Who Moved My Marriage?

So I wrote on this topic a year ago last March. Bringing up a popular book called Who Moved My Cheese and gently prophesying as follows;

“Maybe, just maybe these guys are as wrong about what God wants today as they were in the past. They certainly missed the boat on interracial marriage, seems possible that they are a product of their generation now just like we are told today1 earlier leaders were of theirs. If you consider the idea that these guys could be wrong then, hopefully you might open up to a different way of looking at things and then accept that change isn’t always bad, even if your first inclination says otherwise. Then you might also see the writing on the wall.”

If you haven’t heard of this book and the moral of the story take a moment and check it out.

Haw teaches an excellent principle in this short story for those that fear the results of gay marriage.

“when you move beyond fear you feel free” -Haw

So today the writing is on the wall, and the only reason you can’t see it is fear.

In regards to the ruling the justices penned the following:

“No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family. … [The challengers] ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the law. The Constitution grants them that right.”

They realized that just like in 1967 when the court ruled interracial marriages could not be banned by the states under the constitution that this case was no different. So in spite of the outrage of religions like my own previous faith they ruled that black and white marriage could not be outlawed by the states.

Of course not everyone is happy with the decision, there are still Hem’s amongst us. People that have a difficult time with change. I have even seen friends of mine call for civil war because of it.2 If you think the world is coming to an end I implore you to stop take a deep breath and ask yourself why you fear that?

What is it you are afraid of? Is it that civil war my buddy called for? Guess what, it’s not the rainbow crew calling for that, it’s the religious nut jobs. Think about that… What is it you are really afraid of? Your own religion starting a civil war because ‘God said to’? I kind of doubt it. Personally I suspect at its root you simply fear change.

It is natural to fear change. Some are born with a bigger dose of this that others. I tend to accept change myself and make the best of it, but even so I’d like to add a personal experience.

You see my kids have a friend that is gay, he announced it just before I started questioning my own faith. And at that time it kind of freaked me out. I feared that my boys when they hung out at his house would end up ‘in trouble’ so to speak.3 But I soon realized I was wrong. Also over time I questioned my faith and that in turn caused me to question many notions that I’d picked up from it. After my wife and I left the church, one of our closest family friends (for over 15 years!!) revealed that she was a lesbian. We had no idea, honestly it kind of freaked us both out. I will admit I was afraid of gay people. But you know what? We stayed friends and nothing changed. My boys weren’t hit on by their gay friend. Our lesbian friend didn’t try to seduce my wife. Totally counter to my fears, boundaries were completely respected and recognized. Turned out there was nothing to be afraid of.

Nothing at all. Recognize that back in the 60’s some of the states were banning interracial marriage and the supreme court ruled that unconstitutional as well. 50 years later look at society today. Did you lose the right to the kind of marriage you want? Not in the slightest. Churches today can still be as bigoted and divisive as they want. You can even kick a person out of your church if you don’t like the color of their skin. Churches haven’t lost a single right.4 All that happened is some people that disagree with you got to have the same right that you already have. Why do you fear that? Seriously tell me why, comment below and let’s examine the roots of those fears and see if they truly have any foundation at all.

For verily thus saith the Fridge. When it comes to same sex marriage, it is just like interracial marriage, there is nothing to be afraid of.

 

  1. The LDS church today disavows all that past BS.
  2. Of course they think God has their backs just like the Jihadists do… one day I am gonna blog on the crazy that is confined to zealous belief. That is something to fear!
  3. Thank you president Kimball for programming that fear into me.
  4. The LDS religion quickly posted their decision to keep this division in their faith. Did the government say they couldn’t? Of course when they try to explain why a person that is now ‘legally and lawfully wedded’ can’t go to the temple they might get a little egg on their face. But such is the flaw of no actual prescience from divinity (where instead they are making it up as they go along.) If you do a little historical analysis you will notice that the church follows society about 20-30 years after the fact, just about the time it takes for the older generation of leadership that has been deeply set in their ways to die off. Is that any surprise if it is only humans leading it?

Religious Blinders

I love the iconic Stephen Spielberg helmed science fiction film, Minority Report. The concept of a cop whose job is to arrest murderers before they commit their crimes, and then has to go on the run when his name comes up as a future killer is fascinating.

While trying to understand how he could have been identified as someone who is about to commit a murder by the pre-crime program John Anderton has used to put away hundreds of dangerous men, he seeks out Iris Hineman, the woman who helped create Pre-Crime. In what turns out to be a very insightful conversation, Iris tells Detective Anderton that she is the mother of Pre-Crime and Anderton’s supervisor is the father of the program. She then notes that most parents see their children the way they want to see them and not as they really are.

