Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Faith, Beliefs, Miracles, and God

I've spoken with a lot of people on the topic of religion and I've noticed a distrubing concept. I was just as guilty of it too.

People have a certain belief and, naturally, they think their belief is correct. As they go about their lives, they say their prayers and once in a while, something good happens to them. They take this small stroke of good luck as a sign from god that their belief is true.

Can you see the flaw in this thinking?

As you go about your life, eventually something good will happen to you. Everyone experiences good times and bad times. The good times reinforce your belief and the bad times are god's "refiners fire". But to take this event, give god credit for it, and believe that it only happened because of your belief is just stupid.

I know a Mormon girl who was recently waiting for some money from the government. She relayed to me how she's been waiting for it for a long time. Well, she finally prayed and promised god that the very first thing she would do with it is pay her tithing. Guess what! It showed up the very next day! Now she thinks that she is so in touch with god because this happened and that it only confirms that all her beliefs are correct.

But it actually confirms nothing.

The money was from who? The government. It would have come anyway. In fact, I'm sure that the entire time she's been waiting for the money she's been praying that it will arrive. Well, it arrived when it arrived and now she thinks that this great miracle has taken place.

I wish I could say that only this one lady thinks like that, but nearly everyone I've ever talked to bases the strength of their belief on some event that happened. It would have happened anyway! But no one is willing to admit that. They all want to think their god did it because they have the correct belief.

So if that's the case, why do good things happen to apostates? Isn't god supposed to make their lives as miserable as possible so they will humble themselves and come back? Yes, in the scriptures and in rumors, but in real life an apostate gets exact equal treatment from "god". Nothing bad happens to them that wouldn't have happened anyway. Nothing good happens that wouldn't have happened anyway.

I wish that more people could open their eyes and see the amazing absence of "god".

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Morbid Callings

I spoke with a very nice TBM woman today who was recently called to a position in the Relief Society. She expressed her concern with how much time this new calling requires and it's quite apparent that she would rather not be doing it.

But you see, if she refuses to accept and fulfill the calling, then she is saying "no" directly to Jesus. This could have a serious impact upon her salvation. And while she has only had the calling a short time, she is already starting to feel burnt out by it. But in Mormonism you not only faithfull fulfill a calling, but even go the extra mile.

Of course, I believe that the LDS church has done nothing more than manipulate her and millions of other tired and burnt out Mormons into hours and hours and hours of free labor for them. She can stop anytime she wants, but unfortunately, she does not realize that. She is simply donating her time to a cult, which in the end will only thank her with a very brief mention in sacrament meeting and a vote of thanks by the members.

So she plugs along, believing that she is earning her place in heaven, while dealing with her family and their needs as well. This lady is a genuinely good person and I adore her very much. It's just sad that she has expressed her dislike for the calling but feels that she has to keep at it in order to please god. And yes, she is serving and helping the people of her ward, which is a good thing. But most likely she will hold the position for many years and will be completely burnt out by the time it's over.

While the next few years of her life could be fun, it will be spent in morbid service to the church. And she can't say no because Jesus will damn her. Her service will be given, but it will be given out of a sense of fear and obligation, not love and compassion.

I very much feel her pain as I was in the exact same situation myself. I was in a calling that demanded my time constantly. I hated it and it eventually drove me to inactivity. If I had stayed, I would probably still be doing it, and hating every minute of it.

But how can you tell a believer that they really don't have to do it? You can't. That's the catch. Every person has to figure it out for themselves. Even if I did try to tell her, she would resist it. A person can only get out of that vicious cycle when they are ready, and not before. I was past ready. And now I'm free!

I set myself free and I blog in the hopes that my words will find someone else who is ready.

Monday, November 10, 2008

More About Testimony

I'm going to talk about testimony for a minute. I've addressed this recently before but I thought of something that I felt was important to add. A Mormon testimony is the most powerful evidence one has for the truthfulness of the church. Therefore, even if strong evidence is given against it, your testimony has told you it's true and therefore no evidence in the world is enough to convince you it's not true.

People who leave or "fall into sin" are looked upon as weak. They must have never had a real testimony since they so easily fell away. People often say of them, "He was such a strong spirit," or "He had such a powerful testimony."

