Word of Wisdom and marijuana. Very serious.


TStevieRob

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I'lll work on the hyperlink and the quotes, but seriously why don't you just Google "cannabinoid receptor sites" and become a bit educated.

Done, but I'm not finding what you say is there. The first results are to scholarly articles that use lots of big words and cite other articles. A brief scan didn't produce any support for your claim that we have receptors that bind to absolutely nothing besides THC, which only occurs naturally in MJ. It is possible that I just don't understand the big words, and need you to cut and paste.

Next result was a link to 'druglibrary.org' aka the "Shaffer Library on Drug policy". The first thing I noticed was the immediate banner ads advertising rehab clinics and offering "Own your ow legal marijuana business", and a way to obtain "Your guide to making money in the multi-billion dollar marijuana industry". The article talked about the state of attempts to legalize MJ, and then delved into receptors and THC research. I find no support for your claim.

Next up was a forum post on the "Tokers Q&A" forum of grasscity.com. I didn't click.

Next was this imgur photo:

Posted Image

Next was a link to the "gangavibes.wordpress.com" site.

The rest of the results were a mixture of more journals, or links to books you can buy written on the subject.

I'm gonna need a little help here. You claim we have receptors that bind to absolutely nothing besides THC, which only occurs naturally in MJ. Your opinions seem to rely heavily on this claim. I need your source.

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Vort had contended that since I talked about "using" marijuana, I necessarily meant "smoking marijuana"; and that since I talked about having medication "on board" in the temple I necessarily meant being stoned in the temple.

Huh?

Are we reading the same thread?

FYI, she subsequently confirmed that she does not believe either of those to be true...

"Thank you" [in falsetto, while curtsying]

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Done, but I'm not finding what you say is there. The first results are to scholarly articles that use lots of big words and cite other articles. A brief scan didn't produce any support for your claim that we have receptors that bind to absolutely nothing besides THC, which only occurs naturally in MJ. It is possible that I just don't understand the big words, and need you to cut and paste.

Next result was a link to 'druglibrary.org' aka the "Shaffer Library on Drug policy". The first thing I noticed was the immediate banner ads advertising rehab clinics and offering "Own your ow legal marijuana business", and a way to obtain "Your guide to making money in the multi-billion dollar marijuana industry". The article talked about the state of attempts to legalize MJ, and then delved into receptors and THC research. I find no support for your claim.

Next up was a forum post on the "Tokers Q&A" forum of grasscity.com. I didn't click.

Next was this imgur photo:

Posted Image

Next was a link to the "gangavibes.wordpress.com" site.

The rest of the results were a mixture of more journals, or links to books you can buy written on the subject.

I'm gonna need a little help here. You claim we have receptors that bind to absolutely nothing besides THC, which only occurs naturally in MJ. Your opinions seem to rely heavily on this claim. I need your source.

I am with LoudMouth. I too have searched under different search terms and this is the only article I can find, which was quoted unfortunately, and was also against the claims made by ElZorillo.

1. Yes THC receptors do exist in the brain and

2. They do have a purpose other than binding to THC, which is only

found in Marijuana.

What follows is a short discussion on this topic (modified from an online

site on the effects of Marijuana).

The THC or cannabinoid receptor is a typical member of the largest known

family of receptors: the G-protein-coupled receptors with their distinctive

pattern in which the receptor molecule spans the cell membrane seven

times.THC receptors are very abundant in the brain.

The Endogenous Cannabinoid System

For any drug for which there is a receptor, the logical question is, "Why

does this receptor exist?" The short answer is that there is probably an

endogenous agonist (that is, a compound that is naturally produced in the

brain) that acts on that receptor. The long answer begins with a search

for such compounds in the area of the body that produce the receptors and

ends with a determination of the natural function of those compounds. So

far, the search has yielded several endogenous compounds that bind

selectively to cannabinoid receptors. The best studied of them are

anandamide and arachidonyl glycerol. However, their physiological roles

are not yet known.

