Friday, December 25, 2009
Sunday, December 6, 2009
It is a service that even in the best of times is difficult for me to get through. I darn near lost it this year. That cauldron of emotions began to bubble yet again. But I have to keep it together to play the service. Praise God for some degree of maturity and focus to be able to channel those feelings in to rather poignant improvisations on selected Advent and Christmas tunes.
At one portion of the service the refrain of a hymn was used as a response to stories and scriptures of heartache that were shared. I share it with you:
Light of each tomorrow,
give us peace beyond our fear,
and hope beyond our sorrow.
Friday, December 4, 2009
Friday, November 20, 2009
In talking with some of my fellow MoHomies I find it fascinating that some have such and optimistic outlook on life. Especially some of the ones that are in some difficult situations as I once was. In one particular chat on Facebook I was groaning how the holidays this year are probably going to be the worst ever. Things are usually bad enough as I remember the anniversary of my mom's death (12 years come Dec. 1). But this year I get to add to that the additional angst of having been through a rough bout with finding myself, attempted suicide, business issues, divorce, seeing an ex move on before the divorce, and being very alone.
When my dad called to extend the invitation of being on the other side of the mountains for Thanksgiving at their house I was a little apprehensive. With all that has gone on this year I'm not in very much of a festive, let alone grateful mood. Especially with a 3.5 hour drive just to get there. Perhaps sensing my reluctance my dad sweetened the deal a little by saying "you're also welcome to bring a 'special' friend if you want." Now the gesture in and of itself is huge coming from my still very LDS dad. Yet at the same time it felt more like a knife in my back now that I no longer have anyone to share my life with. The odds of my status going from single and available to happily taken are not likely to change any time soon short of a miracle occurring. God if you're up there are you listening?
So it just added to my weight of the holiday season. It's bad enough feeling the loneliness in and of itself with out adding an entirely new helping of personal guilt for not being "good enough" for anyone to even go on a date with. In talking with Good to be free we were going on about how being gay is difficult enough but being (ex) Mormon and gay makes and already small pool of fish evaporate almost entirely. Since there are plenty of us who don't smoke or drink, and aren't interested in the one night stands (although even then I'm feeling myself wanting to slip there too), it places with us a certain stigma in the community for not being "stereotypically gay." So what is a poor lost boy to do? I have no answers but I would love for Santa to leave me a boyfriend for Christmas. It's the only thing on my list this year.
Monday, November 16, 2009
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
MORMON CHURCH LEADERS BEND UNDER SCRUTINY BROUGHT ON BY 8: THE MORMON PROPOSITION. IS THIS ANOTHER MORMON P.R. STUNT?
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: STEVEN GREENSTREET (801) 580-3103
PRESS@MORMONPROPOSITION.COM MORMON CHURCH LEADERS BEND UNDER SCRUTINY BROUGHT ON
BY 8: THE MORMON PROPOSITION. IS THIS ANOTHER MORMON P.R. STUNT?
On November 10, 2009 several highly placed people featured in the upcoming documentary film 8: THE MORMON PROPOSITION were contacted by well-placed people inside the Mormon Church in anticipation of an "historic statement against discrimination" to be made by the Mormon Church. They were told, "Watch what we are about to do. You will be pleased."
At this hour gays and lesbians all over the world hope that the Mormon Church's announcement will not be yet another Mormon public relations smoke screen and result in action that will result in full marriage equality for the LGBT community world-wide. Since the release of the trailer for 8: THE MORMON PROPOSITION, intense scrutiny has been focused on Mormon involvement in the passage of Proposition 8 and allegations that the Mormon Church set up the infamous NATIONAL ORGANIZATION FOR MARRIAGE which was the key player in Maine's recent ban on gay marriage.
Sources close to those who called our cast and production team alerting us to the upcoming Mormon statement on discrimination say that Mormon Mitt Romney has recently put pressure on his own church to extend an olive branch to the gay community to try and deflate the anticipated negative press that will come from the release of 8: THE MORMON PROPOSITION that would likely damage his hope for a successful 2012 presidential bid. Ironically (and we suspect in step with the Mormon's anticipated statement on discrimination) Mormon-owned KSL TV released an article on their web site saying "Romney appears to be front-runner in 2012 election." http://www.facebook.com/l/cac2b;www.ksl.com/?nid=148&sid=8613293
While the 8:TMP team hopes Mormons end their game of discrimination against the LGBT community and wishes to work with people of all faith traditions to end discrimination, we would like to assert the following.
FACT: Under similar international scrutiny, Mormon leaders have in the past made similar statements regarding being against discrimination directed towards minorities & the LGBT COMMUNITY.
FACT: Gay leaders in SLC begged Mormon leaders to back up their statements on ending discrimination against the LGBT commmunity, through Mormon support for their COMMON GROUND initiative.
FACT: Despite lip service, Mormons did not get behind the COMMON GROUND INITIATIVE and in fact worked to see the initiative's defeat.
FACT: Despite lip service to people of color, the holiest book of Mormon scripture THE BOOK OF MORMON still refers to people of color as being "CURSED WITH A DARK SKIN, FILTHY AND LOATHSOME."
