Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Obedience at others expense

Obedience at others expense

There's a lot of emphasis on obedience in our church. We're taught that it's essential for our spiritual safety to be obedient to our leaders. I feel that obedience to god is important, but it's important to have evidence that what you're being instructed to do is god's will.“ People should each stand for himself, and depend on no man or men."  TPJS pg. 238.   We should be depending on the scriptures and god for instructions. If there's good evidence that what someone is encouraging us to do is of god, we should consider it, and see if it is something god would have us do. Obedience is only good if it's from the right source. Was it good for the Nazis to be obedient to what they were being instructed to do? Many would be upset that I would even make an attempt to compare these two things. There's more similiarties than most would think. I've had some good leaders that I believe were sincerely trying to do god's will, but that doesn't mean I should do whatever I'm instructed to by any church leader.

In my Psychology class this semester we learned of the famous Stanley Milgrim obedience experiment. He tested nearly 1000 participants, by having them come and sit in front of a machine with switches labeled of voltages. They were told they were the teachers. There were learners strapped to a chair wired to the electric shock machine. Those called learners were in on the experiment and in reality received no harm. There was a man in a white lab coat who seemed to be in a position of authority. He would ask the person in the chair a question and if the person got it wrong he would instruct the teacher to administer an electric shock to the learner. The learner would yell out in pain as if he were really being shocked to fool the teacher.

In this experiment the labels of the shock ranged from 15 volts a slight shock to 450 degrees fatal. At times when the machine was set at 150 volts the learner would yell out " I don't want to do this experiment anymore. Often times the teacher would show signs of distress, and ask if they could stop shocking the learner.  "The man in the white lab coat would insist to the teacher " It is essential that you carry on." The teacher often didn't want to administer what he thought was an electric shock, but he did because that's what he was being asked to do. Even when the man in the chair would cry out that he had heart problems, or quit yelling all together, implying that he was dead the teacher often times continued on. It was surprising that 63% complied to the man in white lab coat all the way to the fatal last switch.

It goes to show that many will follow someone that they deem as having authority to the point of it hurting others.

It reminds me a lot of a blog post I read, from another blogger. He talked of how before someone is put to death, every bit of evidence is examined. The same can't be said for those being ex-communcated.  From my understanding  Stake Presidents are  ex-communicating members because they are being instructed to from their leaders. In their minds this is destroying the Eternal Life of this person. I would guess that some Stake Presidents don't want to do this, and feel conflicted inside. But when all is said and done it's easier to go along with what we're being told to do, than it is to to go against it.

In both the experiment and with these ex-communications the one following orders strongly believes that what they are doing hurts the other person, but they're still doing it. My belief is the same way in the experiment the one in the chair isn't being electrocuted, those that are being ex-communicated aren't losing their chance for salvation.

 Being in the church doesn't bring salvation the way many suppose

In Doctrine and Covenants 76 in describing those who will be in the Celestial Kingdom it says that " They are the who received the Testimony of Jesus." The common belief is that this is simply believing in Christ. But Joseph Smith claimed that the Testimony of Jesus is the Spirit of Prophecy. TPJS pg. 160  I had an Institute teacher try to tell me that we all had the spirit of prophecy to a small degree if we believed in Christ, but that didn't make sense to me. How many members do you see go around prophesying? I've never heard a General Authority prophecy let alone any other member. From my understanding receiving the Testimony of Jesus is when Christ appears to you and gives you his testimony  that you will be saved. If this has happened then it wouldn't make sense that being ex-communicated could break this. As another blogger put it "the church can't take away what it hasn't given."

Milgrim's experiment is a controversial one because of the distress it caused to those who were asked to electrocute others. It's made me ponder if one day those who are performing the ex- communications will be distressed by the things they've done. I wonder if  they are those who are being talked about in this scripture  " For the leaders of this people cause them to err; and they that are led of them are destroyed."  - 2 Nephi 19:16  I like to avoid absolutes, but based off study and experience it seems like a strong possibility. 

Why is the church ex-communicating people?

There's a lot of possibilities for this, but it seems to me that they want people to be afraid to share their ideas and the things that they're learning. When one is exed they can become an outcast from their friends and family. One of the greatest instincts we have is to belong. No one wants to outcasted, so many stay quiet.  There was a philosopher named David Hume who summarized " Truth springs from argument among friends." If only the churches ideas and explanations are being heard then that's what many will believe. " For there are many blinded by the subtle craftiness of men, and who are kept from the truth because they know not where to find it." D&C 123:12 If we don't hear both sides then we can't really have an idea of truth. Shouldn't the truth be able to stand by itself, despite what others say? Is it really necessary to ex-communicate people for sharing things they're learning from their gospel study? I feel that my faith in Christ has increased from the study of those who have been ex-communicated for apostasy. 