If you look around on ex-Mormon blogs and web sites, you will see TBMs left and right accusing us of never having had a real testimony. On the contrary, we did believe. We did have a testimony. But the problem is when that testimony is based on a lie, it easily crumbles. For example:

Someone you know and trust with all your heart tells you that they have a great treasure of gold and diamonds. It's safely locked up inside a trunk where no one can steal it. This person you trust has told you that in order to keep the treasure safe, no one can open the trunk and see it. Therefore, you have never actually seen the treasure, even though you have seen the trunk that holds it. Since you have seen the trunk and have absolutely no reason not to trust this person, you spend many years believing that there literally is a treasure.

Eventually this person dies and leaves the trunk to you. You open it in great anticipation of this wonderful treasure, but to your disappointment, it is empty. There never was a treasure. You are forced to admit that this person lied to you and that even though you believed in the treasure, it was never actually there.

You have just lost your testimony of the treasure based upon new evidence. Does that mean that you never believed in the treasure? No! You absolutely did believe and had no reason to doubt. But you saw the evidence and were forced to change your testimony.

This is how it is for ex-Mormons. We did believe and had no reason to doubt. When we finally found out that the organization that we trusted has been lying to us, we were forced to update our testimonies to fit the current evidence.

So get off your soap boxes, you judgemental TBM's. You're still living in a dream world.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

This Presidential Election and Brigham Young

Barak Obama will be the next president of the United States, the first black American president in history...

...I bet Brigham Young is turning over in his grave.

Brigham Young was an extremely racist LDS president who stated that (and I paraphrase) "the black man was created to serve the white man." Brigham Young was convinced that a black man would never hold the priesthood and that whites were meant to govern blacks, stating, "It will always be." Regarding the Civil War, Young prophesied that the South would win because god wanted slavery to continue. Well, now the blacks are allowed to hold the priesthood and a black man will lead the United States as its president.

So much for the prophetic mumbo jumbo of the false prophet, Brigham Young. Nothing he said concerning the black race has come true!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Mormon Leadership and Members Alike Are Opposed to Free Speech

Church members are just as bad at doing it as their leaders are... suppressing the idea of free speech.

I recently spent several hours on blogger searching for LDS couples. They are just blogging about their lives and are not necessarially trying to promote the church. I found 10 blogs maintained by LDS people. Then I went to their comment section and left a simple comment:

"Has it ever occurred to you that the LDS church might not be true?"

My purpose is two fold. 1) To get some more activity here on my blog, but more importantly 2) to conduct a little experiment. I want to see how many of these 10 bloggers will supress my right to free speech. After one week, eight of the 10 have deleted my comment. Of the two that are left, it appears that they haven't checked their blog, because the post I commented on is still the newest post.

So obviously they think that it is okay for them to flood the world with their pro-Mormon crap, but anyone who voices any opposition must be silenced immediately.

The only comments I delete from this blog are from spammers. Everyone else gets the right to express themselves freely. Even people who are very rude and condescending get to have their voices heard. Just because I disagree with someone, doesn't mean that I go and edit them whenever I feel like it. But obviously my view on the matter is not shared by Mormons.

If it agrees with them, then they love it. If it disagrees with them, then they must get rid of it. But doesn't that just reinforce what I've been saying all along? They think the world needs to have their religion shoved down their throats, while anything that opposes them is "angry, not good enough, weak, full of self pity," etc.

Oh, apparently they do believe in free speech... as long as it's in favor of them. However, no one else is allowed to voice their opinion because the other opinion is of the devil. It's okay for them to send out thousands of missionaries. It's okay for them to invite their friends and family to church. It's okay for them to broadcast "warm and fuzzy" ads. But it's not okay for me to have a blog and to leave a simple comment on their blog. They want the whole world to stop and listen to their message, but they completely refuse to listen to anyone elses!

And when they are occasionally exposed to our anti-Mormon "lies", they respond in rage and anger. They accuse us of forcing our opinions and beliefs on everyone else. But let me ask you this, have you ever had an ex-Mormon or an anti-Mormon knock on your front door? Well, I guarantee that almost everyone in the world has had a Mormon knock on their door.

