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Australian filmaker takes on Mormons.
Posted: 06 April 2007 03:44 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]  
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I’ll point out 3 reasons why trying to convince a 19 year old Mormon missionary on your doorstep is futile:

1.  He just made a huge commitment to jesus by leaving his girlfriend, family, schooling and friends behind to go serve the lord.  To even consider being wrong for a minute about why he did it would be treasonous territory.

2.  The church gives him and all of his male compadres a title that must be spoken any time any church member, family member, and missionary addresses this young man.  The title is “Elder”.  For example, if two 19 year old missionaries are sitting alone in their apartment after a hard 14 to 16 hour day’s work and one of them needs to ask the other a question, the dialogue, no matter how simple, goes something like:

“Hey Elder, do you know where my pencil is?  I swear I left it on my Book of Mormon this morning”.  “hmmmm.  No, Elder, haven’t seen your pencil”

or

“Elder… Elder!! Oh my gosh Elder Mattson!  I am out of toilet paper here—uh… Elder Mattson… please could you get me another roll of TP??”

First names are forbidden.  It is a written rule in missionary code of conduct to NEVER address a missionary by his first name. 

And female missionaries have a similar rule whereby they are not called Elder, but Sister.  Therefore the dialogue in the Sister’s missionary apartment would go:

“Sister… Sister!! Oh my gosh Sister Mattson!  I am out of toilet paper here—uh… Sister Mattson… please could you get me another roll of TP??”

same forbid on the usage of 1st name basis.

So WHY do I bring this up as a reason you cannot infiltrate the missionary’s mind?  Because.  To demonstrate how seriously these teenagers take themselves.  They show up at your door and if you talk to them, these 19-21 year old young men will require you to address them as Elder.  If this does not clue you into the mentality I am talking about—I don’t think much else will.

and lastly #3: The temple covenant.  All young missionaries, prior to leaving on their mission, go to the temple for the first time.  This is a hum dinger of a ritual.  This is where the young missionary to be gives up his worldly underwear and dons the garment, which he is told will serve him as a shield and a protector against the evils of this world.  He is also given a new temple name that he is required NEVER to reveal to anyone.  This person covenants before “god and these angels” that he will “sacrifice all that he now has and everything that the lord shall bless him with to the building up of the lord’s kingdom here on earth.”

bonus reason:  They are taught from age 0 that they are the only ones on the earth today where god himself came down to a man to declare which church is the true one.  God himself told Joseph Smith that all other churches are an abomination in his sight.

good luck trying to penetrate it.  Someone finally got through to me, and Waner, I gather.  The best arrow you might be able to use to pierce through their armor is to display clearly how solidly other religions they consider to be obviously false also “know” equally as they do that they are true and Mormonism is the “obviously false one.

My first seed of undoing was when I debated a Jehovah’s Witness off and on for a few days in a number of private meetings.  We pulled every scripture we could think of on each other.  Bore solemn testimony of how true our religion was and why the other’s religion was the false one.  In the end we reached a stalemate and parted.  But I never shook how I was unable to prove my claim was any more unique than the JW claim was. 15 or so years later, that seed grew into a tree.

Noggin

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Posted: 06 April 2007 04:25 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]  
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Noggin,

I guess that was Waner’s point.
If I tell these little robots to go blow themselves no good result will come of it.
But perhaps if I don’t go medieval on them and just speak my mind, there is a small chance that the drones may sometime awake from their slumber like you did.

Thanks for the expose on Mormon life Noggs.
This strengthens my theory that you can make a human being believe literally anything, no matter how retarded it is.

We are a very scary species.

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Posted: 06 April 2007 05:41 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]  
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Wow Noggin, based on your descriptions of how missionaries act, it appears that our missions were quite different or perhaps the times have changed and missionaries as a whole act a bit different from what you described.  I’m 24 and so I’m only 3 years off of the Mormon mission and only a little over a year out of the religion.  But in the mission I was in, us missionaries called each other by our first name quite periodically, in fact we made it a goal to do such.  Most did not like to call each other Elder.  But the women (Sister) missionaries were a different story.  They were how you described the guy (Elder) missionaries.

Now if I may, I have some comments about your 3 points you raised.

1. He just made a huge commitment to jesus by leaving his girlfriend, family, schooling and friends behind to go serve the lord. To even consider being wrong for a minute about why he did it would be treasonous territory.

As it was my experience, that not all people who go on Mormon missions make any commitment to Jesus or God.  But rather to their family, friends, or to the people from their church back home because to go on a mission means they can get some type of approval.  And since God/Jesus are no where to be found they figure they’ll get the approval of someone who is real and not made up.  They do not have a “testimony” of the Mormon church, except that it appears to work for some of the people that they’re near and dear to. But in regards to the dogmas the church spews, it is very doubtful that someone can believe all of it.  But nonetheless, for whatever reason a person goes on a Mormon mission is, to question, disbelieve, or leave your mission early is definitely treacherous territory.

Here’s a real scenario that happened to me while being on a mission for the Mormon church in Oklahoma.  One guy missionary, who will be referred to as John Doe for now, came out the same time I did and was exactly how Noggin described missionaries to be from Point #1.  John Doe was always abiding by every rule given in the mission.  He was quick to correct people and let them know what was appropriate for missionary conduct.  A typical mission rule is that missionaries are to be up by 6:30 am.  John Doe was up at 5:30 am so he could read his scriptures for an extra hour before he was to take off to the world outside by 9:30 am.  John Doe never took lunches that were over an hour.  And he did this for the full two years every day.  This bit of information came from missionaries who had to serve with and around him.  He was in no earlier than 9:30 pm.  So John Doe was quite dedicated to the mission way of life and definitely dedicated to the Mormon church.  John Doe would always talk how the Mormon church changed his and will change other people’s lives, etc, etc. 

Shortly after he got home from his mission, I heard that John Doe had left the Mormon church and even had the Mormon church remove his name from their records.  “Was this the same guy from my mission?” I thought.  As gun-hoe as this individual was about God, Mormons, Jesus, he still left the Mormon church.  Never had I seen someone act the way he did while on a mission. 

So it’s still possible to have people believe hardcore and end up leaving.  Like I said earlier, they just need to hear the right things.  I’m sure he had some conversations with people who pointed out the flaws in God’s “blessings”.

Such as:

“You work so hard, yet you don’t get any of the blessings other people get.  Why would they deserve blessings more than you?  You clearly are dedicated.  Don’t you think that being an avid member of God’s church should be like a good investment?”

That’s only my assumption, but that’s the only thing I could conclude to as to why he would’ve left.  So even if people are like John Doe, they can still leave.

2. The church gives him and all of his male compadres a title that must be spoken any time any church member, family member, and missionary addresses this young man. The title is “Elder”.

I mentioned this earlier, but this has become quite lax and calling people by strictly their last name has become a normal occurrence in the church.  Most people didn’t call me “Elder”.  Some actually called me by my first name and that wasn’t considered taboo one bit.