As I studied the words of some church leaders, I found myself more confused than before. Me and my mom were talking about prophets last night and me referring to an author who's blog I read, asked her " How do you know he's not a prophet? I don't know he is, but I believe, and you don't know he's not" She replied back " I know he's not because he's been ex-communicated."  The minute someone is ex-communicated they lose their validity among many members. It's sad because truth is truth regardless of where it comes from. But if you ask me the church doesn't want its members reading evidence against it, because I believe if most members really looked into this stuff, they would be convinced. Instead of continuously searching for truth we're being told that we have it, and that we don't need to look any further. Then we're being instructed by what seems to me to be The philosphies of men mingled with scripture. It's funny how we don't see scriptures like this being used and discussed in Sunday School lessons " Yea how long will ye suffer yourselves to be led by foolish and blind guides." Helaman 13:29

Maybe one day those being ex-communicated will be in the scriptures. Just like many read and learn about Milgrim's experiment, and shake their heads at those administering the electricity, people will be shaking their heads over what is going on today in the church. Maybe those who were ex-communicated for sharing their ideas, will be admired the way that people like Abinadi or even Galileo are today.  I pray that the lord will have mercy on those who are simply following orders, and casting out good people.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Pressure from the Top Down

There was one common theme in every single meeting where my Mission President was present. That common theme was numbers. We were constantly told that we were expected to baptize every single month. We were told that if we weren't baptizing monthly we just needed to have more faith. We were told that when we want to baptize as bad as we want to breathe air we would baptize, and that the best missionaries always baptized monthly. I think my Mission President was trying to inspire us in a similar manner to the theme of this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lsSC2vx7zFQ

I know missionaries who walked away from those meetings feeling inadequate, and some would really get down on themselves. We were told that the work was hastening and that we needed to do better. I would often think about the meetings, and I one time came had the thought that my Mission President was a goal oriented businessman, and that he pressured us because numbers were his way of measuring success, and if we had good numbers it helped him feel good about the mission.

This perspective changed one day. We had just gotten out of a meeting where he had been literally drilling us about numbers. He was extremely intense that day. As me and a few of my mission friends were talking, after the meeting he came up to us and said " Elders I know I might have gone hard on you, but just know that I'm getting a lot of pressure from those above me. " It was in that moment that something clicked for me. I feel I can reasonably assume that the General Authorities put immense pressure on the local leaders. Could it be that the General Authorities interact with local leaders in a harsher way than they come across  in their General Conference talks?

My Mission President told the whole mission at the beginning of the year that the leaders of the mission had set a goal for 805 baptisms. He told us how there was a skype conference call with the Stake Presidents in the area and Elder L Tom Perry. The Stake Presidents set a goal of around 795 baptisms for the area, and Elder Perry told them " The lord is hastening his work and is not pleased with that goal." My companionship and many others were literally doing everything we could. We were being obedient, and learning the scriptures, but the baptisms still didn't come. That's when I started believing that if the lord really expected us to be baptizing every month, then it would be happening. My mission is part of what's led me to think deeply of if god's favor is really with the church.

One Mission Conference my Mission President explained how when President Monson was a Mission President in Canada he raised the baptisms from 500 a year to 1200 because he had faith. He then told us a story of a missionary once calling in on an especially cold day, and saying "President Monson it's -40 degrees please advice." To that President Monson replied " dress warm and don't look at the thermometer." My Mission President then want on to talk about how that's what faith is, and President Monson had incredible faith and that's why his mission improved and he became the great prophet he is today. Some in hearing of this situation would say that it seems more like the story of a businessman whose number one priority is maximum productivity at all costs, and that it was easy for President Monson to say that while he was nice and warm in the comfort of Mission Office or Mission Home. It's up to you to decide how to interpret that. We choose what we believe.

