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Posted by: Done & Done ( )
Date: June 07, 2019 10:35AM

A re-write of an ancient post:


From the stunning CD Rome, one of my favorite songs of all time: "Two Against One" by Jack White. The lyric stopped me in my tracks, "Two against one--you and me against me."

Is there any description of Mormonism more apt than that? Co-dependency on steroids, but rather than with a mentally abusive spouse, with a so-called church?

Hadn't we been carefully groomed? Groomed to fear any other choice than complete obedience? The threat of loss of Eternal Reward crouched behind every sentence. Constantly rewarded by the TSCC with a "well done thou good and faithful servant" every time we denied our true selves--just the same as a dog is rewarded with a treat for doing a trick, accompanied by a clicker. Eventually the clicker is enough and the treat isn't even offered and a dog will do exactly what you want with just one click.

The Mormon church has a clicker. How else could they have gotten a young bride to sit through the ridiculous endowment in a silly costume and then stand in line for a quickie impersonal 'wedding' ceremony with her parents standing outside the temple on what is supposed to be the most beautiful day of her life?

How else do they get family to shun family? How do they get a parent to turn on a gay child? Spouse against exMo spouse? A child disavowing a loving parent?

How else do they get Priesthood holders to pay tithing needed for the family instead? To put the church first. To give their time to callings instead of children? To pressure a miserable child to stay on a fruitless mission?

I could go on, but . . .


When it is you and the Mormon church, it is "two against one, you and me against me." You will go against all that is good inside of you, all that is curious and open and honest. You will deny your natural self to the core, because the church has chosen you to be on it's side---against you.

Two against one. Taught to be our own worst enemy. Taught to help the church ruin our lives.

Mormons, as most religions, created a god that hates diversity. Is there anything more beautiful than diversity? What possible purpose could sameness serve? Oh, yeah. We know don't we. It's good for the coffers.

As a Mormon I was never who I wanted to be. I was never my best self. Maybe I'm still not, but at least it is only me stopping me now.

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Posted by: GNPE1 ( )
Date: June 07, 2019 10:58AM

Excellent & Insightful analysis!!

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner !!!!

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Posted by: Screen Name ( )
Date: June 07, 2019 11:04AM


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Posted by: Human ( )
Date: June 07, 2019 11:19AM

Yes.

But that ganged-up-on Mormon soul has at least this for consolation:

“Lucky for me, I’m not the only one.”

That’s why it hurts them when we leave: we leave them with one less soul for consolation, while we gain our one and only soul.

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Posted by: Done & Done ( )
Date: June 07, 2019 11:30AM

Wow. Yes! That is why the desperation to keep you.


But also . . .

"Lucky for me I'm not the only one." Because I was. For a very long time. And then I found my people. And then I found more of my people here. And there's more out there somewhere.

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Posted by: Human ( )
Date: June 07, 2019 11:51AM

Imagine living on the rich, green fields of England, warm and abundant and alive: “a fat land”, as T.E, Lawrence might have actually said.

You get on s boat, you arrive at a newly, poorly built city, and are asked to pull a hand-cart across a great swath of land mass the size of which cannot be accurately imagined.

Hardship is the easiest part. Animals die. People die. People you love die. But you, lucky you, arrive.

Arrive to what? Arrive to a hot, dead land with a lake of salt. This is Zion, the Promised Land you were promised while you were milking a fat cow in a cooling breeze on the fat, rolling hills of Derby, say.

“Surely, they must be joking,” you might have thought. Nope, no one is joking.

At that point, in the middle of nowhere, all alone, it makes all the sense in the world to want to be one of the in-crowd, at whatever cost. To be on the outside, now, would be die.

That makes sense. That exonerates the original Mormon pioneers. Anyone can be led astray while milking a cow with a belly full of England’s warmth, coolness and fat abundance.

What’s more interesting, after all that, why would you pass on to your children the in-crowd’s lies?

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Posted by: Dave the Atheist ( )
Date: June 10, 2019 10:49AM

Is this why the jews want to live in Israel ?

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Posted by: Done & Done ( )
Date: June 10, 2019 11:08AM

Haha. I have always wondered if Brigham finding his "red sea" wasn't why he made the declaration, "This is the Place!"

