Http Www.Self.Com Story 7-Natural-Remedies-For-An-Upse On Being a Mormon Missionary – A Manifesto of Faith and Reason

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On Being a Mormon Missionary – A Manifesto of Faith and Reason

Sometimes when I was studying in college and graduate school, I was like some kind of mythical animal like the mythical Yeti or — to take something from a certain part of the world — a Jackalope. . I am an honest, religious, run of the mill Mormon. I am also a student at a great university studying history. In a sea of ​​doubt, pessimism, and agnosticism my colleagues find my faith dubious and strange, and sometimes speak of the sadness of that genius who lies beneath the surface. make mistakes. My shyness of the country has forced me to avoid debate and controversy, but here I want to answer those people and all the others who have said the same thing over the years. Most of the comments I see about Mormon missionaries on the internet and social media are sarcastic and offensive. The authors report few cases where the missionary had a negative mission experience, or when the missionaries clashed with religious ministers and secular visionaries. I want to say it bluntly: I enjoyed my mission.

Like most young Mormon men, I served as a Mormon missionary when I was 19 years old. My meditations and prayers for the future seemed to be the same, or at least they flowed from one to the other and I didn’t really know what I was doing. I decided that I would not go unless I heard and knew in my heart that it was the right thing to do. The Prophet Joseph Smith once said,

[T]the things of God are very important; and time, and experience, and careful thought and wisdom and truth will only be revealed. Your opinion, man! if you would lead a soul to life, you must reach as high as the highest heavens, and search and explore the darkest depths, and the world of eternity—you have to talk to God. There is more honor and goodness in the thoughts of God than the false thoughts of the human heart. Only fools despise the souls of men. (Joseph Smith, History of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 7 Vols. 3:295)

In Mormonism, God is found not only through philosophical ideas such as in Natural Theology, but through experiences with Him and those experiences that come from working with God and people. As Joseph Smith said, what is needed is time, knowledge, and deep thought. The truth of something can be seen through action. Therefore, I studied and lived what I read later, I came to know that God lives and the Book of Mormon is true. As a Mormon missionary I spent two years teaching that to everyone I met. Another essay at another time will speak more strongly of my point about faith, but I must say that faith is not an illusion. It is not an illusion. It comes from a spiritual desire and understands that sometimes, to be understood, a truth must first be accepted and put in the best possible light” yes or in love. Logic, my college philosophy professor used to say, is just a creative tool. a priori thoughts and like a machine calculates the necessary decisions. It is not knowledge in itself, but a framework for organizing knowledge. A religious person is just as capable of reason and questioning as a serious believer in Positivism.

What does a Mormon missionary do? Some of these questions will no doubt be surprising. Some, because of the lack of values ​​that they hold, distort their way of thinking about the world, do not believe that someone will devote two years of their time; delays in school, work, dating, and friendships; and at his own cost he spends every day sharing a story that he knows will be rejected by many. It may seem like a quixotic act. Instead, let me stand on the witness stand as someone who did it and will not regret it. For two years I wore shoes and grew a phone from walking and working out every day. I was rejected, spit on, hit with a rock (and once with a ketchup container), taunted, harassed, almost arrested twice, and then threatened with a gun.

I won’t try to say that I liked this bad treatment. Sometimes, I understand people’s frustration and anger. It can be irritating when someone approaches you and tries to lead you into a conversation about something as profound as religion. However, my experience has taught me that most people, once my missionary friend and I were able to sit down with them and talk honestly about each other’s beliefs and the other, they enjoyed the discussions even though they did not choose to believe what we taught. Some were very opposed to our beliefs or practices, and I might feel uncomfortable just being around them. To all who were willing to believe, I taught my beliefs and gave my testimony of God’s inspiration and my commitment to Him in in my life. In those two years I learned more about myself, about my God, and about my fellow human beings than at any other time, and I will undoubtedly treasure these experiences for the rest of my life.

