I know there isn't much that you can help me with right now, but I was hoping for a minute that you didn't mind just reading a vent.
I am at work right now on the computer and this was pretty much the last day I have considered myself a Mormon after a long time of doubts that I have felt more at ease with by talking to other church members and bishopric that said that prayer and fasting would help my doubts go away. I stopped believing in any religion for about a few days but the feeling of guilt was too much that I felt peace when reading scripture, testimony and thought maybe I was back on the right track.
It wasn't until reading in D&C that talked about marriage by proxy for those who never got married, the practice of polygamy and creating spiritual babies in heaven with all your wives you had been sealed to on Earth, and those on other forums telling me that since I am asexual the only way for me to acheive the highest glory was through marriage by proxy of which I would be assigned a wife, and if I rejected I would have to in another degree of celestial life as a servant.
After a couple more hours of searching scripture, begging the lord to give me an answer of why everything is so confusing, why I can't live my life according to what I believe is right in my heart and still earn the highest degree, and why if I adopt a child as a single father someday I have to be separated from him in the kingdom unless I agreed to marry through an arranged marriage.
After looking at more evidence about Joseph Smith teaching that women are able to be sealed by proxy if not on earth, but then marries other people's wives and claimed to never have sex with anyone except Emma, adn then those same women which had been sealed to JS being sealed to Brigham Young also, and the church constantly changing what sealings mean and members all coming up with different answers, I knew that if there really was a heaven I did not want to be part of the heaven as described by Joseph Smith. After reading one scripture that doesn't conform to sermon, and seeing each member have a different excuse for why this is mis-interpreted, or claiming just to pray about it to see if this information is even accurate. I then realized that all my personal morals, values, and beliefs put me in a deep state of cognitive dissonance where after 4 months since I started doing some real LDS study, I then found that prayer wasn't going to be able to explain inconsistancies in the LDS church or even in the Bible, because for long I have been asking if eternal punishment made sense when someone is supposed to be forgiven of their sins, and why a loving God wouldn't really accept someone's plea to stay out of hell if they changed their ways because of what they couldn't come to terms with. After I realized I had nothing left in my toolkit to defend the church against critics with, I started to cry in tremendous pain in my room thinking that my life was over with and everything I had claimed to be I wasn't anymore, and I didn't want to be anyone else. Now I have to try to get the five children and my mother in my household to accept the fact that I will not accept any teachings of God just because of fear of the afterlife and what the Bible and Mormon church say happens to "non-believers." I am 23 going on 24 by the way. I live in South Carolina and I am a college student for elementary school education. I am still at the point where I feel sick to my stomache because my life going in a complete opposite direction as it was going before, I do not know what is in store for me now because I am going to feel like a hypocrite when I tell my friends and family about my true beliefs.
When I was 11 and baptized by personal choice I would have died if I ever had to figure out that someday I would say this.....
but I am a college student, a brother of 5 Mormon siblings, son of a Mormon mother, a former 1st and 2nd counselor of the Deacon's Quorum, a former member of the Teachers and Priests Chorum, I have been to the Kirtland temple, sacred grove, the hill cumorah paegent, and the johnson farm sure that I felt the holy ghost each time, and I still can't help cringing so tightly as I type this....
I am an ex-mormon.
Thanks for taking the time to read my venting and I hope it didn't waste any of your valuable time.
What an good post Nate. KNow that you do not have to close your eyes and mumble to yourself, and call it prayer. That act serves a psycological side that the Mormons create and use against you. You are not asking God, but being used by auto suggestion and psycological proddings.
We have good minds, we all do. We can think, be rational, and do as we feel needed. we do not need to castrate ourselves by not making basic life decisions. Decisions that have been made by humans for tens of thousands of years successfully before the Mormon twist came along. When a person leaves Mormonism they have to socially reaclimate to being able to mke these decisions. They call this feeling that comes when you are redeveloping this ability to decide "loss of the Spirit". It is really just leaning to stand on your own and not be patted on the head by old men from Salt Lake. I have had the pleasure of chatting with you in the mornings here on LAM. You are a good man, with a strong mind and heart. You are doing very well.