#3: The temple covenant. All young missionaries, prior to leaving on their mission, go to the temple for the first time. This is a hum dinger of a ritual. This is where the young missionary to be gives up his worldly underwear and dons the garment, which he is told will serve him as a shield and a protector against the evils of this world. He is also given a new temple name that he is required NEVER to reveal to anyone. This person covenants before “god and these angels” that he will “sacrifice all that he now has and everything that the lord shall bless him with to the building up of the lord’s kingdom here on earth.”

bonus reason: They are taught from age 0 that they are the only ones on the earth today where god himself came down to a man to declare which church is the true one. God himself told Joseph Smith that all other churches are an abomination in his sight.

This is why it can be very difficult to persuade or even have people try thinking outside of the Mormon religion.  Mainly because of fear.  By not wearing those garments means that you’re not protected, faithful, whatever bad scenario you want to throw in.  My interactions with some active Mormons is that a lot have doubted the Mormon church, but having been indoctrinated from being such a wee-little child they fear that if they leave the church or reduce their time within, then that would be a wrong move and the ones who have doubted figure “What harm will I cause myself if I stay in the church?  I sure don’t want to leave and then come to find out I’m wrong for leaving.”

What I’ve realized from being in religion is that knowledge is the power to leave.  Typically, and I’m not saying this to make assumptions on religious individuals or to be derogatory, but my experience with most people while being a Mormon missionary in Oklahoma is that the religious ones were the least educated.  It seemed that they just didn’t know any better.

Noggin, mainly my point was to have intelligent, knowledgeable people, like the ones on this forum, try to give insight to these 19-21 year old young men/women.  Those men/women most likely don’t know any better.  They were raised that way and if people don’t try to give them another point of view to look at then they will more than likely stay that way.  That’s the scenario I faced as being an active Mormon at one point in my life.  I just couldn’t fathom a life without religion.  If it were possible that I could have religious people see that there is life, and a better life, after religion, I’m confident many would make the change.  But it’s such a drastic change in life and the fear of being wrong usually takes precedence over all other choices.  It’s difficult to have people change such a way of life, but I’ve successfully talked to people and that change has been made.  It just takes time and almost never will it be an overnight occurrence.  Just requires some thought on their part.

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Posted: 06 April 2007 07:07 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]  
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Waner, thanks for the post.  point by point, if I may.  This might make for great sideshow material for the rest of the forum.

[quote author=“waner”]Wow Noggin, based on your descriptions of how missionaries act, it appears that our missions were quite different or perhaps the times have changed and missionaries as a whole act a bit different from what you described.

State side (united states) missions, I have seen debated elsewhere, were where some of the more less committed young men were sent.  This has been hotly debated over on some of the RFM or Mormon apologetics boards but there is an overall consensus tilting in favor of the opinion that over seas missions were comprised of elders who showed more zeal for Mormonism overall during ages 12 thru 18 in the church youth programs.

I had about 15 companions (that is mission lingo for the guy who you serve full time with, eat sleep and preach with 24/7).  All but 3 of these guys were as dedicated as your John Doe figure describes.  Maybe not 5:30 wake up calls, but honestly striving to live each and every letter of the missionary law.  No geographical crossing into unapproved territory, no movies, no TV, only church approved music in the arpartment, if the president required 80 hours of work we worked it… no monkey business.  The three companions I had that were less than ideal had illnesses that prevented them from working 80 hours or arising at 6:30.  But two of the three were constantly racked with guilt because they could not tow the line.  The last guy.. he was a Spaniard who later left his mission a year early because he sorely missed smoking pot.

I’m 24 and so I’m only 3 years off of the Mormon mission and only a little over a year out of the religion.  But in the mission I was in, us missionaries called each other by our first name quite periodically, in fact we made it a goal to do such.

wow.  What you just described there is a complete abboration to me.  I cannot recall even one instance where I called another or someone else called me by my first name.  ever.  Nor can I recall any other missionary doing so to another elder.  Isn’t this a complete infraction of mission rules?  Don’t the missionaries have to carry and read the white bible?  I carried my white bible (a small 3"x4” condensed version of mission rules) in my left breast pocket behind my name tag every single day.  I also kept the rule that required me to read this booklet at least once a month.

I take great courage with this.  Perhaps missionaries are quietly rebelling in meaningless ways by now striving to call each other by first names.  As much of an aborration that was in my mission, this revelation of yours has me practically celebrating.

Noggin wrote:
1. He just made a huge commitment to jesus by leaving his girlfriend, family, schooling and friends behind to go serve the lord. To even consider being wrong for a minute about why he did it would be treasonous territory.

Waner writes:As it was my experience, that not all people who go on Mormon missions make any commitment to Jesus or God.  But rather to their family, friends, or to the people from their church back home because to go on a mission means they can get some type of approval.

We had a few elders struggling to figure out why they could not actually honestly say that they knew Joseph Smith was a prophet.  I tutored a few of them.  But.  Through patient study and testifying frequently in discussions with investigators, usually, quite quickly actually, they would be in the middle of a sentance or prayer and have the epiphany manifest itself in the form of a powerful feeling wash over them and then… then they were able to say that god touched them and now they now god gave them a sign that Joseph Smith was a prophet.  It all hinges on Smith.

I did hear a few stories of some elders who were out for over a year who still did not actually know if Smith saw god or not.  I am telling you something that you might agree with in that these were never district leaders or zone leaders and certainly not AP.  At least in my mission.  As a zone leader, I worked closely with three assistants to the president.  Two of them confided with me that elder X was not a district leader because of stress, or elder Y actually turned down the calling to be a district leader for undisclosed reasons… or elder Z had a discipline problem in that perhaps he couldn’t wake up on time or refused to work hard.  I don’t know.  Maybe part of my problem was I was a worker and paid little attention to the slacker missionaries.  I tried to associate with other die hard worker bees.  I was also a total asskisser.  I admit it.

anyway.  long way to say all that.  I completely agree with the stigma attached to not serving a mission you describe.  To stay home jeopardizes your chance of marrying well within the mormon dating pool.  It also might brand you as a failure in many of the hard core member’s eyes.

And since God/Jesus are no where to be found they figure they’ll get the approval of someone who is real and not made up.

But waner, this may assume that the young mormon senses that there is no god in Mormonism.  Usually, most young Mormons really struggle with the testimony aquisition process (the process of aquiring a strong, timely feeling that the individual can attribute to god speaking to them that what they are reading or hearing is indeed 100% true).  That is why it is the subject of nearly every sunday school lesson and general conference talk directed to youth.  The key about this is that the young person does not usually figure out that a god is not to be found in Mormonism, they usually blame themselves for not having a testimony.  And they will try again and again to aquire the elusive testimony until they have some sort of feeling come to them.  I don’t know about you but growing up Mormon, I was repeatedly subjected to lessons in a group setting where we were told that the holy ghost would not testify to us or guide us to truth and correct choice making if we were unworthy of the spirit.  That was spelled out in detail to include drinking, smoking, drugs, masturbation, sex, prolonged unchecked impure thoughts, rated R movies, coffee, and refusing to read scriptures or pray to name a few.