FACT: Despite lip service to people of color, printings of MORMON DOCTRINE by beloved Mormon Apostle Bruce R. Mcconkie, assert African Americans are "marked" for not being fully behind the plan of Jesus Christ in a pre-earth life war in Heaven.
FACT: A Mormon spokesperson told 8TMP's director "this is all about public relations and making the church look good."
In conclusion, as Mormon heavy-hitters prepare for the so-called "historic announcement" our team would encourage Mormons to put their money and their membership by doing the following:
1. Severing all Mormon ties to the NATIONAL ORGANIZATION FOR MARRIAGE, which works to rob the LGBT COMMUNITY of their civil rights.
2. Directing an amount of money equal to Mormon money spent in California's Prop. 8 campaign to LGBT marriage equality.
3. Removing from all Mormon canonized scripture any reference to people of color as being "cursed or marked with a dark skin" or being "filthy and loathsome."
4. Ask Mormon Apostle Dallin H. Oaks to retract his recent teachings on LGBT "alleged civil rights" and affirm that LGBT rights are not "alleged" but deserved and long overdue.
Our production team and cast await the day when Mormons will work with the LGBT community not only with their words, but their money and their members to achieve FULL MARRIAGE EQUALITY. This is the only way to truly advocate for the end of discrimination against ALL PEOPLE. Anything else is lip-service.
Saturday, November 7, 2009
I just cannot believe how some have to keep telling lies. I found this on the anti-gay 'protect "marriage" wa' website (I will not post a like to give them more hits) after a whiny and lengthy diatribe complaining about them wanting all of the names that signed the petition to put R 71 on the ballot kept secret. I'll only repost the key item they wrote at the bottom of their most recent post.
Friday November 6, 2009
The results of the November 2009 election in Washington remain too close to call.
Too close to call with pretty much all the ballots in hand and most of them counted!?!?! You have to be frakin' kidding me!!! Get your divisive self righteous heads out of your behinds and look at the numbers. The math doesn't lie. 1 + 1 still does equal 2 although I'm sure a number of literalist Christian conservatives would like to change this truth as well.
Clearly these people have no idea how elections work. The voting margins have been set it, is clear how people are voting in each county, and the people have spoken. Admittedly this is not a land slide in favor of gay rights outside of King county, but still, the majority has spoken in a vote by the people. As the votes were coming in and "approve R-71" maintained a lead the anti-gay group were asking the Christians of the state to "pray - in" a "reject" victory (because all good Christians are apparently anti-gay rights since, "the Bibles says..." and therefore God is on their side) my sick ex-Mormon mind couldn't help but to think that there prayers weren't being answered because...
Perhaps you have some unresolved sin, aren't praying with 'real intent', aren't reading your scriptures enough, aren't paying a full and honest tithe, aren't fasting with purpose, aren't participating in your church meetings, aren't doing enough temple work or fully performing your callings (for my Mormon friends) for God to hear and answer your prayers to reject domestic partnerships. This is the basis for having prayers answered after all as I was taught in my youth and what I was asked to teach as a missionary. That OR, God does not exist, OR domestic partnerships and gay rights ARE in fact the will of God. Hmm...
Thursday, November 5, 2009
Monday, November 2, 2009
As was suggested I thought I would do a two fold post. Just a blurb on the theme and then yet another pause for the beginning of another mopey week, or so it seems.
So the only secret I could possibly get off my chest is rather obvious. I'm gay and have been for as long as I can remember. Now being who I was and how I was raised it has taken my entire life thus far to realize what I am and make an attempt to come to peace with it.
I was thinking this morning before I got out of bed that, yeah, I've been gay for as long as I was even remotely aware of what such things were. My earliest recollection of being attracted to guys goes back to elementary school. Something made me more curious about the boys then the girls. Not being in the thick of puberty yet I didn't think much of it and of course I had no idea what it was. But then middle school hit and even in the high anxiety world of P.E. I found myself drawn to some of the cute guys in my gym class. You know looking around in the locker room while trying not to be caught looking around. Again no idea what so ever I was gay. Really gay didn't exist - I had no family or friends that were "that way." It is certainly not going to be talked about in any good LDS home in those days. Just "the talk" about the "birds and the bees" seemed rather abrupt even for a dad who is a medical professional.
At any rate high school hit and of course I was still discreetly checking the guys out. I had a couple groups of friends and guy friends. And again I thought nothing of it. How I wish I could have got past the whole self awareness phase and come out while I was still in high school and young enough to rebound from it before college. It's really somewhat amusing now how oblivious I was to my gayness. It wasn't until I had "the phone call" with my dad, who was not surprised, where I realized that even he suspected all those years ago.
My dad reminded me of my first crush. Being where I'm at I can see that whole thing as being just that, but of course even just a few years ago I would have never saw my attraction to this guy for what it truly was. I was an under classmen and this guy was a senior. He was a sweet, friendly, outgoing sort. I was drawn in by his musical talents, he had a wonderful tenor voice, played the trumpet and piano well, and had quite a faith in God. He was not LDS but a good christian guy. There was just something about his eyes that to this day still makes me melt. He had befriended me as he did with so many others. I found myself at his house a time or two where we'd hang out and do music nerd stuff with the christian music he was passionate about. His little brother was my age and in some of the same classes I was. They were complete opposites in those days. But I was drawn in by my high school crush. When I found out their family was moving to Las Vegas I was heart broken. It wasn't long after where my mom was diagnosed with cancer the year following loosing that battle.