I have also had on my mind all weekend, though I was away from computer and couldn't respond, the last question of human. Why pass it on to the children. How much of Mormonism has become Tevye and "Tradition?" ....still thinking. . .

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Posted by: babyloncansuckit ( )
Date: June 07, 2019 11:41AM

The natural man is an enemy to stupidity.

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Posted by: Anon For This ( )
Date: June 07, 2019 12:32PM

Read "Breaking The Will Of The members" in Short Topics #316:

https://www.exmormon.org/mormon/mormon316.htm

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Posted by: cl2 ( )
Date: June 07, 2019 12:46PM

I ran into something yesterday, that although I had heard it before, it bothered me yesterday. My dad knew what happened to my life. My dad also wasn't that active mormon. We grew up with a dad who stayed home either to farm or to watch TV and we went off to church with my mother, so since my dad wasn't active and didn't toe the line and my mother was not social (raised by 2 deaf parents and personality), we were not accepted well.

So I went to see my disabled brother for his birthday yesterday. He still goes to church. He went to the genealogy library at the local ward and was looking at, is it, family search. He said my daughter had put in a memory of my dad on there and that she had said that after my mother died, my dad told her to keep going to church. She told me that recently, but I had forgotten.

When I showed up at the house the Sunday after my mother died and I was dressed nice (not in a dress), he thought I had gone to church that day and was hopeful and I said I hadn't. He seemed to fine religion just before he died, I think out of fear of what was to come.

My daughter is the ONLY mormon of all his grandchildren and great grandchildren. I'm afraid that that alone will keep my daughter in the church and she obviously wanted to use it on me for guilt purposes. Today it is bugging me and it isn't because I think I'll ever go back.

I'm still fighting the me though--I obviously am, but only because I want people to quit thinking they know what I've been through, that I just got lazy, that I still believe deep down, I just wanted to sin.

When my husband left, I used to want to stand on the roof and shout, "It wasn't my fault," as the ward loved/loves my husband. He is MORMON ROYALTY as he knows how to act the part. I've said I was treated better in mormonism while with him than any other time. AND when he left, that attitude was that it must be that old bitch he was married to (as I'm like my mother, not social and reserved). So now I feel like I need to stand on the roof and scream, "I REALLY DO NOT BELIEVE DEEP DOWN."



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/07/2019 12:48PM by cl2.

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Posted by: Done & Done ( )
Date: June 07, 2019 06:28PM

So now I feel like I need to stand on the roof and scream, "I REALLY DO NOT BELIEVE DEEP DOWN."

All I know is even if you did that they still would not believe you. Believing you believe is how they are able to believe their own beliefs I do believe.

My parents never doubted my testimony. It just got funny after a while.

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Posted by: Done & Done ( )
Date: June 07, 2019 01:37PM

Thanks for that link. Great post

"Church broke" is a real thing. Instead of making one immune to gunshots though, they make you immune to facts and reason and even your own inner self which sits in limbo.

Reminds me of a story I heard from the pulpit as a kid about how they tested the prize Arabians they trained for the Sheik once the training was done. The horse was deprived of water until it was nearly dead. Then it was turned loose to run to the water trough but just as it got there the signal was given to come back to the trainer. The horses that came back without drinking were the ones chosen to carry the Sheik. Not hard to figure out what the Mormon lesson was there: You are to serve and obey at any cost to yourself.

This was all delivered in that special Mormon spirichul voice. I remember feeling uncomfortable with the story even then.

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Posted by: kathleen ( )
Date: June 07, 2019 02:59PM

Wow, D&D, brilliant post, responses, and insights that you followed up with.

Yes, the Arabian story (and video) made deprivation look so useful, and victimization look honorable.

And to think--we escaped it all!

This is one I'm going to screenshoot and archive.

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Posted by: exminion ( )
Date: June 07, 2019 06:04PM

Thank you for your great post, and this thread, Done & Done.

Yes, yes, yes, you have explained exactly why Mormonism always bothered me so much--it turned me against my self.

I had to go to therapy, to understand that I had internalized all those Mormon ideas of hatred, prejudices, sexism, harsh judgments, Mormon superiority and entitlement, etc. I had been brainwashed that these skewed notions were CORRECT.