I would argue that people see anything they love the way they want to see it and not as those things really are. More on that in a moment – I’m going to discuss something very personal for a while and come back to it.

I have six siblings and I’m the second oldest. Unfortunately, most of my siblings hated each other and our treatment of each other could be downright cruel. My parents were so focused on themselves and on church responsibilities that they never put any real effort into resolving our issues with each other, instead choosing to side with whichever of us they liked best, causing us to become even more vicious with our vindictive and hateful behavior.

I only had two siblings who I really got along with. A younger sister and my brother, Caleb.1 Caleb and I always had identical interests. Like me, he loved science fiction and fantasy. He enjoyed the same activities – from swimming to playing board games, just about everything he liked, I liked. I liked Caleb enough that I invited him to live with my wife and me after he graduated from high school because there were better jobs in the city I was living in.

Then Caleb went on his mission and things changed. After he got back, he started spending less time around us and, after we left the LDS church, he began avoiding us entirely. However, he always seemed to be willing to spend time with our son, Adam. We couldn’t tell what we had done to offend him, but we were glad, at least that he didn’t take it out on our son.

And then we began to notice weird things. Caleb had two girlfriends over the course of seven years and seemed intent on pushing both of them away from the time he started dating them to the time he dumped them. He insisted that he would never kiss a girl until he was engaged, he would keep his distance from them when they were on dates, and he even dumped one of them a few weeks before her senior prom. The other one complained that he actively avoided her and used his religion to justify it. He took it so far that when she invited him over to watch a movie when no one else was home and he recommended that she spend the time reading the Book of Mormon since she was setting up a situation that could tempt them to sin.

After his last girlfriend, he went 5 years without dating anyone. Considering how actively he avoided women and other things like his mannerisms, his love of broadway, and a number of other things that are bad stereotypes for homosexual men, we began to suspect he was actually gay. At first we dismissed the idea, because we were Mormon and didn’t want Caleb to be gay but then, after we left the church and began to understand that there is nothing wrong with homosexuality, we began to accept that it was probably true.

The idea was partially confirmed when we invited Caleb to accompany us on a trip to a water park in a town several hours away. While we were waiting in line for one of the rides, a group of boys got queued up behind us. Caleb, whose head hadn’t been turned by any of the beautiful young women at the park (he hadn’t so much as given a glance toward them), began chatting up the boys. His normally uptight posture relaxed, he leaned toward them, and his tone was extremely friendly. He was clearly flirting with them.

I definitely didn’t miss the flirtation. For someone who claimed to know that the church was true as fervently was Caleb did, such blatant forwardness with people of the same gender was odd enough, but even worse was the fact the oldest of the boys was only probably fifteen or sixteen. But I figured that maybe Caleb thought the kid was eighteen. However, the youngest was only eleven and my brother seemed to be way more interested in him than any of the other kids in the group. It really didn’t sit well with me at all, but I figured that Caleb was probably trying to impress the oldest boy by being nice to his younger brother.

On the drive home that night, we had a discussion with Caleb about why we left the church and he bore strong testimony to us that he knew the church was true and that he had had a sacred experience in the temple that proved it. I couldn’t help but think that his testimony didn’t stop him from flirting with young boys. I continued to convince myself that his interest in the boys had been because he thought the oldest was older and his extra interest in the youngest was just being friendly to impress the oldest boy by being nice to his little brother.

Then Caleb went back to BYU, where he had just changed his major from business to teaching. Christmas came around and he flew back for the holidays, during which time he volunteered to spend more time around Adam, even though he continued to avoid hanging out with my wife and me. Then my wife found a picture of Caleb and Adam together under a blanket. Even though I thought it was a little bit odd that they would spend time under a blanket, it just seemed like normal roughhousing to me, so I dismissed it, but my wife was bothered by the picture and suggested that we ask our son if his uncle had touched him inappropriately.

Adam told us that Caleb had put his hand on his crotch earlier that summer. We asked more questions about it and it just sounded like it had been an accident. They were in public view where anyone could have seen them, it was over the clothing, his hand wasn’t moving, he wasn’t looking at Adam, and he didn’t ask Adam to keep it a secret. It was very suspicious, but I couldn’t imagine that Caleb would deliberately do anything like that to Adam, so we gave Adam instructions not to sit close to Caleb anymore and to call us immediately if anything like that ever happened again.