I still think about what could have happened had I not been confined to the Mormon way of life. In the years the passed I thought often about my first crush... what he was up to and whether or not he could have had any feelings for me as well. Since the miracle of facebook he has become part of my gathering of friends and acquaintances. I had figured that if our paths had ever crossed again that I would discover that he would be married and have a few kids. But as with others, I remain perplexed by the guys that in their personal information only put that they are single. No other mention as to if they are interested in men or women or what. How many straight guys do we know that take full advantage of such a thing to advertise they are single and want a woman? But there he is - just single. So I have to secretly wonder could he be... Sadly friending on facebook does not guarantee being able to strike up even a casual conversation with former friends. I've thrown a couple of wall posts and private messages his way just curious to see where the last 12 years has led him, to no response. Yet, I stop and wonder. Should he ever come across this and figure it out I would be mortified and turn every shade of embarrassed color imaginable. But then again...
Of course thinking so much about what might have been when I wasn't ready to come out leads me to contemplate what could be now that I'm ready. And what I find hurting is now that I'm ready the opportunities I've had now seem to be gone. My social circle of live interactions has shrunk to a party of one - me, myself, and I. While I appreciate the connections I seem to be making online, nothing compares to getting to know people in real life. We are social creatures after all.
Just last night and also this morning I was thinking about the fictitious love of my life, not my high school crush. A few years ago I would have said that was with the girl I married only later to end up being divorced. Some how God managed to bring her to me for the purposes of showing me a better path for myself. Now I have to wait all over again to find the guy I should have been with from the start.
I have spent way too much time thinking about the first date and all the things I want to happen in a relationship that I've been craving for nearly 30 years but never getting. It's worse than being hungry for a good steak and potatoes. I have felt myself feeling desire for such a true relationship in every part of my body. And my spirit aches to have that connection with someone. My friend, my soul mate, my love. Oh merciful and loving God don't make me wait too long. Lead me to "the one."
Saturday, October 31, 2009
Friday, October 23, 2009
Following in other's lead a little blurb about where I'm at. Since I only came out in March I'm not as far as many of you out in there in MoHo land. I still live in the house my ex and I purchased. She is still living there as well until we can get to a point to sell it. Within a couple weeks of me coming out the ex decided to start dating an ex-roommate of ours (there's a story there I might share sometime) and they have been seeing each other for about 6 months. And yes I get to see it all.
As for me I've only been on one date - with a guy that is. I learned a lot from that and have formed ideas in what sort of person I'm interested in. Interestingly enough I don't fit in to any stereotypical gay category being a very straight acting personality that doesn't smoke, doesn't drink, and doesn't really fit in to the gay party/social scene. So I am, as many ExMoHo's know about themselves, an oddity among oddities.
I've been doing huge quantities of reading and studying trying to get past both my crisis of identity and faith. It's still slow going but reading the stories of others and helping others helps me. Of course being very inactive and only working as a musician for other church's I don't feel like I really have a spiritual home. I haven't yet requested my name be removed from LDS membership and it is something I am dreading actually following through on despite my hostile feelings towards Mormonism.
All the reading and watching nice "gay movies" like MILK, or Latter Days doesn't, however, make those feelings of loneliness and needing a personal and intimate relationship go away. Sometimes it makes it worse. Most nights I cry in to my pillow and praying that the painful part of this transition will be over soon and that I will find the true love of my life and that there will be a point where things will get better. But I often feel that such prayers and yearnings fall on deaf ears. I hate being alone and even after almost 30 years and a failed marriage I'm still waiting to find that person I fully connect with. But for now all I can do is wait and hope that all of this pain and suffering is not in vain.
Man on a mission
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Thursday, October 15, 2009
"Would you want to belong to a religion where you could change God's mind about something?"
I saw this question on the Deseret News website in response to reactions about General Conference and what the General Authorities are saying about homosexuality. It was such a provocative question that I couldn't help but bring it here. I will answer the question at the end.
As the tension increases and the great debate of whether or not being gay is ok as God sees it I stumbled across something I couldn't push away. I was rather touched by the film "MILK." How someone in essence died as a martyr for the gay rights movement. While many LDS like to lay claim that Joseph Smith was the only "true" martyr in religious history I found some interesting and painful stuff in church history.
It is really amazing how when you start diging in the past of Mormon history it reopens old wounds of leaving the church fearing deep down it was true. Yes, I still have more healing to do but finding this little gem of history continually affirms that I made the right choice to leave Mormonism behind and find my true self.
I was perusing the Affirmation website and learned that the church in the 1970's whole heartedly approved of the anti-gay movement. The church that claims to love everyone, as long as you are baptised in the church and are obedient to the leaders and just do as you are told... isn't quite so innocent. As if there was ever any doubt in my mind.
