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Micah

“My name is Micah and I’m an enthusiast of truth.”

My exit from Mormonism unknowingly started in early 2008 with a deepened desire to have my calling and election made sure for myself and my wife, and our place in the New Jerusalem assured for Christ’s second coming. That all began with much fasting and prayer in February, and openness to the guidance of the Holy Ghost. During this spiritual journey, I never read anything online or elsewhere related to Mormonism or that would be considered “anti” material etc. What I did read and follow were philosophies and spiritual works that gave me the warm promptings and confirmation feelings associated with the Holy Ghost and a few months down the road, to the conclusion that all religions together were failing to unite the human family into a single peaceful society. 

This epiphany (or “revelation” in religious terms) occurred on May 28th, 2008 and was the last day I considered myself Mormon or religiously affiliated. When this understanding dawned on me I felt the most exhilarating, freeing, and euphoric peace and freedom I have ever experienced. I had been freed from the dogma and closed minded thinking from my past indoctrination and upbringing, and awakened to the true nature, potential and beauty of humanity and creation. This experience was equal to or in excess of any spiritual confirmations or experiences I had on my mission and in Mormonism, of which I had many. During all of this time of searching I continued to read my Book of Mormon every morning, sincerely pray multiple times daily, fast, attend the temple, bare testimony and purify my life according to LDS teachings.

A couple weeks later I had another such epiphany that directed me to investigate why Mormonism in particular was not uniting humanity, but also deceptive and untruthful in its own right. It didn’t take much searching online in today’s information age to find many confirmable sources and events from Mormon origins and history that leave little trust in the watered down version of LDS church history as taught in Gospel Doctrine classes and a lot of doubt as to the LDS church’s claims of being God’s one and only true and authorized church. It was at this point that I introduced what I found to my wife who then began her own heart breaking awakening to the illusion and eventual disaffection with Mormonism.

I realize now that what lead me out were literary materials that appealed to my own biases based first in Mormonism and second in divine guidance, and are neither unbiased nor verifiable in their own right. However, this realization is just further evidence of our human weakness to be guided or mislead by our psychological biases, programming and conditioning, and that the spiritual experiences had by those in Mormonism are very similar to what others experience in all religions, whether Jehovah’s Witnesses, Catholic, Christian, Muslim, Buddhism and most others. Our experiences are all functions and illusions of our own minds, verifiable by many psychological studies and human behavior science experts, perhaps mounting the greatest argument against religious spiritualism, second only to the unique deceptions, lies and facts of each individual creed.

You may take this how you will. I have no desire to lead anyone out of Mormonism or any religion who honestly finds that particular creed fulfilling and meaningful. If that faith works for you and gives you the purpose and fulfillment you desire out of life, congratulations and more power to you, so long as you don’t enforce your beliefs on those who aren’t of your faith.

I now see life in a much less judgmental and mostly impartial manner, which has opened my eyes to the beautiful diversity, individuality and interconnectedness of humanity and nature. I no longer feel that I have to convert the world to my way of thinking, and instead appreciate the individual perspectives and experiences we all have. I no longer recognize a right or wrong way to live, just your way and what works for us individually to bring us purpose, fulfillment and joy, much as the Dalai Lama says: “People take different roads seeking fulfillment and happiness. Just because they’re not on your road doesn’t mean they’ve gotten lost.”

Micah’s website:
http://www.LifeAfterMormonism.net

Facebook Fanpage:
http://www.facebook.com/LifeAfterMormonism

Other communities for those leaving or who have left Mormonism:
http://www.postmormon.org
http://www.thefoyer.org
http://www.reddit.com/r/exmormon/

Micah suggests these helpful Links in Studying Mormonism:
http://www.MormonThink.com
http://wivesofjosephsmith.org
http://www.exmormonscholarstestify.org
http://www.fairlds.org/
http://www.mormondialogue.org/

Books on Mormonism:
http://exmormonfoundation.org/bookstore.html

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Brian
February 7th, 2011 at 12:35 am

Well done, Micah. It takes courage to be true to your conscience, especially in the face of potential backlash for living your life with integrity!

Peggy
February 7th, 2011 at 9:46 am

Micah, it was nice to ‘meet’ you via webcam. I really admire your positive approach and thanks for LAM, it helped me through the rough spots.

FindingPeace/Donna
February 7th, 2011 at 12:47 pm

Great job Micah! I loved hearing your voice and I appreciate all of your contributions to the Post Mormon/Ex-Mormon communities. I agree with you in that I have no desire to lead people out of mormonism who are truly happy. I think that the efforts to provide a safe place for Mormons who question are fabulous. Thanks again for all that you have done. And I love FNC!

LDS Truthseeker
February 8th, 2011 at 7:18 pm

Awesome job Micah. That was really good. I enjoyed the positive, upbeat way in which you did that.