I saw so many missionaries running around and repeating exactly what the Mission President was saying. I saw my Mission President running around and repeating exactly what the brethren were saying. I saw so many missionaries striving for leadership, and they were willing to do whatever it took to obtain it. They were willing to tell on their companions for petty rules to get the Mission President trusting them. When one is a leader in the mission they are looked up to and they feel important. Is it possible that this striving for leadership happens the same after the mission? I'll say at the same time, that I've met leaders who seem like good humble men. My last bishop I had seemed like one of the most christ-like men I had ever met. Is it possible some bishops want to go on to be in Stake Presidencies, Mission Presidencies and more? It's natural to want to feel important, but then again the scriptures teach that the  natural man is an enemy to god. Mosiah 3:19  There's many called to be leaders. but few are chosen, to receive the second comforter and that's because they aspire to the honors of men. D&C 121:35

There's more people leaving the church than there's ever been. With the internet people are finding things out that have been kept from them. They are learning how many leaders of the church have contradicted each other over the years. and  Truth is springing forth out of the earth. Psalms 85:11. We were always told in the Mission that the internet was created for us sharing the gospel. My mission was one of the first to be able to use facebook. Is it possible that the internet has been created so that real truth could come forth? I was discouraged with a lot of my experiences, and things I was finding on the internet. I had felt what the scriptures describe as the " Fruits of the spirit" while  reading the Book of Mormon and learning of Christ, and still believed them to be true. It was Fast Sunday in October of this year that I fasted and prayed to be led to truth. It was the next day on the bus that I sat next to one of my brother's friends ( who never takes the bus at that time) He told me on this bus ride  about the book the Second Comforter and the author. This message is what I felt I was looking for. It's provided me with hope, and makes sense of many of my concerns and experiences.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Listen to your leaders

Last week in Institute we had a forum called " On the Highroad to Apostasy." The teacher started talking about his father-in-law who became really dedicated to studying the scriptures and learning all of the doctrine that he possibly could. He started bringing people into their home to teach them the new truths that he was learning. When his local Priesthood leaders heard about it, they put an end to it. The teacher went on to say that even though he was teaching truth he wasn't authorized to do so in his home.

The teacher said his father-in-law was prideful because he felt that he knew more doctrine than his leader who held keys.  "The glory of god is intelligence" D&C 93:36, now it seems in our church that the glory of god is obedience. I can't find anywhere in the scriptures that talks about someone not being allowed to teach certain things because he isn't authorized. The teacher went on to explain that we should humble ourselves and listen to the counsel our leaders give us. He told us of a Stake President who had given a devotional that morning. The Stake President talked of a General Authority above him that came and spent the weekend with him and at the end said " Aren't you glad that god loves you enough to send me here to rebuke you." The message of the devotional was that if we are truly humble we will follow the advice that our leaders give us.

We're told that we're prideful if we don't submit to what our leaders say. It goes back to my last post " Called of God." There's the question, is it possible that some leaders are called by men instead of god, and if that's true then their authority is that of men and not of god. I have a hard time believing that it pleases god the way that we put men above one another in this church. Brigham Young taught that when we gain knowledge " there will be no disposition in any man to place himself above another; for such a feeling meets no countenance in the order of heaven." - Journal of Discourse Volume 9 pg. 150 It's gotten to the point where if you disagree with a leader, you are now disagreeing with god, even when your point is clearly backed up by logic and scripture.

The teacher asked us about examples of people having a hard time with pride when they were being rebuked. I raised my hand and gave the example of King Noah and his priests. I said " Even though they were looked to as the religious leaders of that time, and Abinadi had no religious authority. Abinadi was called by an angel to speak the truth, and they didn't respond well to his message." The teacher's smile turned into a frown and he changed the subject. I looked around the room and saw some who looked confused, and some who looked like they were giving thought to what I said.
 I don't think the teacher liked it, because later in the lesson he talked about how when others claim revelation, we should be wary of it because the prophet is the one who receives it for the church. 

If I'm going to follow a leader, there had better be some strong indications that he is being led by god. " there is no calling of God to man on earth but what brings with it the evidences of its authenticity." - Brigham Young Journal of Discourses volume 9 discourse 27

