Sometimes I wish I could get "plugged back in".

This last week has been kind of a rough week. Throughout the last week I have been thinking a lot about how hard it is to deal with the loss of my world view. At first I felt freed by leaving everything behind, and to a degree I do still feel freed. I feel a weight has been lifted, but in many ways the previous weight has been replaced by other things. I find that I am having to reexamine everything about my life. I am having to deal with family issues related to leaving. I left in the first place so that I could stop lying to myself and others. I left so that I could stop pretending...

I remember hating that guy in The Matrix... The bald guy who betrayed them all and got most of Neo's team killed. He is sitting down to a big steak dinner with Mr. Smith and betrays them all for the sake of getting plugged back into the matrix so that he can forget reality. I HATE HIM though today I find that I am beginning to understand him. I never understood him before. How could you want to live in a fake world? How could you want to escape reality so badly that you would willingly accept a lie? He did not want to feel the pain anymore. He did not want to deal with the crappy conditions of the real world. He did not want to fight.

I also think a lot about Orson Scott Card's book Xenocide. I think of Li Qing-Jao the "godspoken" girl living on the world of Path. In her world the gods manifested themselves to the "godspoken" through rituals. The godspoken were compelled to perform these rituals to please the gods. The rituals were really intense things. Li Qing-Jao had to trace wood grains on the floorboards of her house anytime she displeased the gods. Turns out that the "godspoken" on Path were really purposely given intense OCD by government entities to help control them. Even after a cure was administered and they were no longer compelled by their OCD to perform the rituals Qing-Jao continued to do it. She wanted to prove to the gods that she did not need them to compel her to be righteous, that she would willingly humble herself. She did not believe that it was OCD. She did not believe that it was the government controlling them. Despite the OCD being taken away she still had faith in the silent gods. Card painted her as a tragic and noble character. One who lived by faith and conviction. (It is just such themes in Card's books that lead me to believe that he is not actually a true believer.)

These characters are drastically different from each other in their motives, but both ultimately end up choosing to live a lie. The matrix character chooses directly to leave reality behind. Qing-Jao, though shown the truth rationalizes is all away and continues to actually believes the lie.

I kind of want to be plugged back into the matrix. I kind of want to be in the believer camp again. I think I find that I want it because it is easier than completely reexamining all of my thoughts and beliefs. It is nice to believe, but there are some things about the church that I just can't accept. The problem is that the church itself openly says that it is an all or nothing situation. You are either all the way in, or all the way the way out. You cannot really be a member of the church and be a fence sitter. You cannot just halfway believe. It is all a package deal.

I was never a very "good" member, but I did believe. I may have had my doubts all along the way, but I have mostly believed it was true. I may have been unhappy with the culture. I may have felt unworthy. I may have viewed myself as a huge sinner, but I ultimately believed. I have not regularly attended for about a year and half, and I did not miss going. It has been only during these last two months that I started to let go and actually dropped the belief that I miss it. In some ways I wish I still believed.

Views: 15

Comment by MikeUtah on November 28, 2009 at 5:42pm
I think this is a stage we all go through from time to time, and for some multiple times. In some ways, ignorance can be bliss. Unfortunately nothing short of amnesia would return me to the same state of ignorance I was in while in the morg. But I find freedom and happiness in living an authentic and honorable life. Your path is your own. Do what makes you happy.
Comment by Kiley on November 28, 2009 at 9:30pm
You are right Mike. I have thought about it and there is no way to go back. Nice to know that it is a stage.
Comment by Kath Jones on November 29, 2009 at 4:05pm
Kiley, it's a stage, but unfortunately, one that you may go through for some time still. I've been out for 20 yrs now. It still comes back in some ways. How I wish I could believe so that I had my whole family to be with on the holidays, etc. If I could go back, would I? Often at Christmas time, I spend a little time in a funk because there is no way for me to take this season the way the rest of the people I love do. This year might actually be the very first that I am really and truly happy about it, and can honestly celebrate the season by focusing on what a great year it's been, that I do have some family and friends that love me for who I actually am, etc. I view the holidays as just an extension of giving thanks for all that I have and all the people in my life.

It will ease, Kiley. I promise. But that need to plug back in and want it all to be as it was, that might not ever go completely....
Comment by Kiley on November 29, 2009 at 8:00pm
Thank you Kath. This whole struggle to break away has kind of given me a new perspective on an old scripture. I tried to find it but am not sure where it is, but it said something like if you raise up a child in the ways of righteousness in their youth they will never depart from it.... something like that. THE new perspective that I have gained is that they don't depart because it is so ingrained, not merely habit, but actual though patterns have been formed. It has nothing to do with the teachings being true as much as trained.
Comment by Kath Jones on November 29, 2009 at 8:35pm
yes, trained or "habit" is a very kind way of wording it....none the less, it is true and utter brainwashing. I do not for a second believe my parents or any, actually have ever done it knowingly. Though, there are many who have doubts and go along with doing it (indoctrinating) to their children even when they doubt themselves. We see Exmo's or wannabe Exmo's post that each and every day.
If you haven't yet, go read Ayn Rand's "Anthem", or "The Giver" by Lois Lowry. Anthem was THE pivotal moment for me 20 yrs. ago when I realized what had been done to me. They are both quick reads, but extremely powerful for helping you get your head around what happened (and is happening still).
Religion is an opiate. Anything that gives the end-all be-all answer is simply a lie……IMHO. The answer to it all is HUGE, or simply nothing at all. It doesn’t really matter either way to me. I just do unto others as I would want to be treated, raise my kids how I would want to be raised. How can you go wrong with that? It’s a beautiful message and it doesn’t have to have a label on it.

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