Always, forming the solid base of my Mormon "testimonys' was the idea that I was WRONG, bad, less-than. Nothing I could ever do would be enough to earn Love. All I could do was obey, pay tithing, get married in the temple, have BIC children, and help grow the church, but all I deserved was an eternity with a wife-beater I hated, and his other two subsequent temple wives, plus more wives for him, as he became a God. This would happen only if I I was very, very obedient. The cult, on its terms, was my only hope for salvation. No wonder I was filled with hopelessness and despair!

I hated myself. You just explained part of why I hated myself. I was punishing myself for NOTHING. I was and always had been a good person! I have never given up on being honest, loving, kind, obeying the laws, seeking the Truth, yet I never appreciated my good character. It was never good enough for the cult. In fact, the cult was against most of these good qualities.

Instead of being a Mormon SAHM, circumstances forced me out into the work force, in order to support my children. Luckily, I had a great career and made money, and my children flourished--BUT--I didn't put in enough time and money into the cult, and I was marginalized for that. You. Can. Not. Win.

Often, the Mormon-instructed "right thing to do" was something that went against my gut feelings. The examples of the creepy temple ritual, and old blood oaths (suicide vows) are spot-on. only very sick people would do those things to themselves.

Recovery is very slow. I still beat myself up, when I make mistakes, or most often, when I neglect to do enough.

I will use this new insight, as I continue the battle to be kinder to myself. Fortunately, I have put in the effort and awareness, to not beat up my children, like my TMB parents did. The Mormon abuse did stop with me, in the nick of time, and has not harmed any of them.

Interesting, Cl2, how you react against having someone else define you, put words into your mouth, tell you that you have feelings that you do not have, etc. The Mormons and my mother used to say, "Treat a person as if they were already the person you want them to be, and they will become that new person." Or something like that. They think that if they keep telling you that you still believe in Mormonism "deep-down," that soon you will start to believe that, yourself. Mormons are master manipulators.

Thanks to all of those who have helped make us aware of this.

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Posted by: Done & Done ( )
Date: June 07, 2019 06:30PM

Lucky, lucky, kids.

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Posted by: Done & Done ( )
Date: June 10, 2019 10:20AM

Topping because I wrote this mostly for the lurkers.

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Posted by: dagny ( )
Date: June 10, 2019 11:07AM

Diversity is a complicated subject for religions. The holy writs are full of tribal divisiveness and tribal pride. This may have given justification for condemning or killing others for survival of the group at one time, but today, this thinking is harmful.

The behaviors engrained in the Bible (to name one source) filter down as a foundation to shun diversity, even in ourselves. In the bigger picture, we humans need to distinguish safe insiders from unknown outsiders. We keep believing people when they teach obedient sameness.

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Posted by: redskittle ( )
Date: June 10, 2019 03:13PM

The scriptures, indeed, do have racist verses against darker skinned people.

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Posted by: Wally Prince ( )
Date: June 11, 2019 12:21AM

is the Tom Sawyer of religion.

Tom Sawyer had some miserable chores to do (painting a fence) and was lazy when it came to chores. But he was good at manipulating others with a combination of make-believe and acting.

So with this combination of skills, he was able to manipulate his friends into: (i) doing all of the work painting the fence; and (ii) believing that Tom was actually sacrificing his own interests and doing them all a favor by ALLOWING them to have all the fun of painting the fence instead of him.

Mormonism is pretty much the same thing on stilts, on steroids and writ large.

Joseph Smith sacrificed his time and energy to help many women, married and unmarried, young and a bit older, to partake in the special ordinance that only he could administer to help ensure that they would have a place of high status in the afterlife. It was a great sacrifice for him. There was only one of him and so many women with whom he wanted to share this special blessing.

And his successors have carried on in the spirit of Tom Sawyer/Joseph Smith to this day:

"Well, okay, we will humbly serve you and God by accepting, on God's behalf, your offerings of tithing, so that you can be blessed. It's a big sacrifice to us to have to devote our time to such tasks, but that's just the kind of people we GAs are. These all-expense-paid trips on private jets to exotic locations such as Tahiti are horrific burdens that we are willing to bear for you. We meet with world leaders not because our egos demand it, but because we want the best for you. It's all for you! Because we love, love, love you so much."