Among my fondest memories are the many wonderful conversations with people from all walks of life from the educated to the ignorant, from the deeply rooted American to the new immigrant. I learned early on that debate and argument is a free movement. I believe, and in my later life, I am very sure of it, and the truth and the light are the most deadly of the treatments. The result is the same: when both sides are fully aware of the truth of their own position, the issue becomes more polarized than before. In confessing that knowledge, I feel that I am guilty of the modern society that has taken the argument for each person. I must explain that it is not a debate or a discussion, but that kind of parallel argument which dominates our public discourse, which cannot be called a speaker, who speaks privately, communication is not possible. or knowing the other person’s opinion. It is the solipsistic pontificating of priests and preachers.

As Mormon missionaries, we are taught — and I intend — to share our message, ask others to think about it, pray about it, and live it, no True, sometimes we were forced into arguments and I fell into many traps, but I and my fellow missionaries often testified and warning and inviting others to listen to our message with no bad intentions. Some have tried to argue that our reluctance to debate reflects some serious fear on our part about the truth of what we are saying; but that objection is false. We only know that these conflicts produce few results, and the casualty of these conflicts is the good relations between people. Most of those who want to argue with us are unable to listen and understand the other person’s point of view, that argument is just a battle of will and desire.

So, you may ask, why do we do it? Why do we risk stirring up arguments and hatred? I am convinced after various experiences that it is the missionary work of this Church that inspires strong feelings on us more than any other. actions or principles. There are many groups that have different beliefs about God and salvation, but no group can make sure that everyone knows about them. I can answer by saying that our faith compels us to do so and without contradicting the command to share this information we are involved in deception. We believe that our message can soothe the heart, strengthen relationships, and enable everyone to understand and worship God. This belief will lead to controversy and we will receive the negative judgment of many who say that truth and values ​​are relative, but if we stop expressing what we say it will be like denying that we believe that it is not we can; I can’t do that, because I have had many experiences that have convinced me of the truth of this message and the importance of sharing it with others. . I have seen faith, in God and in myself, bring about so many miracles that I must leave the sidelines now by saying that , I don’t work to help others because I can hurt others. Life has taught me: no matter what I do, someone will be offended, so I will live without being offended because it will be friend forever.

My plea for this is: that people should spend more time getting to know each other in our public conversations, especially about religion. This appeal has been filed before and will be filed again. I have no doubt that this essay will be of great benefit to the community, but I hope someone will listen. To speak honestly and honestly about ideas and values ​​we must first understand our ideas and beliefs. Too many people are quick to assume that they know what someone else believes about this or that. These kinds of mental mondegreen that limit our ability to communicate about language and speech are fluid and highly dependent on economic conditions. It’s not enough to know why God a just love a value what it means to us, we need to know what it means to others. If not, we attack straw men of our own making because, as Cervantes said, “they may be tall.” So, when we defeat our enemy, we just call it our accidental victory.

Go to the fountain and ask a Mormon what Mormonism is. Those who work hard to grind Mormon mills and kill Mormon chimeras will inevitably claim that all Mormons are lying about their own beliefs or hiding from the truth about what Mormons really believe. No doubt they will continue to claim that Mormon missionaries are masters of propaganda and disinformation (nothing could be further from the truth), but those claims are circular and rely on the assumptions of the prejudiced eyes and blind eyes. As a former Mormon missionary who was proud to practice his faith and still follow the principles of his religion, I must say that, even in America and the West if they disagree, the first step is to improve our communication, the improvement. our listening.

If we do not first seek to understand, we will never understand. I am tired of the prejudice, the disdain, the quick and angry dismissal of those who attack not only my faith, but all religions and belief systems. These ignorant and prejudiced attacks come not only from other religious leaders, but also from secular scholars who are isolated in their own religious traditions that they believe to be absurd. Dismissing the ability of others to disagree with you and rightly believe in something you find fascinating, divides, and distorts our public discourse. I will conclude as I began by saying that I do not believe: I believe in God and the Mormon message and I do so with great clarity. and with all the thoughts of my mind. I am not asking readers to suddenly convert to my faith, but I do hope that they will follow with an open mind and a thoughtful understanding of us who continue to believe in faith and hope through Living God.

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