Anandamide

The first endogenous cannabinoid to be discovered was

arachidonylethanolamine, named anandamide from the Sanskrit word ananda,

meaning "bliss." Anandamide appears to have both central (in the brain) and

peripheral (in the rest of the body) effects. The precise neuroanatomical

localization of anandamide and its function are not yet known.

hope this helps,

gabriel vargas md/phd

References:

Abood ME, Martin BR. 1996. Molecular neurobiology of the cannabinoid

receptor. International Review of Neurobiology 39:197-221.

Calignano A, La Rana G. Giuffrida A, Piomelli D. 1998. Control of pain

initiation by endogenous cannabinoids. Nature 394:277-281.

Childers SR, Breivogel CS. 1998. Cannabis and endogenous cannabinoid

systems. Drug and Alcohol Dependence 51:173-187.

Devane WA, Hanus L, Breuer A, Pertwee RG, Stevenson LA, Griffing F. Gibson

D, Mandelbaum A, Etinger A, Mechoulam R. 1992. Isolation and structure of a

brain constituent that binds to the cannabinoid receptor. Science 258:

1946- 1949.

Dewey WL. 1986. Cannabinoid pharmacology. Pharmacology Review 38:151-178.

I will keep looking, but you would think it would be more widely available if it was as absolute as stated.

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Well, if none of you ever stated that, then we're all in agreement (on what's really important--that it is indeed possible that marijuana may have medicinal value). I am so glad to have that cleared up and agreed to.

This paragraph is a prime example of the challenges present in trying to communicate with you. To wit:

1. "That medicinal marijuana may have medicinal value" is most certainly NOT what's really important here. You assume it so completely that you are almost unaware of your assumption, throwing it in as an aside. But you are mistaken. The potential medicinal value of marijuana is not and never has been the "really important thing" in this discussion.

2. More importantly, "if none of you ever stated that, then we're all in agreement". Not only is this false on its face, but it is far more insidious as an indicator of your state of mind. You have blatantly and very badly misquoted us and provided misattributions of what we wrote. When you have been called out about it, you have refused to acknowledge or otherwise clear up your false allegations. And now, when cornered about it, you still refuse to acknowledge your fault head-on, instead saying, "Oh, hey, looks like we're in agreement after all!!!" But the point is not whether we are in agreement; it is that you badly misrepresented what we have written, time and again.

On the "false dichotomy"...I'm going to try this logic one last time, but I have serious doubts about the open mindedness of the audience.

Whether or not you believe this, the problem is not with the open-mindedness of the audience, but with your own lack of understanding of logical argumentation, as we shall see below.

First concept: it is clear that marijuana is the only known naturally occurring source of THC, and also that THC is known to bind to receptor sites in human anatomy; <etc>

You make a huge deal about THC binding to receptor sites. Why? It's an accident of molecular geometry; cocaine also binds to receptor sites, as does LSD and frankly any number of narcotics. Does that make all of them also God-inspired medicine for humans?

But for the moment, in the interest of following your logic, let us accept your first concept at face value.

Also, on this first point, we do agree that God is omniscient (and, therefore, He knew/knows about this bioactivity in humans--i.e. it was not "unintended" or "unforseen"). The underlying idea here, of course, would be that He indeed knowingly "made marijuana that way".

This is an absurd point to make. You can, with equal force, make the point that God "made the rapist that way", that God "made the arsenic that way", that God "made the firearm that way", etc.

Second concept (closely related to but subtly different from the first, and essential for our natural gas huffing friend): It is also clear that human beings have (at least two) types of receptor sites to which only one naturally occurring compound--THC--binds and has bioactivity (having a receptor site designed to receive the molecule is a bit different than "natural gas binding to oxygen in our blood").

I disbelieve this claim. Absolutely. This claim is outrageous. Please establish that there are human receptor sites that have absolutely zero bioactivity unless stimulated by THC. I believe this to be a bald-faced lie. (Not necessarily saying you are the liar who made the lie, just that you have bought into a lie.)

You have made an extraordinary claim: That human beings have receptors that are active uniquely to THC. Now the onus is on you to provide evidence of this extraordinary claim.

But again, for the sake of examining your logic, let us pretend that your clearly false "second concept" is also true.

as, again, a request for a source quote on this would demonstrate an extreme degree on "uneducation" (which is, of course, forgiven but duly noted).

Fine. Call me uneducated, if it makes you feel better. But provide the citation.

