Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Compartmentalization

Tucking things (ideas, events, facts, memories) away, recovering them on an as-needed basis.

I cannot do this. I'm trying, because it seems like a decent coping mechanism. I wish I could find a spot for hurts or pains or ends. But I tend to dwell on things. Situations stay forefront in my mind until something else comes along to replace it, or with time it just becomes less vivid.

For people like me, leaving the church is an abrupt and concise journey. When I first learned about the Book of Abraham being funeral writings, the rest of the doctrine crumbled from there. I had no basis for rationalizing any of it. Piece by piece it fell, until all my beliefs laid scattered at my feet, and I was naked and vulnerable. I don't presume that my journey was any more traumatic than anyone else's; in fact, it was probably way less traumatic. But early on I desperately sought after reasons, ways to rationalize it and tuck the truth away. It just didn't happen.

Now here I am. I dealt with the pain, the grief, and the end of my mormon life. I'm moving on. A new life has replaced it, though the new life is still awkward and fumbling. I have new pains now, ones which I'm dwelling on. They, too, will fade. I'll be okay.

9 comments:

C.L. Hanson said...

The Book of Abraham was a crucial part of my deconversion as well. And like you and many others I remember a particular tipping-point moment when it all crumbled.

Hope your journey is going well... :D

MattMan said...

Ditto on the BoA being a crucial part of my deconversion.

I think you'd be hard pressed to find an exmo who would say it wasn't a crucial part.

I think each of us exmos have one or more of our own "last straw" issues after which the house of cards fell; however, I think that may only a matter of timing or personality in general.

The black and white thinking that the church teaches (or, in all fairness, at least *encourages*) is responsible for its own self-destruction in my opinion. Once we, as TBMs, allowed for the possibility for one part of it to be a fraud, then it really does crumble like a house of cards. If the church encouraged individuality in belief instead of conformity, and healthy questioning instead of obedience obedience obedience, then there would likely be far fewer exmos.

We all know some TBMs who do take a more cafeteria-style approach to the morg, and I think everyone would agree that those are the most difficult to reach for deconversion. That's because their personal system of belief is more individualized, and can withstand more blows than someone who just followed the adage that when the brethren have spoken the thinking has been done.

In a way, I see parallels in the mainstreaming PR attempts of the church and this idea of black and white versus cafeteria-style or individualized belief. I think we will see a lot more of this in the future. If we don't, the church is only going to implode on itself because of the fragile nature of the black and white system. The black and white system is like the bully. It seems strong and tough, and may be the most stubborn, but in the end, it's the weakest because it contradicts reality.

Sister Mary Lisa said...

It's hard to consider that this life we live is the one. This is it. I'm only 34 and have finally realized that this is it. MY LIFE. I get to create it as I want to... I never felt that until now. It's hard sometimes, huh? Especially since we grew up LDS and we were given all the answers to what we should do and be before we had a chance to think about it first. That for me is the hard part...what will I be now? What will I do? Who am I or who do I want to be?

The house of cards falling is a good analogy.

:)

Arizona Expositor said...

You know it wasn't until I hit FAIR that I found about the BoA and then I left the boards, but earlier this year I went back and it was their silly defenses that assisted me in leaving.

I have two final straws, the issue of polyandry in the church by Joseph. To me it's a horny guy trying to get his way. But last week I had a conversation with a TBM friend and he defends polygamy by stating they had to do it to maintain property. Granted I am sure there is something to that, but he ignores the mountain of evidence showing the control and horny side of it that existed. It appears to me that Jeffs is closer to JS's and BY's brand of Mormonism than the mainline church of today.

The other issue was the recent senate debate about the "Federal Marriage Amendment". I got blasted by the same TBM friend for not calling our senators to urge them to vote for it. To me I am not threatned by gays marrying. He gave me the line of "the thinking has been done and the prophet has spoken, how dare you?"

Well that dare lead me to outer blogness. :)

Rebecca said...

The doctrinal issues were all secondary for me. The "straw" was what my own sense of morality was telling me. Sure, it's no more logical than "the Spirit," or any of the other TBM stuff, but at least it was all ME - no "prophet," no "still small voice," - just my increasing sense that I couldn't reconcile what I thought was right with what I was taught was right.

Also, I think I have the potential to compartmentalize. Which is why I think I'd make a great assassin (with the right training, of course). :) And you know, the scariest part is realizing that, despite all my high-minded ideals regarding human rights, I think I actually DO have the capacity to kill for money and thrill. And I kind of like that. Okay, you totally don't want to be my friend anymore, do you?

Bishop Rick said...

For me (though I'm not really and exmo, just an exmo wannabe) it was the DNA issue. Then the BoA and all the other stuff just made it that much easier.

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Just one of many said...

For me it was the deception, I grew up with lies. I will don't mind doubt. The is something comforting in the unknown

Just one of many said...

Again, no BUIing tonite.

Anonymous said...

http://www.jefflindsay.com/LDSFAQ/FQ_Abraham.shtml