I was missionary for the LDS 10 years ago and I met the man who most influenced me 'spiritually' , the guy who opened my eyes to really fundamental principles. I just called him up to chat and found out that he's left the LDS faith having found no evidence for it. I feel a little punch drunk and a bit sick. I guess that's how those who are close to you and still JWs all felt (if) when you left. Man it sucks.
Ouch. Just gonna post 'cos no one else to listen
Hey Qcmbr... That must have been a bit of a shock to you! Are you going to maintain contact with him?
Heck yea, he's kinda like my twin brother.
Wow, that must've hit you really hard, Qcmbr.
Just a question, if you don't mind - you've said that you'll maintain your contact with this person (good choice, by the way), but does the Chruch of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints advocate some form of "shunning" for those who leave the faith??
I'm just curious, I'm not trying to be offensive or anything.
No quite the opposite - people normally have to get restraining orders to get rid of us.
That said there are plenty of examples where shunning takes place for other reasons(read my posts for my past flops) and in the case of someone who actively fought against the church there would be a local warning to be careful over contact.
Sorry to hear about a personal crisis such as this. Who knows these things are all part of our growth.
I've always admired your willingness to look at other perspectives...and engage in respectful dialogue.
Hope you keep posting, and hope we can help. Take care.
Wow, Q, that must've bowled you over. Did he mention what level of evidence he was looking for? Has he moved to another faith, or has he dropped religion altogether?
You seem to have a good separation of "man" and "man's beliefs", that's important. He's the same guy he's been all along.
Hi AA and thanks to all,
Well after a disturbed nights sleep I still feel like I've done ten ronds with the spaghetti monster and lost on a points decision. Here's the list of things my friend couldn't accept:
1/ The making of pseudo prophetic statements by men in religious leadership that turned out to be absolute cobblers (from local leadership through to the top.)
2/ Prophecies of Joseph Smith that failed - such as a prophecy regarding one man that not only didn't happen but mentioned his good standing before God while later on it was found he was an adulteror.
3/ Tailing off of LDS revelation - i.e. started with balls and then has slipped into a mainstream style without real substance (Our prophet was on Larry King and when asked very direct questions re things such as homosexuality - didn't have a strong definite line whereas JS would have been very very certain and authoratitive in the mould of a Moses type.)We haven't had any revelation of any canonisable weight for a while. Also he pointed out that revelation is pretty poor if it keeps referring to events after they happened - why didn't LDS get moved out of New Orleans before the storm..
4/ Disagreement between LDS prophets - example Brigham Young Adam/God theory disregarded by modern day prophets.
5/ Lack of real power - no major healings, visions, angelic visitations or discernable signs and miracles.
6/ A 'testimony' - the mainstay of LDS faith - is likely to be no more than an altered state of mind brought about by intense desire. He pointed to shared experience with all other faiths yet that would suggest they were all right.
He tried buhddism for a bit and has drawn some comfort from it but is at the stage where he finds the christian notion of a God itself totally open to doubt. He did go back to church last week but he says its just to support his wife and kids who are still LDS.
I'm going to do some thinking on the walk to work.
I'm impressed with your candor and honesty about these things. There are many who would never admit to these kinds of challenges to their thinking, and simply do their best to surpress them.
Interesting day today, spent a lot of time discussing with my friend (LDS) my really deep concerns and I feel like I'm in quite a fragile place now. The intellectual/spiritual journey I am compelled to take again is to re-tread the road to see if I still believe deep deep down. I have been on a simmering spiritual crisis for some time and this is quite a push for me that will see it resolved one way or another.
I feel a bit naked now and spent most of the walk to and from work prayer to a so far silent heavens.