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Thursday, April 10, 2008

Grievances

So I hope you all caught on to my April Fools joke- It made me laugh :P I have to give half of the credit to Alanis, who once again pulled through with the perfect lyrics. She pretty much is the best lyricist ever.

I've had several conversations in the last 6 months in which I've been told that I am taking the easy way out. I want to be gay so I'm picking at the church's doctrine concerning homosexuality to justify my way out of Mormonism. This bothers me. First of all, I am not taking the easy way out. The way I'm heading is just as difficult with just as many problems along the way. Second, the church's position on homosexuality is not the only thing that rubs me the wrong way. I have already explained a little bit about why I'm feeling disenchanted with organized religion in general, but I would like to make a list of all the things that are specifically driving me away from Mormonism, aside from the gay issue.

Treatment of Blacks- The best that the church can say is that it does not know why Blacks were treated differently than other members, but that God commanded it. Denying temple and priesthood privileges based on race is disgusting and seems far from divinely inspired.

Knowing- I've already explained this one on several other occasions.

Commandments that do not deal with moral issues- These seem like sounding brass and tinkling cymbals.

The Book of Abraham- In my opinion, this has been proven to be a fabrication.

Twisting scripture for convenience- especially in the New Testament.

No questioning authority- I've already explained this one in other posts.

Elitism- And this one.

Denial of mistakes

Emotional manipulation

I had a doctrine and covenants professor who taught us that each church doctrine is like a book that we find in the giant gospel library (I'm already gagging on this analogy). Every time we find a book that we find distasteful or that we think is wrong, we should just put it back on the shelf and say "I hate this book and I can't understand it, but I trust that it belongs in the library and that it is important." We can come back to the book later, when we're more prepared (brainwashed) to swallow its chapters.

I'm sorry, but I just can't do this. Everything about it feels so wrong. I can't surrender reason and free thinking to conformity.

Hmmm- I didn't mean to end up sounding so bitingly bitter and anti-Mormon. And I'm sorry if the painting of Martin Luther seems a little pretentious of me. I just wanted to make clear that while the church's stance on homosexuality does bother me, there are plenty of other church doctrines that I find irreconcilable with my conception of God and his perfect nature. Even if the church suddenly changed it's view on homosexuality, I don't think it would change the way I feel.

14 comments:

One of So Many said...

Just don't let the hate and anger consume you. You are far to amazing for that kind of pettiness.

biggins said...

I'm sad that you feel that way, but I think I can just echo the previous comment. Follow Christ in love and in deed as best you can, whether in or out of the church. And keep posting!

draco said...

Thanks guys :)
My bitter moments usually only last long enough for me to make a blog about them lol. And I though I really dislike a lot about the church, I can't hate it. It has been a wonderful learning experience and it has changed my life for the better.

[kɹeɪ̯g̊] said...

I've always felt a connection to Luther. Now more than ever, I understand why he did what he did.

Chase said...

I have also faced this idea. Chase you want to leave because it is easy. You just want to have sex. The idea that some form of cognitive dissonance is actually the reason for my departure. People who honestly think that homosexuals are leaving to just hump are completely avoiding the issue. Instead of actually considering why we leave, they label us as incapable of following the "lords" commandments. These people need to consider how much a companion is an integral part of the Mormon church yet is systematically denied to some many because love can only be how they define it.
I agree with you on the other stuff too. I am not so sure about Abraham but i havent really looked into it. I did take a new testament class that gave me great doubts about the basis for all Christianity. Keep on keeping on.

Leonardo da Vinci said...

Accepting your homosexuality is certainly not the easy way out. Shutting yourself out and submitting to the Church-machine is the easy way out.

We do not ask to be gay, and if we accept it and act on it we must deal with the prejudice, pressure, and inequality issues.

I dare say, homosexuality is not the easy way out. It is accepting who you are, despite what others say or think. That is one of the most difficult things to do.

And it's obvious that hate and anger are not consuming. I think it's ridiculous for someone to make that conclusion - your writing does not indicate that at all.

Kengo Biddles said...

For the record, I would like to say that I think your D&C teacher is/was smoking crack.

draco said...

lol- he was an ex-mission president.

Anonymous said...

Making a list like that seems dangerous. It makes it seem like you'd rather not be a member of the church at all. You know that the church is true and the people are not. Why get flustered over such silly things that ultimately don't have an effect on anyone's salvation?

[kɹeɪ̯g̊] said...

Anon: These things are far, far from silly. They are significant, serious, and they do have an effect, a lasting, indelible effect on us, and I suspect you as well.

And I wonder if we've had the same crack-smoking D&C teacher - or whether its something they all have to tell us. I was told the same creepy metaphor by one of my D&C teachers as well.

Gabriel said...

I'm glad you decided to keep the homosexual side of the argument at a minimum and focused on other parts. You have a lot of great arguments.

Anonymous said...

I am sorry, but this post offends me greatly. I, a member of the church, have never once judged you for what you are going through, and yet I feel judged by you for being LDS. You have no more right to call me brainwashed for believing the teachings of the church than I do to call you the same for being gay. I believe that what your D&C teacher was saying is true, there are some things that are difficult to understand with other foundational learning. He encouraged you to continue learning and then revisit the thing you didn't understand. Your anger is the same as all those who you have felt have discriminated you.

Chase said...

Mr. Anonymous you are looking for offense. He does not call you brainwashed, he says those who merely skip over difficult aspects of the gospel are being brainwashed. To ignore the uncomfortable and difficult parts of the gospel is to rob yourself the opportunity to develop faith in the church for what it is. There are those who well put that "book" back on the shelf and never return. They try to ignore it because it is hard. Ignoring the difficult parts of the gospel is to never understand the very church you claim membership in.

draco said...

Mr. Anonymous
Yes, I think that a lot of Mormons have been brainwashed- maybe a more accurate way of describing it is that they stop thinking for themselves and call this faith. That certainly was my experience.

Perhaps you are a Mormon who does think for himself. I don't recall ever saying that you had been brainwashed. I didn't judge you, I just judged your religion in general- just like you don't judge gay people in general, just their behavior.

And yes, I am angry at the church right now. You might also be angry at someone if you felt that he had deceived you and if he had helped take away the opportunity for you to get married.