  They do not have a “testimony” of the Mormon church, except that it appears to work for some of the people that they’re near and dear to.

blanket statement?  Many young mormons struggle mightily with this process.  If you are plugged into general conference and trust your peers and parents when they tell you that the modern day figurehead apostles and prophets are speaking the word of god, you fight for a personal conviction.  Does everyone do it?  No.  But many do.  I would say that many do begin the path of aquiring a testimony based on how strongly their parents and peers appear to know that Mormonism is true.  Hence the reason why such heavy emphasis of bearing testimony in public—even if you do not know it is true yourself.  Even the modern Apostle Packer declared “Testimony is found in the bearing of it”

Once a month, one hour is dedicated for the general body of the church to congregate and declare to each other how it is that they too know that Mormonism is true.  For the non Mormon, this is called the Fast and Testimony Meeting.  (going without food and water is required for all able bodied faithful members in attendance of this meeting).  Every single discourse I ever heard any apostle or prophet or general authority give includes some strong form of the statement

“I know that this church is true”

or

“I know that Joseph Smith was/is a prophet of God and Jesus Christ is at the head of this church”

But in regards to the dogmas the church spews, it is very doubtful that someone can believe all of it.

uh, what?  In my circle of Mormon family and friends I know of two people that are considered liberal Mormons or “Sunstone Mormons”.  Two.  They are intellectuals.  Perhaps there are others who do not come forward vocally.

You are exchanging ideas here with a former Mormon who believed every last jot and tittle of Mormonism.  From Kolob, to the temple ceremony, to polygamy being god’s holy method of marriage to the book of Abraham actually being an autographed version of holy writ enscribed by Father Abraham’s own hand.  I am telling you that most of the people I associated with in Mormonism also believed like this.

Good to know that maybe my experience was an anomele.  My wife is a tiny bit of a shopping cart Mormon.  She does not believe in polygamy as the decreed highest form of marriage available to eternal beings.  BUT, she does say that if god requires it in the next life, god will change her heart to be able to accept the polygamy lifestyle.

Here’s a real scenario that happened to me while being on a mission for the Mormon church in Oklahoma.  One guy missionary, who will be referred to as John Doe for now, came out the same time I did and was exactly how Noggin described missionaries to be from Point #1.

John Doe was very prevelant in my mission.

Shortly after he got home from his mission, I heard that John Doe had left the Mormon church and even had the Mormon church remove his name from their records.

I raise my glass.  This is actually becoming a trend as the internet becomes more wide spread.  My mission has an exchange board online for all alumni of the Spain Barcelona mission.  My bio now reads that after reading about the more untrustworthy mentionables of Joseph Smith, I no longer am able to pledge any allegiance to his religious ideals. 

I have had a few people who knew me on the mission contact me thus, some are inactive, and a couple also left the church. 

  “Was this the same guy from my mission?” I thought.  As gun-hoe as this individual was about God, Mormons, Jesus, he still left the Mormon church.  Never had I seen someone act the way he did while on a mission.

We had two different missions.  Most of my associates were hard core or striving tooth and nail to be hard core.

So it’s still possible to have people believe hardcore and end up leaving.

amen.

Like I said earlier, they just need to hear the right things.  I’m sure he had some conversations with people who pointed out the flaws in God’s “blessings”.

Such as:

“You work so hard, yet you don’t get any of the blessings other people get.  Why would they deserve blessings more than you?  You clearly are dedicated.  Don’t you think that being an avid member of God’s church should be like a good investment?”

That’s only my assumption, but that’s the only thing I could conclude to as to why he would’ve left.  So even if people are like John Doe, they can still leave.

You never debated.. like hot and heavy debate… ministers of other faiths?  I did.  I probably have a dozen really great exchanges with catholic preists or Jehovah’s Witnesses or 7th day adventists or what not recorded in my missionary journal.  One of these exchanges affected me so deeply.  It was my counterpart’s conviction that he was right and I was wrong about The Truth. I eventually could no longer dismiss how it was that he knew it to that degree.  It was a splinter in my mind.

I mean, I knew what I knew… I knew how solid I was yet here was this guy obviously equally solid with a scripture to back up every single point and refutation to my points.  I was able to counter adequately, but the exchange showed me that other religions also have their own form of bedrock.

and bedrock like that disturbed me.  I was supposed to be the only person with bedrock.

Noggin wrote:
2. The church gives him and all of his male compadres a title that must be spoken any time any church member, family member, and missionary addresses this young man. The title is “Elder”.

waner respnds:
I mentioned this earlier, but this has become quite lax and calling people by strictly their last name has become a normal occurrence in the church.  Most people didn’t call me “Elder”.  Some actually called me by my first name and that wasn’t considered taboo one bit.

You mentioned first name salutationaries were common, not last name ones.  There was a constant chiding by our mission president to never refer to another missionary by the last name only.  I kept that rule.  Some others did not.  But never first names. 

Noggin writes:
#3: The temple covenant. All young missionaries, prior to leaving on their mission, go to the temple for the first time. This is a hum dinger of a ritual. This is where the young missionary to be gives up his worldly underwear and dons the garment, which he is told will serve him as a shield and a protector against the evils of this world. He is also given a new temple name that he is required NEVER to reveal to anyone. This person covenants before “god and these angels” that he will “sacrifice all that he now has and everything that the lord shall bless him with to the building up of the lord’s kingdom here on earth.”

bonus reason: They are taught from age 0 that they are the only ones on the earth today where god himself came down to a man to declare which church is the true one. God himself told Joseph Smith that all other churches are an abomination in his sight.

waner responds:
This is why it can be very difficult to persuade or even have people try thinking outside of the Mormon religion.  Mainly because of fear.  By not wearing those garments means that you’re not protected, faithful, whatever bad scenario you want to throw in.

 

Fear, yep.  Tradition too.  But also never discount the testimony.  Mormons, as you are aware, do believe that god speaks to humans about what is True via strong emotions and feelings.  Having a market share on how god talks to people and what he is saying is powerful medicine.  Once you buy into the feelings methodology of establishing what is True, the garments, polygamy, tithing 10% of your income, etc all falls in line neatly.  None of it is wierd… because god said that we should wear this type of underwear if we are his chosen people.  Choosing to not wear it shows god we are not faithful.  Besides, it’s also a requirement of god’s—as you know… if we want to see our children get married in the Mormon temple.  No garments?  Well you can just forget about watching your daughter get married, you will have to wait outside the temple. 

