Friday, April 29, 2011


What is the meaning of life?  Whatever you want it to be.  Doesn't that sound wonderful?  So refreshing after spending a majority of my life in Mormonism.  Instead of the Cookie Cutter mold that "they" tried to force me into, I get to decide what the meaning of life actually is for ME.  And although I wish I had arrived where I am now many, many years ago (long before I became a middle-aged woman, when I still had my whole life ahead of me), I'm thankful to have arrived at this point at all.  After all, the odds were against me getting away from the Mormon Church at 52 years old.  At such an "advanced" age, I would seemingly be stuck in my ways, unable to adapt to big changes in my life.  But luckily, I'm not "the norm."  And I have a few good years still ahead of me... LOL

I spent most of my life trying to conform to what Mormonism said I should be.  Trying to squelch my individuality.  Attempting to deny my uniqueness.  Setting aside the rational thoughts that tried to invade the wall I had put up to ward off the "evils of the world."  After all, I had been told that I was supposed to live in the world but not be "of the world," and I took all of that tripe to heart.

When it comes down to it, life is simply not fair.  We are born to parents who believe one way or another, and in many cases, we are basically expected to adopt their belief patterns.  Even brainwashed to a certain degree (especially as Mormons).  In the Mormon Church, people are looked down on if their children do not adhere to Mormonism.  If they do not follow along like sheep, attending Primary, Sunday School, Sacrament Meeting, Seminary, going to Young Men or Young Women, going on a mission (if you are a boy), going to Institute, going to the temple, and on and on and on, then you are considered "less valiant," and are grouped with members who are considered the scourge.  Many 19-year old boys go on a mission simply to please their parents and advance their resume and profile so they can get a good TBM woman to marry them when they get home.  Simply put, they go on a mission because they feel they "have to go."  There is no real option in Mormondom.  In fact, there are many, many videos posted on YouTube of young men opening their mission call letters.  One in particular that I saw a while back made me very, very sad.  The boy was obviously not enthusiastic at all about the whole thing, but he was made to sit there (by his obviously TBM parents), read the letter, and comment on it.  My heart broke for him because it was blatantly obvious that HE DID NOT WANT TO GO.  I've tried to find that video again, but it looks like it may been removed (probably because of the boy's attitude toward the ritual).  Sadly, there are most likely a lot of others who also don't want to go but are much better at hiding their real feelings (somewhat like a survival instinct within Mormonism).

I used to dread getting older, probably because I wasn't happy with my life.  Everything had begun to seem so mundane.  Going to church had become a mind-numbing experience.  Trying to fit into the mold that was set out for me by Mormonism had become more and more difficult, and trying to buy into the whole Mormon ramble had become next to impossible.  Allowing myself to finally question it all and realize that it was my choice whether or not to believe in it was a freeing experience, just as was finally acknowleding that I really did have my Free Agency to do as I chose with my life.  And finally realizing once and for all that my thoughts and opinions really did matter was like breaking free from chains and/or a prison.  Of course, going on some ExMormon / PostMormon discussion boards and seeing that others felt the same way I do, and had similar opinions about it all, was very reassuring as well. 

When I finally broke away from Mormonism and began to voice my actual opinions, I began to see life as an exciting adventure again.  Instead, I now see the rest of my life as exciting and memorable rather than average or mundane.  And that is a gift all by itself.

And hopefully, we all know what the meaning of life is for ourselves... and don't need to consult any computers or websites...


Friday, April 22, 2011


Recently, I discovered Google Images.   Yeah, I'm a little slow on the uptake sometimes...

So anyway, I typed in "Religion" on Google Images, and got some interesting results. Of course, the image at the left is interesting all by itself. According to this Google search, religion is the opiate of the masses, bullshit, fake, islam, man made, a smile on a dog, a joke, the root of all evil, a lie... and apparently, religion is also like Paul Rudd.

Clicking on that entry, the first website that came up was named, where it says:

Google says religion is like... Paul Rudd?

In case you didn’t see it, I had a little fun with Google’s suggest tool and a number of the world’s religions. Well, perhaps “fun” isn’t the best way to describe it.  Actually, it was pretty much bullshit.

But one thing jumped out at me that I wanted to give its own special post; that is Google’s suggestion for what we collectively believe religion to be.

According to Google, we not only consider religion to be the “opiate of the masses” and “a smile on a dog”, but we also consider it to be like Paul Rudd.  And I assume Google is talking about the actor.

