Saturday, October 22, 2005

On Doubt

I was going to write a different article today, but it was long and self-serving so I decided to scrap it. )

So with that out of the way, it's onto whatever ramblings I intend to write about today. Don't ask me why, but I was looking up the Mormon position on trans gendered individuals the other day. The only thing I know for certain is that if you're a trans gendered female to male you cannot hold the priesthood. (I don't know if this applies to male to female transsexuals. I only assume it does. As I left the church, to the best of my knowledge, I no longer hold the priesthood anyway, and according to the pamphlet they sent, all blessings of baptism were canceled.) And, as I still look male and have male parts, I can probably climb back through the ranks if that's what I choose to do. (Thankfully, I don't want to.)

But I find myself thinking what if I was wrong all along? I don't mean about the doctored history or the Book of Abraham being little more than the Egyptian Book of Breathings and not what Joseph Smith translated it as, but chances are you don't know about these things unless you're a Mormon with some form of doubt already. Even things that aren't literally true, can be true in other ways, and some parts of the Book of Mormon are true, whether Lamanites and Nephites existed or not. Of course the same thing can be true of any myth, provided the myth wasn't written for entertainment. (Many things presented as mythology to students are actually from Ovid's Metamorphoses.)

Now, I know as an evil apostate, I'm already bound according to some people for Outer Darkness. Thankfully, this is a small portion of people who have been described by the columnist Robert Kirby as “Nazi Mormons” 90% of whom live within pot lucking distance of BYU (Also a direct quote for him, lest I engage in crass plagiarism.)

Doubt is a natural part of our lives. I was told initially that doubt (about the Mormon church specifically) was from Satan, but is doubt really always a bad thing? The doubts I had about the church were a good thing. I often believe there's a presence in my life that watches over me and occasionally keeps me from making severely bad decisions. (I wish he/she was around when I bought that Neon, but I'm not bitter or anything...) There may even be good reasons for your doubt. Unfortunately, it's up to you to determine whether the reasons for the doubt are valid or not. Nobody else can do it for you.

Don't dismiss your doubt just because someone tells you to. If I merely dismissed it as the promptings of Satan, I would not know as much as I do now about other religions, and of course, at the root of this whole blog is one big doubt that remains unresolved. Doubt is uncomfortable and sometimes all we want out of life is a sense of inner peace – which religion can provide. We must understand, however, that religion does not provide cures, which is why many denominations make their clergy take courses in psychology and counseling.

I've said before I don't know where my doubts will lead me. Just merely taking a look inside myself can be scary yet liberating at the same time. I don't know where you are reader, but perhaps you may want to give into the journeys of doubt from time to time. They don't always lead to bad ends.


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