It goes down like this: I feel it is true… therefore, I will submit to it… not to mention all my family and friends are wearing it… so I will conform and wear the underwear.

waner writes:
My interactions with some active Mormons is that a lot have doubted the Mormon church, but having been indoctrinated from being such a wee-little child they fear that if they leave the church or reduce their time within, then that would be a wrong move and the ones who have doubted figure “What harm will I cause myself if I stay in the church?  I sure don’t want to leave and then come to find out I’m wrong for leaving.”

and thus the tailor made Pascal’s wager rears it’s head.

waner writes:
What I’ve realized from being in religion is that knowledge is the power to leave.  Typically, and I’m not saying this to make assumptions on religious individuals or to be derogatory, but my experience with most people while being a Mormon missionary in Oklahoma is that the religious ones were the least educated.  It seemed that they just didn’t know any better.

I have observed this as well.  And if you try to educate a Mormon (or theist for that matter), they become rather irritated very quickly. And defensive... WOOOOSH!

Noggin, mainly my point was to have intelligent, knowledgeable people, like the ones on this forum, try to give insight to these 19-21 year old young men/women.  Those men/women most likely don’t know any better.  They were raised that way and if people don’t try to give them another point of view to look at then they will more than likely stay that way.

waner I totally agree.  The single most devestating information for a Mormon is to some how show them they aren’t the only game in town.  If they even see this on a small scale, it will be a splinter in their mind that massive amounts of repetetive reindoctrination efforts will be needed for further tithing payments to ensue.

seeing it is the tricky part.  How to get them to see it.  For me, it was another theist who knew his sh!t and could prove it using my bible.  It’s surely a tailor made scenario for everyone else.

That’s the scenario I faced as being an active Mormon at one point in my life.  I just couldn’t fathom a life without religion.

waner—this was a huge hurdle for me too.  Oh gosh I can’t tell you how scary my approach to the atheism runway airport was!  Oh man.  It still freaks me out from time to time.  The thought of a life without god was so foreign.  So dangerous.  Wouldn’t I run through the streets fornicating with hookers, and shoot up with heroin three times a day?  Wouldn’t I become a depraved porn slave?  Or worse—cheat on my taxes!!

(hee hee)

If it were possible that I could have religious people see that there is life, and a better life, after religion, I’m confident many would make the change.  But it’s such a drastic change in life and the fear of being wrong usually takes precedence over all other choices.

I don’t know.  That, to me, is secondary.  First objective, I think is to crack into the tough coconut and sprinkle the idea that so many other people have it all figured out too.

waner.  Just a thought here.  Did reading about the “errant” non Salt Lake Mormons ever throw you?  I mean, they too also have the Book of Mormon and Doctrine and Covenants.  I never knew much about Warren Jeff’s cult or the community of christ (RLDS).  Or I should say that I never knew that they too claimed Moroni 10:3-4 or, Alma 32 or D&C 9:7-9 as a reliable source of deciding what is true.  Because think about it… if a Salt Lake Mormon missionary comes to your door and tells you to read the book of Mormon and pray about it as per Moroni 10:3-5 could not a really great retort be something like:

OH I already have prayed about the book of Mormon… god did respond to me.  I had a very powerful witness borne to me from god through the holy ghost that testified to me that it is true!!  That is why I am a member of the reorganized church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints!  I know that this church is TRUE

tell me that would not have thrown you back in the day in Oklahoma! 

Noggin

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Posted: 06 April 2007 10:07 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]  
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Noggin,

First off I want to say from reading your last post it appears to me that the generation of Mormons from our respective ages seem to be quite different, let alone the geography factor might also contribute as well.  But I’m hoping that it’s becoming a global change for Mormons around the globe to be a bit more rebellious. 

For instance, my parents and a lot of people their age (all being Mormon) are completely against homosexuality.  They think of it as the greatest evil.  Not the greatest evil, but it ranks up there with adultery.  My generation of Mormons see homosexuality much different.  They see it as something one cannot help and is just a problem they will have to deal with in life.  Some Mormons I am somewhat acquainted with have left the church based on the LDS’s decisions about homosexuals.  Such as when the LDS church encouraged its members to vote on a ban of same sex marriage.  That did it for a friend of mine, and as a result he didn’t want to be part of a church that discriminated against gays or anyone else for that matter.  My parents couldn’t see the harm in the LDS church encouraging their members on how to vote on specific laws.  I can only contribute their inability to see such discriminating acts based on their generation.  It’s a common theme for the Mormons my age to think differently about the whole homosexuality way of life, as opposed to how my own parents view it.

Now onto the show…..well, sideshow as Noggin put it.

Noggin wrote:
State side (united states) missions, I have seen debated elsewhere, were where some of the more less committed young men were sent.

I too have heard the same arguments and come to find out they never seem to hold any water.  Most of my friends who went on missions went out of the country and based on hearing how missionaries conducted themselves it seemed no different from my mission in Oklahoma.  I never had any reason to believe that foreign missions were held for the extra faithful because everyone seemed to be the same whenever I heard others tell of their mission.  The only country I know of where mission rules are completely disregarded is Brazil.  My friend went there and some of things that went there, like having a girlfriend and going on dates, never occurred to me or even fancied my mind to act on such things.  Probably the worst thing (worst by Mormon standards) that happened while I was on my mission was that a set of missionaries went to a hockey game at 9 pm.  That’s it.  No one in my mission got sent home for fornicating, drugs, or what have you.

Waner wrote:
I’m 24 and so I’m only 3 years off of the Mormon mission and only a little over a year out of the religion. But in the mission I was in, us missionaries called each other by our first name quite periodically, in fact we made it a goal to do such.

Noggin’s Response:
wow. What you just described there is a complete abboration to me. I cannot recall even one instance where I called another or someone else called me by my first name. ever. Nor can I recall any other missionary doing so to another elder. Isn’t this a complete infraction of mission rules? Don’t the missionaries have to carry and read the white bible? I carried my white bible (a small 3"x4” condensed version of mission rules) in my left breast pocket behind my name tag every single day. I also kept the rule that required me to read this booklet at least once a month.

Calling missionaries by anything but their given title was considered breaking the rules.  But a lot of the mentality on my mission was that something such as that is so “letter of the law”.  It seemed to defeat the purpose of missionary work by worrying so such about small infractions to the rules.  Granted there were still some who thought every “jot and tittle” of the rules must be followed.  For the most part though, that was somewhat irrelevant.  Did I call my mission president by his full title?  Nope.  I almost always called him Prez.  That’s right, Prez with a “z”.  He really didn’t mind.  He thought it quite humorous.  Maybe he thought it meant he was “in” with the crowd.  Who knows.

And yes, I did have that white handbook and did carry it in my pocket everywhere I went.  Did I read it?  Probably in the range of 5-10 times.  I had a somewhat good memory and could remember quite well what all the rules were, so I figured “Why waste my time?”.