In "MILK" and seeing the documentary "The Bible Tells Me So" I was stunned by the "christian" nastiness by the fallen crusader Anita Bryant. Few have been so publicly anti-gay and homophobic. I was surprised to learn that she does in fact have a gay son and, shockingly, her stance outside of the spotlight has softened towards the gay community.
Even more shocking is the the LDS church fully supported Bryant and her claims as well as her movement. Bryant was supported by the Relief Society and the "Prophet" of the church when they brought her to Utah in the 1970's. I was just stunned that a church professing to follow Christ would invite such a person. It's really is no different than embracing a white supremacist when you think about it. I was shocked and saddened and relieved that I no longer participate in the so called "One True Church." The proof of the said alliance is below.
Now to answer the question at hand...
"Would you want to belong to a religion where you could change God's mind about something?"
It is at that point where it ceases to be a religion and becomes a relationship. This is the culmination of what all religion is, to have that close relationship with God. It would no longer be about faith because God is no longer a mysterious thing never seen but always prayed to. And it isn't a vain or prideful thing to want such a thing. Prophets throughout biblical history have wrestled with God to change God's mind. Unquestionably YES.
1. “Relief Society Leader Hails Anita Bryant's Homosexual Stand,” Salt Lake Tribune, June 11, 1977; “LDS Leader Hails Anti-Gay Stand,” Salt Lake Tribune, November 5, 1977; “Relief Society commends Anita,” Deseret News, June 11, 1977, B1; “Unnatural, without excuse,” Church News supplement of theDeseret News, July 9, 1977.
Monday, October 12, 2009
As my gay and MoHo circle of acquaintances and friends increases, seemingly daily, I am growing more concerned by a commonality that seems to go with many of theses wonderful people, especially with those in the gay Mormon community. They seem to be fighting a war. One that is concealed from general view but to those who have been there the battle is easily seen. It is the fight for our selves and our identity after growing up in a world and faith that says we shouldn't exist and, being gay, certainly have no claims to heavenly salvation or the happiness and love to be found in this world.
While I don't necessarily know each of these individuals personally or nearly as well as I would like, I have come to see and learn the stories and struggles of some of these children of God. I have met the guy who is just realizing that Mormonism can not support him in being gay, or the one still trying to stay in the church and denounce his sexuality, or even the one married with a family. They are all here seeking solace from a brutal reality and bearing a bruised spirit - but where do they find it when the one place that claimed to offer it to them turns their backs to those in need. To where do they go to find peace with themselves?
I don't know what it is I can offer those that carry these burdens, and indeed they are. I learned and I know that they can not be carried alone and I nearly lost my fight trying to do so. I feel compelled to offer a hand of friendship to each one of my gay brothers and sisters willing to take it. And to give a chance of hope and opportunity to all when none existed for me. Be it an e-mail, text, phone call, conversation, or even a shoulder to cry on, I want to do my best to give hope where perhaps none existed. I'm not sure why I even feel so driven to say any of this - but I feel like I can help and so I shall whenever I can. My dear friends I reach out to you where ever you may be. There are a few ways to reach me via this blog and my associated facebook page. To those in the Seattle area I reach out further since I'm in the area. Please don't feel like you have to go through life alone. God does love and care for you and there are many in the world who love you and support you and many walking the journey alongside you.
My heart goes out to each and every one of you. You are all in my prayers where ever you may be and what ever circumstance you may be challenged with... have hope... You are not alone!
I’m following in his ways.
I’m trying to love as he did, in all that I do and say.
At times I am tempted to make a wrong choice,
But I try to listen as the still small voice whispers,
I’m learning to serve my friends.
I watch for the day of gladness when Jesus will come again.
I try to remember the lessons he taught.
Then the Holy Spirit enters into my thoughts, saying:
“Love one another as Jesus loves you.
Try to show kindness in all that you do.
Be gentle and loving in deed and in thought,
For these are the things Jesus taught.”
Sunday, October 11, 2009
It's funny the people you meet who are members of the church and how they react when you tell them you're gay. The young lady giving me a hair cut became instantly uncomfortable. You know how how they like to chat you up and as you start talking about yourself you just start throwing things out there. Well I took the plunge after talking about going on a mission and being a musician to toss out that I was an inactive member and I was gay. Funny how the chatting ended right there. Fortunately she was done and was trying so hard to be professional at that point. I had a good laugh in my car the whole way home at this poor gal's expense. Members just don't know how to handle it.
So I ended up at a party after the weekend gig and a fellow homo's place. A couple of friends showed up and it was nice to not be in a room of people I knew from school but had practically no connection with. I learned last night the really being gay is like playground kickball. You know exactly where you stand in the "pecking order" of life as soon as teams start getting picked. You know the ritual - first we start with the jocks, the ones with obvious ability, then ones with a gorgeous body, then the ones with a pretty face, the ones that just are. And then the fight to get the lesser of the remaining evils ensues, the awkward ones, the goofy ones, the nerdy ones, and so on.