John
February 9th, 2011 at 1:41 am

You sound knowledgeable Micah and thats awesome. I can honestly tell you now that no matter what youve learned in or outside of the church, Truth is Truth and I’m a little saddened to hear you actually went further from it. You knew it when you taught it on your Mission and you probably still have a little testimony in you of the Truth. I want to testify to you Micah that I am a Mormon and I know that our teachings are Gods teachings no matter what anybody says. My Faith has been tried many times, and continues to be tried all the time, but no matter what happens the Holy Ghost lets me know that the church is true. Come back, it is not too late but it will be one day. The Lord loves you and so do I believe it or not. Your Brother, John.

Dan Johnson (admin)
February 9th, 2011 at 3:52 am

Hi John. I think there are many who feel just as strongly as you do about their respective religions. I appreciate your comments and participation with this site, especially in defense of Shane.

I think there are a few things that are noteworthy about your testimony.

One thing I find particularly shady in the LDS church is the practice of telling everyone you “know” in order to gain a testimony. Examples from the leadership here:

“Another way to seek a testimony seems astonishing when compared with the methods of obtaining other knowledge. We gain or strengthen a testimony by bearing it. Someone even suggested that some testimonies are better gained on the feet bearing them than on the knees praying for them.” -Dalin H Oaks
http://lds.org/conference/talk/display/0,5232,49-1-851-10,00.html

“It is not unusual to have a missionary say, “How can I bear testimony until I get one? How can I testify that God lives, that Jesus is the Christ, and that the gospel is true? If I do not have such a testimony, would it not be dishonest?”
Oh, if I could teach you this one principle. A testimony is to be found in the bearing of it!”-Boyd K Packer
http://lds.org/liahona/1988/12/the-candle-of-the-lord?lang=eng

The problem with this teaching, is that sincere belief can be engineered through simple expression of belief, and this is a documented psychological effect called “Insufficient Justification Effect”. If your leaders believe themselves to be honest, they will renounce this manipulative teaching. This is only one of the psychological tools the church uses constantly to engineer and strengthen belief. It is dishonest, and has inevitably created many strong testimonies like your own. Unfortunately, you may as well believe in Xenu the dictator of the “Galactic Confederacy” who, 75 million years ago, brought billions of his people to Earth in a DC-8-like spacecraft, stacked them around volcanoes and killed them using hydrogen bombs. Millions of people believe this nonsense through similar psychological manipulation in the Church of Scientology. How have they come to these beliefs? Why would members of their church dedicate their lives by signing “Billion Year Contracts” to give service to their church (100 hour weeks in the infamous “Sea Organization”)? They believe they are helping the world and fighting for truth. But when we are on the outside, we can see how ridiculous their beliefs are and how they are victims of psychological manipulation. They refuse to look at material critical of their beliefs. They call detractors “Suppressive Persons” and have a practice of “disconnection” which has torn families apart. The Mormon faith has a cultural disconnection practice as you have witnessed with Shane’s parents. But the result is the same: the organisation and it’s doctrines are protected. But think of how much psychological manipulation must be going on in the church of Scientology for them to believe in an evil Galactic Emperor named Xenu. I would challenge you to find more information about how this is possible- for your own knowledge and assurance that the same things are not going on with your own declaration of testimony. You have nothing to lose- and in the process you do not have to investigate anything considered “anti” from the LDS perspective. My suggestion would be to begin by familiarizing yourself with Steven Hassan’s “BITE” model:

http://www.freedomofmind.com/resourcecenter/articles/BITE.htm

Steven Hassan’s Book can be purchased here:

http://amzn.com/0967068800

Again, I appreciate your comments and participation on this site! Take care!

Sincerely,
Dan Johnson

February 9th, 2011 at 9:28 am

John,

I appreciate your concern and understand the perspective you are coming from, as I too was there in as strong of a testimony as any saint. In my search for truth and the discovery of how easily our minds can fabricate warm fuzzies to produce the illusion of something being true, I had to conclude that genuine truth has to be self evident, verifiable, repeatable and non-subjective to the emotions of the one seeking it.

You mention that you’ve experienced your own trials of faith. You might consider that these “trials” may just be your rational mind trying to alert you to the contradiction between the reality you observe through your senses, and the illusion created in your mind of the truthfulness of Mormonism. For example, I don’t have to continue to assert my testimony of gravity or be tried in my faith of gravity because I can observe it as a constant force, test it when ever, and get the same results as everyone else.

