Ignorance was bliss

Public forum for those seeking support for their experience in the LDS Church.
part time believer
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Re: Ignorance was bliss

Post by part time believer » 14 May 2018, 13:48

dande48 wrote:
part time believer wrote:
11 May 2018, 12:41
But the staying I'm doing now is not enjoyable. I don't look forward to going every Sunday.
What's the hardest thing for you, in attending Church, would you say?
The hardest part used to be just walking in the building. After I was released I knew that a hand full of ward members were aware something was up with me.
So I had a lot of anxiety any time I was around Mormons. That has improved over time and now my Sabbath hang up is that I feel totally out of place. My beliefs have changed so much that I just can't relate to most of what is said. Whether from SM talks, testimonies or SS lessons.
It feels like the one time I went to an evangelical church and just didn't get it.
The entire worship service left me feeling confused and with ringing in my ears from being to close to the stage.

Except with lds services I know how I used to feel but can't bring those feelings out of me again. I guess I do a lot of cringing now to things that used to bring me warm fuzzies.

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dande48
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Re: Ignorance was bliss

Post by dande48 » 14 May 2018, 15:38

part time believer wrote:
14 May 2018, 13:48
I just can't relate to most of what is said. Whether from SM talks, testimonies or SS lessons.
I know how you feel... What do you believe in now?
"The whole world is a comedy to those that think, a tragedy to those that feel." - Horace Walpole

"Even though there are no ways of knowing for sure, there are ways of knowing for pretty sure."
-Lemony Snicket

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nibbler
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Re: Ignorance was bliss

Post by nibbler » 15 May 2018, 05:06

part time believer wrote:
14 May 2018, 13:48
...now my Sabbath hang up is that I feel totally out of place.
I know how that feels. Quite often at church I'll hear someone say that there's a place for everyone. People say that and genuinely mean it but I think it's a case of the phrase meaning different things to different people.

I think from an orthodox perspective, "there's a place for everyone" means that it doesn't matter if you're sinning or different, we'll welcome your presence, we'll help you become like us.

There are several ways to feel out of place though. I'm sure the church is very welcoming in creating space for people that are sinning or different but ultimately have the goal of conforming. I also think that people that feel out of place wouldn't feel out of place if the environment was as welcoming as we believe it to be.

It takes a diverse community to create a space for diverse people. Maybe that's a reason I stay, to be the fish out of water waiting for the moment that a fish out of water is needed... if that moment should ever come. To help the community make good on its claim to have a place for everyone, even when I myself feel crowded out every Sunday.
Sometimes, the thing you've been looking for your whole life is right there beside you all along.
-Peter Quill

part time believer
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Re: Ignorance was bliss

Post by part time believer » 15 May 2018, 15:57

Thanks for every ones remarks, it's so refreshing to hear these kinds of thoughts.
dande48 wrote:
14 May 2018, 15:38
What do you believe in now?
I don't know...... I like to think of my loss of faith as a Jenga puzzle that fell over and I still haven't rebuilt it.
It feels good to think that there is a Supreme Being out there rooting for me to make it back to him/her/it. But I can no longer frame that around the orthodox LDS proprietary info... such as proper priesthood authority, Temple rituals and Institutional Tithes that God is supposed to be very particular about. Like how convert baptism is required of one who might already have been baptized in a different in a different faith and then on top of that the baptism has to be performed perfectly. If one word is added or not said or the pinky toe pops out while being dunked it doesn't count and you have to start over.
Its stuff like that was comforting to me before because it creates order and certify in life.
Now it makes me think we just have made up a lot of this stuff we think is important.

I really like how God is depicted in the book "The Shack". She blows away the anal retentive god I used to believe in.

part time believer
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Re: Ignorance was bliss

Post by part time believer » 15 May 2018, 16:33

nibbler wrote:
15 May 2018, 05:06
I know how that feels. Quite often at church I'll hear someone say that there's a place for everyone. People say that and genuinely mean it but I think it's a case of the phrase meaning different things to different people.

I think from an orthodox perspective, "there's a place for everyone" means that it doesn't matter if you're sinning or different, we'll welcome your presence, we'll help you become like us.

There are several ways to feel out of place though. I'm sure the church is very welcoming in creating space for people that are sinning or different but ultimately have the goal of conforming. I also think that people that feel out of place wouldn't feel out of place if the environment was as welcoming as we believe it to be.

It takes a diverse community to create a space for diverse people. Maybe that's a reason I stay, to be the fish out of water waiting for the moment that a fish out of water is needed... if that moment should ever come. To help the community make good on its claim to have a place for everyone, even when I myself feel crowded out every Sunday.
Nibbler your statement rings so true to my experience.
You sound like a true Saint.

Ann
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Re: Ignorance was bliss

Post by Ann » 15 May 2018, 23:29

...how do I get over these stumbling blocks.

I have felt like I have been spiritually running in place for the last 3 years and haven't gotten any where.
This is kind of trite, but once I stopped seeing stumbling blocks everywhere (and I believe you when you say your list is long!), and saw the blocks for what they really were - a way up and forward. I’m not afraid anymore of where they will take me. I have a personal assurance that God can be with me, that I’m not on his bad side for rejecting so much of the church’s narratives.