The teacher talked of the Old Ship Zion and how those who leave the church are drowned, just like the Teachings of the Presidents of the Church Book says. The teacher talked of how Brigham Young claims it all starts with finding fault in our leaders. It seems like they pick and choose which quotes to use, and some of the quotes are heresay. If they're going to quote Brigham Young why don't they throw in the quote where he says " if you have leaders who do not teach you words of life and salvation- who do not give you the words of the lord, why not have the faith sufficient to remove them out of the way and have better men?” – Brigham Young journals of discourses volume 6 discourse 26 
 Or the time when he said "What a pity it would be if we were led by one man to utter destruction! Are you afraid of this? I am more afraid that this people have so much confidence in their leaders that they will not inquire for themselves of God whether they are led by Him. I am fearful they settle down in a state of blind self-security, trusting their eternal destiny in the hands of their leaders with a reckless confidence that in itself would thwart the purposes of God in their salvation, and weaken that influence they could give to their leaders, did they know for themselves, by the revelations of Jesus, that they are led in the right way. Let every man and woman know, by the whispering of the Spirit of God to themselves, whether their leaders are walking in the path the Lord dictates, or not. This has been my exhortation continually." - Brigham Young journals of discourses volume 9 discourse 27

If they're going to quote the former presidents of church, why do they ignore these kinds of quotes? Do they do that because it's forming the way we as a people think? I've learned in my history classes the way that religion has been used as a tool to direct the way that people think. But the quicker you learn, the quicker the truth really will set you free.  - John 8:32  The overall theme of the lesson was to not question your priesthood leaders. Intelligent people are intelligent because they study things out, and analyze them. Intelligent people constantly question, because it's foolish to not question. What would have happened if Christ, Joseph Smith, Abinadi, Samuel the Lamanite and others would have never questioned their religious leaders? Never stop questioning.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Called of God

I can remember one time in my mission being at a leadership meeting, and my zone leader told us how our Mission President told him " Elder I didn't call you. God did." This zone leader went on to tell all of us how we had been called of god, and that was why we were District Leaders. I can remember my Mission President telling us that whatever level we reached in the mission, we would be able to reach in our lives. With him saying that, it's no wonder why so many missionaries were striving to become leaders.

When I hear of leaders being called of god, I can't help but think of a missionary in my mission. He was a zone leader and one of the highest baptizing in the mission. Many missionaries loved, respected, and looked up to this Elder. I came to realize that he was gone a few months before his two years was over. I'm a curious guy, and wanted to learn all I could about the situation. I was friends with a missionary who was close to him and learned the story. This Elder had broken the law of chastity with a girl from one of the wards he was serving in. This happened before he was called to be a zone leader. I actually remember being on exchange with his former companion who had served in that area and mentioned his companion liked a girl in that area. Does it really seem that God would call someone to be a Zone Leader that had been breaking one of his most important commandments? This missionary baptized a lot of people like around forty. There was a talk Elder Holland gave in the October 2011 Priesthood Session called " We Are All Enlisted" in which he says " No missionary can be unrepentant of sexual transgression and then expect to challenge others to repent of those very things! The spirit will not be with you, the words will choke in your throat." https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2011/10/we-are-all-enlisted?lang=eng   Does it seem like a missionary baptizing around forty people had words choking in his throat? Is it possible a missionary will have success more based off of how good of a salesman he is? People used to be converted on witnessing miracles and powerful spiritual witnesses. Today there's a lot of emphasis on "friend shipping" our investigators.  So what does that mean if a leader in our church makes a promise that doesn't happen? Should we not question anything that comes out of his or any other leaders mouth?

 The main thing this Mission President could see is that this missionary was baptizing a lot of people. At one point on my mission, I was on exchange with my Zone Leader and he told me " Elder you're a good missionary. You can teach,are hard-working and obedient. I'm going to recommend you to be a District Leader." The next transfer I was called to be a District Leader. This same missionary also told me how the Mission President told him " Knowledge is Revelation." To some it could seem at least on the mission level that a man is calling missionaries to leadership positions based on who has good numbers, seems to have a good testimony from their emails, and who his other leaders are recommending. If this is true, is it possible it could be happening on a higher level? Friends in leadership positions could be recommending one another. Elder Scott was the Mission President of Elder Christofferson and Elder Zwick. Elder Holland and Cook were mission companions. Are these all just coincidences?