Third concept: Heavenly Father, knowing that He made the plant "that way" (to have the compound) and us "this way" (to have the receptor sites), has forbidden the recreational use of this substance.

You have now presented three "concepts" or foundational lemmas:

  • "[M]arijuana is the only known naturally occurring source of THC, and...THC is known to bind to receptor sites in human anatomy"
  • "[H]uman beings have (at least two) types of receptor sites to which only one naturally occurring compound--THC--binds and has bioactivity"
  • "Heavenly Father...has forbidden the recreational use of this substance."

Ignoring for the moment that the second of these, at least, is blatantly false and laughable on its face, let us pretend these "concepts" are true and see if your logic holds.

As I see it, it follows then that the intended use must be medicinal.

Note that this in no possible way follows logically from your above-listed lemmas. You go on to describe how you think it does:

If not, then Heavenly Father would have done two things--put the compound in the plant and the receptor sites in His children--that needn't have been done at all (unless you want to contend that He intentionally and knowingly did those two things so that the adversary would have a really good tool to tempt us with--but that would be contrary to His nature as I understand it).

Saying that you personally do not see the need is vastly different from saying that the need does not exist. And even you must surely admit that you hardly even begin to understand the nature of God, so the fact that elements of his nature are foreign to you is so obvious a truth that it need not be debated.

Therefore, that God might do something that you think is contrary to his nature is no more convincing a reason to disbelieve he did it than the fact that because men are murdered, women raped, and children abused, therefore God must not exist at all (since some people don't believe God could allow such things).

Do you begin to see the lack of logical reasoning in your proclamations?

Having done (these two things) for no good reason would indeed be the "oversight" to which I first referred in what has been called a "false dichotomy".

You assume an unstated fourth lemma: ElZorillo's understanding of God's motives and actions is perfectly sufficient to allow you to draw conclusions.

So, if there is no intended medicinal use (in man) for a compound that Heavenly Father knowingly included in a plant and for which He knowingly gave man receptor sites, then He indeed did those two things for no reason whatsoever (except, perhaps, to tempt us--an illogical assertion already addressed).

No. Rather, he did them for reasons you do not understand. But the fact that you don't understand them does not mean they do not exist. (And you have not demonstrated that "to tempt us" is an illogical assertion, only that you don't like it.)

Since God is both perfect and omniscient, the original dichotomy is indeed "true".

No, it is false. As I have painstakingly demonstrated, your logic is tremendously faulty.

I wonder if anyone will take half as long to think about this as I did to write it before shooting off a reply--I guess if I have responses in the next half hour, then apparently not.

I wonder if you will actually read through this and understand what I and many others have been patiently trying to teach you -- that what you are calling "logic" is nothing of the sort.

Edited by Vort
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Done, but I'm not finding what you say is there. The first results are to scholarly articles that use lots of big words and cite other articles. A brief scan didn't produce any support for your claim that we have receptors that bind to absolutely nothing besides THC, which only occurs naturally in MJ. It is possible that I just don't understand the big words, and need you to cut and paste..

My Googling turned out some interesting results. You see I learned this about something called the Cannabinoid receptor type 1:

The CB1 receptor is activated by cannabinoids, generated naturally inside the body (endocannabinoids) or introduced into the body as cannabis or a related synthetic compound.

Link: Cannabinoid receptor type 1 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

And I learned this about something called the Cannabinoid receptor type 2:

At present, there are five recognized cannabinoids produced endogenously throughout the body: Arachidonoylethanolamine (anandamide), 2-arachidonoyl glycerol (2-AG), 2-arachidonyl glyceryl ether (noladin ether), virodhamine,[9] as well as the recently-discovered N-arachidonoyl-dopamine (NADA).[15] Many of these ligands appear to exhibit properties of functional selectivity at the CB2 receptor

Link: Cannabinoid receptor type 2 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Now that made me curious about this concept of endocannabinoids. So I looked at Wikipedia again and found this:

Endocannabinoids are substances produced from within the body that activate cannabinoid receptors.

Link: Cannabinoid - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

So apparently you body creates cannabinoids which bind to the previously mentioned (Type 1 and 2) receptor sites.