Could that be true?  Could religion really be like Paul Rudd?


Puzzling at first.  After all, what does Paul Rudd have to do with religion?  But as it turns out, this comparison came from the following quote ala the TV show, Community.
Shirley:  You think religion is stupid.
Jeff:  No, no.  to me, religion is like Paul Rudd.  I see the appeal and I would never take it away from anyone, but I would also never stand in line for it.

These days, I tend to agree with Jeff (played by actor Joel McHale of "The Soup").

And as far as I am concerned, religion is all those things listed above, and much more.

Since leaving Mormonism, I have come to the conclusion that organized religion is all about money and power, i.e. controlling people to gain power over them so they will give lots and lots of their money to the specified religion.  In reality, shouldn't religion be about helping people be better versions of themselves?  But no, that concept seems to have gotten lost in the shuffle. I think Abraham Lincoln had it right when he said, "When I do good, I feel good.  When I do bad, I feel bad.  That's my religion."

But unfortunately, all the goodness that religion should actually create seems to have gone off in strange directions... 


What people do and say in the name of RELIGION is truly mind-boggling.  The gap between what is preached and what is practiced has created a very wide chasm, and it seems to be widening even more with each passing day. 

So it all comes back to brainwashing, blind faith, doing what you're told, and following along like sheep and/or zombies with no independent thought, no individuality, and certainly no questioning.  At least, this applies to Mormonism.  And as far as I can tell, it also seems to apply to organized religion in general.

IMO, a very sad commentary.

Thursday, April 21, 2011


It never ceases to amaze me that so many Mormons think that the "primary reason" for people leaving the Mormon Church is because they have been "offended."  Of course, what they are talking about is someone hurting another person's feelings, as though that would cause a large number of people to toss off the promise of "eternal salvation" and create a mass apostasy.  Perhaps some people do leave because they were offended by something another member said or did, or something that a Bishop or Stake President said or did, but automatically lumping everyone into the same pile diminshes and minimizes the real reasons behind why people leave the Mormon Church.

Recently, I found a link to a very interesting website:

On the home page of this website, it says:

People leave the Mormon Church (and become ‘ExMormons’ or former Mormons) for lots of reasons:

  • Some get offended by the words or actions of other Mormon Church members
  • Some succumb to temptations and find themselves entangled in sin
  • Some have doctrinal or historical concerns or questions
  • And many other reasons
For each individual who has left the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and become an ExMormon, there is an equally unique story.  Some join other Christian churches, some become agnostic, and many leave God and all religion completely behind.  While I certainly don’t claim to understand each of these paths, I know there is one who does–the Savior Jesus Christ.  The scriptures talk about how Jesus suffered each of our pains and afflictions, so that he could understood our personal situations, be filled with mercy and comfort us (Alma 7).  Through Him, we can learn to forgive those who may have offended us, we can seek and receive forgiveness of our sins, and find answers to even the most difficult questions of life.

And thus my invitation, my “challenge” if you will, to each and every ExMormon.  Take the path less traveled.  Come back.  We love you, we need you, we miss you.  There will be members of the Church there to welcome you back.  And more importantly, the Savior is waiting with open arms.


I find it interesting that this website lists being "offended" as the first reason in its list of explanations for people leaving the Mormon Church.  This website goes so far as to say, "Through Him, we can learn to forgive those who may have offended us, we can seek and receive forgiveness of our sins, and find answers to even the most difficult questions of life."

I agree with what this says.  If someone has truly offended us, we can learn to forgive them.  But the fact is that when the offense comes from being lied to and deceived about the very origins of a religion, as well as its history and doctrine, there is no overcoming the "offense."  The "offended" explanation for apostasy simply seeks to whitewash and minimize the realities behind why people become ExMormons.

For instance, it offends me that as a Mormon, I could not voice an independent thought or opposing opinion without being worried that someone would ridicule or shun me - or worse yet that I would be accused of verging on APOSTASY, like when my very TBM father told me that my "liberal thinking was going to get me into trouble some day."

It offends me that I was basically taught to keep my opinions to myself (while being given the not-very-subtle message that they really didn't matter or mean that much).

It offends me that as a Mormon, I was told that "When the prophet speaks, the debate is over."  As if whatever thoughts and ideas I have are not important. Someone else more important needs to do my thinking for me.