My own testing of subjective, emotionally appealing, sensationally satisfying and unobservable religious truth has not been so affirming, and the differing results we each experience are easily attributable to the individual indoctrinations, upbringings, social environments and bias building undergone from birth, but do not produce the same, repeatable and verifiable results regardless of the background of the individual observing it. A real truth precedent cannot be established through such subjective methods as emotional or mental response to prayer, which is why when raised in any given religion and asked to pray about it, we each generally produce the answer that already affirms our biases and indoctrination beginning at birth. If any given gospel was the absolute truth, it would have to produce the same exact response whenever observed or confirmation sought by anyone. Instead we observe subjective warm fuzzies(or some other response, or no response) generated by happy thoughts, wishful thinking and social pressure. Surely a God who has given us our senses and thinking minds to survive and learn from the environment around us would expect us to use them rather than disregard them when seeking universal truth. In this sense, science, more than religion, seeks to understand and establish the verifiable, repeatable and observable laws, attributes and nature of the Universe and its truth, and has produced the results to confirm it with all of the technical marvels and advancements of our time.

I hope that provides a more detailed explanation for why I cannot return to Mormonism, for it would require me to deny the observations, logic and reason of my own mind and senses, lie to myself and thus deceive others, and force my blessing on an organization that I do not feel merits it.

-Micah

Michelle
February 17th, 2011 at 8:16 pm

very well said Micah.

Ricardo Garcia
February 13th, 2011 at 8:56 am

Hello Micah; I’m interested to know your believes on Jesus and his teachings.
You references to “mormons” and not to “latter-day saints” indicates that perhaps you were never really a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of latter-day Saints. You don’t speak as some one who has been an active member of the church, but as some one who to me sounds a lot like a “wolf in sheep cloths”. I hope you are not offended by this observations. As for many of “your reasons for leaving the Mormon Church”(which by the way are untruthful and offensive to most Christians) it seems to me that you really have issues with the Bible and it’s teachings and with Jesus Christ and his teachings.
Having said that if you are happy to find truth though science alone then I fear you will never find it, for science continues to discard theory after theory ! One has only to look at what was taught 2000 years ago by the scientist of that time as “the truth” and what it is taught today. Is it different? Has their concept of truth change? Even my youngest child would laugh out loud at their teachings! In contrast the teachings of Jesus are as relevant to me today as they were 2000 years ago!
And yes, I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and as a follower of Jesus I hope that your search for happiness will lead you one day back to our Lord and Saviour (and not to “Mormonism”, for there is not such a thing!)

February 13th, 2011 at 11:05 am

Calling the kettle black Ricardo? You incorrectly accuse me of being a wolf in sheep’s clothing, yet you yourself begin by trying to not appear LDS, but Christian, before outright admitting that you are in fact LDS. Fascinating. As to your accusations, I was a 6th generational Mormon, aka, a fully active and believing member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day saints, married in the temple, 2 years to Santiago Chile preaching the gospel and still have 9 siblings along with my parents and extended family who are still active and faithful members. You are trying to twist semantics to paint me false. I speak my truth as well as I live it. If all LDS did the same, they would stay out of politics and stop dictating “appropriate” behaviors for those not members of that faith (11th article of faith).

Celestialbound
February 13th, 2011 at 3:40 pm

Ricardo,

Better to have a truth that is available to change based on new evidence than to have a truth that can’t change when contradicted by new evidence. Which is more likely to be true? The truth that assumes it is true and then closes itself of from any and all contradictory evidence, or the truth that welcomes all contradictory evidence and refines itself.

To be open and always evaluating is not a weakness. To be closed and never evaluating is.

February 13th, 2011 at 4:56 pm

Nicely worded. Couldn’t have said it better myself.

Dan Johnson (admin)
February 13th, 2011 at 6:59 pm

Celestialbound has his video coming out next week!

Nazapatch
February 15th, 2011 at 5:25 pm

Do you know what impresses me? Why, after leaving LDS Church, people start gathering all efforts to preach against it? We, human beings are free to come and go. I left Catholicism years ago but I never said a word against it. And never tried to make Catholics believe that they are right or wrong. It was my right, my choice to be a dissident and so are all, whenever we decide to.
Ex-Catholics, Ex-Protestants, Ex-Mormons… we are all Ex something. One day we decide that we don’t want something anymore. It’s a choice. Period.

And more. In the name of “believes” wars infest the World. People kill and die. Innocents suffer. This is absolutely not the Doctrine of Christ.

Stop of blah blah blah… Get a life people. There are children dying of hunger in Africa and many other countries. How about being a volunteer and spend your time doing something that really counts?

(I hope Mr Administrator, you are decent enough to post my comment. But, of course, it’s your choice). Cheerio!!!!

February 15th, 2011 at 9:00 pm

Nazapatch, you impress me as one who left Catholicism for Mormonism. Forgive me if I’m wrong. The deep indoctrination one experiences at the hands of any religion, the greater effort required to deprogram and recover from said religion. We share our stories to give hope and a path to those just beginning or still going through their transitions for Mormonism to life after mormonism. I hope you can recognize the good in that mission.