Edited by Dravin
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No it doesn't, and I don't appreciate your making light of my attempt to clarify myself. To me this comment is more than condescending...

Vort had contended that since I talked about "using" marijuana, I necessarily meant "smoking marijuana"; and that since I talked about having medication "on board" in the temple I necessarily meant being stoned in the temple. I asked the question (to which you gave the "is is" reply only to confirm that she indeed beleived that those two allegations were necessarily true (i.e. that marijuana could only be smoked and that any amount in one's system would qualify them as being "high".

FYI, she subsequently confirmed that she does not believe either of those to be true...

How very clumsy of me. I didn't mean to make light of your attempt to clarify yourself. I meant to imply that a red herring post that dwells on how the MJ enters the body--rather than the fact that it enters the body at all, which was the thrust of the discussion and the WoW generally--comes across as rather Clintonesque.

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I love the idea that the only possible reason for us to disagree is a failure to spend enough time thinking about it.

Wow, then according to you lots of members, leaders, and even General Authorities should "stay home" rather than go to the temple--because certainly people attend the temple all of the time with both narcotic pain medication and/or benzodiazepines on board.

Was that supposed to be an armor piercing argument? Show me some examples and we'll discuss them on a case by case basis. In the meantime, I stand by my statement.

Edited by unixknight
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Look, I think we're all letting emotions get away from us. ElZorilla has already said that he's asked his Bishop, so I just handily looked up the Petoskey, MI information on LDS.org.

It's a tiny branch, it turns out. I'm just going to call the branch president on Sunday and ask him the question point blank: "Hi. A member of your congregation told us that you informed him that marijuana use as a means of getting closer to God is a good thing. Can you clarify that and let us know why you feel that way?"

Clearly, he's not making things up and not just seeking to troll. Petoskey, Michigan has a tiny LDS presence. The odds of me not making contact with the right person is non-existent.

Don't worry, ElZorilla. I've got your back on this one. I'm going to show that you have authority on your side. I have free long distance. Petoskey meets at 10 AM, so if I phone after church my time and give it a call a few hours afterwards, he should be in. I'll find out why he told you that and you will be vindicated, ElZorilla.

See? Not everyone here is closed-minded. Some people might think you were lying about going to your bishop, but I believe you and I'm going to prove it to everyone. You're welcome.

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Original Quote (annewandering): Consider the fact that marijuana is the only known naturally occurring source of THC, a compound for which human beings have "receptor sites"--both in the central nervous system and in the immune system. If there were no intended use for this compound in human medicine, then God would have either made a mistake or committed an oversight--both of which are inconsistent with our concept of deity. If God intentionally made marijuana with the properties that it has (i.e. no mistake nor oversight), but at the same time there were no intended use for those properties, then one would have to argue that He included those properties in the plant so as to be a source of temptation to man; and this is also contrary to the nature of God, Who does not tempt man but only permits the adversary to do so.

ElZorillo:

I have access to scholarly journals and I could not find any support for your statement. I did find that THC is only found in the cannabis sativa family, this includes Hemp and marijuana. It is noted in other forms, that the non-psychoactive cannabis, not marijuana, also produces THC.

Cannabis Sativa has been used for producing milk (like soy milk), for cereal, for clothes, and other industrial purposes.

So, these findings would set your premise false also. Apparently, the family associated with the marijuana plant has other uses, which would provide another variable and confirm you have provided a false dichotomy.

I also, found writings from pharmaceutical students specifying that the body when it initially absorbs marijuana, the psychoactive form, the body's brain first induces that this is a foreign substance (not a natural substance), and it is not until the user has consumed a sufficient amount of marijuana that the body begins to produce and react to a "foreign" substance. As a result of the new adaption of the brain, the person then receives the high that so many people use marijuana for.

I also found this, Title:

THE SCIENCE OF MARIJUANA HOW THC AFFECTS THE BRAIN

Within this article it mentions that scientist have found, discovered, that our body's naturally produce a chemical which also interacts with the CB receptors. Thus providing evidence to contradict marijuana and THC are solely responsible for CB1 and CB2 receptors.

Note: I did not find this evidence on Google, except for the information pertaining to Hemp.