And I wonder why I never get off the wall to even be picked at all. I'm not ripped or gorgeous, but decently cute and working to take better care of myself. I'm not a pretty face but attractive and I certainly have more than just a vacuum inside my head. And yet I never even get a chance to get up to bat. The teams area already full and the game in the bedrooms has already begun.
And it feels like it did all those years ago in the playground - alone, with no one who cares to notice that I'm the only one standing there with no team to play on.
Saturday, October 10, 2009
Soon eyes will be turning to the State of Washington as we have our own version of California's Prop. 8 debacle. While the opponents of preserving domestic partnership laws (which is what voting yes of Referendum 71 will do) take the stance this is about "preserving traditional marriage between a man and a woman," defeating this measure will nullify domestic partnership regardless of sexual orientation.
It is clear that the protect marriage camp is attempting to make this an anti gay issue. With support from many anti gay churches and organizations this may be but a first attempt to return to the 1970's and push gays back in to the closet and out of society. To those who still don't get it, gays are here to stay!
Professor Patrick M. Chapman, Ph.D. and author of "Thou Shalt Not Love: What Evangelicals Really Say to Gays"was guest speaker this month for Tacoma PFLAG. He discussed the origins of marriage in several cultures and how many other societies look at those of different sexual orientation or gender identity. It was interesting to note that the US is actually one of the furthest behind western civilization world superpowers when it comes to gay rights. He commented if a country like South Africa can have gay rights ahead of the US there is something terribly wrong with the country purported to have the most freedom. And what is it preventing equality yet again in this great country of ours? Yet again as it was for African Americans and many other minorities, it fear stirred up by religious conservatives.
Naturally the discussion at PFLAG went the discussion of how religion enters the picture as in many pacific island cultures those who we would label as gay are often put in to religious roles such as shaman and the like. We heard about Professor Chapman's experience in a nondenominational church that outed him in front of the entire church while he was in the company of friends and students and was not out publicly. Of course the church wanted to change, I mean "help" him. The discussion naturally led to Ref. 71. Apparently the opponents of domestic partnership have released a new commercial with copyrighted images from the LDS church. While I have not seen said commercial the comment was made that in all probability the Mormon church is quietly supporting the anti partnership platform.
To all of my gay brothers and sisters Mormon or not out there. Get off your hindquarters and register to vote. Allowing our rights to be taken away by the homophobic, the bigots, the misguided religious conservatives, or just the uninformed will allow the Anita Bryants of the 1970's to return to the 21st century to push us out of society.
Defend our freedom and vote that "all men are created equal and are given certain inalienable rights."
Vote for all to keep their homes and their families safe from those seeking to destroy the family unit just because it is not like theirs. Make your voice heard that the words of the constitution will never be erased or the words written at the base of the Statue of Liberty may forever beckon all to "come home."
"Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me.
I lift my lamp beside the golden door."
Thursday, October 8, 2009
For those like myself still trying to find their path or even just get their footing, or those that are uncertain about life or who they are and where they are going... hang on my dear friends. Together we can find our way. None of us is alone.
While many just use the web for a one way means of expression I am going to go out on a limb and offer to be supportive and say to you get in touch with me via my facebook attached to this blog if you need a friend, someone to talk to, and even a shoulder to cry on should we be within driving distance. We can share and should in each other's burdens and joys. As Harvey said "have hope" my friends, have hope.
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
So I had brewing in my head yesterday a couple of responses. Posting on youtube is so ridiculous with all of the TBM's patrolling every church clip and instantly reporting or voting down any response not favorable to the church. But I like to publicly stir the pot so I keep doing it.
Now to "speak ill of the Lord's 'annointed.'"
M. Russell Ballard started to get my blood boiling. And to use a prop (Hyrum Smiths BOM) from church vaults as if that some how validates the "truth" is nothing more than emotional blackmail. Produce some golden plates for academia to look at and then we'll talk. I hope some day I will get to meet Clark Johnsen and thank him for his courage in being out in the public with his thoughts on the church and being gay (and all the others out there for that matter). I will use his line yet again here, "Truth needs no buttress." A turned down page in the back of an old book owned by someone lawfully imprisoned and unfortunately shot for taking away the right to free speech does not in any way prove the truth of Mormonism one iota.
Elder Ballard in his chest beating conference talk suggested no one can leave the church with out dragging the BoM through the mud. Or as he said walking over it, around it, through it, etc. As if doing such a thing is only unique to Mormonism or somehow the persecution of this "poor abused church" like in civil war times still continues. That just proves the church is true he implies while waving around a first edition BoM.
Since the BoM and Joe Smith are the keystones to the church how is it in any way surprising that people who believe the church to be false will not either directly or indirectly attack the church? To think differently is a logical fallacy. This goes back to the upside down house of cards in one of my earlier postings. If all that is (ahem) "true" is built upon these two things of course they will be constantly attacked. Especially when there is sufficient evidence to if not disprove at least call in to serious question the validity of Mormonism's claims of the Nephites etc., the Pearl of Great Price, and numerous other questionable "prophesies."
But this is no different for Mormonism than it would be to walk on Mary Baker Eddy if you were a Scientologist, or Luther and the small catechism, or Judaism and the Torah. Suggesting that people only attack the Mormon church, it's founding leaders and doctrine is not only false but incredibly arrogant and ignorant.