It offends me that Boyd K. Packer thinks it's okay to say things like, "Some things that are true are not useful." Since when is truth not useful? In essence, he is telling everyone that lying is perfectly fine. But then, in essence that's what the Mormon Church tells everyone.

It offends me that I was relegated to a subservient role by a male-dominted, male-oriented religion that treats women as second class citizens and has a very definite double-standard.

It offends me that as a 22 year old girl, I went to the temple to receive my "endowments," and was subjected to such a ridiculous barage of Masonic images and rituals.

It offends me that I was told that the temple ceremonies were so "sacred" that they could not be discussed outside the walls of the temple, but when I tried to talk to anyone about them in the Celestial Room, I was shushed and rushed out by the temple workers.

It offends me when I read the Journal of Discourses and see what the early prophets in the church really thought of certain groups, like women and Blacks. 

It offends me that when I questioned as to why the Blacks were denied the priesthood, I was given such ridiculous explanations as their being "less valiant" in the pre-existent and/or that they were descendants of Cain who was cursed with a dark skin after killing Able (especially since that philosophy clearly contradicts the 2nd Article of Faith which says that men shall be punished for their own sins and not for Adam's transgression).

It offends me that Blacks could not hold the priesthood until 1978 and that when they were finally given that right, it was said that the Lord had revealed this change, not that the Mormon Church had been threatened by the IRS with losing its tax-exempt status for discriminatory practices.

And I could go on and on...

Point-blank, Mormonism in its entirety offends me.

These are only a few of the things that offended me when I was a Mormon.  And I worked through them.  But I would have to be extremely shallow to leave the church over such a "personal offense."  And I'm a lot of things, but I'm not shallow.

IMO, the following post hits the nail on the head.

"You left because you were offended"
Post on ExMormon Forums by InsanaD, 1/20/2011

Oh how often we've heard this tired excuse. How often it's used to marginalize the one who finds credible fault with the inconsistencies and untruths in the LDS church and doctrine, and yet how far off the mark it often is. It's a low class tactic meant to suggest that the person that left just couldn't handle normal human relationships. It suggests that they misinterpret, are playing victim, and lack the courage to work things out in civil manners. It negates their core argument and turns the discussion to their personal weakness, percieved or real.

We hear these games taught from the pulpit from leaders at the very top of the LDS church. We hear the subsequent message given in a sort of whisper campaign like the ones Karl Rove instigated on Bush's rivals. The cumulative effect is to draw attention from the hard questions being asked and to zero in on the disaffected. A bandaid for a gushing head wound.

I've fallen prey to this game numerous times and I suspect my mother graduated Suma Cum Laude from the school of Passive Agressiveness. The twisted gyrations to turn attention away from the many difficult questions was frustrating and I always came out the bully, the loser, the negative nelly and nay sayer. But in the end regardless of how they saw me, I still had hard questions that weren't answered or were outright lied about.

If someone asks me why I left the LDS church I now say "YES, I left because I was offended!"

I left because I was offended. Really, my feelings were hurt.

One thing that genuinely offends me is when some arrogant entitled LDS person thinks that by lumping all those who leave the church into the "Offended/Sinner" category it absolves them from having to examine the vast wasteland of horrific offenses that the church has done to so many and permeates the culture and history of the church. If they can marginalize those that leave with such a blanket accusation it may offer them some comfort for their own ignorance and naive perspective but it does nothing to help bridge the chasm that exists between the disaffected and the devout.

I left because I was offended. I was offended at the doctrine, the leadership, the history, the culture, the oppression, the lies, the lies, the lies and more lies. I was offended at the corruption, the graft, the good ol' boys games, the misogynist sexual discrimination, the cruel way the culture extorts silence from dissenters, the ostricization, the manipulation and backward indoctrination of children, the group think mindset that dominates any sort of honest intellectual integrity. I was offended by the grey dull tedious repressive leaders. I was offended by so much that it would take volumes to write it all out. I left because I was offended. Lies offend me. I must be a big baby.

I will continue to be offended at the lies the church continues to tell and forces their devotees to swallow. If it comforts those who give their loyalty to such a corrupt organization as the LDS church to think that folks like me left because we were offended, then by all means, placate the passive aggressive game with such silliness. They sure as hell won't win friends and influence people but they can sit comfortably in their little home teaching room and congratulate themselves that they stayed loyal to a corrupt lying organization and are among folks who think just like them. They belong there.