At the Hill Cumorah Pagent, and all the other places you went in your search, what you felt was an emotional rapture brought about by staging, by lights and colorful uniforms. It was not the Spirit. Emotional rapture is addictive, and it is normal to want it bacl...as a crack user wants another hit. But, the crack is not reality neither is the response to it. Life, sunshine, friends, singing in a rock band, going to the beach, developing a healthy self image and having intimate friends are equally important.
You are fine, you made a wonderful decision, and a correct decision as well. :) Leaving the Mormon Church was the wisest decision you ever made and it will increase the quality of your life.
I say this in the name of ....:) ...only joking :)
Its the same response we have to a commercial on television or the radio. We want it because the oerson said we do.... nothing more. Now, if McDonalds could tell that feeling was the spirit, and we'd be silly enough to believe it. .....they'd sell more hamburgers. That does not confirm the Spirit, but sales technigues > :)
Don Salt Lake is so full of horse shit
Yes, it is. All religions point to that same feeling and say it's God. I think a very strong case could be made that it's your wiring in your brain reacting to stimuli in a predictable fashion.
But then again, I'm an atheist, so my point of view may be biased.
Thats cool Polly. I am an ardent Catholic and some of my best friends and relations are Athiests, sincerly. They can communicate their feelings and views where as the TBM wants to share their emotion with you and wait for you to swoon and be swept off your feet. Gimme a damned break!! :)
Emotion never equates to reality. Our views are so parallel that it is ..... exciting :)
yup, tis. Group psycosis as well.
My family knows of the asexual situation that I'm in. My mom doesn't know or really want to know why I've left the church, she just knows that there is no chance of me being re-converted. She is having a hard time understanding why I am talking about the church in groups like this instead of just leaving and going my own way, and I'm trying to explain to her after going through such a journey as I have it isn't as easy as just walking away and not talking about it with anyone, and sometimes the only people you feel comfortable talking to are ones who have went through similar experiences.
I am gonna revise and rewrite my exit story more thoroughly. Not that this one is wrong, but keep in mind I wrote this the same day I left the church so this is really only telling about what happened the final moments.
This sort of is the last jenga block that made the whole tower come down, but I had pulled out many blocks over the year that made my jenga tower become like the tower of pisa before I finally pulled out the block that made it crumble to pieces. I am a bit obsessed with anologies and metaphors.
Nathan, Your mother still loves you very much. She is struggling with her own issues. If you were my son, I'd be incredibly proud of you for being able to tell the world of your sexual situation, and be willing to move on and deal with it. And quite frankly, you are hard wired to be asexual.. There, I said it. You've done nothing wrong, and you don't need a blessing for it. And also, for whatever it's worth, you don't have to convince your family of anything, because there's a good chance they won't be convinced of anything. You've stated your case, and I believe now is the time for you to live your life as you see fit, and disengage from trying to convince them of anything. You stated you are sick to your stomach for having to tell your family and friends about your situation. Guess what? There are still people I've not explained my situation to, and it's been 23 years. You owe them nothing at this point. Promise us one thing. That you will start doing one nice thing for yourself daily. Perhaps a 10 minute walk. Perhaps a few chapters of a good book not required by your studies. Perhaps a nice hot bath. It's definitely time for you to pamper you my love. Everyone here is proud of you, and would be proud to call you son. Would you and mom feel any better if you simply put your arms around her once or twice a week and told her you loved her very much? Would that diffuse some of her concern? Or,help the two of you to gently move on together? I see tremendous hope for you. Hang in there kiddo.
Yep, that is what I meant about the final block that brought down the jenga tower. The fact that you must be married and sealed when I have no desire and think it is horrible. What really made me break down into emotional turmoil when I was actually starting to think that my plan to adopt a child as a single dad some day was a bad idea because the church teachings that 2 parent families are critical for kids and that I would be depriving a child of a good family if he didn't have that, but the problem is some kids just cannot get adopted by couples or families with other kids because of their issues, and it takes a specific kind of person that can handle a child with violent anger issues to give him the kind of support that other families cannot give. So I don't see how just because I have given up on the idea of marriage and romance, I should have to give up on the idea of parenting at the same time, it just doesn't seem fair what the church is trying to teach people.
Usually a lot of people never end up leaving the church because the teachings are not necessarily things they agree with, but are willing to keep on their Mormon goggles because they don't hit them personally in a hurtful way as they did me.
I know its a bit strange that a goal for a 23 year old is to adopt a child someday, but I am a bit of a weird person all around.