So shut up, you whiny Mormon babies who can't stand the thought of anyone who is not like you! How many of you are going to respond to this post and again accuse me of being angry, when in reality, all I'm doing is calling it like it is.

Did I force you to click the link? Did I force you to visit my blog? Did I force you to read it? Did I force you to agree with me? Did I force you to leave a comment accusing me of being full of anger? "No" to all of the above, and yet you react like I've done something horrible.

Eight out of ten deleted my comment! And I suspect that it will be ten out of ten as soon as the other two check their blogs!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

It's Just So Absurd

The more I think about Mormonism and am around people who believe it, the more I can't believe that I ever did. It's so absurd!

Prayer: Whether spoken or said in private, what good will praying do? First of all, you're just saying words and the idea that a god who lives millions of light years away can actually hear you is stupid. I can't even hear what is going on in the house next door. Secondly, if god's will is god's will, then no amount of praying in the world is going to change that. If praying changed god's will, then what would be the purpose of an all knowing god? Bottom line, praying does no good, and even if there is a god, praying won't change his will. So what's the point?

Temple: Anyone who has been to the temple AND is honest about it will say that it was wierd. Mormons believe that it is their duty to preform several ordinances for every single person who has lived or will live on this earth IF they didn't get the chance to do it for themselves. How many people is that? I don't know, but I am sure that it is an insane amount of people. Knock yourself out, Mormons. I'm just glad that I finally realized that I no longer have to participate in that crap!

We are spirit children of god: if god produced our spirits sexually before we were produced physically, then how many times has god had sex? With the number of people that are born everyday, god must not have time to do anything else. He's up there in heaven with his 3,000,000 wives and all he does all day long is take turns on each one to pop out a little spirit baby. No wonder god really doesn't ever seem to be there... he's constantly in the sack! Building off of that, how does god have the time to produce thousands of spirit children every day, answer every single prayer ever said, create worlds, etc. God is busier than hell!

Tithing: This is one of the most obvious. The scriptures (Bible and Book of Mormon) are very clear that the gospel is totally free. Besides, god is god, right? Does he really need your money? Is god such an asshole that if you fed your family rather than pay him then he'll deny you your temple recommend (which will have everlasting consequences). If Jesus could feed 5,000 people with two fish and five loaves of bread, then does he really need your money? Especially since his only true church is swimming in money, does god need more and more and more? Jesus had no church building... he didn't even have a pillow to lay on... so why would he suddenly demand that you pay, pay, pay? Why would Jesus have his only true church build a shopping mall? The Mormon Jesus is a freaking business tycoon!

I just sit here and laugh at the nonsense I used to believe. To a Mormon, if you can't understand something now (like all the questions I have just asked) then they simply state that we can't understand all of gods ways, and besides, is it really pertanant to our salvation?

COP OUT! In Mormonism, the obvious contradictions are brushed off as being unimportant. The only important thing is that you stay strong and keep paying! Just do that and you'll be fine. Amazing that thinking is so blatently discouraged. Any answer will do, even if that answer is, "Doesn't matter."

Think, people! Just think! That's all I'm asking!

Sex in the Movies

The other night I went to spend some time with some TBM family members. They have quite the collection of DVD movies and proudly boast that none of them are rated R or have any sexual content. Wow! It's like a Celestial Blockbuster!

However, this collection of movies does have swearing, killing, smoking, drinking (alcohol and coffee), and other items that LDS people might find offensive.

So it just leaves me wondering... why do they feel the need to get rid of any movie that contains sex but it's okay to watch killing, swearing, etc? I mean, really, if you're going to edit your movie collection so that your sensitive little Mormon standards aren't threatened, then why do you keep movies in your collection that have other "offensive" content? Why only edit out the sex? Besides, this couple I visited are a couple, meaning that they have sex. Why is it that two consenting adults who are having sex with each other are so offended at the very idea that a movie might show a pair of titties or have a sex scene?

It seems like a tremendous double standard to me. It's okay to watch people getting shot and killed, but it's not okay to watch two people expressing their love for each other? I mean, if you're going to so proudly edit your movie collection, then why only sex? Why not murder, violence, drugs, drinking, and smoking too? These things are equally as offensive to Mormons as sex, so why are they okay to leave in your movie collection?

It seriously baffles me. Why can't they see the obvious contradiction?