Monday, April 17, 2006

Literal Belief

Once a former believer breaks through their Mormon bubble and gets a dose of reality... Life will never be the same again. Once a former believer asks the question "What if the church is not what it claims to be?" they have opened a door that leads from a dark closet out into the bright sunshine of reality. But for those that make this journey without their believing families... This journey is not without its trials

A few days ago my wife and I were once again discussing my apostasy from Mormonism. She wanted to know why I couldn't just compromise and believe something, anything regarding the church. As I contemplated her question I asked her how I could get all the tooth paste back into the tube once its all been squeezed out? The point being, I do not know how to reinvent my former religion to accommodate all the false claims that it has made. I do not know how to again believe in a church that has covered-up or changed important historical evidence that I felt was essential to an honest assessment of its truth claims.

Mormonism is a literal religion. It teaches and believes in a literal universal flood, a literal tower of Babel, a literal 6,000 year earth age, that dinosaurs literally are not of THIS earth but lived on another earth like planet and that their bones were transplanted here during the creation of this earth, that there was no death prior to Adam and Eve some 4,000 years ago, that the Garden of Eden was in the State ofMissouri, that Noah literally carried 2 of ever species on his Ark and then somehow placed them through out the earth so that they reinforced not Noah's story but Darwin's theory of evolution and on and on and on... These are things I can not put back into the tooth paste tube of Mormon faith...To me they are beyond question... And "literally" unbelievable...

7 comments:

Jason said...

Craig,

I always enjoy your posts on RFM... And the blog doesn't disappoint. Thanks for writing.

Jason

F2K said...

Well done, Craig . . .

It's a pleasure reading your posts . . .

Keep up the good work!

F2K

Anonymous said...

Craig,

As a fellow member, someone who evaluates the same questions you have noted in the paragraph below, I think you may not be aware that the church has not taken an official position on many of the points you mention and it is fine for you to question them and still be a faithful member.

"Mormonism is a literal religion. It teaches and believes in a literal universal flood" - I question this as well, although inclined to believe in a universal flood, I also think that a local cataclysmic event could account for the biblical records of the flood - (for the authors, it would have seemed a world wide flood, but in reality may have not been) For example, the filling of the black sea as the mediterranean seeped over the land barrier by Istanbul turkey may have seemed like a worldwide event for those living in the area.

tower of Babel,- don't know either, I am inclined to believe.

a literal 6,000 year earth age- This I question - The D&C states that we won't know how the creation was accomplished until the second coming - Church doesn't have a official position on Evolution or the Creation. There are many faithful teachers at BYU who believe whole heartily in evolution and an old age earth (4 billion years).

that dinosaurs literally are not of THIS earth but lived on another earth like planet and that their bones were transplanted here during the creation of this earth,
- This is once again just speculation by some members, others speculate differently - not official church doctring. Others believe all the fossil record is accurate, indeed the oil deposits were placed over millions of years. However, when God created the world, it was not a creation out of nothing, he organized it. The earth could have been empty and void following a cataclysmic event, with all the fossil records in place, when he replanted and repopulated it it in preparation for Adam. This makes the most sense to me but it realy doesn't matter because the church does not have an official position so you can believe what you want to till more truth is revealed.

- that there was no death prior to Adam and Eve some 4,000 years ago,- This may pertain only to the state things in the Garden of Eden - death may have occured before the Garden of Eden on an old age earth. What if sheep ate grass in the Garden of Eden, did the grass die? Doesn't matter. Evolution via survival of the fittest may have occured prior to the Garden of Eden. I agree that with no death whatsoever - Evoloution becomes impossible.

that the Garden of Eden was in the State of Missouri,- Had to be somewhere - why not Missouri, where else would it be and what evidence do we have that would prove otherwise?

that Noah literally carried 2 of ever species on his Ark and then somehow placed them through out the earth so that they reinforced not Noah's story but Darwin's theory of evolution and on and on and on... YOU don't have to accept this to be a believing member, you can question this. This isn't on your temple recommend interview.

These are things I can not put back into the tooth paste tube of Mormon faith...To me they are beyond question... And "literally" unbelievable

So what? - I question them and still have faith in revelation. In many of these instances in which you are troubled, there is not an offical chruch doctrine. In others, you can still question it and be faithful.

What do you think?

Anonymous said...

I whole-heartedly agree with the previous post. I also am a member, and I do have questions, but that does not diminish my faith in modern day revelation or in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I can vouch for the things said in the previous post regarding the church's stance on certain issues. Mormon teachings are not as 'literal' as you have come to believe.

Theophilus said...

I also agree with the previous comments. There will come a time when we will all KNOW (creation, dinasours, noah, etc) - with perfect knowledge. Until then it must be taken on faith. That's all part of the plan and our test. We're not supposed to have a sure knowledge of many things - that's why we don't each "get our own angel" when we pray about the truthfulness of the church, book of mormon, temples, priesthood, ordinations, etc. Our God is very protective and merciful. If we had a perfect knowledge about these things we would be judged using a very strict law and hard justice (who wants that!?!?!). If you're fully "repented" and clean - you will be entitled to the spirit who will testify to you that these things are true. It won't be a marvelous manifestiation - but, it will be a feeling you know to be an answer. If you've never felt it you'll say "that's bologne". If you've felt it, you'll say "that's right - I've received that testimony from the spirit before". Are you willing to have faith? One day we will understand it all and it will all make perfect sense. Until then, I will exercise faith, "be believing", and endure to the end. The world would call me an idiot for being a "believer". Doesn't bother me. I too am LDS and part of a humble, believing bishopric. I serve with two great men who try to do what is right. None of us is perfect...I struggle with turning the channel when something crummy comes on the TV. But, every time you do that - you get stronger and can do it more easily the next time. Once virtue garnishes your thoughts unceasingly - you'll understand this post. I can't answer all the questions. I'm thankful I can show my faith by believing in things I don't KNOW to be true. I have seen several people denounce their faith and justify it by trying to find "holes" in the church. I would encourage you to read D&C 42:23. In every case - without exception - serious sin and a loss of the spirit proceeds the denial. A broken heart and a contrite spirit is the sign of a true and humble believer. If you really want to know the truth - you have to "get there" somehow. May God bless you in this all-important effort that each one of us must make in order to return home to our loving Heavenly Father.

Anonymous said...

Craig, where does it say in mormon doctrine that dinos came from another planet. I am compiling a list of questions and things that just dont make sense to eventually ask.

Cr@ig said...

Joseph Smith taught that the Earth was created like a cake, from ingredients of different ages. Just like a cake was made from wheat that is a year old, eggs from a few days and milk fresh this morning from the cow, so too, the Earth is made from parts of different ages.

See Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, pages 350-352.