Edited by Anddenex
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*keeps holding his hand up, waiting for a highfive* C'mon, ElZee. Don't leave me hanging. We get to confirm that someone who has stewardship over you advised you this was the case. Gimme a high five. Or at least a woo. We get to prove you definitely aren't the type of person to justify drug use, then lie like a rug when you get called on it.

C'moooon. Highfive me back! I got your back.

...

Woo?

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  • 10 months later...

I hate to tell you all this. but you are still breaking the law even if you state allows medical marijuana. It still against federal law witch for those who don't understand even if your state allows it its still illegal to smoke grow or use in anyway in the united states . your braking a commandment on following the law of the land. if your state allows it and you use it you supporting illegal activity and on top of that there is no way you can go through the temple interview truthfully.

SORRY

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I don't quiet see how the O.P. not having logged on in such time would really matter. As this shows up when Google searched and others may still read through for opinion. Through after reading it felt like a bunch of argument had just happened.

I do agree with Motoki that marijuana whether legal in your state or not it is against federal law. Thus still making it illegal no matter where you reside within the US. It is very possible that your particular Bishop may okay it, but from where I see it and the feelings that come from it you still have to answer the question "Do you obey and follow the laws of the land?" in a temple recommend interview. With it being against federal law I don't see a way to answer that question with "Yes, I do". Making it not matter what your Bishop says on it being okay or not. Also to respond to most answers of "Ask your Bishop" You need to remember that your Bishop is still a human being and we are all capable of wrong choices and sin, if we were perfect we wouldn't be here anymore. In the mission in my area and where my husband served, mission presidents wouldn't approve baptism of those who used MJ even with holding a medical marijuana card. In the end I suppose it is every persons own choice and judgement will happen for their actions depending on what choices they make.

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I generally agree with you, SeekYourWish, but for the record: I don't think obedience to the laws of the land is a temple recommend question.

It's been a question I remember being asked when I was 12 to go do baptisms... It's one I was asked last year when I got my recommend to be married. It may have been phrased slightly different, but from what I remember it was in there with all the other questions.

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So I took some time to evaluate my options and the path going forward that best suits me, and helps me deal with my problems.

I decided to keep smoking it. I have PTSD from some pretty terrible combat I faced overseas. There is NO CURE for PTSD. I am fully prepared to deal with it the rest of my life, much like the older WWII, Korea and Vietnam vets are still dealing with it. Going forward, the question becomes: How do I deal with it? Aside from two obvious answers: getting psychological help (which I believe to be questionable in effectiveness and necessity for all war vets) and reverent religious guidance. I have decided I have 3 options: I can do nothing, which will mean bad nightmares, grumpy days, isolationism. I can go the prescription route: will knock me out and get more sleep but doesn't necessarily help with flashbacks or nightmares. Also, dependency becomes an issue. As well as weight gain and the fact that I feel they alter my mind. Or, I can self-medicate. Self-medicate is a broad term, I know. It COULD include drinking alcohol. Which is why alcoholism and spousal abuse or so much higher in older (veteran) populations. Obviously though, I am not an alcohol drinker. I could try supplements such as melatonin, but they have little to no effect (in my experience).

So, I choose marijuana. It helps really in no way other substances can. It mellows me out, calms me down, relaxes me and helps me sleep, seriously, so much better. I use it safely (meaning I don't operate motor vehicles) in the comforts of my home, it is not habit forming, and the health effects of using are negligible (not saying it is free of adverse health effects of side effects, although it might, but it is certainly less than alcohol, tobacco, fast food, and definitely the different pills the VA had me on). There is the whole argument of "You might be supporting drug cartels" but I think that is a cop-out. Not saying it isn't true, but it is a man created problem and I will address that in a second. Marijuana is shipped en masse (illegally of course) from Mexico, but I think it is becoming so much more common and people have a desire for higher quality, which the cartels cannot supply, so I think the amount of marijuana people get from DANGEROUS illegal sources is not as much as we think. I especially know it in my case (that is all I will say on how I obtain mine).