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Posted by: Done & Done ( )
Date: June 11, 2019 09:47AM

"Joseph Smith sacrificed his time and energy to help many women, married and unmarried, young and a bit older, to partake in the special ordinance that only he could administer to help ensure that they would have a place of high status in the afterlife. It was a great sacrifice for him. There was only one of him and so many women with whom he wanted to share this special blessing."

Hahah HA! Brilliant. The Mormons try to say the same thing but not with the same elan.


The GAs are fools not to have you writing for them, Wally. If I were Rusty I would be dumping their PR company so fast and paying you anything.

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Posted by: Wally Prince ( )
Date: June 11, 2019 11:27PM

Joseph Smith was an ardent feminist. Hands-on mentoring and often more concerned about the afterlife advancement of women than he was about the afterlife advancement of men. Not only that, but he was always very proactive in seeking out younger women, so that they would be sure to get a head start on the path of the new and everlasting covenant.

(I'm auditioning for that PR job. If I can just get my hands on a high-quality fake temple recommend I think I may have a shot.)

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Posted by: Done & Done ( )
Date: June 12, 2019 09:09AM

Your gift is truly "unblieveable." You're hired!

Screw the recommend. They're just for the little people in the village anyway---sort of a dangled carrot as we do.

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Posted by: NormaRae ( )
Date: June 11, 2019 11:23AM

VERY insightful and every word you write resonates with me. Yes, we were taught to be our own worst enemy. So so so many times I think of something from my former life and can only ask myself "where was my brain." I'll be talking about something with friends and suddenly feel really embarrassed because I know they just can't understand how anybody with half a brain could ever have thought that way or done the things I did. Even though I know they not only don't judge me, but they remind me how strong I am to have made it out.

A family member thought she was really putting me down by telling me that EVERYONE knows I'm mentally ill. "You should hear the things they say." Bwahahahahahahah. First of all, anyone who knows both me and her would be mormon. Reeeeeeeeeeally? I'm hurt because a mormon thinks I am the mentally ill one? Let's see, these would be people who sing praises to and worship a sexual predator, who think their secret passwords will get them into heaven and truly believe their underwear has magical powers. Not to mention, blindly follow a dementia-ridden geezer who tells them whether they can see their child get married, at what temperature they can drink their caffeine, how much money they have to give him, etc. etc. etc. Oh, Pullllleeeease don't tell me those people think I'm mentally ill. Too funny. Yeah, when it comes down to it, that's the sign that we're finally on the road to sanity, when the inmates at the asylum are calling you the ill one.

For a long time, even after I left, I wanted to believe that the leadership had good intentions. But I know that is as far from the truth as it gets. In order to get in those top positions, you have to be a master manipulator and by that time you know darn well that it's a total fraud. But if you had a problem with defrauding people for your own gain, you'd have been kicked off the ladder long before reaching the top rungs. In many ways I'm still my own worst enemy, but I catch myself and constantly try to make peace with my enemy. In mormonism you absolutely cannot make peace with it, so they are constantly reminding you of the enemy within that must be destroyed.

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Posted by: Done & Done ( )
Date: June 11, 2019 12:20PM

Yes. Love the way you put it.

Mormons need us to be crazy/wrong/sinners as confirmation that they are the opposite. They need that because deep down they know these days they are on shaky ground. Seeing us as "lost" is a necessary part of them being able to convince themselves they are still the "found." Every yin needs a yang?

What strikes me the most though, is what you say about "not being able to make peace with Mormonism." I have no interest in trying. I am actually suspicious of those who say they have. Even if you have tamed a wild animal you are fool to turn your back.

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Posted by: name ( )
Date: June 11, 2019 04:47PM

Good intentions, but only those as proscribed by their "calling," which involves bring you back to "the fold" and back on "the covenant path." Because, to them, this is the ultimate good, to number those sheep and keep you in the pen.

I would love to hear stories of leadership who realized that being/doing/existing in the bubble of the ward WASN'T in someone's best interests and suggested that maybe some time off was a good idea.

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