It never stops hurting
When I started Irresistible (Dis)Grace, I wanted to try something different. I wanted to try to be a (prepare to gag) *reasonable* blogger. I wanted to reach out to both sides of the Mormon fence.
Because I am not completely satisfied with any of the existing camps. I do not believe, so I cannot be a part of the traditional believing camp (or its blogs). I’m not an academic (especially not of Mormon issues), so I can’t even keep up on that front. But…I also don’t believe that the church is the devil incorporated, and so I’ve felt a disconnect from many disaffected members and exmormons who feel strongly against the church (although I’ve recognized that the different life experiences that some have had may help explain the depths of their sense of betrayal and indignation.)
On top of all that, I don’t often “get” the middle way or New Order Mormon position.
So, I’ve found myself trying to stake out a position that I haven’t really quite seen before and I don’t even know how it works.
…but I’m not even doing a good job at it.
You know, sometimes I *do* want to vent. Sometimes, I want to make an example of people. Some times, I want to feel free to say unkind things about people.
How *unreasonable*. How petty.
I hate it.
And I know…the internet…srs bsns. I know I’m not supposed to take any of this seriously, but I still really feel bad whenever I cross someone’s path. It really drains me.
What can I say, this time?
This time, I feel like I’ve swung further to the dark side. It all started with a discussion about make-believe. That discussion really bothered me, because I wondered — with how cavalier people are about truth, it seems — whether people even care. (But really, I don’t particularly care about the truth aspect that much…in fact, that’s a point where I really disagree with a lot of exmormons. I think many exmos fetishize the pursuit of these ideals of truth, objectivity, “facts,” and “reason.” I was more concerned at the time of how cavalier people were about belief.)
But even THAT wasn’t all. What became a rather popular subtopic was Ardis Parshall’s post in response to many disaffected members’ charge that they left because of all the history they learned that the church doesn’t teach.
Yeah, this one hasn’t been all that well-liked by the DAMU, to say the least.
I had to laugh at someone’s ludicrous claim that if “nothing [Ardis] has ever learned about Church history causes [her] the least amount of stress, insofar as [her] testimony of the gospel and [her] support of the Church is concerned,” then that must mean that “she probably hasn’t read enough history.” Because obviously, anyone who has read x historical fact of the church will be stressed out, no matter what.
If you’re suggesting that Ardis Parshall probably hasn’t read enough history, then you do not know who Ardis Parshall is and you should stop talking now, because you’re embarrassing yourself.
…Ah, speaking of embarrassing…
I wrote a comment to Ardis’s post. It was really out of line. It was loaded; it was tongue-in-cheek; it was everything I know better than to say.
And yet, at some level, I was trying to find an answer: Ardis’s experience seems extraordinary. It does not seem generalizable to the average Mormon. If this is the case, then what are people who don’t have such experiences supposed to do? Despite my loaded language, I was (and am) interested to hear how Ardis would answer.
Ardis had a pretty thorough response, which I’ll have to think about in depth for a bit…but which I also think doesn’t fully answer my question. (It still assumes “knowledge” of certain things that I don’t think every Mormon would consider “known” or easily knowable — it may be true that “learning that Joseph Smith was a polygamist doesn’t affect the origin of the Book of Mormon” — but the origin of the Book of Mormon was a questionable point already. Same with the disparate aspects of Mountain Meadows Massacre and the First Vision — there are enough questionable points about the First Vision itself that the MMM just adds insult to injury) And so I was interested in continuing the conversation, and started drafting a new comment.
…until I realized she had responded a second time to me.
Andrew, having now read your remarks elsewhere, I realize there wasn’t a shadow of sincerity in your question. No need for you to respond here again.
:< :< :<
Yeah, I deserved that.
But what a joke I am. Turns out I’m still a monster. I’m not really doing anything different here.
IB”Oh there goes Andrew S trying to start up drama, dishing it out but not being able to take it.” etc.,