By this point you would probably see me as “rebellious” missionary.  But I knocked on doors on average 6 hrs/day on my mission.  I woke up on time, got in no earlier than 9:00 pm, and read church authorized material.  I was actually considered a hard-working missionary.  Nothing to gloat about because I just got a really bad farmer’s tan and sore feet from all that.

Waner wrote:
And since God/Jesus are no where to be found they figure they’ll get the approval of someone who is real and not made up.

Noggin Responds:
But waner, this may assume that the young mormon senses that there is no god in Mormonism. Usually, most young Mormons really struggle with the testimony aquisition process (the process of aquiring a strong, timely feeling that the individual can attribute to god speaking to them that what they are reading or hearing is indeed 100% true). That is why it is the subject of nearly every sunday school lesson and general conference talk directed to youth. The key about this is that the young person does not usually figure out that a god is not to be found in Mormonism, they usually blame themselves for not having a testimony. And they will try again and again to aquire the elusive testimony until they have some sort of feeling come to them. I don’t know about you but growing up Mormon, I was repeatedly subjected to lessons in a group setting where we were told that the holy ghost would not testify to us or guide us to truth and correct choice making if we were unworthy of the spirit. That was spelled out in detail to include drinking, smoking, drugs, masturbation, sex, prolonged unchecked impure thoughts, rated R movies, coffee, and refusing to read scriptures or pray to name a few.

Let me clarify my original post I made about God/Jesus not being there.  I didn’t make myself very clear on that.  I got a bit vague and assumed that my writings could be interpreted how I viewed them.  My fault.

Any way, not that people in mormonism don’t have a god to believe in or that the individual assumes that there is no god.  I just don’t believe in god and by me saying “since there is no God/Jesus”, I was merely conveying my own ideas about god right there.  Not trying to put thoughts of what a would-be-missionary would think.  It was more of me predicting how a mormon would act from my point-of-view and how I see them.  They can believe in God all they want, but I’ll still view their personal prayers as them talking to themselves and not an act of speaking to deity.  But by me asserting that they are indeed talking to themselves while in the act of what they call prayer, I am not implying that they don’t really believe they are talking to God.  I might have made it more confusing, so sorry about that.  I tried.  It’s all in my head, but I’m not the best at writing.

Noggin wrote:
Apostle Packer declared “Testimony is found in the bearing of it”.

That statement actually infuriates me like nothing else.  I can’t believe the amount of brainwashing that entails.  Pretty much, one is to talk themselves into believing that “The church is true”.  No studying, prayer, or any sort of empirical evidence will suffice.  Only that you “bear” your testimony about something that you don’t really know, then magically you just “know” it to be true.  Brainwashing at its best right there.  Sorry, I get side tracked whenever I see Packer’s name, because I really just don’t like him.  His talks are the absolute worst.  Talk about a bigot.  Ever read the talk “The unwritten Rules”?  Or the one on the 3 enemies of the LDS church?  Most ridiculous talks given. 

Waner wrote:
But in regards to the dogmas the church spews, it is very doubtful that someone can believe all of it.

Noggin Responded:
uh, what? In my circle of Mormon family and friends I know of two people that are considered liberal Mormons or “Sunstone Mormons”. Two. They are intellectuals. Perhaps there are others who do not come forward vocally.

You are exchanging ideas here with a former Mormon who believed every last jot and tittle of Mormonism. From Kolob, to the temple ceremony, to polygamy being god’s holy method of marriage to the book of Abraham actually being an autographed version of holy writ enscribed by Father Abraham’s own hand. I am telling you that most of the people I associated with in Mormonism also believed like this.

Seriously, EVERYTHING??  I couldn’t stomach some of the stuff.  Like blood-oaths and Adam-God theory.  Just didn’t sit well with me.  But nonetheless I figured that there was something out of context there, so that’s how I by-passed all that.  Didn’t you have anything you thought was fishy while being a True Believing Mormon (TBM)?  Like there being either one or two Hill Cumorahs?  The idea that millions upon millions of people were slaughtered where Joseph Smith lived in New York but historical evidence seemed to show the contrary.  Now if millions and millions died in the central America then that could’ve made a bit more sense, but that’s not what the church was spouting.

I think once again this shows the generation gap in the Mormon church.  It seems that you have very few liberal Mormons that were part of your family or Mormons you associated with, while me on the other hand can’t even really find Mormons who are considered literalists that are around my age group.  Mormon literalists typically have a hard time with the idea of fossils and what not.  So that whole Creation story just doesn’t sit too well with my generation.

Noggin wrote:
My mission has an exchange board online for all alumni of the Spain Barcelona mission. My bio now reads that after reading about the more untrustworthy mentionables of Joseph Smith, I no longer am able to pledge any allegiance to his religious ideals.

I have not done that, but it’s a great idea.  Just out of curiosity, do you still have your name on the Church’s records as being a member or have you had your name removed?  If you haven’t taken your name off, would you mind explaining your reasons for not doing so?  If this is of a personal nature and I’ve stepped too far, then please let me know.  I have no intentions to intrude on your life, I’m just curious is all.  Mainly I’ve been thinking of taking my name off within the next couple of weeks.

Noggin wrote:
You never debated.. like hot and heavy debate… ministers of other faiths?

Oh you bet I did.  Oklahoma is the Bible Belt and there are so many churches I can’t believe.  It puts Utah to shame on the number of churches there are in Oklahoma.  I probably got into a Bible bash on average about once a day.  As in a pretty rough one, where you’re both determined to whoop the other guy and prove them wrong and hopes that you look like you’re the top dog.  I was in a 6 hour straight bash a couple of times.  While you seemed to heavily debate JW’s, the JW’s in Oklahoma were the nicest people and rarely debated with us.  The also knocked doors so they knew what it felt like to get rejected and as a result they would always get something drink or let us come in out of the sun or cold.  Very pleasant people by my experiences.  The 7th Day Adventists were pretty good, but they stole a lot of the Mormon’s ideas and were very easily debunked.  The 7th Day Adventists had almost word for word the Mormon Church’s “Articles of Faith”.  Except like three or so were missing.

Noggin wrote:
The single most devestating information for a Mormon is to some how show them they aren’t the only game in town. If they even see this on a small scale, it will be a splinter in their mind that massive amounts of repetetive reindoctrination efforts will be needed for further tithing payments to ensue.

That’s so true.  For some reason Mormons think they have this philosophy or ideology on life that is superior and much more enlightening than anyone else’s.  While my way out of the Mormon church didn’t really involve this route, it does work.  There’s actually a small little underground world of return missionaries (RM) who are more or less seen as disgruntled RM’s.  They get together and talk about what is so bothersome about the Mormon church.  It’s rather fun to attend and get in on these conversations because they usually last for hours and you discuss everything and actually if TBM’s were to attend these, I really think that could be an eye opener.