A really good book that talks about adult religious development is Navigating a Mormon Faith Crisis by Thomas Wirthlin McConkie. Last I looked it was still to edgy for Deseret Book, but you can get it on Amazon. He left the church as a teenager and roamed far and wide until he came back, at least in some respects.
"Preachers err by trying to talk people into belief; better they reveal the radiance of their own discovery." - Joseph Campbell

"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes." - Marcel Proust

"Therefore they said unto him, How were thine eyes opened? He answered and said unto them, A man that is called Jesus made clay, and anointed my eyes...." - John 9:10-11

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mom3
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Re: Ignorance was bliss

Post by mom3 » 16 May 2018, 00:30

Of all the topics discussed here, this is my favorite and I could write pages on it.

I totally support everyone's comments about their place in their transition. I will add though that for my life and movement forward, I anchored in other people who had experienced extraordinary spiritual experiences. Luckily for me I was born with one of those tales laced into my life, Joan of Arc, she too had experiences. She was a farm girl. Only in her teens. Pious to her Catholicism. Untrained for battle or life outside her farming community. But she answered the call of 3 spiritual personages who spoke to her, led her, guided her, and ultimately abandoned her when she burned at the stake for heresy.

Over the years her story has taken on a mythology. It's hundreds of years old now. What is or isn't true of it is pretty minimal, but it inspires people all over the world, through out ages of time.

Our tale is barely 200 years old. It hasn't begun it's ascension. While you wait, take comfort that you are apart of that arc. Let it sit for awhile, even in it's uncomfortable state. It will have meaning for you.

As to navigating a tribe you can't fully grasp, work with what you can grasp. Family (it's a worthy effort), Self discipline - so scriptures aren't comforting now - O.K. read other uplifting stuff. We have a library full of suggestions. Develop talents. Teach and live the Golden Rule - it's universal. Study and learn meditation (It will help with church meetings). Look for good in your ward community. Make real Service a commitment. Even if it's moving people in the ward or mowing an older sisters yard. Don't do it for brownie points, do it to bring God into the community. During tough classes bring an e-reader and read Givens, Uchtdorf, Okazaki - and other broad minded members. It will help.

Welcome aboard.
"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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On Own Now
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Re: Ignorance was bliss

Post by On Own Now » 16 May 2018, 12:15

Hi PTB,

I'm glad you're here and look forward to hearing more from you.
part time believer wrote:
10 May 2018, 15:47
How does one reconcile Issues related to church?
I suppose it depends on what end you are trying to reach. For me, I've gotten to the point where I think of the Church as an organization of believers. I'm welcome there because I don't do anything against them. They are my tribe, I feel comfortable around them and I have my own, unique, belief system that sometimes matches up with the organization and sometimes doesn't.

Having said all that, I think the main thing that helps "reconcile" the issues for me is the following:

- I believe most, the vast majority, of members and leaders of the Church are acting in ways that they believe are best for themselves, their families, the Church, and humankind in general. When they stumble awkwardly, it's not out of malice, but rather because they are human beings, just like us and they sometimes can't pull things together they way they would like.

- I have come to believe that JS himself, in spite of all the strangeness, was a visionary who really did see himself as an oracle of God. He messed up in some major ways, but I often remind myself that he bore the brunt of his failures the way very few of us ever will.

Together, these views make it easier for me to accept that the Church can be both amazing and terrible at the same time, and I've learned to celebrate the good and discard the bad.
"Let us therefore no longer pass judgment on one another, but resolve instead never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of another." --Romans 14:13

part time believer
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Re: Ignorance was bliss

Post by part time believer » 16 May 2018, 15:58


On Own Now wrote:Hi PTB,

I'm glad you're here and look forward to hearing more from you.
part time believer wrote:
10 May 2018, 15:47
How does one reconcile Issues related to church?
- I have come to believe that JS himself, in spite of all the strangeness, was a visionary who really did see himself as an oracle of God. He messed up in some major ways, but I often remind myself that he bore the brunt of his failures the way very few of us ever will.
I see that now with Joseph, but it's difficult when he gets painted to look like one of the current church leaders. And by that I mean how the leaders now are these squeaky clean examples of what modern lds living should look like
Why can't we just be more honest about the man. For crying out Joseph almost got his balls cut off for some of his antics.

Sorry to sound salty, I don't intend to offend anyone.




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Curt Sunshine
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Re: Ignorance was bliss

Post by Curt Sunshine » 16 May 2018, 16:42

Fwiw, ignorance is never bliss in the fullest dictionary definition. It is comforting and laziness-inducing and easy and deflective and content, but it isn't utter joy or supreme happiness, imo. Those require understanding and real, practical, on-going, ever-present opposition that must be wrestled and fought and overcome.

Ignorance can't produce that necessary struggle.
I see through my glass, darkly - as I play my saxophone in harmony with the other instruments in God's orchestra. (h/t Elder Joseph Wirthlin)

Even if people view many things differently, the core Gospel principles (LOVE; belief in the unseen but hoped; self-reflective change; symbolic cleansing; striving to recognize the will of the divine; never giving up) are universal.

"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." H. L. Mencken

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