Comment to this post - by Rainfather, 1/22/2011

I'm free to study anything I want to, without someone commenting, "You shouldn't be reading that stuff." Life is suddenly an exciting mystery. It's so much happier now without the dogma of any religious organization. I study so many different faiths now. When you do that, it really highlights how many different beliefs there are out there and how many there have been throughout history.

You live in such a tiny box when you live within Mormonism. Unfortunately, you don't see that until you're on the outside, looking back. That's when you see the box and everyone running around in it. You feel sorry for them and wish you could rescue them all. But at some point, you finally realize that they're happy in their little box and that they don't want to be rescued.

You simply rejoice for those who have made their way out, and many will.  Some of them find their way here, where we try to help them to heal their wounds (for those who are wounded). I'm at the point where I feel no need to work through the issues of the church anymore. I don't care about debating the issues. I have healed and moved on. I remain only to help those who are at the beginning of their journey out or are struggling.

As for being offended? Sure there are those who offended me. I'm lucky. There were only a few. But I never would have left because of them. I simply put them down as jerks and went about my business. The only reason I left was because I'd made the discovery that the church wasn't what it claimed to be, and I knew that with a 100% surety after a lot of study and research.

Ditto to what both InsanaD and Rainfather said in the above post and comment.  And the bolded part above is exactly why I left.  But when it comes down to it, yes, I was offended, very offended.  Not by any one person per se, but by lies, deception, cover-ups and contradictions perpetuated by the Mormon Church that are laced throughout both its history and doctrine.

Joseph Smith lied.  Period.  End of story.  Subsequent leaders have perpetuated those lies, and in many ways have enhanced them.  Latching on to the explanation for Joseph Smith's behavior as touted in the book "Rough Stone Rolling" is also perpetuating those lies.  And those members who ignore what is blatantly clear about the Mormon Church's history and doctrine are continuing to perpetuate those lies.  Really, since when is lying okay?  That quote by Boyd K. Packer really irritates me - "Some things that are true are not very useful."  Just ridiculous.
can put up with a lot.  I'm a trooper, and I tend to "hang in there" until I'm holding on by nothing but a fingernail.  But one thing I can't tolerate is deceit and dishonesty.  Being lied to.  Especially by a religious organization that purports to value truth and honesty.  Just tell me the truth.  Is that too much to ask?

So when I am asked if the reason I left the Mormon Church was because I was offended, I will answer... "Yes, I was offended, and I am still offended by the lies, deceit, cover-ups and contradictions embodied within Mormonism and perpetuated by its 'prophet' and leaders.  Very offended."

Monday, April 18, 2011


When I saw this Doonesbury cartoon strip, I really laughed.  That kind of says it all, doesn't it?!!  And although it doesn't necessarily describe me (at least, I'd like to think it doesn't), I can certainly relate to its sentiments.

When I first created my blog, it was to post a book I have written about my Exit from Mormonism entitled, "Finding My Own Voice: A Former Mormon Woman's Journey of Self-Discovery."  Once I had posted my book, though, I decided to start posting my ideas as well.  Expressing my distress and disgust with the Mormon Church and the way in which I was brainwashed into believing so many ridiculous things has really helped me continue to sort through it all.   

Overall, blogging has become one of my ways of coping with all I have been through, and sorting through the endless list of ridiculous beliefs I adhered to for so many years.  After all, I was 52 years old before I finally left the Mormon Church so there is A LOT for me to sort through.  STILL. 

Several months after starting blogging, I discovered Main Street Plaza ( and Outer Blogness ( - and I felt I had "arrived" when my blog began to appear in the feed on that website.  Of course, the Mormon-related correlations between the names Outer Blogness and Outer Darkness aren't lost on me... and I find the parallels rather amusing...

These days, I have really gotten into blogging.  Especially after entering Outer Blogness.  I find it exhilarating and life-affirming to state my opinions openly for the first time in my life, and to realize that my opinions are actually being heard and appreciated.  Blogging has become one of my lifelines, just as has going on various ExMormon discussion boards and joining some ExMormon Facebook groups.  Blogging (and the thoughts that go into it) feeds my soul just as reading some other Ex-Mormon blogs has done.  And of course, realizing that I'm not alone in my position regarding the Mormon Church is very assuring as well.