I have an old friend who's dad had been a Stake President. He had an affair while he was a Stake President. My mom's friend's father-in-law had been a Stake Patriarch, and while he was a patriarch they found out he had been molesting children. Did these men's leaders receive revelation and feel something was wrong? If it happens on this level could it happen on a higher level with General Authorities?  The main belief in the lds church is that our church could never go astray. Was this the case in the Book of Mormon with Christ's church? Mosiah 27:13 " For the lord hath said : This is my church, and I will establish  it; and nothing shall overthrow it, save it be the transgression of my people." I'll bet those living in Jerusalem at the time Lehi became a prophet were confident that they were righteous too. If things like this are happening today, shouldn't we evaluate and try to find out what transgressions these could be? We should investigate to see if anything has been changed over the years. Shouldn't we search to see if the same things are being taught and focused on that were when Joseph Smith was alive. Could this scripture be talking about us?
"they have all gone astray save it be a few, who are the humble followers of Christ; nevertheless, they are led, that in many instances they do err because they are taught by the precepts of men." 2 Nephi 28:14  Can the scriptures explain why things are the way they are?

Is there a difference in putting your faith in the church and the gospel? In my search for truth there's some making sense of a lot of my questions. They use the scriptures and explain them in ways that make sense of what is going on today.  If someone is in a position of authority, does that mean that they speak truth? Or could it be that when one speaks truth they receive real power and authority   
"Verily I say unto you, he that is ordained of me and sent forth to preach the word of truth by the Comforter, in the Spirit of truth, doth he preach it by the Spirit of truth or some other way?" D&C 50:17

Wednesday, October 29, 2014


While on my mission I would see humble believers of Christ giving a lot of money to their preachers. Their preachers were supported by the people, and lived lives better than many in their congregation. It would disturb me, but I would find great comfort in the idea that no one in our church was paid. One day I came across the Mission President Handbook online https://archive.org/details/MissionPresidentsHandbook2006

In the handbook there's a section that talks of costs reimbursed to Mission Presidents. It includes food, rent, dry cleaning, family activities, secondary school tuition and fees, extracurricular activities for kids, college tuition for kids, cost of mission for kids, air fare for kids to visit, gardener, maid, and modest gifts. In this section there were also instructions to never hint in anyway that you are paid for your service. As I reflected this, it made me think of the many sacrifices that people make to pay their tithing, which is told by their leaders is their responsibility and expected by god. There are members that have many kids because that's what they are told to do by their leaders, even though I've never seen that commandment in the scriptures. These families avoid many family activities and their kids extracurricular activities are limited so they can pay their tithing which is paying for these reimbursements that the Mission Presidents receive.

 My Mission President was a successful business man, and in talking to many of my friends I learned theirs were too. The brethren tell us in  General Conference that we need missionaries. Young and senior missionaries go out of great sacrifice made by them and their families, and live very humbly. If members don't feed the missionaries one meal a day they at times don't eat 3 meals a day. The church acknowledges that the General Authorities are paid a " modest stipend" Is it possible that the General Authorities stipends are better than the Mission Presidents? We would have no way of knowing. Did you know the requirement of tithing to enter the temple wasn't added until 1910?  http://puremormonism.blogspot.com/2012/12/are-we-paying-too-much-tithing.htmloriginally Did you know that we were asked pay 10% of our surplus meaning that we would pay 10% after our needs were met?  " those who gather unto the land of Zion shall be tithed of their surplus properties." D&C 119:5

It's a little confusing to me when the savior taught " Freely ye have received, freely give" Matthew 10:8  Shouldn't we all be following that?  I remember one time in my mission, we were in a big meeting and the Mission President said " We need to quit focusing so much time and attention on those that will deplete the church's resources. We need to find those that will help us financially and be kingdom builders." When he said this I was looking around the room, thinking to myself " Does anyone else think that's wrong?" I don't judge my Mission President, because I believe he was being instructed by his leaders, and was doing what he felt was right.

It seems odd to me that his leaders, the General Authorities have never said such a thing in General Conference, but could they have given him these instructions?  "They rob the poor because of their fine sanctuaries; they rob the poor because of their fine clothing; and they persecute the meek and the poor in heart, because in their pride they are puffed up." 2 Nephi 28:13. In our church we're quick to say that this scripture is talking about other churches. What if it's talking about us? The prophets wrote the Book of Mormon for those they knew would have it.   Elder Holland gave a talk this last General Conference on helping the poor, encouraging us to be generous with our fast offerings.  In the Mission President handbook they don't pay tithing on the stipend they receive. They get all their living expenses tithing free. A lot of people don't have money left after paying their bills. I want to give the brethren the benefit of the doubt. I hope that they don't take stipends, unless they absolutely need to. Even then I would hope that they would take the church's welfare food that they give to those struggling, before they would take tithing money. But I'm honestly not sure, because there's not transparency on where our tithing money goes. " the lord god worketh not in darkness." 2 Nephi 26:33   Does the General Authorities receiving stipends contradict this scripture?  "Yea, and all their priests and teachers should labor with their own hands for their support, in all cases" Mosiah 27:5 

