"Obedience"

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Curt Sunshine
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Re: "Obedience"

Post by Curt Sunshine » 20 Aug 2009, 15:28

Fwiw, I ALWAYS try to put myself in the position of the leader - then treat leaders and their words like I would want others to treat me and my words.

I don't want them to accept everything I say as God's own word, but I also don't want them to disbelieve and doubt everything I say. If I am in a position of perceived authority, I want to be taken seriously and have my words accepted generally - simply out of respect for my effort. If I'm ignorant or a jerk, that's different - but if I am trying my best, I want to be challenged lovingly and privately (whenever possible) when someone disagrees. Ultimately, if I am leading an organization, I want my final decision to be accepted generally by those who aren't in a position to know of and understand all the details that affected my decision. If hindsight proves I was wrong, so be it. I just hope others will understand I did the best with what I knew.
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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Orson
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Re: "Obedience"

Post by Orson » 20 Aug 2009, 17:38

Good points Ray.
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I first found faith, and thought I had all truth. I then discovered doubt, and claimed a more accurate truth. Now I’ve greeted paradox and a deeper truth than I have ever known.

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jmb275
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Re: "Obedience"

Post by jmb275 » 20 Aug 2009, 19:42

@Orson and Ray
Both of you made very good points. Maybe it is the lack of parenting experiencing (only 4 years) under my belt, or my generation, or something. I have placed such a high value on obedience my whole life, and guilt has been a strong motivator in my life. Now that I have broken away from this type of behavior, I struggle to find meaning in obedience for obedience sake. I really do see it with preschoolers, but I have a hard time treating adults as preschoolers because they don't understand what someone else does. I would prefer an environment like college student to professor for my spirituality gurus, as opposed to preschooler to youth leader.
I am like a huge, rough stone rolling down from a high mountain; and the only polishing I get is when some corner gets rubbed off by coming in contact with something else, striking with accelerated force against religious bigotry, priestcraft, lawyer-craft, doctor-craft, lying editors, suborned judges and jurors, and the authority of perjured executives, backed by mobs, blasphemers, licentious and corrupt men and women--all hell knocking off a corner here and a corner there.
- Joseph Smith, (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, 304)

Curt Sunshine
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Re: "Obedience"

Post by Curt Sunshine » 20 Aug 2009, 22:03

jmb, I assure you that the majority of church leaders want that just as badly as you do.

It's said that one bad experience often negates up to seven good experiences. I believe that is true even more so in a religious environment. Therefore, even if only 1/8 of all church leaders treat members like children, the perception easily becomes that "The Church" does so.

That's only TWO members of the FP and Q12 - and it's only ONE member of the combined SP and Bishopric for each member at any given time.
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

swimordie
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Re: "Obedience"

Post by swimordie » 20 Aug 2009, 22:36

That's so true, Ray.

I think it is a higher ratio in religion, probably because religions make "unrealistic" claims, hence setting themselves up for disappointment by a follower.

I know it's important for most religions and, more specifically, local congregations to hold up expectations to attract and retain devotees because there's clergy to be paid. And I don't mean that derogatorily, just that it's much more financially taxing than the mormon system.

I wonder what the differences between the paid vs. unpaid clergy would be when it comes to unmet expectations?
Perfectionism hasn't served me. I think I am done with it. -Poppyseed

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Heber13
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Re: "Obedience"

Post by Heber13 » 21 Aug 2009, 10:34

jmb275 wrote:@Orson and Ray
Both of you made very good points. Maybe it is the lack of parenting experiencing (only 4 years) under my belt, or my generation, or something. I have placed such a high value on obedience my whole life, and guilt has been a strong motivator in my life. Now that I have broken away from this type of behavior, I struggle to find meaning in obedience for obedience sake. I really do see it with preschoolers, but I have a hard time treating adults as preschoolers because they don't understand what someone else does. I would prefer an environment like college student to professor for my spirituality gurus, as opposed to preschooler to youth leader.
JMB275, I think you'll find the proper "environment" is always changing...never static, whether with kids, with schooling and teachers, or with church leaders and members.

I had a great system going with my girls when they were young...seemed to be working great as I was the father, they listened to me and obeyed, and I provided love and encouragement. Then they grew up to be teenagers, and while I thought I knew how to be a dad, I am now realizing you don't just "figure it out" ... you keep figuring it out as you go. Things change. Sometimes obedience is needed, sometimes it takes a back seat to a higher virtue. IMO.