Waner wrote:
If it were possible that I could have religious people see that there is life, and a better life, after religion, I’m confident many would make the change. But it’s such a drastic change in life and the fear of being wrong usually takes precedence over all other choices.

Noggin Responded:
I don’t know. That, to me, is secondary. First objective, I think is to crack into the tough coconut and sprinkle the idea that so many other people have it all figured out too.

Upon reading your response, I agree with you.  First objective should be to crack that shell or pull them out of their cave.

Noggin wrote:
waner. Just a thought here. Did reading about the “errant” non Salt Lake Mormons ever throw you? I mean, they too also have the Book of Mormon and Doctrine and Covenants. I never knew much about Warren Jeff’s cult or the community of christ (RLDS)

I’m assuming you’re referring to the Apostate LDS churches.  While being active in the church and still living in Utah I never really heard too much about them.  I heard more about them in Oklahoma than in Salt Lake.  I knew they were around and have even met some polygamous people.  They typically dress the same and stick out like a sore thumb.  But that never dawned on me that what they were saying about their church being authentic was similar to the Mormon church’s.  Because even Ed Decker, maker of the God Makers, has the exact same thing.  He has Moroni’s promise in one of his pamphlets I got while in Oklahoma and Ed Decker doesn’t want anything to do with the Mormon church.  Ed is just a Bible tootin’ Book of Mormon hating Born Again Christian.  But when I read that pamphlet with Moroni’s promise in it, I couldn’t help but laugh at the time. Here an anti-Mormon is using Book of Mormon scripture to declare that what he says is legit.  He didn’t use the scripture word for word, but cut some words out to put his message across.  Makes me wish I didn’t throw it away.  I got a lot anti-mormon stuff on my mission.  I’d park our car or bike and come back with stuff in my helmet of under my windshield wiper of pamphlets.  I even got a movie one time.  That was a highlight for missionaries in Oklahoma.

I actually did come across people in Oklahoma that were of the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (RLDS).  But most didn’t even know at the time I met them that their church’s name was changed to “Community of Christ” due to making an agreement with the Council of Churches, or Christian Coalition that they could have “x” amount of money if the RLDS church denounced the Book of Mormon.  Then to hear some actually say the RLDS church is true was what seemed to be quite the kicker.  I even met people who said they prayed about the Book of Mormon and God told them to stay away.  Then they called me the devil. 

Noggin wrote:
Once you buy into the feelings methodology of establishing what is True, the garments, polygamy, tithing 10% of your income, etc all falls in line neatly. None of it is wierd… because god said that we should wear this type of underwear if we are his chosen people. Choosing to not wear it shows god we are not faithful. Besides, it’s also a requirement of god’s—as you know… if we want to see our children get married in the Mormon temple. No garments? Well you can just forget about watching your daughter get married, you will have to wait outside the temple.

What’s interesting here, again I think it’s the generation gap, is that garments always seemed weird to me as well as others.  It made no sense to “have” to wear them to be considered a good Mormon.  It was almost like a tell-tale sign that you were on the fringes of, god forbid, questioning the Mormon church.  It’s voiced pretty heavily around my age by women who hate the thought of wearing garments. 

“We have to wear underwear that doesn’t look sexy?  What will I show my husband when I want to show a bit of my sexy side?” 

No girl wants to wear garments until they can’t wear their sexy attire no longer.  The underwear is just too boring, and quite honestly a bit restrictive on one’s personality or individuality.  Mormons are pretty much to be Carbon-Copies of God or the prophet or some church leader.

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Posted: 06 April 2007 01:25 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 21 ]  
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[quote author=“waner”]Noggin,

First off I want to say from reading your last post it appears to me that the generation of Mormons from our respective ages seem to be quite different, let alone the geography factor might also contribute as well.

Oh probably.  Jeez you make me feel old wink  I am 38, you are 24.  I am seriously celebrating a few of your comments in your last thread.  If what you say is true, that means the Mormon iron fisted grip of authoritarianism is loosing it’s hold.  What you describe is very encouraging, particularily the bit about Mormon females not wanting to don the garments.  Can you imagine if the church had not converted over to two piece type? Did you ever see your parents walking around their dressing room in the one piece dealy whops???  With that gawd awful low hanging crotch slit from the nads to the top of the crack… I did my endowment in 1988 and that was right about the time that the 2 piece garments came out… I think it had only been a few years.

Anyhow.

Here, you can savor this next bit as to how fundy LDS I was…

Coming out of the temple session where the garments were placed upon me, I also bought one piece garments and only wore those for a little while because the one piecers seemed to be more authentic.  What a nut.  I quickly switched over to two piece.

I hated the garments, but loved being faithful to god so that won over and I eventually got to the point to where I could not go out for a bike ride without them under my spandex shorts and jersey… seeing as how they were supposed to protect me from physical and spiritual harm and my cycling route included precarious vehicular manuevering throughout the countryside…  I honestly believed the garments would protect me from being sidewiped or mowed over by an approaching car.

But I’m hoping that it’s becoming a global change for Mormons around the globe to be a bit more rebellious.

you and me both.

For instance, my parents and a lot of people their age (all being Mormon) are completely against homosexuality.  They think of it as the greatest evil.  Not the greatest evil, but it ranks up there with adultery.

I am rolling my eyes.  My parents are total homophobes.  As were my fundy LDS grandparents.  How can they not be when that is what is preached from the pulpit.

My generation of Mormons see homosexuality much different.

I have noted that.  I’d say yes and no.  There are still many who listen to conference and ingest all of the screeching homophobia with nary a belch.

Now onto the show…..well, sideshow as Noggin put it.

step right up…..bearded lady to the right, man with three heads to the left!! wink

By this point you would probably see me as “rebellious” missionary.

Oh I don’t know about that.  You’d be in my upper echelon cadre of fundies if you put the time on the streets, wore out your shoes every three months, had callouses on your knees from praying, were hoarse at the end of the day, woke up on time, and basically eat slept and breathed missionary work.

But I knocked on doors on average 6 hrs/day on my mission.  I woke up on time, got in no earlier than 9:00 pm, and read church authorized material.

see? we’d practically be best buddies!

  I was actually considered a hard-working missionary.  Nothing to gloat about because I just got a really bad farmer’s tan and sore feet from all that.

ah that farmer’s tan.  and bleached hair from baking in the sun too.  Sunscreen smell still reminds me of proselyting to this day.

Noggin wrote:
Apostle Packer declared “Testimony is found in the bearing of it”.

That statement actually infuriates me like nothing else.  I can’t believe the amount of brainwashing that entails.  Pretty much, one is to talk themselves into believing that “The church is true”.

yep.  A far cry from Joseph Smith’s bold declaration of “Truth will cut it’s own way”.  Far being defined in terms of several hundred lightyears.

  Ever read the talk [by Packer] “The unwritten Rules”?  Or the one on the 3 enemies of the LDS church?  Most ridiculous talks given.

this one?

http://www.lds-mormon.com/unwrittn.shtml

I couldn’t find the 3 enemas of the LDS church one (yes that was intentional).