Once I opened my mind to the actual facts, I began to see that I had been a SHEEP my whole life, just following along without really thinking about it.   Simply going with the flow, doing what I saw everyone else doing.  Believing what I was told to believe.  Not making any waves.  Becoming complacent.  And since breaking away from the mold, I've come to see my blog is a statement reflecting what is embodied in this Far Side cartoon:

In many ways, I see my blogging as a way to reach out to others who are stuck in the goose-step march that so epitomizes Mormonism.  And I've become so comfortable with my Ex-Mormonism that I have even begun to mention my blog on Facebook, something that would have made me very wary and nervous just a few months ago.  I am very proud of my progression from Mormon Woman... to Former Mormon Woman... to Openly Full-Blown Ex-Mormon Woman.

And it feels very good to finally just be ME.  I make no apologies for who I am anymore, which I did regularly when I was an active Mormon.  You know... never feeling good enough, never doing enough, never able to relax and just exist without feeling like I should be doing more, always worried that unless I tirelessly did everything "they" said I should, I wouldn't make it to the Celestial Kingdom.  It was exhausting being a Mormon.

Accepting ME for who I am has been a big step, and it feels very good not to expect so much from myself anymore.  And I certainly don't feel the urge to confess anything to a Mormon Bishop anymore...

Now if I could just figure out how you can die from blogging...

Friday, April 15, 2011


In another post that appears earlier in this blog, I wrote an entry based on a quote by Gerry Spence:  "I would rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief." 

Or as depicted in this picture,

Since writing that previous post, I have thought even more about belief structures and how detrimental they can be to a person's perceptions.  For instance, in Mormonism, people often become so wrapped up in the belief structure that they seem to feel personally attacked if anyone questions their beliefs.  And when that occurs, it often leads to the person launching a direct personal attack against the other person, who they tend to look at as the opponent.  This recently happened between me and a very good friend with whom I grew up.  Of course, since when someone actually begins to think differently, and decides to leave Mormonism, it is seen as not just an attack against the religion itself but also against its members, it wasn't a big surprise to me.  But even so, the fact that so much animosity seems to develop between members and what they term as "apostates," even to the point of family members turning against the "apostate," is almost a given, I still find it not only very sad but also extremely unChristian-like.

Personal attacks like this are called "ad hominem attacks."  These types of attacks usually involve insulting or belittling one's opponent in order to invalidate his argument, but can also involve pointing out supposed character flaws or actions which are irrelevant to the opponent's argument.  Of course, this tactic is not based in reality because insults and even true negative facts about the opponent's personal character have nothing to do with the logical merits of the opponent's arguments or assertions.

  • "You can't believe Jack when he says the proposed policy would help the economy. He doesn't even have a job."
  • "Candidate Jane's proposal about zoning is ridiculous. She was caught cheating on her taxes in 2003."
Of course, these types of attacks are very common in regard to Ex-Mormons.  Like being told that we cannot know anything since we no longer have the "spirit" because we have obviously lost the "Holy Ghost."  Or the connotation that there must be something wrong with us because we can't understand the importance or significance of certain doctrines.  Or the insinuation that the fact that we even began to question is evidence of how lack of faith and inability to process things that are truly spiritual.  And on and on and on, ad nauseum.

In the movie Dogma, there's a great quote about belief structures:

Rufus: He still digs humanity, but it bothers Him to see the shit that gets carried out in His name - wars, bigotry, televangelism. But especially the factioning of all the religions. He said humanity took a good idea and, like always, built a belief structure on it.

Bethany: Having beliefs isn't good?

Rufus: I think it's better to have ideas. You can change an idea. Changing a belief is trickier. Life should be malleable and progressive; working from idea to idea permits that. Beliefs anchor you to certain points and limit growth; new ideas can't generate. Life becomes stagnant.

So in essence, people become blinded by belief, so much so that they can't accept or even listen to any opposing views.  Their minds are closed by belief.  Being open to new ideas and the possiblity that a person's view is skewed is important to living an intellectually curious life.  One of my biggest regrets in life is that I went along with Mormonism for so long and didn't even question so many things that are clearly preposterous to me now.  I was not intellectually curious, but rather buried my head in the sand like so many Mormons tend to do.  Blindly going along.  Not really questioning, but rather allowing others to do the thinking for them.  It is no wonder to me that most Mormons actually believe that "When the prophet speaks, the debate is over," although most don't even get to the debating stage.  They accept what they are told, that "there are things we can't understand in this life."

