What would it take to put you into TBM "status"?

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SilentDawning
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What would it take to put you into TBM "status"?

Post by SilentDawning » 29 Jun 2010, 20:59

I've read through a number of your introductions and your comments in other threads, and I've often wondered -- what would it take to bring you into believing and serving like a True Blue Mormon? Or is this not even possible anymore, in your view?
"It doesn't have to be about the Church (church) all the time!" -- 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."

A man asked Jesus "do all roads lead to you?" Jesus responds,”most roads don’t lead anywhere, but I will travel any road to find you.” Adapted from The Shack, William Young

nightwalden
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Re: What would it take to put you into TBM "status"?

Post by nightwalden » 29 Jun 2010, 22:38

Have you read much about Fowler's stages of faith? Basically, the theory states that there is no real way back. TBM is roughly a stage 3 mentality. Once you're past that, there really is no going back. But that doesn't mean you cannot form a new relationship with the church as your faith progresses.

humanist
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Re: What would it take to put you into TBM "status"?

Post by humanist » 29 Jun 2010, 23:20

IMO it just isnt possible anymore. I agree once you leave stage three you can never return. One of my favorite sayings is "the older I get, the less I know." It was great time being a TBM, seeing the world in black and white, thinking ... no knowing I had all the answers. The closest I could get to becoming a TBM would be if the Church radicalized the way it operates but I dont see that happening.
"It is better to live your own destiny imperfectly than to live an imitation of someone elses life with perfection." from the Bhagavad Gita

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SamBee
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Re: What would it take to put you into TBM "status"?

Post by SamBee » 30 Jun 2010, 02:20

I could never become one in the classic sense because I am too bloody minded, and ask the wrong questions. If a bad decision gets made, I don't just accept it either.

For me to become a TBM, I suppose I would have to blank out major parts of my mind. I suppose that I would be capable of appearing as a TBM on the surface, in my actions, or perhaps what I posted here, but that wouldn't change what I was thinking. If we look into people's minds, we'd probably find surprisingly few people are pure TBM.
DASH1730 "An Area Authority...[was] asked...who...would go to the Telestial kingdom. His answer: "murderers, adulterers and a lot of surprised Mormons!"'
1ST PRES 1978 "[LDS] believe...there is truth in many religions and philosophies...good and great religious leaders... have raised the spiritual, moral, and ethical awareness of their people. When we speak of The [LDS] as the only true church...it is...authorized to administer the ordinances...by Jesus Christ... we do not mean... it is the only teacher of truth."

George
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Re: What would it take to put you into TBM "status"?

Post by George » 30 Jun 2010, 06:28

Many years ago the IMPROVEMENT ERA carried a faith promoting story about a man who visited his grandfather on his death bed. The old man takes his grandson's hand and says, "Johnny is the gospel still true?" Then in my youth, I almost yelled "YES." Today is it a much grayer zone for me. I know this, I would not want to be lied to. I would be ok with "POSSIBLY" or "NO gramps, but I love you and that is eternal."
Last edited by George on 06 Sep 2010, 20:14, edited 2 times in total.

Curt Sunshine
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Re: What would it take to put you into TBM "status"?

Post by Curt Sunshine » 30 Jun 2010, 06:30

It totally depends on how you define "TBM" - and points to why I don't like that title.

When it comes to my practical life, I'm about as TBM as it gets. I'm an orthopraxic TBM, if you will. When it comes to my opinions and beliefs, I'm all over the place. I'm a heterodox member, if you will. So, I'm a heterodox TBM in the end.
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.

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SilentDawning
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Re: What would it take to put you into TBM "status"?

Post by SilentDawning » 30 Jun 2010, 08:36

I just submitted what would have to change for me to be a TBM again, and when I pressed the submit button, it disappeared. The short answer -- get rid of my cynical attitudes toward Church policy as ideas meant to serve the interests of the Church rather than the individual. Start believing the Church is an extension of God's will again. I'd have to reframe my attitudes toward some of the faith-trying experiences I've had with Church service agencies and the behavior of my most recent Bishop on matters of money.

The short answer -- I realized that my movement into Level 4 was prompted by a trial of my faith that happened about 14 years ago. It was at that trial of faith that I lost my TBM orientation. And by TBM orientation, I meant the largely unquestioning attitude toward Church commandments and practices, as well as the assumption of Godlike motives on the part of the Church when it comes to tithing, service, fast offering disbursement, policy as well as even the objectionable parts of Church history. These things tend to drive one's desire to do willing service, which I have lost.

