The Church doesn't feel like a good investment

Public forum for those seeking support for their experience in the LDS Church.
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hawkgrrrl
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Re: The Church doesn't feel like a good investment

Post by hawkgrrrl » 11 Oct 2017, 10:09

If you tried to apply this thinking to our tax dollars, you might have a similar issue. In fact, lots of people do. Older people get upset that they are paying for education when their kids are grown. People say things like why should I be obligated to pay for a police force or fire department or roads when all these things exist already, and I've never had to use them? Libertarians even push for privatization of these types of services--all toll roads (that pay for themselves through tolls), etc.

Others have pointed out that theoretically, our contributions are helping others more than ourselves, running wards in poorer areas, temple maintenance, etc. That's all true. Belonging to a group has long-term benefits and short-term drawbacks. People are flawed and irritating, but having no social network has serious costs in the long term.

But I certainly get the thinking that 10% of your income and 3 hours a week or more are big commitments. In some wards, the commitment feels bigger than in other wards.

Roy
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Re: The Church doesn't feel like a good investment

Post by Roy » 11 Oct 2017, 10:26

hawkgrrrl wrote:
11 Oct 2017, 10:09
Libertarians even push for privatization of these types of services--all toll roads (that pay for themselves through tolls), etc.
Perhaps we should have all troll roads. If you cannot afford to pay, a troll comes out and eats you. Thus the roads are maintained through fees, the trolls are well fed, and the indigent are no longer a drain on the system. (A variation of A Modest Proposal by Jonathan Swift)
"It is not so much the pain and suffering of life which crushes the individual as it is its meaninglessness and hopelessness." C. A. Elwood

“It is not the function of religion to answer all the questions about God’s moral government of the universe, but to give one courage, through faith, to go on in the face of questions he never finds the answer to in his present status.” TPC: Harold B. Lee 223

"I struggle now with establishing my faith that God may always be there, but may not always need to intervene" Heber13

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SilentDawning
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Re: The Church doesn't feel like a good investment

Post by SilentDawning » 11 Oct 2017, 13:53

hawkgrrrl wrote:
11 Oct 2017, 10:09
But I certainly get the thinking that 10% of your income and 3 hours a week or more are big commitments. I
Big commitments for what you receive in return. I know it's all supposed to be selfless, but I believe that when it's repeated, lifelong service, there HAS to be some reciprocity when the chips are down. And frankly, I haven't seen it. It is empowering to take matters into your own hands!!!
"It doesn't have to be about the Church (church) all the time!" -- SD

"Stage 5 is where you no longer believe the gospel as its literally or traditionally taught. Nonetheless, you find your own way to be active and at peace within it". -- SD

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. No price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself."

My introduction: viewtopic.php?f=8&t=1576

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Beefster
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Re: The Church doesn't feel like a good investment

Post by Beefster » 11 Oct 2017, 17:55

I would be a little more okay with getting little to nothing in return if I was not promised as much as I am. The issue is that so many people in the church promise blessings which they have no foresight or knowledge to be able to promise. There is a lot of "If you do X, you will get Y" which is wrong often enough that it's a flimsy basis for living a principle or believing in something.
Boys are governed by rules. Men are governed by principles.

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mom3
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Re: The Church doesn't feel like a good investment

Post by mom3 » 11 Oct 2017, 20:45

Silent Dawning wrote
not one to use in TBM circles lest it create another perception of first and second class citizenship
Yes. It's Llama only. Definitely.
"I stayed because it was God and Jesus Christ that I wanted to follow and be like, not individual human beings." Chieko Okazaki Dialogue interview

"I am coming to envision a new persona for the Church as humble followers of Jesus Christ....Joseph and his early followers came forth with lots of triumphalist rhetoric, but I think we need a new voice, one of humility, friendship and service. We should teach people to believe in God because it will soften their hearts and make them more willing to serve." - Richard Bushman

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Reuben
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Re: The Church doesn't feel like a good investment

Post by Reuben » 12 Oct 2017, 00:11

Beefster wrote:
11 Oct 2017, 17:55
I would be a little more okay with getting little to nothing in return if I was not promised as much as I am. The issue is that so many people in the church promise blessings which they have no foresight or knowledge to be able to promise. There is a lot of "If you do X, you will get Y" which is wrong often enough that it's a flimsy basis for living a principle or believing in something.
You and I seem to think alike on formulas:

viewtopic.php?t=8049#p112314

Heck, you even used capital letters for the preconditions and postconditions...
My intro

Love before dogma. Truth before loyalty. Knowledge before certainty.

Roy
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Re: The Church doesn't feel like a good investment

Post by Roy » 12 Oct 2017, 14:48

Beefster wrote:
11 Oct 2017, 17:55
The issue is that so many people in the church promise blessings which they have no foresight or knowledge to be able to promise.
As a missionary we were taught to do this. We called it the commitment pattern.
"It is not so much the pain and suffering of life which crushes the individual as it is its meaninglessness and hopelessness." C. A. Elwood

“It is not the function of religion to answer all the questions about God’s moral government of the universe, but to give one courage, through faith, to go on in the face of questions he never finds the answer to in his present status.” TPC: Harold B. Lee 223

"I struggle now with establishing my faith that God may always be there, but may not always need to intervene" Heber13

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Beefster
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Re: The Church doesn't feel like a good investment

Post by Beefster » 12 Oct 2017, 16:00

I think the "promise a blessing" part of the commitment pattern is criminally overused. It surely sets up a lot of people for disappointment. If not that, it's just another brainwashing tool that sucks us into cognitive biases that should not be the basis of a lifestyle. It's fine to base one's belief on something that is inherently unprovable, but it needs to be done with recognition of that uncertainty.
Boys are governed by rules. Men are governed by principles.

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nibbler
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Re: The Church doesn't feel like a good investment

Post by nibbler » 12 Oct 2017, 16:14

I think it has worked its way into our belief system because we so desperately want it to be true.

A world of uncertainty can be frightening.
“We understand how dangerous a mask can be. We all become what we pretend to be.”
― Patrick Rothfuss


“No man, for any considerable period, can wear one face to himself and another to the multitude, without finally getting bewildered as to which may be the true.”
― Nathaniel Hawthorne

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Beefster
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Re: The Church doesn't feel like a good investment

Post by Beefster » 12 Oct 2017, 16:39

I personally find myself wanting the church to be false more often than I want it to be true due to all the distress it has caused me (mostly culturally). The problem is I still deeply believe Joseph Smith saw God and I would feel internally dishonest if I were to let that go. I've hung my entire church commitment on that tidbit of belief pretty much since my first FC. Since then, a few deep beliefs have formed solidly in addition to it- such as my deeply-rooted belief that God is real and He loves me- but none are beliefs that would keep me in the church. OTOH, I can't see myself ever attending any other church with any regularity; I'd probably prefer to abandon organized religion altogether.
Boys are governed by rules. Men are governed by principles.

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