Even though we were cautious about letting Adam go near Caleb again, I continued to believe it was an accident. I just couldn’t see Caleb doing that on purpose.

And then, six weeks ago, my parents informed me that Caleb had been arrested for sodomizing young boys. I was shocked. Not by the fact that Caleb might be attracted to kids, but by the idea that he could be so selfish as to damage young children for his own pleasure. By this time, we had forgotten about the hand on the crotch incident, but we asked Adam if Caleb had ever touched him inappropriately and he reminded us of it.

And despite all of the evidence in front of me, I continued to believe that it could have been an accident. However, we felt that we should contact the police and have them determine if it was likely that the hand over the clothed crotch had criminal intent. In speaking to them, they made it clear to us that Caleb’s preferred technique of grooming children for molestation involved putting his hand on boy’s genitals over the clothes, seeing if they reacted, then moving forward from there if they didn’t. Caleb had started grooming Adam to be sodomized.

Chances are that you’re reading this wondering how I could have been so stupid as to not see red flags everywhere after the waterpark and especially after Caleb put his hand on Adam’s crotch. I would like to bring you back to the discussion of Minority Report: people tend to see people they love as they want to see them, not as they really are. I loved Caleb. I saw what I wanted to see.

If I’m being honest, I had no reason to be shocked that Caleb had molested young boys. I had ample reason to suspect the attraction but, more importantly, I knew just how narcissistic Caleb could be. As much as I loved him, I knew that Caleb’s first and only love was himself. He was still holding grudges over minor things that had happened fifteen years ago. He had a habit of using people, then avoiding them like the plague. We had gone out of our way to try to help him on several occasions and he had thanked us by lying to other family members about the help we offered – to make us look bad after we had tried to be kind. He even went so far as to move to another state and send everyone an email after telling us that he had moved and had no plans on staying in touch.

Caleb was just a nasty piece of work and I knew it. Because he had once been my closest friend, I tried to convince myself that he was still a good person. I forgave all of his rude behaviors and deluded myself into believing that if I tried to be kind and supportive, he would eventually be my friend again. It was never going to happen. I saw clear evidence on several occasions that he was attracted to children. But because I loved him, I wouldn’t admit to myself that he was a pedophile and I fully rejected the notion that he could ever harm a child. Even after he had been arrested for child rape, I still clung to the belief that he hadn’t deliberately sexually assaulted my son. Because I loved him and I saw what I wanted to see, rather than the truth.

If you feel inclined to judge me, I fully understand. I won’t claim that I was anything but dangerously stupid and wrong. I know that my insistence on believing what I wanted to believe instead of what the facts clearly indicated played a role in children getting hurt. And I’m going to have to live with that.

What’s worse is that this isn’t the first time I allowed something viciously dangerous to hurt others because I loved it. When I was Mormon, I fully understood that the church was harmful and yet I refused to admit it to myself. I saw five people who were close to me driven to seriously contemplating suicide because they failed to live up to the church’s standards. One of them successfully went through with it.

I knew that there was no way that the true gospel of a God of love could make people feel so inadequate that they would want to kill themselves, but I continued to believe and defend the church because I loved it.

I saw others miss their children growing up because of callings. I knew that no church that was run by God and put so much emphasis on family could ever allow that to happen, but I pretended that it wasn’t really a problem because I loved the church and I saw it the way I wanted to see it, not the way it really was.

I saw bullies and cruel people put into positions of power and abuse their power over others. I saw countless people rely on emotions that they believed were the Holy Ghost for making decisions and I saw them make bad decision after bad decision. I saw families broken apart by people leaving the church, I saw people disowned by their parents for not serving missions, and I saw bigotry instilled into the hearts of many by the church and, even though I knew that if the leader of the church really received inspiration from God, he would put an end to such horrifying practices, they went unchallenged. Despite the clear lack of leadership from God and the pain it was causing so many people, I continued to insist the church was true because I saw what I wanted in the church because I loved it.

Long before reaching this point in the blog entry, many Mormons have already begun working on their justifications for clear problems in their supposedly inspired religion. They might ignore the fact that an omniscient god would be able to present His expectations of people in a way that doesn’t destroy their self worth and say:

“Those people weren’t drive to suicide or the brink of suicide by the church’s teachings, they were clearly mired in sin and sin leads to dark thoughts and dark actions.”