When I discovered the truth about Mormonism and the fact that it is based on a stack of lies, I was dumbfounded.  For a long time, I tried to blame my upbringing for my lack of interest in finding out the truth earlier.  Brainwashing.  Programming.  But although all that is true to a certain extent, I really only had myself to blame.  I should have examined it more closely when I was growing up.  I should have looked at the history of the Church sooner and in more depth.  The fact that I didn't but rather waited until I was 50 years old to really research and study about it all upsets me to this day.

Obviously, blind belief is not confined to Mormonism.  I'm sure it exists in every religion.  My experience has been with Mormonism, and so I tend to focus on its idiosyncrasies.  But in the end, what it all boils down to is that people in general are told to believe in a certain religion simply because.  Because someone said they should believe a certain way.  Or because they were brought up to believe these things.  Or because (as the below Non Sequitur cartoon points out), "Because, ummmm.... God said so, that's why."

These days, I look at myself as an Agnostic.  In my years since leaving Mormonism, I have come to realize that it is impossible to know one way or the other whether God really exists.  I do know one thing, though, and that is that the Mormon Church is not "the one and only true church on the face of the earth" (as they like to claim - another sign of a cult). 
In my contact with other ExMormons, I have noted that while some people who leave the Mormon Church join other Christian churches after their departure (including Unitarian type churches to a great extent), a great many become Agnostics.  And while some stay in the Agnostic mindset (like me), others tend to work their way toward being Atheists.   It seems to me that this progression is a result of being "burnt out" on organized religion and its "all or nothing" stance.

One of the things that puzzles me now is that there are a lot of very intelligent people ensconced in the Mormon Church, perfectly happy to live what I consider to be "the lie."  Their beliefs do not make sense, and although many of those beliefs have been proven to be false, that doesn't seem to matter to them.  Some of these "true believers" include lawyers, who are taught to be critical thinkers in law school, but for some reason, they do not apply that critical thinking to their religion.  That is very puzzling to me.

But whether or not the belief is based on truth or lies seems to be immaterial to the "true believer."  For instance, there is a huge example of this in the Book of Abraham, which was purportedly "translated" by Joseph Smith from Egyptian Papyri.  But even though modern Egyptologists have declared the "translation" by Joseph Smith to be completely inaccurate and not based in any measure in reality, members of the Mormon Church continue to cling to their belief that the Book of Abraham is the Word of God translated by a modern-day prophet.  To me, however, when something is proven to be false, then it is false.  If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, it is a duck (as pointed out by Steven Kazan, an expert on cults, when referring to Mormonism - which in his opinion, as in mine, is very definitely a cult).

For me, one of the biggest lessons I have learned in my journey away from Mormonism is developing a true belief in Freedom of Religion (not what I consider to be the pretend one behind the 11th Article of Faith ala Mormonism).  People should be able to believe what they truly want to believe in actuality, and no one should tell them they should believe one way or another.  The phrase "Live and let live" has taken on new meaning for me, as has the scripture "Judge not that ye be not judged."

In other words...
Whatever floats your boat.
Whatever rocks your socks.
Whatever melts your  butter.


Wednesday, April 6, 2011


I love to watch reruns of Seinfeld.  So funny.  And there are so many quotes and situations from that show that have made it into normal everyday conversation.  The Soup Nazi.  Muffin Tops.  The Puffy Shirt.  The Big Salad.  Low talkers.  J. Peterman catalog.  Junior Mints ("They're so refreshing").  Art Vandelay.  Toxic envelope adhesive.  Yada yada yada.

Of course, the one here - "It's not a lie if you believe it" - is from an episode ("The Beard") in which Jerry Seinfeld was going to take a polygraph test as a result of a bet he made with a girl he was dating about whether or not he watched Melrose Place.  Interlaced through that episode are story lines about Elaine dating a gay man and thinking she could get him to "switch teams," and George wearing a toupee as he begins dating a bald woman (and Elaine ripping the toupee of his head and throwing it out the window because she says he's acting like a jerk - after which the bald woman breaks up with George).  That is one of the best things about Seinfeld episodes - the way in which so many story lines are intertwined.