Sam Andy
February 15th, 2011 at 10:53 pm

To those that criticize Micah: why all the hand-wringing? Do you feel threatened by his use of his own integrity and his pursuit of truth, wherever it leads him? To me, truth is like gravity — it needs no defense. It just *is*. If the LDS Church feels no need to openly and publicly explain its version of truth, and openly defend its history, I see no reason why its membership should feel such a burning need to step in and do it for them.

Gullible's Travels / Natalie
February 15th, 2011 at 11:08 pm

No one is going to censor your speech here as your world view is just as valid as anyone else’s. That said, if you have not personally been affected by being caught up in, and indeed making your life’s work that of a provable con, then maybe it is best that you admit you don’t, and indeed are not trying to understand. It is of Christ to have pure love and empathy, and so perhaps you can be a little more understanding and a little more forgiving if you are a true follower of Christ, in lieu of judgement based on assumptions

It is a fallacy to put your experience on mine, Micah’s, or anyone elses. Our experiences are not the same. And just because you were able to leave and walk away from Catholicism without feelings doesn’t mean we aren’t allowed to have any reaction we need to after leaving Mormonism. Again, our world views are also valid.

Did you give 10% of your income, literally adding up to thousands upon thousands of dollars to your church? Did you give 2 years of your life in devoted service, and in addition pay for the privilege to do so? Did you fellowship and bring others into something you later, under your world view, realized was a corporation void of god? Did you self-loathe because you fell short of unrealistic spiritual and ‘moral’ dictates, mandates and doctrines? Were things purposefully and calculatingly hidden from you that once found out were the catalyst for your departure? Did you experience unnecessary and unwarranted fall-out from loved ones purely because of your very personal decision to part ways with your religion? (see comments on Shane’s video)

This website is about support for others in dealing with these and other issues relating to our departure from Mormonism. It isn’t bashing or attacking anyone and that anyone would see it as such I ask them to seriously consider that they may be operating under the confirmation bias.

And some things are what they are. I do not doubt that many particpating here lead fulfilling happy lives where volunteering toward causes they believe in are a major part of. This website need not take focus of starving children in Africa to allow us to take a minute to get the support and help we need to get ourselves sorted during what may be described as an excruciating journey out of the world view many of us were born into, and have dedicated our entire lives to.

If you want to be understood, it’s probably best if you seek to understand first. Peace in your journey Nazapatch.

Ruby
February 16th, 2011 at 10:15 am

I concur with Natalie.

Thank you for sharing your story, Micah. It is invaluable to those of us that have been through the emotional roller coaster of giving our all and then subsequently leaving the LDS church, to know that we are not alone. I don’t sense in you any wish to preach against anything, but rather a wish to support your fellows on their journey, and I applaud that effort.

Scott California
February 19th, 2011 at 9:58 pm

I was preparing a lesson for Elders Quorum. I was ready to give and called and told them I couldn’t come. I did just as Micah did. I came to the same answer. I was stunned. I am just beginning my journey. I have never felt this peace. Thank You
Scott

February 19th, 2011 at 11:23 pm

Were you preparing that lesson today Scott? If so, wow. That’s a huge awakening and step. If you need community or support, stop on by LifeAfterMormonism.net or any of the other communities and read other exit stories, research, or whatever helps.

-Micah

Camille
February 20th, 2011 at 10:08 am

Dear Micah,
I understand how you, if you found inner peace at it, would want to spread the news of your “journey” into peace. But what i don’t understand is why you are trying to lure people away from what they believe makes them happy. Going to the LDS church gives me a feeling of peace and happiness that no other place does. I feel like I belong and someone cares for me. I know that what the LDS church teaches is true. I, like yourself, went through the same “journey”, but came out with different results. It strengthened my testimony. You say all religions are false? That it is just psychological feeling made to believe that it means something more? Does that honestly make you feel better? That can not possibly give someone peace. You believe that humans have no purpose in life and everything that we know of just happens to be one big mistake. No, there is something more.

February 20th, 2011 at 11:38 am

Thanks for the comment Camille. If Mormonism gives you peace, than don’t take our message to heart and consider it not applicable to you. Sadly, not everyone finds and experiences the peace that you have found. To them we reach out and offer validation, support and an invitation to live your own authentic path.

As to your statement of my believing “all religions are false”, does your own religion not teach that all other religions are false, minus your own? Or was Joseph Smith just lying when he was told just that in the sacred grove? I have really only taken that same philosophy one religion further. And yes, it does give me great peace to realize that the vengeful, jealous and petty God of the Old Testament, and of most modern religions is not a true, universally loving and kind being, that I will not be subject to such a boring and eternal torment in the afterlife, and not just the Celestial Kingdom either (who really wants to make 50 billion plus babies and perpetuate humans to the ends of the Universe?).

As to “humans hav[ing] no purpose in life”, you are putting words in my mouth. Humans will have and experience whatever purpose and effort they put into life. There is much to live for outside of religion. In fact since leaving Mormonism, I now live my life to the fullest in THIS life, and no longer living by the designs of someone else to be able to live a “eternal” life in the next one. You may not see it that way and that is perfectly acceptable. Follow your own path and don’t believe anything that doesn’t agree with your own logic and reason.