They may say that bishops and stake presidents who neglect their families don’t understand how to prioritize, despite knowing that those people are put in an impossible situation. They will invariably respond to the other problems by trying to claim that the church is perfect but the members aren’t, despite the fact that if their god were really omniscient, he would see the problems in LDS culture and tell his prophet how to put an end to those problems.

Those people love the church. They see it how they want to see it, not how it really is. And by pretending that the problems don’t exist or aren’t serious, they help to hurt other people. And what’s worse is that many of these people not only ignore the way the church abuses, they either blame the abused or actively take part in the abuse. I’ll never get through to those people, but hopefully someone who out there will read this and stop being part of the abuse cycle.

If you aren’t actively speaking out against it, you are part of the problem. And many people end up with just as many emotional problems from abuses in the church as victims of sexual abuse end up with. If you don’t believe me, go ask any of the homeless gay youth in Salt Lake City. Check the suicide rates of homosexual youths in Utah. Look up the depression medication rate in Utah. You can either stop turning a blind eye to the destruction that Mormonism wreaks on its followers or you are just as responsible for the next gay kid who kills himself as I am for the kids my brother sodomized.
blinders-on carrotPlease learn from my mistake, if you are not willing to take off your blinders and see the truth, others may get hurt because of your negligence. What does your conscious tell you to do? Can you let go of something you love to do the right thing? Letting go of what you wish for to do what is right is not ever easy, but it is right. And deep down you already know it.

honest man

 

  1.  Names and some identifying details have been changed to protect privacy of others involved. Although my brother deserves to have his name and his crimes made well known to anyone he may ever come in contact with, if his name is made public, it will make it clear who my son is and my son deserves privacy on this issue.

Dear Believer, Please Fight the Urge to Shun and Manipulate Your Loved Ones!

An icicle of the Fridge recently posted the following in a private group:

Woke up this morning, just after 9am. 
Noticed the door was closed. It’s never closed. 

Get up and start to walk down stairs, it’s super quiet. Surely the kids have planned something for me for Father’s Day. 

Get down stairs and no one. Look throughout the house, no one. No breakfasts, no cards, no notes, no kids.

They’re at church. Happy Father’s Day.
I’m not sure I should be hurt, but I am.
Church has taken my kids away from me over Father’s Day.

I am sharing this experince anonymously with permission because there is a huge misunderstanding amongst believers about the best way to deal with a situation where one parent doesn’t believe and one does. He followed up with this:

Apparently my parents went to church with [wife] too.

I sent [wife] a text and my dad replied with this: 


“You going to come to sacrament meeting after the sacrament
1 to hear your kids sing to you?  
We are in primary with [your son] right now and they are practicing their song to their dads.  
The song leader just asked if they were excited to sing to their dads and [your son] excitedly raised his arm. 
If you don’t come I’m sure that’s fine. Just thought you should know.”

Having been in leadership positions and having gone to ward councils I have participated in those meetings where you are really concerned about the spiritual well-being of an inactive or apostate. One who, from your perspective, has lost the light of the gospel. That is how I completely understand that this type of behavior has good intentions. You don’t mean it to be as hurtful as it is.

shun meme
You are repeatedly taught that if you do what the church says first and foremost all the rest of your family will be fine and things will fall into place. You should know that this scenario has played out in more than one place and in more than one religion where one spouse has experienced a change in what they believe about their past faith. My particular experience was with the Mormon faith and I know exactly how the above situation makes a freshly-minted apostate feel. It makes you feel terrible. It drives a wedge into your family relationship that can take a long, long time to overcome. I’d like you, dear believing spouse, to try and put yourself in our shoes for a moment. Imagine if you, on Mothers Day, had been ignored because you were Mormon and the rest of the family decided to go to a different church, or to a matinee and then sent you texts about how much they wished you were there with them while you sat alone in sacrament meeting…

Would you feel manipulated? Would you feel shunned? Or would you feel inspired to leave the church and go be with your family? Think about that. Please really think about that, because I believe you can have a little empathy in this situation and realize it will not inspire this person to come to church to feel the spirit and come back any more than it would inspire you to convert to Islam.

I know that you have been taught otherwise. I know that because as an Elders quorum president I believed all that a lost soul needed was to ‘feel the spirit’ just one good time and they would come back. Having been on the other side of that fence now, such an outcome is not often the case. To put it bluntly, being treated like this will actually cause us “poor lost souls” to see the religion as something you love more than us. From your perspective you will think our hearts are even more hardened because to us this feels like manipulation. And no one likes to be manipulated. Would you like it? Would it make you angry and hard-hearted towards the institution you felt was causing the manipulation?