So we run into the "Law of the Land" issue. It is true, that Federal-ly marijuana is still as illegal as ever. But state by state, and really even city by city now, regions are changing their own laws regarding marijuana. So there arises the question of "Well, am I breaking the law then?". It's true that technically you are breaking Federal Law. But, there is a reason the Federal Government is allowing all these states to allow medical marijuana. There is a reason they are not challenging Colorado and Washington and marijuana legalization. They realize they don't really have a leg to stand. They are beginning to realize the notions we made marijuana illegal on are almost entirely false, and now there is movement, a tide, that really cannot be turned back. And that counts for something. If a state legalized murder, the Federal Government would jump right in immediately and say "That's crazy, what are you doin?" But, they do not do that with marijuana. They are letting states do as they please. That is saying something.

So when a person is caught in that moral dilemma, and whether or not they are following the Law of the Land, I think they have that to turn to.

Something else you have to ask: Just because something is the "Law of the Land", does that make it "lawful"?

If the law of the land tomorrow became "Identify all Jewish neighbors and businesses, help ship them off to concentration camps", would you follow it? I know I wouldn't. Because I know that the laws were made by men, who are imperfect. And so some of their laws can be imperfect, even unfair.

Were Thomas Jefferson and other Founding Fathers sinful for breaking the law of the land and claiming an American independence, in the face of unlawful English orders for taxation of colonists without representation?

So speaking for myself, I think any law outlawing marijuana is wrong, and I am not afraid to "break" it. I fought for this country, bled for it, saluted the flag every morning at 0630 for 5 years, put 3 best friends into body bags, watched a little girl have her arm ripped off, killed for this flag, and had to wear a flea collar to stave off insects all over me since I couldn't shower for 3 months. Who is any politician, Bishop, President to tell me what should and shouldn't go into my body that I know helps me?

And not only do I find the law outlawing marijuana wrong, I find it immoral. We live in a country that is supposed to promote life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Having it illegal discriminates against all 3 principles. How do you explain having fast food, alcohol and tobacco perfectly legal by Federal Law, but discriminating against marijuana? How many hundreds of thousands die every single year from poor diet, alcohol and tobacco? And how many from marijuana? By having it illegal we are in fact encouraging violence. Low end estimates place marijuana at 40% of Mexican Cartel incomes, high at 60-70%. Low or high, that is a huge chunk of their profits. If we legalized here, people could legally grow it and sell it, and there goes a huge chunk of cartel income. You create an illegal marketplace where disputes cant be settled in court, so instead are settled by gunfire. I believe it is wrong to have it illegal, dead wrong. Just like segregation was wrong, slavery was wrong, throwing Japanese citizens into internment camps was wrong, allowing torture of enemy combatants was wrong, breaking anti-Vietnam War protests with batons, tear gas, fire hoses and dogs was wrong, and outlawing alcohol (remember the results of that?) in the 20's was wrong. I find it wrong, and therefore will not subject myself to something I find wrong.

Edited by TStevieRob
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I did not speak to him about it.

I like my Bishop, I respect him, I think he is a highly intelligent man.

But, my Bishop has never fought in a war.

I don't feel comfortable spilling some highly personal secrets to him, which are emotional (war memories) and my actions (MJ) that I feel strongly about.

Not to sound condescending, but he, or any other person who has not fought in a war, has no idea what it is like to be in a war veteran's shoes. I am not ready to divulge certain aspects of my life to I strongly believe in, to have him potentially judge me. He may completely agree with me and totally surprise me, but I don't know and therefore I am not ready.

I also think I am grown man who has experienced many things beyond my years, so I think that I am capable of making life-altering decisions (like joining the Army). If I feel I need, I seek it. But I do not feel I need it in this manner. I feel I have done enough research, prayed enough about it, and talked to people I trusted enough to make this decision and feel what I am doing is right.

Edited by TStevieRob
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So I took some time to evaluate my options and the path going forward that best suits me, and helps me deal with my problems.