That line - "It's not a lie if you believe it" - really says a lot.  Many people lie to themselves all the time - and the more the lie is told, the more it seems less like a lie and more like the truth.  Of course, involved in that process is a certain amount of delusion, especially when the lie starts to morph and transform into "the absolute truth" in the person's mind.  And usually when that happens, they close themselves off to hearing any opposing opinions - or the actual facts.

But what is worse, at least in my opinion, is when religious organizations lie to people.  After I began researching Mormon Church history, I began to realize just how many lies are present within Mormonism, not only in the telling of its history, but also in its doctrines and teachings.  Things that I had been taught from childhood on turned out to be filled with lies and half-truths.  Like Joseph Smith being jailed for his religious beliefs and being a religious martyr.  That is simply not true.  Joseph Smith was in Carthage Jail because he was a criminal, and was definitely not a martyr.  He was arrested because he ordered the destruction of the Nauvoo Expositor press and the burning of the building in which it was housed after its owners dared to print the truth about his polyamous ways.  I'm sorry, but those are criminal acts, and he deserved to be jailed for these actions.  And to paint him as a religious martyr is beyond delusional.

And of course, there are many other examples of lying within Mormonism.  The First Vision is a classic example.  The fact that there are at least 9 versions of the First Vision is very telling.  Joseph Smith just kept telling it and re-telling it until it morphed into the "official version" that the Mormon Church holds out today.  But the fact is that until the last version, which wasn't even written down until 1838 (18 years after the fact), the First Vision didn't even speak of Joseph Smith having a visitation from Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, but rather said that he had been visited by "heavenly personages" and/or "an angel."  It wasn't until a time when the church was losing many members due to the excommunications of Oliver Cowdery and the Whitmer brothers that Joseph Smith decided to "beef up" the First Vision to say that he had been visited by none other than Eloheim and Jesus Christ, two separate heavenly individuals.

Also, claiming that the Pearl of Great Price is scripture is an enormous lie.  Saying that Joseph Smith translated the Book of Abraham from Egyptian papyri is a blatant falsehood.  In fact, the more research I do, the more convinced I am that the Book of Mormon is a made-up piece of fiction, and that Joseph Smith no more translated it from golden plates than I did.

Lying for the Lord.  Despicable.  Unconscionable.  Reeling people in with lies in order to gain power over them, control them, and get them to hand over lots and lots of money.  Certainly not honest - and not Christian either.  But sadly, the Mormon Church is very good at reeling people it and trapping them for life.  And so these duped individuals live out their lives, believing in this bogus religious organization, convincing themselves that there is an explanation for it all - which we can't understand now, but if we endure to the end, after we shed this mortal coil, the truth of all these things will be made known to us, and then we will know that it was all worth it.

Delusional?  Yes.  But then, "It's not a lie if you believe it," right???

Friday, April 1, 2011


As if religion (and particularly Mormonism) is the only path to being a good person or finding goodness in the world...

Of course, the Mormon Church takes it one step further, and says that only certain "righteous" Mormons will make it to the highest degree of the Celestial Kingdom... and anyone who isn't Mormon will go to either the Terrestrial Kingdom or the Telestial Kingdom.  But wait... there is baptism for the dead, so if someone dies without becoming Mormon, they can rectify that problem in the Afterlife.  Isn't that convenient (as the Church lady would say).

But Mormons take it even further by believing that they can eventually become Gods themselves. Yes, I know President Gordon B. Hinckley told a reporter in 1997 when being interviewed for the Time magazine article entitled Mormons, Inc., "I don't know that we teach that," but they do and have all along.  The statement "As man is now, God once was; as God now is, man may become" is a Mormon belief, which I heard repeatedly when I was growing up, and it always bothered me.

The reporter said, "God the Father was once a man as we are.  This is something that Christian writers are always addressing."  Then the reporter asked President Hinckley, "Is this the teaching of the church today, that God the Father was once a man like we are?" And his reply was: "I don't know that we teach that. I don't know that we emphasize it. I haven't heard it discussed for a long time in public discourse. I don't know. I don't know all the circumstances under which that statement was made. I understand the philosophical background behind it, but I don't know a lot about it, and I don't think others know a lot about it."

Oh, really?  He seriously didn't know if the Mormon Church teaches that?  The reality of the situation, though, is that President Hinckley knew that the Mormon Church teaches that, but he didn't feel comfortable discussing it so he went into a song-and-dance routine.  What a cop-out.
Moral of the story (ala Mormonism):

When cornered, make something up... and certainly don't tell the truth.