You know, I sort of miss being a TBM -- I still do all the outward things -- but there isn't the same commitment any longer. I'm active because I'm concerned it might be still be utterly and completely true in spite of my beliefs, because my kids need religion and the LDS way seems the best out there, and is something I understand. It's like a habit. There are times when I wish I was in level 3 and didn't have to rationalize, justify, search, and do all these spiritual and mental gymnastics keep myself in it.

My family was a away for a few weeks recently, and I just farmed out my Sunday obligations to other people and just stayed home. I loved it. If I didn't have a family in the Church, I'm sure I'd be less active.
"It doesn't have to be about the Church (church) all the time!" -- 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."

A man asked Jesus "do all roads lead to you?" Jesus responds,”most roads don’t lead anywhere, but I will travel any road to find you.” Adapted from The Shack, William Young

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DevilsAdvocate
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Re: What would it take to put you into TBM "status"?

Post by DevilsAdvocate » 30 Jun 2010, 08:51

SilentDawning wrote:I've read through a number of your introductions and your comments in other threads, and I've often wondered -- what would it take to bring you into believing and serving like a True Blue Mormon? Or is this not even possible anymore, in your view?
I think I would need some experience like Paul's conversion on the road to Damascus. Also, I would need to hear more than some generic message like the idea that the Church is good, basically God or an angel would have to specifically tell me that I need to pay tithing and stop criticizing past and present prophets and apostles even when they were wrong. In other words, I will probably never be a TBM again because there are too many things that don't make sense to me to just shrug off or ignore them all.
"Truth is what works." - William James

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Heber13
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Re: What would it take to put you into TBM "status"?

Post by Heber13 » 30 Jun 2010, 13:44

To me, it is all a choice of what I want to do sincerely in my heart.

I could see myself being a 100% committed and obedient member if it helped my family become more spiritual and more loving, and if there were spiritual confirmations along the way that it would be "right" for me. I want to love God, and if He made it clear to me He wanted that commitment from me right now, I would do it. I have not had such a revelation yet, so I continue to explore new ways to stretch my faith which make me not feel I fit the category of TBM (as I define it for myself) right now.

But I do not doubt I could be 100% believing and committed again. I would always be different and more empathetic and tolerant after what I've studied and accepted in the past 2 years. I think I could be a True Believing Mormon...but I don't think I could ever go back to stage 3.
Luke: "Why didn't you tell me? You told me Vader betrayed and murdered my father."
Obi-Wan: "Your father... was seduced by the dark side of the Force. He ceased to be Anakin Skywalker and became Darth Vader. When that happened, the good man who was your father was destroyed. So what I told you was true... from a certain point of view."
Luke: "A certain point of view?"
Obi-Wan: "Luke, you're going to find that many of the truths we cling to...depend greatly on our point of view."

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hawkgrrrl
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Re: What would it take to put you into TBM "status"?

Post by hawkgrrrl » 30 Jun 2010, 14:01

I'm with Ray that I don't like the term TBM and with the others who've described the term as generally applying to a Stage 3 mindset - one that has never questioned. Questioning leads to a nuanced faith, but I do still define that as belief - a belief that is more hope than assertion. It's just a more deliberate and specific belief. You no longer seek to justify and defend the indefensible and unjustifiable (as is common in Stage 3).
There are times when I wish I was in level 3 and didn't have to rationalize, justify, search, and do all these spiritual and mental gymnastics keep myself in it.
Actually, as I said, I think the difference is that in Stage 3 people do a ton of justifying, rationalizing and mental gymnastics when confronted with logic or contrary viewpoints. In Stage 4, they realize what they are doing and sometimes get angry at being in that situation and reject the whole thing. In Stage 5, you are aware of mental gymnastics in others and can get past the need to be right and the fear of being wrong. What I just described also sounds like the stages of adult learning:
1 - unconscious incompetence. You don't know what you don't know. You think you know it all.
2 - conscious incompetence. You become aware of the things you don't know. You lose confidence in what you know and don't know.
3 - conscious competence. You are very aware of the things you know and the things you don't know. You are somewhat hesitant, but gaining confidence.
4 - unconscious competence. You know what you know and you know what you don't know. You don't worry about either one, and you can be your authentic self.

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