StayLDS as an alternative or supplement to journal writing

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SilentDawning
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StayLDS as an alternative or supplement to journal writing

Post by SilentDawning »

I have often wondered if the availability of StayLDS, and self-help discussion forums in general, provide a viable alternative to journal writing.

I have used StayLDS to deal with my church issues one at a time for years now. Like higher education, writing out thoughts crystallizes meaning and creates deeper thought processing than mere stream of consciousness thinking. Unlike a journal, you get interactive commentary on your problem, additional perspectives, and the sense that others care about your plight. You don't get that with writing in a journal.

Sure, there are things that are only suitable for a journal. I learned early in my StayLDS days that there was a limit to the extent board members would consider the SAME ISSUES, described OVER AND OVER AGAIN. In a journal you can be obsessive like that, and not be a burden on others. And there are things that even I am not likely to share in a public forum like StayLDS, so the journal serves a purpose that a public discussion forum can't.

But what do you think? Do you think that posting on public discussion forums provides a viable alternative to journal writing on issues that are suitable for a public forum?
"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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nibbler
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Re: StayLDS as an alternative or supplement to journal writing

Post by nibbler »

I've only kept a journal sporadically and only on the insistence from people at church that everyone keep one. If not for that counsel I wouldn't have kept one at all. I think the last time I wrote in one was during my mission and decades later I haven't gone back and read anything from them. Perhaps it's time.

I think I'd be embarrassed by what I found, mostly because I'd feel that the person I read in those pages no longer exists.

It can be cathartic to get thoughts, feelings, and ideas written out. Writing is a more deliberate act than speaking, it (sometimes) forces you to think about what you truly feel so you can better express thought.
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DarkJedi
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Re: StayLDS as an alternative or supplement to journal writing

Post by DarkJedi »

Journal writing is something GAs don't talk about any more. I think there could be several reasons for that, including their own lack of commitment to doing so (Kimball seemed to be into it). I think it was one of those things presented as part of "the gospel" (like prepping) that really isn't and has no doctrinal foundation. God/Christ never commanded us to keep journals and it is not a sin not to do so. I think journals/diaries are fine for those who have that desire which seems to be a very small number of people. In answer to the question, I suppose if you are one who has that desire then online forums (or blogs) could be an appropriate outlet.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

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Roy
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Re: StayLDS as an alternative or supplement to journal writing

Post by Roy »

I think one big difference is that you do not get to keep what is written on StayLDS. It is here and accessible for now but not likely something that you could pull out to read to your grandkids etc.
"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: StayLDS as an alternative or supplement to journal writing

Post by SilentDawning »

Roy wrote: 08 Aug 2022, 12:34 I think one big difference is that you do not get to keep what is written on StayLDS. It is here and accessible for now but not likely something that you could pull out to read to your grandkids etc.
You also don't know if StayLDS will be here when you are ready to extract your posts from it. I would like to think it's here indefinitely, but who knows...I was once on a discussion forum for smooth jazz super fans called magicisland.com, and now it's gone. It imploded due to allowing discussion about political topics, so people got angry with each other and left. Eventually they shut it down -- presumably due to inactivity. I would image there are places

I think that's the downside of any electronic communication. It's more temporary than hard copy paper. I have lost years of journal information due to viruses and computer problems, and admittedly, not being disciplined enough in my backups. Sometimes I have lost things just due to manipulating the files by accident. Plus if calamity strikes, will anyone think to archive your electronic thoughts?

You are right -- the postings are scattered all over the place here. You could search on your username, though, and sift through posts of interest.

Interesting, I was searching on a topic of interest yesterday, to see if we had already discussed it here. Much to my surprise, we had discussed it, and I was the author of the starting topic! So, you forget over the years....to the point you might not even know what to search upon.

However, one thing I have done that provides a happy medium is to cut and paste discussions of interest into my journal. I have done that a number of times. Sometimes it's the post made by someone else only, and sometimes it's a discussion. I think you can get the immediate benefits of journal writing at the moment -- as you react to the most recent postings, but for really memorable posts, cut and paste them into your journal.
"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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PazamaManX
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Re: StayLDS as an alternative or supplement to journal writing

Post by PazamaManX »

I've tried to take up the practice of journaling on numerous occasions. With the exception of my mission, I've never kept up with it for more than a few days.

One benefit did come from my mission journal. My wife read it and has a much greater understanding of the horrible experience it was for me. Of course, I had told her all about it before, but there was stuff in there that had slipped my mind.

StayLDS (or any online forum) being used as journal wouldn't have been a great place to put down personal thoughts and experiences like that in such detail. Plus, as has been mentioned, online forums are impermanent. So a personal journal has its place. But, I do like StayLDS as a place to put out thoughts and see what thoughts others have.

nibbler wrote: 07 Aug 2022, 19:46 I think I'd be embarrassed by what I found, mostly because I'd feel that the person I read in those pages no longer exists.
This is exactly why I don't go back and read my journals. Every time I do, I cringe at my past self.
"Fix reason firmly in her seat, and call to her tribunal every fact, every opinion. Question with boldness, even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blindfolded fear." ~ Thomas Jefferson
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SilentDawning
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Re: StayLDS as an alternative or supplement to journal writing

Post by SilentDawning »

PazamaManX wrote: 09 Aug 2022, 09:56 StayLDS (or any online forum) being used as journal wouldn't have been a great place to put down personal thoughts and experiences like that in such detail.
One thing to consider when posting on discussion forums is how interested the other members of the site will be in your post. It's a bit embarrassing to post something and have no one answer (except in the Media and Book Reviews section). Thank goodness for some of the members on this site who make a point of responding to lone posts. I appreciate that :smile:
"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
Old-Timer
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Re: StayLDS as an alternative or supplement to journal writing

Post by Old-Timer »

I can’t do consistent traditional journaling - but I can write here and in a blog and on social media about my life and ideas. I think it all depends on what each person wants to share and/or leave as a legacy.
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
Roy
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Re: StayLDS as an alternative or supplement to journal writing

Post by Roy »

Old-Timer wrote: 14 Aug 2022, 20:20 I can’t do consistent traditional journaling - but I can write here and in a blog and on social media about my life and ideas. I think it all depends on what each person wants to share and/or leave as a legacy.
OT makes a good point. I do come here to get my thoughts out - so that makes it similar to journal writing. I also come here for validation and to not feel alone in the struggle. Those last two are things that journal writing would not give me.
"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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