Tyler
February 20th, 2011 at 12:38 pm

you know its pretty sad that you have an entire site that is going against the church of jesus christ of latter day saints. that shows right there that you not the great people you say you are cause your judging

February 20th, 2011 at 1:58 pm

Tyler, doesn’t the claim of the LDS church being the “one true church” basically pit itself against all other religions, creeds, and beliefs, and so claim superiority, self righteousness and truth above all others? Who then lacks humility? Certainly not those willing to doubt such claims when the unbiased evidence doesn’t support them. Your grammar suggests you are perhaps yet young and unexperienced with the real world. If that is indeed the case, hopefully when you’ve gained a few more years under your belt you will one day recognize that we are a support and outreach group, not an “anti” organization.

Cori
February 20th, 2011 at 9:46 pm

I read in an earlier posting by you that you now live life to the fullest. but before you did not. Do you say that Mormons do not live life to the fullest? Because you must have been misunderstood. In the lds church we are taught to live life to the fullest, because what we do affect those all around us in ways we never can imagine. Living life to the fullest doesnt mean being able to defy rules once kept. It could mean your dad teaching you how to fly fish or laughing long and hard with your friends over a joke. Things like these are not suppressed by the church, but rather looked up upon. I am very sorry that you may have had a misunderstanding about the beliefs of the church and although you might say you have been active all your life and habe been taught these beliefs, you probably interpretted wrong.
you also said that you are glad that a mean God doesnt exist… first, what makes you sure God doesnt exist? being an atheist is like a religion for you cannot know that God does not exist. It is on faith alone that you believe there is no God. Secondly, as you probably know mormons believe in a loving God, one that loves each and every person- no matter who they are- so much and when he sees his children leave him he is filled with so much sadness that I can only imagine is possible. Finally, you continue saying that for a basis of your arguements against the teachings of the LDS, that we are the only true church. yes, I believe that, but we also believe that churches have got it partly or mostly right. to come to my point though, God loves you no matter what religion, race, or class you are, and He would send his only begotten son to save us because God loves us so much. I wish you could see through my eyes so that you can see God’s love all around us, be it a mothers hug or bright blue sky, it is real and it is there.

“Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do.” Luke 23:34

Celestialbound
February 21st, 2011 at 4:57 pm

You are correct that Micah can not prove that god does not exist. However, that fact does not make the probabilities of a god existing or not existing 50/50. The fact that one cannot prove that god does not exist does not mean that he does; such reasoning is called an argument from ignorance. Because one doesn’t know something, one knows something.

Based on the available evidence, the probabilities of a god existing are on par with unicorns or fairies existing.

Cori
February 21st, 2011 at 6:52 pm

dear celestialbound,
what created the universe, then, if there is no God? I am not trying to be rude, I am just simply curious.
also, you said God was as believable as unicorns? Did unicorns save my cousins life? Or perhaps it was just luck….. perhaps it was just luck that he died three times on the way to the hospital but was released two days later completely fine. Perhaps it is luck that my bestfriend’s mom was able to find a job and enough money to pay the rent before they were thrown out onto the streets and forced to become homeless. But, I believe it is not. I don’t really care about your beliefs on God- maybe I am not talking to you- I care about the person who is on the brink of unbelief that nothing is pure luck. Celestialbound- believe what you will but please do not take away the miracles in someone elses life. think for a moment, how would you feel if you died tomorrow? Me? i would feel sorry for the people that would be crushed if I die, but other than that, I would be ok with it. I would know I would be happy still.

Celestialbound
February 22nd, 2011 at 12:11 am

Cori,

Thanks for being curious about the way that I think and see things. You said “what created the universe, then, if there is no God?” The honest answer to this question is, I don’t know. The reverse of your question, ‘because you can’t explain how the universe got here, it must have been god who did it’ is a logical fallacy called the argument from ignorance. It generally takes the form of ‘because you/I/we don’t know something, therefore, I/you/we know something’. In this particular case, it takes the form ‘because you can’t explain where the universe came from, I can explain where the universe came from.’

Now, in conceding I don’t know where the universe came from, I am not saying that I don’t have conjectures or ideas about where it came from, I just am not certain about its origins at this point. Have you heard of dark energy? It is possible that in a state of nothing (nothing being defined as positive and negative energies that equal a sum of zero) the fluctuations between the energies could have created a big bang. There is objective, verifiable evidence to support some of the main ideas behind this idea.

