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Eternal Marriage, or, Singles Suck XD, sorry

January 7, 2009

The union of male and female identity into one synergistic “god” is at the apex of Mormon theological thought.

Sorry, but there really is no way around this one. Heaven is not just you and God. It will always involve another person. Always.

Maybe this idea rubs anti-social blogging types the wrong way. But I don’t know what else to tell you.

Mormon exaltation is done communally or not at all. The fact that you don’t like other people all that much does not eliminate the plain truth that you cannot be exalted without them.

Self-centered-ness simply does not work in this religion. Maybe it works fine in certain brands of modern Protestantism. Maybe there you can fuss over whether you are “self-actualized” and psychobabble yourself to sleep at night. But not this religion.

Sorry.

*Golf clap for Seth R at Feminist Mormon Housewives*

I love when people point out simple ultimata that make it really easy to decide then and there if you will believe or not believe. Not saying that I agree at all, but when you have it out there black and white, it’s really easy to see the many places you should just walk out the door. You don’t have to spend days, weeks, months, or years agonizing because it’s all simply lain out before you. It’s a powerful and forceful polarizing voice.

It’s like those who argue from “tough love.” They can speak so forcefully because they are convinced that their truth, no matter how terrible sound in the short run, is true. So, they (or someone who agrees with them) will point out — even if you don’t like it, that doesn’t make it wrong. You can’t escape the truth. (The problem is: you can find an inconvenient truth for anything — not just global warming [p.s., i’m not going there]. While Seth points out the simple foundation of the church’s doctrine that nullifies all of these other machinations, some evangelical preacher would just as easily point out the simple foundation of their faith that nullifies the machinations of the church. And then comes the atheist who points out that any and all religion is just feel good fluff anyway. Whose truth is right? We have no idea, but we sure are convinced anyway.)

Even though I disagree with the church precisely because it hinges so much on the family and on marriage and this ends up programming people with dangerous expectations and assumptions some times (I have heard people call the church a “sex cult” — and when I realize how things like eternal marriage for eternal increase must sound like to nonmembers, I guess that’s what they get from it), I must admit that it is a powerful foundation. Even as people squabble about where single people or gay people or whoever else fits in the gospel (protip: they don’t, except as aberrations [or a consequence of another aberration, like the Fall or original sin or pride or whatever,] from perfection that hopefully, if the doctrine is true, will be wiped away either here or in the hereafter), the church has a simple foundation that enables it to create a rather strong doctrine about these issues.

And it’s not like it’s a bad foundation. Although utterly unaccommodating and even less sympathetic (despite the sorry thrown at the end), as I’ve probably mentioned before, it’s not like founding a religion on the eternal worth of families and of gender complementarities is *ever* a bad thing. I have read others argue about whether the church is built to last, and I think that, regardless of it is true or false, because it’s based on ideas that at least some people will wholeheartedly agree with, it will probably last. You really can’t deny that from even a biological standpoint, boys and girls get together to do something that neither could naturally do alone. So that will give credence to certain views, no matter what.

Although sometimes I wish the church would be more accommodating to marginalized groups within it (at least, if they don’t want these groups to disaffect), but then at the same time, I understand that the church is too busy being a beacon — of whatever — to the world. I think that is a bit of the part of the allure, so even if half the time I have to look away in disgust, sometimes, I look forward in admiration. Like a crash that’s so terrible you have to keep looking.

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8 Comments
  1. Re: Not saying that I agree at all, but when you have it out there black and white, it’s really easy to see the many places you should just walk out the door.

    That reminds me of the infamous ironing story which anther blogger (who has since deleted his blog) identified as a touchstone moment that many people will remember as the catalyst that led them to leave the church…

    But the thing I like about Seth R. is that his position is internally consistent/coherent and very Mormon and he’s generally willing and interested in having a civil discussion with people who disagree with him. It makes for an interesting discussion, at least.

  2. Though, admittedly, that comment kind of reminds me of my third-favorite LOL Naklz.

  3. I had to seriously shake my head when I read the GBH quote: “Do you wish to marry a girl whose education has been far superior to your own?” in the Ironing Story link.

  4. Aww, shucks guys….

    There’s an interesting post over on Zelophehad’s Daughters. One of those “categorize the different type of Mormon” posts.

    It compares bloggernacle types to different animals:

    I’ve always felt a bit between an “Ocelot” and a “Lemur” – but growing more Ocelot-ish as I get older.

    I’d never openly admit to being a dolphin, of course. But I might consider the “Unicorn” way eventually.

    Embrace the dissonance… Become one with the dissonance… Ohmmmm….

    This post will make absolutely zero sense to anyone who hasn’t read the post in question.

  5. I saw that post, actually — your quotation was surprisingly dolphinish…it cut straight to the core.

  6. Oh well. So much for self-observation.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. This just in: atheism is equivalent to murder « Irresistible (Dis)Grace
  2. Because Seth R will not write on his own blog « Irresistible (Dis)Grace

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