"My name is Brian and I'm an Ex Mormon."




I was a faithful member for three decades. I was raised in a good LDS home. served a faithful mission in Brazil, got married in the temple and always worthily held a temple recommend. I was a gospel doctrine teacher, teachers' advisor, elder's quorum counselor, branch president, etc. Active my whole life. I'd followed the rules, I believed it and I meant it with all my heart.

When in my early 30s I began to wonder about the nature of suffering and the role of prayer. Suffering seems to abound in an intensity, frequency and distribution which did not align with the idea of a compassionate, loving deity. Why would god help me drive safely in a snowstorm, but not help a terrified mother while her children are murdered in front of her before she is gang raped, like many women are in Africa? A local story in the news was of a child that was raped and buried alive. A tsunami in Indonesia killed 250,000 people.

Nature is clearly indifferent to suffering. Was god indifferent, too?

Those horrific events left me to question the existence of god. I understood basics of geology, astronomy and physics to a degree which left the possibility of naturally occurring universe without the need of a creator. I prayed. I went to the temple and prayed. I prayed in the car, I prayed at my bedside. I prayed for years feeling that after 30 years of compliance I had demonstrated my willingness to obey the truth. I prayed with all the faith I could muster, with a sincere desire to believe and follow, knowing I had excercized my faith first.

Having a son of my own I understood that a loving father would not ignore a child's sincere requests. A loving father would at least tell a son that his question was heard, even if the son wasn't ready for the answer.

No answer came. Why? I had committed no major sins. Never smoked, never touched drugs or alcohol. I read scriptures and prayed and served. I felt worthy of my temple recommend. I had as much faith as I knew how to have.

I was bothered that it was so hard to tell the difference between "the spirit" and my own thoughts.


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Comment by Don on January 23, 2011 at 6:17pm
The best way to find out that you are water proof is to...take an enjoyable walk in the rain. Take the risk and learn that you are not hurt, that what others think does not bother you. In fact, they are looking for someone to show them that it does not hurt! Sorta like plants growing in the shade being told their who young life that the sun can kill them. How refreshing to enjoy the benefits of warm bright sunlight!!

I used to walk in the rain to La'ie Park at BYU-HC. It was so nice. I could see the dark clouds blowing in from the east....and I could have been scared. It was so good in contrast. AUWE! I did not melt, it felt good. So many of us are scared of things not for reason, but because we have been told we are supposed to be! :)

Comment by Control Zee on January 25, 2011 at 9:29pm
Don - I love the rain analogy. Life is about to take some wild turns for me, and I can face it fearfully, or with courage. Thanks again for your thoughts!
Comment by Don on January 26, 2011 at 7:41am
The turns we experience are good. They stop lif from being boring, mean and ...Mormon in its effects.

Change is good. We look at something and say "OMG, this is horrible. Others look at the same thing and say "Cool, and what the hell is it!" It only has the power we give it. We can respond in many ways. We can look at it, move with it in the dance of life, or scream and run pulling our hair out by the roots because we have been taught that this is the required way to respond. You are not giving up Christ. You are giving up controlling a-hole f-ers that do not care one bit about you. They care for you as much as you care for the sausage you fried for breakfast this morning. Your relationship with the sausage is defined by its ability to meet your personal needs. There is no relationship past its function for you. You are the Mormon sausage. They do not care about you. They really do not give a bag of cat crap about you past your ability to sign that tithing check. And if you do not pay that "Temple Tax"...you aint going to the Temple that they teach you MUST go to. No money for the, no heaven for you...such a deal!! They manipulate people, they use people and they grind them under a millstone as if it were normal. And if you know what is good for you.... you better damned well like it!

Life is short. You go around one time. Do not live it under anothers knife no matter how much they tell you that it is good for you. If you do not like pain, it is not good for you. what kind of idiot runs TOWARDS the fire! We leave pain and discomfort. I say write the letter to Salt Lake, get rid of them, and tell them to go climb a tree and scream like a monkey.

Life is a gift. It must be enjoyed. You do not have to view it as they do, and far more, you do not have to sit it or do as they tell you. You have a mind of your own ...and even opinions of your own. Use them. Or, stay in the cage they want to keep youin.

Just my humble opinion.

Don, Las Vegas


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