We as a people have been trusting man. " Cursed is he that putteth his trust in man." 2 Nephi 28:31 I along with family, friends and other good people have been paying this money, because we relied on someone else to tell us god's will.  and now I'm seeing the church buying 5 billion dollar malls, spending more money than ever on marketing; such as making Meet the Mormons, and now I'm learning of these stipends. I'm planning on paying 10% on my surplus, and giving more money to the poor. I invite all to pray about it, and see what god would have you do. Whenever someone asks for large amounts of money we should be cautious. Did Christ or his followers ever ask for money? After Joseph Smith died tithing was changed from 10% of surplus, to 10% of all income. In 1910 it was changed so that we must pay a full tithe to enter the temple. I had a friend remind me of what the savior had to say.
" My house is the house of prayer: but ye have made it a den of thieves." Matthew 21:13 Let us forgive others of their sins, and the lord will do the same for us

Additional scriptures JST Genesis 14:39   D&C 51:13  Deut 26:12

Monday, October 27, 2014

Purpose of Blog

On this blog I will be reviewing some of the experiences I had on my lds mission. I'm still trying to understand the things I saw, heard and what they could mean. I will analyze and give insight, but I won't be insulting or name-calling.  I feel that we have a greater idea of truth when we put people's experiences together, but this only works if we aren't biased about the information we share. If you only tell faith promoting experiences, but leave out anything that isn't faith promoting then it can give a less than accurate idea of what the truth is. I will avoid using leaders, and missionaries names for their privacy. No one is perfect, and I don't judge those I talk about. But I will share my experiences that I had with individuals because I feel we should all learn as much as we can.  I love my Mission President, and the missionaries I served with, and I feel they were doing what they thought was right, but there's still many things that I am trying to make sense of.

I believe most leaders are well-meaning men who are doing what they feel is right, based off of what they've learned, and the expectations that are being placed on them. My motivation is to help others think critically about their own experiences, and what they've seen and heard. I currently believe that Joseph Smith was a prophet, Christ is our savior and the Book of Mormon is true. I'm constantly seeking for truth and greater understanding. With all of this being said, I did enjoy my mission and am thankful for the sincere believers of Christ I got to meet. There's just some concerns I would like to share, based off of my experiences.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

What is truth?

Elder Bednar recently gave a talk titled "Sweep the earth as with a flood." In this talk he invited us members to use the internet to clear up any misconceptions about the church, spread the truth and to testify boldy of Christ. I am gladly accepting Elder Bednar's invitation. I consider myself a seeker of truth, and I hope you are too. I have an order of how I determine truth.

1) Personal experience

My Mission President always said our experiences create our beliefs. I couldn't agree more, because no one can take away something you've experienced.

2) Prayer

I feel god can help you feel truth as you pray, but first you must study it out. D&C 8:2

3) Scriptures

I believe that the ancient prophets saw our day and they've given warnings to those who will search the scriptures.  " Behold, I speak unto you as if ye were present, and yet ye are not. But behold, Jesus Christ hath shown you unto me, and I know your doing." - Mormon 8:35

4) Others experiences

In the scriptures the prophets boldly testify of seeing Christ and or angels. If one makes the same claims, but I'm not positive they had that experience, I would rate them maybe a 3.5. It's definitely worth listening to what they have to say. It doesn't hurt if they can make a lot of sense of what is going on today and use scripture. We shouldn't be so quick to write off anyone's experiences that doesn't fit with our belief system. I ask that you don't write off mine. We do this sometimes due to something called Confirmation bias. This is where we search only for information that supports our preconceptions, but ignore contradictory evidence.

In this blog I will try to avoid absolutes. I acknowledge there's a possibility my conclusions are wrong, but at the same time there's the possibility that they are right.Truth should always be able to back itself up. We have to look at multiple points of view to find real truth.

.   "I know that the words of truth are hard against all uncleanness; but the righteous fear them not, for they love the truth and are not shaken."  -2 Nephi 9:40

"And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." - John 8:32

"And he answered: Yea, Lord, I know that thou speakest the truth, for thou art a God of truth, and canst not lie."  -Ether 3:12

With that being said I invite you to study with me and we'll see if we can find truth together. I'll be sharing some of my experiences and insights with you to see if it can help you in your search for truth.