I have listened to all of the talks up until about 3 years ago.

Waner wrote:
But in regards to the dogmas the church spews, it is very doubtful that someone can believe all of it.

Noggin Responded:
uh, what? ..... You are exchanging ideas here with a former Mormon who believed every last jot and tittle of Mormonism….

waner responds:
Seriously, EVERYTHING??  I couldn’t stomach some of the stuff.  Like blood-oaths and Adam-God theory.  Just didn’t sit well with me.

I did not know about Joseph Smith’s polygamy or blood atonement or mountain meadows massecre.  I found all that out post mission.  Rose colored glasses.

But I knew about the blood oaths.  I actually did the pre 1990 endowment so that means every major covenant I made in the temple was predicated upon my swearing an oath that I would never reveal the token or oath and rather than do so, I would suffer my life to be taken.  At the moment I mumbled the words

“I would suffer my life to be taken”

I was instructed to draw my hand across my throat with the palm down, thumb extended out acting as a blade.  This was a pantomime suggesting that I would rather slit my throat than tell any gentile about the oaths I was swearing allegiance to.  I had three different times where I slit myself.  Once across the throat for one oath.  Another time across the chest, and finally a slit across my bowels.  All in the same 15 minute period.  You know the places I am talking about.  My first time through I wigged out a little.  It was so over the top.  I got done with the session and was ushered into the celestial room where all of my family and extended family was waiting for me.  Grandma, weeping with joy, tucked her hands about my neck and kissed me jerking through tears about how proud she was of me.  Dad and Mom were there to give me hugs.  Uncle Dennis all smiles… thumbs up way to GO!  Sister, brothers in law, Elder’s quorum president, friends all there supporting me as if this was the most normal event ever conceivable.  In fact, they were all behaving, oddly, as if this was the most HOLY and worshipful and magical event that could ever happen to another human being.

Needless to say, I was horrified waner.  Oh man.  But like I said, I loved god immensely and wanted to please that entity.  So if I was to slash myself and do that odd duck prayer circle thing ah mah jigg then by jove who was I to quibble with how god does his deal??

tangent:  about the prayer circle at the altar. 

Did you ever have to loudly and robotically proclaim PAY LAY ALE!....  PAY LAY ALE!.... PAY LAY ALE! three times in unison around the prayer altar?  I did but I think that they did rip that most bizarre part of the temple out in 1990 also.  I could be wrong.  Incidentally, pay lay ale is supposed to mean

Oh God, Hear the Words of My Mouth

in the lost ancient language of Adam and Eve that Joseph Smith claimed he found again…. I am just reflecting here…  “Pay Lay Ale” is the Adamic language.  Mormonism is so cool that way.

end of tangent.

Didn’t you have anything you thought was fishy while being a True Believing Mormon (TBM)?

see above.  If those gems did not raise the five alarm fire alerts for me… nothing could.  I had this really weird trait of actually trusting my parents and their highly esteemed friends implicitly that they knew what they were talking about.

  Like there being either one or two Hill Cumorahs?

it went down like this for me.  If god is truly god, then he could do anything.  Even change lamanite dna into asiatic dna.  Certainly a magic transporting of the golden plates from central america to upstate New York directly behind Joseph Smith’s family farm is not beneath god’s ability.

I used this means of self talk without even knowing I was self talking.

The idea that millions upon millions of people were slaughtered where Joseph Smith lived in New York but historical evidence seemed to show the contrary.

Hold on Tex.  I read Hugh Nibley’s accounting of how in the days of Smith people would clear land of trees and plow new fields and constantly be catching their plow on rusted out objects that they “just knew” were Nephite swords or remnants of shields or whatever (Nephites and Lamanites are mentioned in the Book of mormon as names of significant populations).

I bought that.  But that only served to bankrupt me later when it was pointed out to me that if such a find was to really happen, it would have made it into anthropolgy journals of that day.  None of that exists.  It was a myth… a self reproducing faith promoting story.  Commonly referred around here as bullshit.

  Now if millions and millions died in the central America then that could’ve made a bit more sense, but that’s not what the church was spouting.

nope.  They certainly weren’t.  With the advent of the Limited Geography Theory, more and more people are coming to the table with this shreikingly shocking opinion that the church never EVER claimed that New York was the site of the last great Nephite battle.

Best way to counter this is to direct them to the New York Hill Cumorah website where they can read it for themselves.  It is a tourist destination complete with missionary efforts ever on guard to explain the significance of the Holy Hill Cumorah.

I think once again this shows the generation gap in the Mormon church.  It seems that you have very few liberal Mormons that were part of your family or Mormons you associated with, while me on the other hand can’t even really find Mormons who are considered literalists that are around my age group.

And I tip my hat.  This is very encouraging.

Just out of curiosity, do you still have your name on the Church’s records as being a member or have you had your name removed?  If you haven’t taken your name off, would you mind explaining your reasons for not doing so?  If this is of a personal nature and I’ve stepped too far, then please let me know.

Well, if I decline to comment, you’d know I haven’t taken my name off the records.  The reason is kind of complicated (imagine that!).  I am married to a faithful devout LDS woman.  She is pretty broken up about my decision to not align myself with Mormonism anymore.  It’s like I betrayed her.  Knowing what you do about the Mormon ideal of “Forever Families” and how she is not going to have hers you can fill in the rest of the details as to her level of angst concerning me.  I already hurt her, I just cannot bring myself to pour salt in her wounds.

Noggin wrote:
You never debated.. like hot and heavy debate… ministers of other faiths?

waner responds:
Oh you bet I did.  Oklahoma is the Bible Belt and there are so many churches I can’t believe.

The dozen exchanges I mentioned were the most heated ones.  Those, like yours, lasted for hours.  Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh good times…. good times….. what a rush.

waner writes:
There’s actually a small little underground world of return missionaries (RM) who are more or less seen as disgruntled RM’s.  They get together and talk about what is so bothersome about the Mormon church.  It’s rather fun to attend and get in on these conversations because they usually last for hours and you discuss everything and actually if TBM’s were to attend these, I really think that could be an eye opener.

really?  live?  not RFM???  Like group therapy?  Can I come and join in?

Noggin wrote:
Once you buy into the feelings methodology of establishing what is True, the garments, polygamy, tithing 10% of your income, etc all falls in line neatly. None of it is wierd… because god said that we should wear this type of underwear if we are his chosen people. Choosing to not wear it shows god we are not faithful. Besides, it’s also a requirement of god’s—as you know… if we want to see our children get married in the Mormon temple. No garments? Well you can just forget about watching your daughter get married, you will have to wait outside the temple.

waner responds:
What’s interesting here, again I think it’s the generation gap, is that garments always seemed weird to me as well as others.  It made no sense to “have” to wear them to be considered a good Mormon.

