I've never been a Mormon and live in a part of the country where the LDS church is barely a blip on the religious radar screen. I'm curious as to why it seems that so many exMormons end-up as atheists? Is it just that exMormons have a real turn-off to religion because of their experience in Mormonism? Another thing that I find interesting is how exMormons seem to "disappear". What I mean by that is that I've noticed that there seems to be a flourish of activity when someone is in the process of leaving the Mormon church and than they just kind of fade from the scene. I've experienced this and so has a friend of mine who lives in another part of the country. In the case of my friend, he had mentored a young man via the internet, the young man and his wife left the LDS church and then "boom" no more contact. I had something similar happen. I'm thinking that some folks just want to leave it behind and not talk about it any more. In the case of the man (and his wife) that I had gotten to know, they were seeking to find a church so it wasn't a case of being turned off to Christianity. Anyone have any thoughts on this?

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Aloha falcon!
You should watch the 3 part video series I posted in the videos called "Mormon Fruit Of Atheism" that will explain it really well to you. Suzanne
I'll take a look at that. Sorry for my delayed response.
I felt betrayed by God and man. I've come around though...I was able to separate the two eventually, but when I first started finding all the glitches, I was just so MAD. I was so mad I just refused to pray. Weirdly enough, sometimes I would pray just to tell God how mad I was. I just officially took my name off the records of the church about a month and a half ago...and I'm still mad. But not at God anymore. More at the church. I feel awkward sometimes, even though my new church is GREAT.
My question is...is this normal/typical? I think I am technically grieving,which kind of is confusing to me.
Yea, I'd say it's pretty normal. It will get better. I hate to sound too simplistic but the more our relationship with Jesus grows and deepens, the more the other negative religious stuff disappears. My observation of exMormons is that they definitely go through stages and it probably is a lot like the grieving process. God bless you.
Good point about the identity/cultural aspects of Mormonism. Some people, I understand, like the culture. For others, it's too limiting and stifles them. None-the-less in some ways it's like someone leaving the Amish community.

Hi there. I am one of the ex Mormons who disappeared, kind of.

 

I didn't become atheist, but I understand how it can happen. For the record, it's my experience that those who leave and become atheist seldom do the leaving formally. They see no reason to. And most seldom speak out about Mormonism itself, rather, its generalized to all religions. I believe some of this is more linked to the mistaken notion that the LDS church is another sect of Christianity, even though LDS doctrine runs contrary to the Christian faith.

 

Evidence for this comes from Smith himself, who claimed that Jesus told him personally that all the existing creeds were an abomination and all professors of those creeds were rasty nasty dudes (paraphrasing here).

 

When you grow up thinking yours is just another sect; but have been told everything else out there is also wrong; exactly whats left? Islam? Buddhism? Joseph Smith did say he wanted to be the next Muhammad, but I doubt many Mormons even know this.

 

It's a baby/bathwater approach. "If this isn't right, it's all wrong."  Fortunately this isn't applied to relationships, family, children and education. Could you see what would happen if someone found out a teacher lied? Stop going to school?

 

I think there's also a kind of "intellectualization" that never leaves the person who was LDS. One of those is "the church is perfect, the people aren't". That only takes you so far, however. You'll find that anyone who is sold on a religious system will take that tact. That's why its important to make a distinction between "religion" and relationship. If no churches existed, I would still have a spiritual relationship with God through Christ, who was and is perfection.

 

As for me, I was outspoken for a little while after becoming a Christian. God moved me into a different area and I had my little time of wandering, so to speak. But the good thing about Christ is he doesn't hunt you down. He lets you come to him, and back to him, when you're ready.

 

Only recently have I felt compelled to speak out again.

 

I'm new here but hope you don't me jumping on board.  The answers posted have excellent points, and I remember not long ago reading that people who leave the Mormon church tend to turn athiest because the beliefs they had can't be matched by any other religion (that's a loose interpretation).  I'll have to see if I can find that article again, it was a good one.  I'm in the process of becoming a born-again-Christian so obviously I don't have a lot of room to talk, but wanted to throw that piece of information out there.
Mormons are in a class by themselves, because they are taught from birth that all other denominations are abominations to God.  This just simply doesn't need to be the case, but the brain washing is so complete, that rather than find other folks to encourage them in a kindly, liberal, and spiritual way, they just drop all religion.  I don't claim to have most answers, indeed, when I die, I'll be the first to know if I'm all wet behind the ears.  It just makes me wonder what kind of peace or support atheists feel when they lose a child, a spouse, or others close to them.  Even if I'm talking strange theology, for me, there's a form of peace that I'd never known as a mormon, or, in years after leaving, simply searching other ideologies.

When I first decided I was leaving the church, I was so mad at God I wanted nothing to do with Him. I finally realized that whether I was angry at Him or not, I still believed in Him.

This is just a theory, but let me know what you guys think of this...could it be that for a lot of Mormons, the church IS their God? So when the church dies for them, then so does their God.

Oh, HazelWings, what do you mean by you're in the process of becoming born again?
What I meant is I'm so niave about anything outside of the Mormon church that I don't know what it takes to become a born again Christian.  There's a non-denominational church I've been attending the past 3 Sundays and really like, and I've started making contacts with people who can answer a ton of questions I have.

HazelWings, If you really like your church, then don't worry about doing anything.  If you believe in Christ, in what he stood for, in loving your neighbor as yourself, you are already a follower of Christ and there's nothing works wise that needs to be done.  Maybe you'd enjoy going to a Bible class at your new church, and just getting a feel for what they believe.  I found fundamentalism too legalistic for me, because my politics are liberal, but I have participated in Bible studies with different groups over the years, and there were interesting times to be had.  Or, you might just want to go each week and enjoy the feel of the place, the people there, making friends, etc.  Just don't get into a situation where someone will lock you out if your opinion of something is different.  I'd say ask away, write down any and all questions, enjoy yourself but don't give up your true heart.  If they want you to say, "I accept Jesus into my heart", and you want to say it, then that's the kind of proof most community churches are looking for.  That's when they tell you that they've decided you are saved.  Personally, my beliefs tell me everyone is saved, whatever that may be.

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