Please, please remember what your leaders have said about shunning:

Don’t do it. Don’t shun us and try to get us to some other place to feel your love by denying it where it should still exist, right in our own homes.

Please apply the golden rule and treat us as you would like to be treated if the roles were reversed. If you truly put yourself in our shoes by imagining yourself alone in the same situation, I really think you will begin to understand how this makes a person feel. This is a situation that can be difficult or it can bring us together. I firmly believe a little empathy can go a long way to it bringing us together instead of pushing us apart as we deal with our differences.

  1. I just noticed the invite clearly made sure this horrible apostate didn’t come to partake of the ritual of sacrament, got to keep the unworthy away from the good stuff I suppose… :/ I have felt the sting of being specifically uninvited and it hurts, it hurts bad. I hope in all that is chill you can just for a moment realize how much.

I Hate Seeing People I Love Being Lied To

I really hate it when I see people I care for taken advantage of. I hate it when they are being subtly lied to. When the deceit takes advantage of their trust. When their innermost hopes and fears are used to maintain the deception.

It is like watching a sister from afar being married to a man you know is cheating on her and she won’t believe you when you tell her. Or seeing your parents sacrificing time and money to a guy that is a smooth talker that has no intentions at all of paying back their investment.

selling lies

I hate when someone implies that another is not good enough, or too dumb, or that they are nothing, without the liar who is deceiving them.

The reason I hate seeing this kind of deception? Because it is so hard to expose. How do you show someone they have been lied to when they can look squarely at the evidence and tell you it doesn’t matter to them? When the deception is so great they will accept actions that would otherwise disgust them. I have found that it is nearly impossible to help a person in this situation. Because they don’t want the help. It’s hard for me because it is in my nature to try to help and warn people about it.

Years and years ago I had a really good friend get involved with an investment deal. I could see it was fraudulent and that he was being bamboozled. He was so excited though. He was going to end up with these brand new free cars. But the math of the investment just didn’t work out. I ran it a few times to check my numbers and then called up my friend to point out it was for sure a fraud, it had to be. The math proved it!

He didn’t believe me though, my proof meant nothing, he stayed in the deal rather than get out. In the end he nearly lost everything, not just his credit, but almost his entire business to this guy that had conned him a little at a time into this massive investment.

I found out that most times people simply won’t heed a voice of warning if they are emotionally invested, I discovered that is how the best cons work. They emotionally invest you to the point that CLEAR EVIDENCE they are being lied to is IGNORED. It is tossed out. That is why I hate this type of deception. Because it uses human emotion, one of our greatest assets, against us. We are empathetic beings. It is so wonderful how we can feel what others feel and connect emotionally. It creates loyalty to brands and causes. It makes us rise up as a society and care for each other.

But when that great asset is used by a deceiver, it often condemns others for being themselves. It justifies some of the most despicable actions by any judgement as somehow ok. I hate it when my loved ones are lied to. I hate that pointing out the lie is considered the worst action I can take because they don’t believe it is possible they have been lied to. It puts me in a position of watching a person I love make great sacrifices for a falsehood. It makes me feel like they are wasting the precious time they have here on earth when they could be choosing for themselves how to use it. And I can’t do anything about it. So I resign myself to the outcome.

I learned that is often the only course you can take. In the case of affinity fraud above, eventually the deal my friend was in collapsed, I did my best to help him in the aftermath. Helped what little I could to get him back on his feet.

It is entirely possible that a person in some situations can be deceived for their entire lives. I am sure there are people trapped in Scientology or the polygamy communes of Warren Jeff’s that ignore the mounds of evidence they are being defrauded. It is possible they will live their lives all the way through without knowing they were swindled. I can see how a person might be happy as a clam in that situation. And I often ask myself, “Who am I to take that away?” It might be a fraud, but they are happy in it, right?

inconvenient truth reassuring lie

That is the problem with this type of deception that I hate so much. To point it out means to cause the deceived significant anguish. So I am in the position of either letting that person be lied to, or causing pain by pointing out the truth. Neither sits particularly well with my soul.

That’s why I hate seeing people I love taken advantage of.