Dallin H. Oaks - and his tip toeing around the "gay issue" while saying nothing more than than "those cohabitating outside of marriage" really got me going too. Just come out and say it. I guess they are afraid that it will make people gay or sinful if they use proper terminology. His talking about following ALL of God's laws made me laugh. Time to rescind mixed marriages, civil rights, and mixing fabrics (Leviticus) - uh oh would that mean you can wear the polyester garment top with the cotton bottoms? Hmmm. Well if it's God's law. Perhaps that part wasn't translated correctly either.
It's clear the general authorities of the church are fearing something. The only thing I can suggest is that they are indeed losing ground and probably membership. And as psychology tells us those that begin to lose control of those they wish to keep in control... the more adverse and desperate their plea to not upset the status quo increases. Conference was full of that, as well as making members more fearful of the world outside of the church. Keep those blinders on and you'll be happy.
I'll have to go on about the whole Elder Hafen garbage after I get a chance to really read it.
Monday, October 5, 2009
Jeffery Holland beating his chest about how a page turned down in an old BOM proves the truth of the church.
Quentin Cook trying to bridge the gap of the Jewish community not so indirectly trying to get temple ordinances moving for Jews again after that major insensitive scandal in the church. Lots of obvious inference in to purity and chastity.
It's also not often the president of the church reminds the membership to keep the GA's in their prayers "we're all in this together." Also, don't for get that as a member "to play your part well." Things must not be going well in the church these days. Such uneasiness in the leadership. Not a lot of tranquility to be found in any talks given. Very interesting.
Saturday, October 3, 2009
As is often the case I was doing some thinking last night about where things are going. Or where they are not is probably more accurate. Since coming out 6 months ago I have hoped that being honest with myself would make it easier to be real, approachable, and in general, faster to move on and find someone new to have a relationship with or at least explore with.
But yet It hasn't happened and I keep wondering why. My ex had entered, or rather fell, in to a new relationship before we even signed the divorce papers. Her answer to it was that although she "didn't want it," it was the wish of her heart. While we could debate the merits of whether or not she wanted it since it was a relationship entered in to before the last one ended there was something to where it was going from the beginning. And there she is - with almost everything she could want in a boy friend. Sure, it's not perfect but yet what is? Things between the two of them are so swimmingly they spend at least every other day together out doing something, and when they aren't
So as I lay in bed cuddling my pillow where a cute nice guy should be, with my arms wrapped around him, I shed silent tears mourning his absence. And I ask myself, "don't I deserve the wish of my heart too, or is that only reserved for heteros." Am I doomed to a life of loneliness now that I have found honesty with myself?
I find it amazing how passive aggressive the guys in this area are. It seems many find me mildly attractive, but in the end it only seems to come down to one thing, the shallowness of online intimacy. Practically none have the guts to pull the trigger to even go on a casual date. Too many guys seem to be more interested in whether or not I'm naked and horny at the time while on gay.com then they are meeting up and seeing if there is genuine human connection. I guess physicality comes cheaper than investing in a real relationship. So I wonder further, will I find anyone worth while in the Puget Sound area - the gay capitol of the NW, or am I just another piece of trash in the streets of heart brokenness.
It hurts to see everyone else in a place where they have someone, and as if I was back in the immaturity of high school, there I am on the side lines shouting to the rest of the players "I'm open, pick me!"
It's almost as if I'm being punished not only for finally coming out to myself, but then for retaining some degree of standards and integrity. While, sure I like sex as much as any guy, I'm not the sort to just go out and have one night stands until someone is interested enough in me to hang around. After my last failed sham of a relationship I want the romance and the connection. Sex is trite and meaningless with out it - an easy lesson learned from the last go around.
It is sad that so many cute guys also seem to have few standards. I can't stand how many guys smoke like chimneys. Aside from the fact its bad for you, my lungs just don't want anything to do with that. And then there are the alcoholics and drug users. Drinking "socially" and going out every other night and getting your booze on no longer makes you a social drinker. It makes you a regular and probably one with not much of a bank account. Trying alcohol never did anything for me so I have no interest in it whatsoever. While I don't hold it against anyone for getting an adult beverage every once in a while, if it makes you an ass after the first glass - sorry, not interested. Simply put drugs of any kind are an instant deal breaker - not interested! Mostly because it would open a Pandora's box that I would rather not acknowledge. That stuff will suck you in and never let go. I have enough problems in life already with out having addiction thrown in on top.
It's funny that I would even be saying this but really I need to find myself a guy that grew up with the same standards I did. I need myself a MoHo - or perhaps better yet an ExMoHo. Someone that knows where I've come from having been raised in the church, served a mission, even the mistake of marriage, has values, morals, and integrity - without too many word of wisdom hang ups (gay sex and intimacy is not part of the word of wisdom BTW). But I'm not interested in going back to the church - we all know where that ends for gay couples. However the qualities I'm looking for in a cute nice guy do fall in line with at least some of the standards of the church - strangely enough. And yet, I don't think it is a bad thing. It actually gives me some degree of standards.