It made no sense, of course, but being bound up with your allegiance to god, borne out of promising this god via sacred temple covenants no less that you would wear them… didn’t you just feel the guilt if you decided not to wear them “night and day”?  That was the commandment.

It was almost like a tell-tale sign that you were on the fringes of, god forbid, questioning the Mormon church.

....uh, if you did not wear the garments?  Of course!  Paramount to french kissing evil incarnate, over here in my world.  I am floored that you and others in your LDS group did not feel the need to constantly wear garments.  Look dude, I am not exactly a square.  I’d go swimming, sun bathe, play sports, and have sex (married sex!) without garments.  But when that activity was done… whoop! back on went the garments.

  It’s voiced pretty heavily around my age by women who hate the thought of wearing garments.

I have several female friends from Utah that have expressed their distaste for the fashion hindering garments that are so uncomfortable to wear.  Usually I hear this is expressed by attractive females who have been used to wearing revealing clothes.  Then they get married or go on missions and voila!  A garment wearing Mormon they be!  I am picturing one woman in particular.  She is stunning.  She constantly adjusts her garments so that she can wear the shirts that show belly buttons.  I swear she pins the garments up.  It’s kind of pathetic but at the same time, I secretly look at her when she is around my wife and I quietly applaud her inside my head. 

“Good job—don’t let them kill off every LAST bit of your individuality!”

It’s tough being a fashion conscious (read: trendy) Mormon female.

“We have to wear underwear that doesn’t look sexy?  What will I show my husband when I want to show a bit of my sexy side?”

Oh that is easily manipulated.  I am guessing you aren’t married to a Mormon who likes lingerie.  Out of respect for my wife, I’ll just shut the hell up.

No girl wants to wear garments until they can’t wear their sexy attire no longer.  The underwear is just too boring, and quite honestly a bit restrictive on one’s personality or individuality.

okay now that.  is an understatement.  BUT then again, who are we to question god’s requirements for his chosen people who are candidates themselves to become future gods and goddesses if they pass god’s test here on earth?

Nice dialogue here waner.  Thanks!

Noggin

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Posted: 06 April 2007 02:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 22 ]  
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I found that article about the 3 enemies of the church.  Here it is .  Basically it was Packer speaking to a special meeting.  Not really for the public.  You’ll have to read about one-quarter of the article to get to the enemies of the church.

waner writes:
There’s actually a small little underground world of return missionaries (RM) who are more or less seen as disgruntled RM’s. They get together and talk about what is so bothersome about the Mormon church. It’s rather fun to attend and get in on these conversations because they usually last for hours and you discuss everything and actually if TBM’s were to attend these, I really think that could be an eye opener.

Noggin Responds:
really? live? not RFM??? Like group therapy? Can I come and join in?

It’s not really a club, group, or any official place.  It’s hard to explain unless you’re there, but the best I could do is say it’s more of a coincidence.  It usually starts out where there are a group of people and being in Utah, the odds of being around other Mormons or RM’s is quite high.  No matter where you go.  Bars, wherever.  And usually when RM’s turn disgruntled and get to talk to one another the conversations just get quite long and a lot of times people join in on the conversation about the Mormon church.  It’s what brings some people together I guess.  Sorry, that’s the best I can possibly do.  It doesn’t sound like anything, I know.  I just can’t convey any better.  Also, that first post by me about the disgruntled RM’s makes it sound like it’s an official club.  I got a little carried away I guess on that one.  But really, it’s its own little world.  I can’t explain it, it’s like me trying to tell you what it’s like to accept Jesus into your heart.  It’s just oh so wonderful.

Thanks for the replies.  It’s always good talk about this, say…...about once a month.

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Posted: 06 April 2007 04:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 23 ]  
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[quote author=“waner”]
Thanks for the replies.  It’s always good talk about this, say…...about once a month.

yeah.  I need to work to that sort of frequency.  I know I know.

hey and I hate to be obtrusive, but I’ll be in Salt Lake in May and I would love to experience this disgruntled RM phenom you are talking about.  Nearly all RM’s I know are very much gruntled.  Disgruntled RM’s are like long lost kin.  Any suggestions on what bar or locale I might have the most chance at experiencing it?  You have the advantage in having some cadre of friends type network or does a swirling vortex of disgruntledness rise up out of the ashes just like wherever.

Point me in a direction, give me a pointer or two, man.  I lived in Provo for 9 years but never ran into any disgrunts.  I used to run up to SLC here and there but no, never had the experience you speak of and I have to tell you I feel jilted.

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Posted: 08 April 2007 02:51 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 24 ]  
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Noggin wrote:
I’ll be in Salt Lake in May and I would love to experience this disgruntled RM phenom you are talking about. Nearly all RM’s I know are very much gruntled. Disgruntled RM’s are like long lost kin. Any suggestions on what bar or locale I might have the most chance at experiencing it? You have the advantage in having some cadre of friends type network or does a swirling vortex of disgruntledness rise up out of the ashes just like wherever.

Unfortunately, it is an event that comes out of the ashes.  But if you want an entertaining night at least, then I highly recommend a bar called The Tavernacle.  It’s located on 300 South 200 East SLC. 

It’s a bar with two grand pianos and they play whatever request you give them.  The requests cost money of course, so that’s why you need to be prepared to spend some money.  It’s not expensive though.  I also suggest that if you do go, then call ahead of time and reserve a table. 

It gets pretty packed, but if you have your own table then you can have a bit more space as opposed to standing around.  The people who play the piano will play anything.  They’re extremely talented and very entertaining.  And people of all ages attend this bar.  You might be able to talk there, but it’s a lot of music going on there all night until 1 am.

This is personally my favorite place to attend on the weekends here in Salt Lake.  Definitely not your typical bar.  Wish I could be of more service to you for finding the RM’s.  But atleast give this place a shot.

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Posted: 09 April 2007 05:41 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 25 ]  
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Not to interrupt, but have you guys seen the film SLC Punk?  Everytime I think of your struggles in Mormonia, I think of this film.  It’s kind of like Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy.

Anyway, sorry to interrupt.

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Posted: 02 May 2007 09:04 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 26 ]  
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[quote author=“Sander”]Noggin,

Thanks for the expose on Mormon life Noggs.
This strengthens my theory that you can make a human being believe literally anything, no matter how retarded it is.

We are a very scary species.

The same evolutionary traits that help us survive, make us vulnerable to this lunacy.

-Trust what your parents and adults tell you.  Important for survival.  If your parents say don’t eat the poisonous mushroom, trust them

-Join a tribe with others.  There is safety and strength in numbers.  Loner man doesn’t do so well in the wild.

-Respect charismatic strong leaders.  Their tribes will do the best over the long run.

-Act and think like others around you.  Acting different will get you kicked out of the tribe.

-Don’t trust other tribes different from you (even if they look JUST like you).

-Try to increase the size and power of your tribe.

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