Life After Being Bamboozled

So this meme has inundated my feed lately. There is such a significant wave of apostasy in my former religion that I think these are kind of reactionary. In a moment I will explain why.

dimming of light

First, note how from even one of the most open and liberally minded apostles today the message is still subtly dismissive by stating the apostate loses the ‘light’ she once had. It is true however that after some time has passed that the non-believer often wonders how he had been so easily bamboozled. So while I completely disagree with the metaphor of lost light, the premise being taught here is well-known in psychology today.

bamboozled

Consider this tidbit from Dr. Simon, a psychotherapist recognized internationally in dealing with victims of fraud and manipulation.

“Many folks have told me about how hard it was for them to stop blaming themselves and engaging in a lot of self-doubt and reproach. ”How could I have been so blind…. or so stupid?,” they ask themselves.”1

Fact is most of us are familiar with the feeling of being defrauded by someone we have trusted. The deeper the trust was, the worse this feeling of being so dumb after it happened is.

The large majority of people I know that have left the faith once they discovered the evidence of historical white washing and fraudulent beginnings where typically very invested. I now know bishops, elders quorum presidents, stake presidents, young women leaders and many others that have gone down this path of ‘lost light’ as Elder Uchtdorf calls it. 2 What all these people I have met have in common is they were very much committed to the faith. Very few were half-assed believers in the gospel. They typically inundated themselves in it, doing their best to serve and be part of the church. ‘Magnifying their callings’ as best they could.

This is important to note, because repetition is a key component of coercive persuasion. Our brains are amazingly pliable (known as neuro plasticity) when it comes to acquiring skills. The same way we ‘learn’ to catch a ball, we learn social responses and methods of thinking. We engrain the new pattern in our mind via repetition.

This fact is exploited by con-men and cults alike. You instigate a loop of thought that the leaders can’t be questioned, that certain rituals must be maintained, even specific clothes worn. After some time, all that feels normal to you.3 I am positive these ladies felt pastels were just the way a pretty, virtuous woman dressed. Look how happy and smiling they are!

all brides

They might even have reminded themselves how much they love the FLDS faith and their leader prophet Jeffs as they put them on each day. Once all that ‘feels’ normal to set it aside at first ‘feels’ completely wrong. Now if your leader was really smart he made sure to teach you that that wrong feeling was ‘of the devil’ and a sign you were straying from the path and losing the light. If you internalize that idea, then you are trapped. Because there is no way out beyond that point that doesn’t require you to risk massive losses in your own mind. You fear losing family, social status, you even fear for your job and possibly your sanity the moment you try to think outside that circular logic.

The people that I know that have left the church were first and foremost digging for truth. They had to set aside all these fears of condemnation in search of it though. They had to stop running in the loop of self-justification and consider the most disturbing possibility that they might be wrong. Ironically it took a far greater level of humility to question the religion than it took to not question it.

athiest

Our natural psychological response is to protect that deeply held belief and surround ourselves with anything we can find that will support it. It’s why you see a Muslim pray harder, or a Catholic counting rosaries when their faith is challenged. These days a person seeks out memes and posts them to their wall as an open declaration of their beliefs. And guess what, that psychology works. The more you openly declare something the more you believe it. But that alone doesn’t make it true now does it?

brain wash

Remember this: Truth never did require belief to be true. Truth just is. So maybe next time you notice yourself justifying an act like the coerced marriage of a 14 year old as a plural wife to a 37 year old self proclaimed prophet… an act that in ANY OTHER situation you would immediately condemn! Stop and think about that for a moment, maybe it’s you that has been brainwashed. Because isn’t that exactly what you think about that follower of ISIL that would justify murder and killing for his beliefs? Is it possible you might be caught in the same trap?4

Then take a chance, stop inundating yourself every single day with the prescribed clothing or the ritual ceremonies and observances you have been told to do lest you lose the faith. Stop for just a moment, because the Elder is right. The only way to see how you have been bamboozled is to first stop the actions that keep the bamboozle going. His metaphor is wrong though and I know it personally. Because once you are willing to question the status quo and to think about the way you think. You don’t lose the light of truth. You find it. 

 

  1.  http://www.manipulative-people.com/life-after-a-manipulator/
  2. some have even received their second anointing, this link is 4 hours of podcast, but I highly recommend listening to it. It is fascinating!
  3. If you are a mormon think about the first time you went through the temple, was it weird and maybe more than a little unsettling? Did it not take some repetition to feel comfortable? Wearing G’s were all sorts of strange at first, now I dare bet you feel odd going without them for a few days.
  4. Albeit not quite so dramatically since your faith probably isn’t strong enough that you would kill if your leader told you to. You know, like Abraham was willing to do.