You give several examples of things that give you reason to believe. Are you familiar with confirmation bias? Perhaps you could explain to me how those things are evidence for god once confirmation bias is taken into account? Further, what about the person who loved their cousin as much as you do, but their cousin died? Did god not love those two as much as you and your cousin? If you are tempted to respond that god has a plan, I would respond by pointing to the principle of falsifiability as something requisite for anything to have any truth or knowledge value (http://www.youtube.com/user/AntiCitizenX#p/u/6/HZkrX5lMiks). As a last point, slightly in jest (I hope you do not take offence), how do you know it was not unicorns that saved your cousin’s life?

You said “ please do not take away the miracles in someone elses life.” This type of reasoning can be called emotional blackmail; ‘please don’t do something because of all the emotional pain you will cause’. While emotions are important and play a significant role in life, they do not play a role in determining reality, and their invocation in a manipulative way in intellectual discourse is a fallacy.

You said “how would you feel if you died tomorrow?” Most likely, I would feel nothing. I would cease to exist. That which is required for consciousness (as far as we know) will have ceased. For the sake of argument however, let’s assume your world view is correct. I would then feel like this: http://www.youtube.com/user/theoreticalbullshit?blend=1&ob=4#p/u/21/iClejS8vWjo

I am looking forward to your thoughts on what I have said Cori.

Celestialbound

Cori
February 22nd, 2011 at 3:33 pm

Celestialbound,
You asked about “what about the person who loved their cousin as much as you do, but their cousin died?”. My answer to that would be (and you said not to say the God’s plan reason) that God knew that whoever this would happen to would be able to take the emotional pain of a loved one dying. In short, the strength of the individual.
In your first paragraph you point out that I think that since their is no real scientific explanation yet, then believing in God fills this void. However, I have given this much thought. I imagine myself, on earth. But, then I zoom my mind out into the universe as far as I can stand it without shutting that exercise down. You are probably wonder why. It’s hard to explain but I will do my best. In my mind I try to understand how nothing and everything can be out there, constantly going further and further away. There is more to this feeling, but I honestly don’t know how to describe it. Nothing in the scientific community can come close to answering this question about an eternity of space- how can that be, what is beyond space, etc. But, with God, it actually makes sense to me.
In your last paragraph you said after death you would cease to exist. This has actually been proven to be false. There is scientific evidence that humans have souls, for when they die a minuscule amount of weight leaves their body (body fluids, breathing etc. had been accounted for). After death the soul must leave to somewhere- someplace. Hasn’t that been the stance of religion? Doesn’t the scientific community and people (like yourself) believe that after death nothing happens? But science itself has proven science wrong.
We are all trying to get a grip on the things unknown, but to me the views of the religious community make more sense than that of the scientific world. I am not saying I am too stupid to understand the views of the scientific world- it is just that (although you say religion has many holes in it) science has many more holes. And while science is waiting for religion to explain itself, science has not done much to explain itself thoroughly either.
Cori

Julie
March 6th, 2016 at 6:13 pm

Well I know that you are correct on the 50/50 part but only in the sense of there are only 2 logical theories based on human existence and those are by creation/design or evolution take your pick,.
I myself believe there is a superior being/source. I also believe good and evil (Yin/Yang) must exist. We must use our free choice to decide ultimately our own Karma and Destiny.

Celestialbound
February 22nd, 2011 at 4:46 pm

It wouldn’t let me respond to your comment.

Cori,

You did not address my main point in relation to your cousin. How is that evidence for god when confirmation bias is taken into account?

A quick search on google provided the following in relation to the body having a soul that has mass. http://www.snopes.com/religion/soulweight.asp Perhaps if you could present some evidence to support your point so I have something to go off of, other than just the assertion.

Cori, I would like you to watch a video in relation to your comments about only being able to understand the universe if there is a god. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SoCqftOYHX4 Interestingly, it is a video about confirmation bias. The first study referenced is about failure to eliminate hypotheses in a conceptual task. You are again committing an argument from ignorance. Because I can’t understand something, I can understand something. What is wrong with the answer “We don’t know”?

It seems like your argument is taking the form of ’Look at the universe and how big it is and we can’t explain it, therefore, god must have done it’; aka we don’t know something, therefore, we know something.

You said “Nothing in the scientific community can come close to answering this question about an eternity of space- how can that be, what is beyond space, etc.” Here is an interesting talk given by one of the pre-eminent cosmologists of our day, Lawrence Krauss, about how a universe can come from nothing.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ImvlS8PLIo

Science has done a great job of explaining itself. It is just honest enough to answer “I don’t know” instead of claiming absolute knowledge without the requisite supporting evidence.

February 22nd, 2011 at 8:55 pm

Cori,

I would add to the challenges posed by Celestialbound, any evidence of religion being inspired and bringing about any advancements in any field of study from technology, medicine, psychology, ethics or morality that aren’t otherwise attributable to the scientific method of deducing cause/effect or to secular studies, philosophers and so forth. I challenge you to produce one significant advancement that can be attributed to revealed religion, and the evidence that such was not already known or available otherwise. The way I see it, all of our modern amenities, electronics and advancements have come through careful analysis to understand the building blocs of physics, biology and such to understand just what the laws and limitations of the Universe are, rather than relying on faith and revelation to find the answers. Which has had a greater affect in your opinion?