So the question is... am I peeing yet again in to an arctic wind or do I have a chance finding such a guy without moving to a hornets nest like Utah? Is there anyone out there for me, or will I be cursed to a relationship with my pillow where surely there must be a guy in the world that could use my love more than a pillow needs my tears. Being alone in the dark at night makes me ponder and dream and lament, where is my love?
Friday, October 2, 2009
Already I find myself making lot of new friends via this humble little corner of the blog-o-sphere. It is amazing how like mindedness ends up pulling complete strangers together. I'm nearly in the last third of my book by Martha Beck, Leaving the Saints. I had not realized until last night that she was a daughter of Hugh Nibley the legendary defender of Mormon theological virtue, I mean 'truthfulness.'
I was thinking last night what the adoring LDS fans would think of Hugh if they knew that most of his "scholarly work" defending the structures of mormonism were a complete and udder fake. Nearly all of the annotations and footnotes were mostly made up by a nutty, yet in a brilliant sort of way man. Perhaps he was trying to repent of the sexual abuse inflicted on his children by running to the church's defense when the Egyptian Paparyi were rediscovered - the so called "Book of Abraham." The book of Joseph Smith making it up yet again.
When the truth about the scrolls came to light, that they were nothing more than Egyptian burrial rites, and not another revelation from God to Joe BlowSmith about Abraham, the church must have spent millions trying to squelch a "non faith promoting fact." Like Clark Johnsen, our own stripping warrior says, "truth needs no buttress.'' I just love that saying. Clark is a genius with this kernel of truth! The fact that Joe Smith's story telling, I mean "translation" didn't even come close to the real thing is proof enough to the forgery known as Mormonism. You don't need non existent gold plates to realize that not only did he not have an ability to translate, divinely or otherwise, the plates never existed beyond JS own mind.
And what of the testimonies of the other witness you ask? They are just as forced and falsified as many of those who get up in fast and testimony meeting every month. I know mine was and I am always part of the average majority. Being an exception to the rule is indeed nice every now and then.
So it got me to thinking about how the church came about. Really it did start just like a cult. But now it is a really large one. One that has been around just long enough to have some degree of religious plausibility and credibility.
I'm a firm believer that JS had some mental issues, especially by today's standards of mental health. Yes, he was dripping with woo abilities and charisma - the only reason the church got going to begin with - but as many brilliant people are regardless of their education, he was nuts.
No prophet since the dawn of creation has seen God in person - because as we learn in the bible the radiance of God would destroy all unclean things. Of course JS was also unbaptized by "proper priesthood" rite and past the Mormon coveted "age of accountability." He was, as we all are, a sinner. That right there would negate him ever seeing God let alone a resurrected Christ with God. And I don't care who you are or where you come from but to put yourself above a prophet as great as Moses who only saw a fragment of God's radiance in the form of a burning bush? And as a boy in back water NY county who would find plates of gold that never existed? The whole thing is as crazy as Hugh Nibley's life long defense of it.
Really there is one miracle going on with in the walls of Mormonism that just can't be explained other than the miracle of modern medicine. The age of the breatheren that run this wizard of oz show. And yes there is a man behind the curtain - and there is with each new president of the church. And those that follow it are as silly as Dorothy, the tin man, the scarecrow, and the lion for thinking the wizard was so great and powerful. But even the most intelligent on the earth can be deceived. However, even Dorothy in her simple and inquisitive way had the courage to look behind the curtain, and the truth was revealed to her. Most in the midst of Mormon culture and resulting mental control won't even approach that veil to see what is really behind it.
As I realized last night Mormonism is an upside down house of cards. It doesn't matter if the first card is the Book of Mormon or it's author Joe Smith since it is the same starting place. But it is no wonder why a faith must have the staff and legal counsel as LDS Inc. does. With out such devoted people to be constantly putting out fires and hiding the truth and history in the church vaults up in Witch Mountain, the
But try as one might to kick out that first card, there are, unfortunately, too many people to hold the rest of the upside down house of cards from the top. Too many who have much at stake to let even a false church collapse. The mass suicides that would happen if the church crumbled to the ground would indeed make the heavens weep. I don't think that God, assuming God does indeed exist, would let that happen, even to a large cult such as Mormonism. How said it is that the mind control keeps you in ignorant bliss - and all of that control, I mean obedience, from the simplest tool of the devil... fear.
Those who are fascinated with the "plan of salvation" will recall that only Satan wanted their to be no choice in finding God and happiness. Blind obedience is casting aside, free agency. How that must delight Lucifer to not have to force people to give up their ability to choose, but to have them give it and everything else they are or possess freely and gladly in belief it is the will of an angry God. But it is not to God they give things, but all of their time talents etc, to "The church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day saints for building the kingdom.." Not to God but a church run by men.
I am no longer afraid. I am not afraid of myself. I am not afraid of the church that took all that I thought I was but wasn't. And best of all I'm not afraid of my God and creator. When we are not afraid of it truth can be revealed.
