“If you saw a thirsty man drinking water from a well you knew to be poisoned, would you let him continue to drink or would you guide him to a safe well?” ~Christopher Miller
“I believe that anyone who is educated with common sense & has the knowledge that water from the ground can often be contaminated, would, through induction, accept your warning not to drink the water without the need for proof. If however, the same person was dying of thirst, the mind would create an intent, and emotion would create justification which would cause them to disregard the truth.
“I believe that above all else, our brain desires happiness. It achieves this by weighing up the potential risks from moment to moment, accepting bogus claims as truth and assimilating happiness, rather than using energy and resources to find out the truth. If the potential risk is deemed too great, only then will the brain be determined to search for confirmation to the claim.
“Information is key to raising awareness of what our brain withholds from our conscious mind. Unfortunately we are hardwired emotion driven thinkers. It takes effort and training to exercise introspection and mindfulness.” ~ David Bloor
I appreciate it can be a sensitive subject defending a belief system which has become a part of our identity.
I did it for 46 years when I was fully invested in the belief system. I was completely committed & for me Mormonism was more important than life itself. For me Mormonism gave me my purpose for life. The Church was the vehicle to Eternal Life. I believed everything was temporary except the gospel of Jesus Christ, which was the power of God unto Salvation.
When I resigned as Bishop of Helston Ward one of my counsellors pleaded with me more than once to continue as bishop, even though I knew the truth claims of the Church were false. He reasoned I was doing a great job, saying I was the best bishop he’d ever known, and should continue to serve the members.
Though flattered, my honesty & integrity forced me to continue with my plan to resign, even though it caused everyone great pain, most of all myself.
If happiness is the ultimate goal of Church participation then maybe it is valid, but I would argue that happiness is not always synonymous with wellbeing.
I believe wellbeing is a more worthy goal than just happiness.
In my opinion belief in Mormonism as a route to Eternal Life is akin to belief in Middle-Earth as the home of Hobbits.
And the Book of Mormon is as historic and as useful to me as The Lord of The Rings is a true account of real people.
When it comes down to authenticity, I think actual, objective reality is far more useful than any fantastic, fictional stories can ever hope to be.
Though the Book of Mormon is useful as interesting fictional mythology, unfortunately it is just as historically authentic as stories about Odin or Zeus. Maybe less so, as most of it is plagiarized!
I think authenticity is much more than sincerity. I don’t doubt most latter-day Saints are sincere, but even the deluded can be sincere.
Human flourishing & wellbeing requires more than mere hopes & dreams in Eternal Life, but knowledge of sound objective reality. The Taliban are sincere & authentic to their belief system, but it is easily & widely acknowledged by neutral outside observers to limit the potential of its adherents of both genders, but especially women and LGBT.
Though less severe, the Mormon belief system is also acknowledged by neutral observers to limit the potential for human flourishing & wellbeing, especially women, but also LGBT.
Having learnt that the Church was started by a fraudulent, adulterous, paedophile, charlatan, I am convinced the Church is also a Fraud.
And, as we are told by many of the Church leaders, including the ‘Prophet of God’, that the Church is either all true or it is a Fraud, there are only two choices.
It is a fraud & as such cannot ever hope to provide an authentic system for human flourishing & wellbeing.
The well is poisoned. All who drink from the well become incapacitated in some way. We need to love & assist them in their recovery from Mormonism & rebirth into the Real World!