Cori
February 23rd, 2011 at 7:36 pm

Hey mike,
I see your point. I am just going to put this simply. While science offers all those benifits to life around us, the LDS faith and religion in general betters the individual. What has science done to help us love one another more? Dont think to say religion causes hate. When used wrongly, yes, it can cause hate. but that is not the point of religion. I am best friends with a Catholic, a Protestant, a gay person, an atheist, and a hindu. I am very tolerant of their beliefs. So please do not say that religion turns on religion because when it is used right it only creates love.

Cori
February 24th, 2011 at 4:31 pm

I would also like to add that I looked in the scriptures and it said that there were many worlds created. meaning extraterrestial life. about 3000 years before scientists even thought about that. look it up in the pearl of great price, moses 1:35

Trent
February 22nd, 2011 at 11:14 pm

“God knew that whoever this would happen to would be able to take the emotional pain of a loved one dying. In short, the strength of the individual.”
Wow! go ahead and tell that to our family, especially my mother who had a son die 3 weeks in the hospital after suffering 3rd degree burns over 70% of his entire body. He died and came back to life 3 times during this 3 weeks. In fact the hospital dubbed him “The comeback kid”. Let’s also add that our entire family prayed and fasted for his recovery, and we all felt unanimously through “the spirit” that he would recover. He eventually died of renal failure.
So let me get this straight, just because we were strong enough to take the emotional pain, God allowed my brother to die and recover 3 times raising our hopes then let him just die? WOW!!! Thats pretty f***ed up!!!

Cori
February 23rd, 2011 at 7:24 pm

Let me first say I am very sorry for your loss.
I am getting pretty tired of so many people saying “why was it God’s will to let this person die? etc etc” because God needed your brother in heaven to help other people who have died and are in need of help. My good friend lost both of her legs and has had to go from surgery to surgery in the fifteen years she. has been around. Doesnt she get the right to complain and whine “why me?”. She doesnt. She is so strong she trusts the Lord and knows she will be blessed. You may think you are not blessed but look around you, look at all the wonderful things in your life. Your brother is happy where he is in heaven. Bad things happen to good people. It is a part of life, dont be bitter. Know that God loves you, and becomforted in such sad times

Dan Johnson (admin)
February 23rd, 2011 at 7:46 pm

You have just stated that God has a plan and that is why some die and some live.

Celestialbound already had this to say on the subject:

“If you are tempted to respond that god has a plan, I would respond by pointing to the principle of falsifiability as something requisite for anything to have any truth or knowledge value.”

You have created a method of interpreting reality that always gives you the answer “Therefore god exists.”

It appears as if you are not allowing yourself to consider the alternatives and what the world would look like if there wasn’t a god. Here is a relevant video on the problem of suffering in the world:

http://www.bartdehrman.com/flv_conversations_with_history/conversations_with_history.htm

Cori
February 24th, 2011 at 4:17 pm

Its called faith. I can PROVE nothing. And neither can you.
“Faith is things which are hoped for, NOT seen.”

Celestialbound
February 24th, 2011 at 5:43 pm

And the argument comes full circle.

This was my point earlier. Just because we cannot prove that god does not exist (which is impossible to do), does not mean that he does. Or that the probabilities of him existing are fifty/fifty.

Cori, please provide evidence to justify the existence of god, or address my point about confirmation bias. Otherwise, I will be left to conclude that you are so unfamiliar with intellectual discourse that my time will be better spent elsewhere.

Cori
February 26th, 2011 at 10:56 am

THAT IS THE WHOLE POINT OF RELIGION! You don’t know for sure and so you have FAITH that what you believe is true. THat is what I have been saying the whole time. Don’t close your mind to there being no God. I still ponder this everyday. I am not being ignorant because I still wonder, you are.

February 26th, 2011 at 3:44 pm

Cori, I personally agree with Carl Sagan:

“It is far better for me to perceive the world as it actually exists, rather than persist in delusion, no matter how comforting that delusion may seem.”

Trent
February 24th, 2011 at 7:49 am

I think you have me very confused, I don’t have a bitter “why me?” attitude. that was not the purpose of my post. the purpose of my post was to call you out on your bulls*** perspective.
I feel I lead a very blessed life, and If “blessings” really do come from following God, then leaving the church must have been his will, because let me tell you, LIFE IS F***ING AWESOME!!!!! ^_^

Cori
February 24th, 2011 at 4:25 pm

Life is just as great for me. Without God I would have a crappy life. I know cuz that was my old life

Celestialbound
February 24th, 2011 at 5:44 pm

Cori,

I’m gonna give you a chance to analyze your own thoughts. Can you point out the flawed reasoning in the post you just made above this?