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
The Artist said the following:
Monday, September 28, 2009
I picked up The Mormon Cult - Jack B. Worthy and also Leaving the Saints - Martha Beck. I guess you could say I'm reading in soft cover form instead of just online, true "anti" literature - gasp. Of course if you don't believe all of the religious horse pucky known as Mormonism does that still make it anti? I always find it funny that anything not written by a member or general authority that defends the purity and truthfulness of the LDS church is instantly tossed in to the "anti" bin and is surely Satan trying to steal away souls from the one and only true church. Sorry Catholics, Mormons use that phrase with so much more conviction and righteous indignation.
At any rate Jack Worthy's mission story was a nice quick read and I'm in to the 4th chapter of Martha Beck's rather thick book. Strange how invigorating reading other's journeys away from the [one true church to rule them all] can be. Perhaps I should write a book too.
Still to be read... No More Goodbyes - Carol Lynn Pearson, among many other good "anti" books sure to confine me to the hottest pits of hell - as if being gay wasn't the express there already.
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
The church and pointing the finger of who is to blame angers me. The gay community by and large is not trying to force any religion in to anything it cannot uphold. Is it the LDS church's goal to over throw same sex marriages in countries it already proselytizes in? How hypocritical for them to mandate that it is acceptable to overthrow any sort of same sex union just because it aligns with their religious view point, while having the audacity to state that those seeking same sex marriages are trying to reduce or limit the rights of heterosexual marriage. Complete and utter bull s**t. And if that's not enough to go so far as to suggest that it will erode liberty if gay marriage is permitted. Is the LDS church going to stage revolutions in each country it wants to control marital equality in? Elder Nelson I'm calling you on the carpet for trying to exercise unrighteous dominion. May separation of church and state be forever rooted in our government.
In Elder Russell M. Nelson recent address The Family: The Hope for the Future of Nations he states
Furthermore, those who seek to undermine traditional marriage and family would effectively limit the rights of those who do uphold the sanctity of these institutions. This consequence leads to another major concern— the eventual erosion of religious liberty, including the liberty to defend, promote, and practice traditional family values.(7)
7. In countries where same-gender marriage is adopted with no religious exemptions, all religions could eventually be required to perform gay marriages or to accept gay priests—even when that violates their most basic doctrines.
Monday, September 21, 2009
While my convert dad doesn't necessarily agree with the lifestyle, despite being a psychiatric practitioner, he is able to be accepting and loving of me as the son I always will be. To the point of being able to "welcome a friend" of mine into his home. My dear sweet sister is a little less open at this point.
While she was not surprised when I came out to her the message of acceptance of my homosexuality was clearly not favorable. It went even to the point of expected behavior should I ever decide to visit them (not any time soon), that I would not try to convince her children that being gay is ok... as if I were some sort of deviant. It always hurts when a family member you come out to treats you as a foreigner once you share your secret. Sad how the cloak of Mormonism and doing unto others only seems to apply when you are straight. As soon as the wild card of gayness gets played all bets are off.
Really it does come down to being true followers of Christ and being able to love unconditionally. Good Mormons often come from the "hate the sin, love the sinner camp." But of course such action is conditional love. We as human beings aren't able to compartmentalize the actions or choices of the ones we love from their identity. This is where so many LDS people fall short of their discipleship. As long as the status quo is appeased then there is no issue. I hope in at least my situation the some time and thought will bring other family members around. To at least realize that I'm still the same person. Being gay does not make me a criminal, pedophile, promiscuous, or just plain distrustful. Neither does it mean I intend to recruit your children in to being gay. No, it's not a communicable disease.
I only hope others will give pause to ponder the true example of love and fellowship Christ gave.
Saturday, September 12, 2009
For many years I've been working in a sacred choral mode and most of my official output was in choir/organ works. When creation grinded to a halt with little outlet to use those works the desire to write anything went with it. Musical creativity was limited to improvised music on Sunday at the "informal service" where I would essentially create all music not sung on the fly. While that is all well and good my desire for more musical structure wasn't being met. So this opportunity to create a powerful show and use all of my composer/orchestrator skills is one I can't turn up - especially with the subject matter of the show. Sorry I can't tell yet...
What is so interesting is how the muse and the way it works is different then before. It's like a new relationship. Before everything was very linear, through composed, start at the beginning and work until the end. Now inspiration is coming at the most strange of times and not necessarily at what I would consider the beginning of a song. It's little bit of a dance and challenge coming up with the score, but then realizing that I've just created a nice chorus or hook, and not the beginning verse. Most unusual for me. But so it goes - with several numbers in creative production and at the same time too.
Any good musical theater actors/ musicians want a gig? This one is going to be demanding in all musical and theatrical senses.
Monday, September 7, 2009
Sunday, September 6, 2009
It had me pondering about my own storms just a little bit. With out the stormy weather there can be no growth. Without the nourishment of the rains there can be no rejuvenation of life. Even the cleansing of the air with the ionization brought by the lightning. Without a little stormy precipitation there would be nothing but desolate dryness.
I quickly started associating this little analogy to my own storms of the last 8 months. I keep asking, "God, why is this so difficult? Why are things going this way?" And today the answer became clear. You are being nourished for further growth... After the rains the sun will come out and you will flourish, just as you were created to do.