I think you'll see that as your kids grow up.
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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jmb275
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Re: "Obedience"

Post by jmb275 » 04 Sep 2009, 15:11

Heber13 wrote:I had a great system going with my girls when they were young...seemed to be working great as I was the father, they listened to me and obeyed, and I provided love and encouragement.
Oh man, Heber could you please write me up a manual and help me out? My kids, 4 and 2 don't listen to anything I say. It is a constant battle just to keep them out of the road so they don't get hit! However, you should recognize that my daughter has my genes :shock: so just imagine me as a 4 year old and then you'll know what you're dealing with :twisted:
I am like a huge, rough stone rolling down from a high mountain; and the only polishing I get is when some corner gets rubbed off by coming in contact with something else, striking with accelerated force against religious bigotry, priestcraft, lawyer-craft, doctor-craft, lying editors, suborned judges and jurors, and the authority of perjured executives, backed by mobs, blasphemers, licentious and corrupt men and women--all hell knocking off a corner here and a corner there.
- Joseph Smith, (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, 304)

Curt Sunshine
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Re: "Obedience"

Post by Curt Sunshine » 04 Sep 2009, 16:11

just imagine me as a 4 year old and then you'll know what you're dealing with
*shudders uncontrollably* :shock:
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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Heber13
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Re: "Obedience"

Post by Heber13 » 05 Sep 2009, 22:31

jmb275 wrote:Oh man, Heber could you please write me up a manual and help me out? My kids, 4 and 2 don't listen to anything I say.
;) You're funny. Actually, the point goes well with this thread...you see, if I thought I had "figured out" how to get kids to listen to parents perfectly so I wrote some "commandments for parenting" because I thought I had the truth, it would have to be a universal guide that works for everyone all the time.

But actually, I really think you might get some good ideas from other parents you might want to try, but what really is of value is the process when you are trying, failing, trying again, having some success, then making more mistakes, then keep trying...and as you try...you gain satisfaction with parenting your kids. What works for me will not necessarily work for you. There is no manual you must be 100% obedient to all the time and it always works...there are guidelines and then there is a process that you benefit from as you apply it personally to your family, and to your growth. Just following a 10 step process to parenting leaves out all the sacrifice you must give and all the love you develop when your heart and soul is struggling to give everything you have to make it work for you and your kids in your situation. My way is not your way. Even if it was, I cannot give you the answers and have you be satisified with it. It is the process you go through that rewards, not whether you "figure it out" or not.

This is my struggle with church rules. Obedience to Word of Wisdom has completely lost meaning for me because all my life I did it out of obedience (fear to punishment)...not out of obedience to a process to understand the benefits of living the commandment God gave me. I don't know if that makes sense to others, but for me, obedience to all the church rules is tough because so many rules at church that I used to think were just so aweful if broken (i.e. curse words, not wearing a tie to church, etc)...really aren't of consequence to me and my current quest. And so I have focused on the big commandments...charity and love. So when I let my daughter of 14 date a boy because I love her...others in the ward are shocked :shock: - that's against the rules...that's not being obedient...that cannot be acceptable. Because in their handbook (FSOY), it says that is wrong, which means that is wrong all the time for everybody in every situation. Is God really that limiting in His love for us? I don't think so. I think my daughter will be fine. I think I will lose respect by people in the ward for choosing this path, and those are the ones I care not to gain the respect of. I think the issue can be turned into major arguments and lost friendships over a stupid little rule...and so instead, I choose love and do not care about what others think.

And so, JMB, I'm sorry to say there is no manual that can benefit you. Enjoy your kids who have your personality, and realize how blessed they will be to benefit from that gift that God gave them. Figure out what works for your family by putting your whole heart, mind, and spirit into loving them to death (including disciplining because you care). And call your mom to tell her you appreciate her dealing with you when you were little. You can now understand a little more of what she had to deal with ;)
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."

swimordie
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Re: "Obedience"

Post by swimordie » 06 Sep 2009, 08:38

So thoughtful and insightful, heber. Thanks for sharing!
Heber13 wrote:I think the issue can be turned into major arguments and lost friendships over a stupid little rule...and so instead, I choose love and do not care about what others think.
Perfect, absolutely perfect!
Perfectionism hasn't served me. I think I am done with it. -Poppyseed

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