Kelly
April 25th, 2011 at 4:26 pm

To all those who are under the impression that “not being Mormon” is somehow going to hurt us in our current life as well as our afterlife, is such crap! I grew up in a very Mormon family, who on the outside seemed like pillars of the community, when at home it was a completely different story. I am not going to say that all Mormons are “Fake” but most are! They are not these great understanding loving people, in fact they are only this way if you believe what they believe! I am speaking from personal experience, I went to the bishop in my area and asked for help one time with my rent when I was put on bed rest and could not work. I explained that the father of my child was not in the picture, because of a drugs and domestic abuse. I offered to work for this help, since I am not one to just take a handout and his advice to me was to get married to this man and make him pay child support and that members of the church would not appreciate him giving out their funds to someone who decided to have children out of wedlock! Sorry to say I took part of his advice and got back together with this man and suffered years of abuse and poverty for both myself and my children! We as a couple even started going back to church thinking that maybe he could be helped with his drug problem, we were counseled that there was nothing that could be done for us. Does that sound like a loving nuturing environment? I finally got the courage to walk away a bit later, and once again tried to start attending church and you have no idea what it is like sitting in meetings as a single mother, you are looked down apon and whispered about constantly! To those who have these great experiences, hooray for you! You must be the carbon copy of what the church wants you to be! I have a brother as well who is active in the church and has been searching for his “wife” for years. I tell him all the time that he will meet her when the time is right and to open himself up to everyone that there are wonderful people out there who are not Mormon and he should not limit himself. He dated a girl from church for six months and didn’t really feel anything for her, but was actually contemplating proposing marriage to her, because 34 is to old to be single! What a crock of shit, this is not what is important in life! Marriage is all well and good, but you should not be made to feel you have to settle for someone! So thank you so much for this page and the questions it raises! I believe in love and compassion and that charity does not have a face or requirements! You do not need to be Mormon or any other religion to have these quality’s and instill in your children! Teach acceptance no matter what one believes!

Dan Johnson (admin)
April 25th, 2011 at 5:39 pm

Thanks so much for your comment Kelly, it sounds like the church has caused many problems in your life. I wish you the best in your future!

Liber Mens
November 11th, 2011 at 9:20 pm

This post responds to Ricardo’ comment about Science continually discarding its own theories.

True! And that is a wonderful thibg about science. Admitting it was wrong demonstrates that Science is in search of truth, not of being right. When a group of scientists over turn previous theories, we celebrate (rather than justify with twisted logic or coverup) precisely because it means humanity is gaining understanding. Truth trumps “rightness”. And Truth trumps “righteousness.”

And Science works. The results speak for themselves.

Science has brought us medicine–saving countless lives and reducing pain. It gave us the hubble telescope-mystifying us with the awe inspiring beauty and complexity (and overwhelming size) of the universe.

You dont have to be a member of the group to benefit. It does not discriminate because science does not claim to control knowledge and truth–just to seek it. The benefits are shared.

In fact, thanks to science, I am sending this message from my couch on what is probably the other side of the planet? (Near South Africa).

Liz
May 13th, 2012 at 1:15 am

Now you make the best point of these video clips so far. Let’s not read the book of Revelations about our eyes rotting in our heads, and the beast and all that. That does get depressing. I’m with you on the let’s try to think positively. It’s Utah culture dude. Everyone thinks it’s the end of the world here because the weather is so crappy and the people are so superficial. You do want to die living here. It’s a harsh environment.

Move to Florida, or California where the sun shines a bit more and you’ll find the church people are happier and dwell on the positives in the Bible. They look for the common values they share and not the little differences, like someone’s hair isn’t coiffed correctly or they’re not attending book club with the rest of the girls. It’s Utah culture that’s done you wrong, not God. Give religion a second chance. Or get a Winnebago and travel the other 47 contiguous. That’s why people say the church is true everywhere except Utah. :)

June 9th, 2012 at 1:11 pm

I am a Mormon, but I do think the prophets are in need of a little repentance. Watch my video pretty please on how a person’s calling and election is made sure. :-)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CpP7fmeqJe0

Furthermore, I’d like to testify that although the prophets are imperfect and make mistakes, I know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is God’s church with the most truth upon this Earth. It is not perfect yet, but it is on the way there as God continues to rebuke, chasten, and bring new revelations to it. :-)

Furthermore, I’d like to state that I believe women shall receive the priesthood in the resurrection. Men being rulers over their wives was a curse placed upon Eve in the garden of Eden. That curse will lift upon a righteous woman’s resurrection. No man or woman can enter into the highest kingdom without the highest priesthood. So we see that men and women will rule together equally with the priesthood, being priests and priestesses. Until the appointed time in which women shall obtain the priesthood, they are given power from God act in the power of the priesthood as God sees it necessary to be done. :-)

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