Ever feel like the man in the picture above?
I have lost track of how often those around me who I dearly love have raised their hand saying yes, yes, yes while I was forced by my conscience to say, wait just a minute. I am not sure…and ultimately at this time, I don’t think so.
It is interesting to see who wants to learn to think for themselves and who is happy to just live by what is fed from the existing party lines they found when they arrived on the planet. When we allow something outside ourselves to tell us how to think, live, do and be without questioning, it is amazing what can happen in the world. This is true even when the external message is perceived as a “good” one as it still takes our personal discernment muscles off line. Drinking even nourishing cool aide 😉 without thinking about what we are doing, ultimately hurts us all.
I have an old friend who still finds me in my dreams from time to time. Every few years he will pop in and be featured several nights on the run. It is someone who connected with my family when I was about age 12. In the past over the years we would email back and forth from time to time. However, after watching this beloved man repeatedly beat a retreat back into the comfort of our shared known past to avoid a jump into the deep end of even looking at the unknown now, I have stopped initiating writing to him.
It had been rather a painful thing to watch such a brilliant mind dig in and defend old territory. Paralysis and defensiveness in the face of communicating about new potentials is a very disheartening thing to witness. I also think that I finally have realized that offering unsolicited perspectives does not ever help growth. Judge not least ye be judged is all about a warning for trapping yourself. I have NEVER seen true growth born from condemnation and judgement and pledging of blind allegiance to an externally sourced power which is static in the past. AND I write this also acknowledging that any pain felt only ever comes from my own lingering expectations attached to relationships. He disappointed me. I disappoint him. He no longer disappoints me, but does not choose to engage. Ok. I finally have done my own growth on this. 🙂
You see, I was raised within a very powerful belief construct offered up by the Christian based religion of Mormonism. This is a religion where you are asked to publicly raise your hand to say that you sustain and support men as the mouthpieces for God on Earth today. Most people I knew from my childhood, including this friend, still participate and create their lives from within this system. And as far as externalized systems go, it is one that does create rather fruitful and contented human lives.
I honestly can say with hand on heart that I am so grateful that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints was my starting point upon hitting Earth school as it was a belief construct that helped me avoid some pretty big pitfalls until I was ready to take responsibility for knowing myself. I was handed some pretty large pain very early in life and that belief system helped me not to end up dealing with it by becoming a crack addicted prostitute. I am not really joking about that last sentence. However, I also can now see how living dishonestly (which can be supported in this belief system) also caused most of the pain to begin with. Don’t you love those catch 22’s ?!
For those in my life who do still religiously attend this church and live it’s teachings from a deep love, after soul searching their hearts and finding that their own personal answers for living still completely aligning within it’s teachings, I completely support and adore engaging with you. If you are finding joy and peace and lasting comfort, keep doing whatever it is that you are doing there. However, for those who ignore their inner niggles, become defensive on questioning and repeatedly just spout back the party line without being able to say it is your truth, I will continue to love them from a distance no matter how many times they appear asleep in my dreams. Nothing is ever gained when we attempt to communicate from a place anywhere other than our own authentic voices in respect from love.
I am so grateful to be able to engage here with those who actually show up authentically in the living of their lives, and thereby can make contact with those same areas in mine. Oh the gratitude for those precious souls who who find their way to my front door, who have taken responsibility for their own thinking and the beliefs this creates for constructing the living of their lives! This means that even when they see something they do not agree with on whatever level in mine, they keep the door open for communication and they do so with a share in love and compassion at my ignorance.
I do not publicize this blog and I do not usually use my writing to indirectly send messages to anyone in particular (only doing so today after vivid dreams several nights on the run). I do not care how many followers I have or how many likes there are or what the wordpress stat counters say about how many people are reading what. I write these words here as a place to reflect… seeing and sharing the M of past, present and future as we remember together.
If you found your way to this blog because I directly told you that I write it, I most likely did this because I thought you might be interested in joining the conversation. Thanks for reading. Thanks for doing enough of your own work that you see me and that you can join in what I am doing here…and thanks for engaging when you feel inspired to do so.
And if not interested, as many of my family and friends are, they are not reading this anyway. (Many of my closest family and friends are not really interested in knowing and engaging with the M of now. They are not reading these words and it is ok). I am sure I will meet up with them in those sound asleep places again if and when we need to. If we can help each other in any way, I know we will. If not, we will each dream on.
Follow me—it just takes a harder hit.
Suddenly, you will see farther down.
You didn’t know you could you do this on your own.
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I have been dreaming about you again. But, this time I am not going to email you out of the blue. You know about this blog and will see this if you are interested in contact.
Do you still hate to visit San Francisco or have you learned to be the same man who stands there as the one who can stand in the temple feeling love(d)? The true temple is the one on wheels inside ourselves and the one in Provo, in my opinion, is all about teaching us to remember this. I think I might just go and enjoy a Slurpee in your honor. I love you so.
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With the header picture, I in no way am wanting to compare the LDS church to the Nazi party. Take any cult inventory identification test and then we will speak from a deep place of honor and love for our shared spiritual roots. 🙂
The flowering of Mormonism in the world CAN be a beautiful thing to live. And on a bad judgement day for my religious family who do read here, just remember that this means that I must not have gotten my own personal testimony of the church as true yet. Thank you for honoring the fact that I will not live lying to any religious leader about my ability to raise my hand in good faith to sustain an authority outside myself anymore. I have prayed and in my heart, I feel peace about not participating with organized religion at this time. Should the day come that the answer to my ongoing prayers changes, my behavior will change again, too. If I ever feel impressed to return to attending church, I will be the first to join you on the pew.
For those who are interested at at deeper peek at Mormonism and the raising of hands for sustaining authority people are asked to do:
Being a child of God, I listened to the prophet’s voice until I could hear and listen to the same still small voice (or for those hardliners, found the light of Christ) inside myself. This does not mean that I do not think these are good and in some cases great men still in the church(es) doing amazing things on this planet. However, the success of living from this listening on my own is seen in the peace and presence that surrounds the living of my day to day life, not just on Sundays. I extend the invitation to come and to visit me in my home any day of the week and see what I spend my time focusing on living. Please feel free to see if you find holiness or not. Observe away, just take care not to make any final judgements as I am only ever claiming to be a work in progress. 🙂