I decided to keep smoking it. I have PTSD from some pretty terrible combat I faced overseas. There is NO CURE for PTSD. I am fully prepared to deal with it the rest of my life, much like the older WWII, Korea and Vietnam vets are still dealing with it. Going forward, the question becomes: How do I deal with it? Aside from two obvious answers: getting psychological help (which I believe to be questionable in effectiveness and necessity for all war vets) and reverent religious guidance. I have decided I have 3 options: I can do nothing, which will mean bad nightmares, grumpy days, isolationism. I can go the prescription route: will knock me out and get more sleep but doesn't necessarily help with flashbacks or nightmares. Also, dependency becomes an issue. As well as weight gain and the fact that I feel they alter my mind. Or, I can self-medicate. Self-medicate is a broad term, I know. It COULD include drinking alcohol. Which is why alcoholism and spousal abuse or so much higher in older (veteran) populations. Obviously though, I am not an alcohol drinker. I could try supplements such as melatonin, but they have little to no effect (in my experience).

....

There may be an option #4. But other factors may be required such as able to concentrate and focus and a higher than mean IQ. You may want to consider self hypnosis with professional guidance.

The Traveler

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I did not speak to him about it.

I like my Bishop, I respect him, I think he is a highly intelligent man.

But, my Bishop has never fought in a war.

I don't feel comfortable spilling some highly personal secrets to him, which are emotional (war memories) and my actions (MJ) that I feel strongly about.

Not to sound condescending, but he, or any other person who has not fought in a war, has no idea what it is like to be in a war veteran's shoes. I am not ready to divulge certain aspects of my life to I strongly believe in, to have him potentially judge me. He may completely agree with me and totally surprise me, but I don't know and therefore I am not ready.

I also think I am grown man who has experienced many things beyond my years, so I think that I am capable of making life-altering decisions (like joining the Army). If I feel I need, I seek it. But I do not feel I need it in this manner. I feel I have done enough research, prayed enough about it, and talked to people I trusted enough to make this decision and feel what I am doing is right.

If you are so confident that your decision is right and moral and all of the things that you spoke about, why NOT tell him? You are clearly going to do as you choose no matter anyone else's opinions or what the church may teach. Are you afraid there may be consequences?

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So I took some time to evaluate my options and the path going forward that best suits me, and helps me deal with my problems.

. . . .

I'm going to do something that very few individuals will say in our Nationalist country.

I truly am terribly sorry for what you went through. The horrors that you went through and the things you experienced should never be experienced by a human being.

I am terribly sorry that you had to travel some 7000 miles away to some God forsaken land to participate in a stupid meaningless war, not "defending our freedoms", but in an idiotic mindless political game. That the root of these wars is the US's meddling in other countries affairs for the past 60 years.

I have a brother who served in both Iraq and Afghanistan, he still doesn't talk much about it. Thankfully, he somehow made it through okay (and I say that only that he doesn't have any major outward scars). He mentioned to me once that the reason he went to Afghanistan was that after Iraq he felt he had to go to help protect his brothers -- forget all the patriotic crap, when it hits the fan, it's about those beside you.

I don't know what the answer is . . . I believe (from what you've written) that you are a tortured soul trying to find relief. No one, will be able to quite understand the pain and suffering you've gone through, except One . . . Jesus Christ. The Atonement covers much more than our sins. It is our path to Peace. At-one-ment, at one with ourselves, with our fellow men, and with God.

This much I do know, whatever emotional scars you have in your life-- you will have to deal with them and resolve them and you will have to keep resolving them. It is a long hard road. If one papers over the emotional scars, one will never truly be at peace and living the life that our Heavenly Father wants us to lead. It may take a while to be able to deal with the emotional damage . . .

I can promise you that as you seek to understand more of the Master you will find more peace in your life. He is more compassionate than we can possibly imagine . . .

The two greatest commandments:

Love the Lord thy God

Love your neighbor.

May you find the peace you are striving for and need.

Edited by yjacket
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I have some PTSD issues, albeit not crazy in my opinion. I manage to get on with everyday life after reading experiences from some older veterans who said life from that point on is about putting on one pant leg at a time, and getting on it with it.

If marijuana helps you with debilitating stress and does not cause debilitating problems, then use it. There's plenty of illegal drugs that can be used as medicine in the right doses (arsenic is good for you in teeny tiny amounts), and your body naturally produces THC.

If you can get ahold of the medicinal version, that is far more effective and has less side effects than just smoking it. If you're afraid you are being immoral by using it, then by all means find an alternative. But if God is the highest intelligence, he will realize that marijuana is better than horrible dreams every night.

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