the Mormon Church always bothered me also. I want to know people, know them as real people not by a title, or category: bishop, president, brother, sister, elder.
I don't want to go back to titles, invasive interviews, regulation underwear, bizarre temple rituals, overwhelmed with responsibilities outside the home, and on and on.
Those things over shadow the fellowship, the social atmosphere of associating as humans which is available to me other places besides the Mormon Church without the stinging overlay of religious expectations.
My life as a Mormon was what contributed to who I am today. I am grateful for all of it: the good, the bad, the ugly. I regret none of it.
But, it's done. Oh so done. You will never find me crying over what might have been, or wishing for the past. NEVER!
I have moved on to a different kind of life which is so much more enjoyable and fulfilling.
And, in my view, that is the beauty of it. The right to change my mind about Mormonism, to accept the past and to make peace with it. All of it.
|Subject:||The Church Broke my Heart|
|Date:||Feb 26 18:36|
|It totally crushed me, when I started down this road
of discovery, to discover that the church had lied, covered up and withheld
pertinent, essential information from me to come to an understanding of its
I remember sitting in my car one day crying uncontrollably as this reality sunk in. I had given my life to an organization that had made promises to my family and me, I had made real sacrifices in both time talents and money for the church and these bastards didn’t have the moral dignity to tell me the truth?
I had a very difficult time wrapping my brain around this reality…why would they lie to me? I went through long periods of depression… revisiting my conclusions over and over, requestioning them still again and again. Yet each time that I have…I have come back to the conclusion that the leaders of the LDS church have been in a certifiable conspiracy to restrict information and keep it from the general church membership. I can only assume that they feel they have some noble purpose or cause that they feel is more important then my right to know the truth. That they believe they know what is better for me than I do. They believe their lies are justified because in their opinions, the church does so many positive things for individuals and families.
Who the f*** do they think they are to use me as a rat in their noble maze? Their lies have exposed my family to untold pain and trauma. And who knows if we’ll have the ability to survive it…all because Joseph lied about his experiences and those who followed him chose to carry on the fraud.
When I discovered the lies about the foundational claims of Mormonism, that church leaders had massaged facts, whitewashed historical events, doctored reality to support their desires to manipulate church membership to their so called higher purpose...it nearly killed me. What gives them the right to f*** with my life! To make promises to me of eternal family life that they will never have to deliver on, to manipulate and restrict our lives, to take our hard earned money…to fulfill their so called higher purpose?
NO Organization has the moral right to take away another's moral agency by depriving them of information they need to utilize that agency - and yet that is exactly what the church does...They literally broke my heart!
|Subject:||my uncle was an MP, I wish he had the integrity that SLDrone has....nt|
|Subject:||Re: You Can Never Go Home Again|
|Date:||Feb 26 20:45|
|Yeah, it's good to be a little naive. It's so comfortable. It was nice believing in Santa Claus, but I grew up. It was great believing that Mom and Dad knew everything and could solve every problem, but I grew up. It was wonderful to know the plan of salvation, the purpose of life on earth, but I grew up. So have you. And it hurts.|
|Subject:||Re: You Can Never Go Home Again|
|Date:||Feb 26 21:12|
|SL Drone, I enjoy your posts. I do think, however,
that one can, indeed, go home...especially if he wakes up in the wrong
house. For me, the Morg was the WRONG house!!!