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askandanswer

beliefs changed as a result of lds.net/forums?

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How often has a sincerely held belief, or strong opinion that you held been changed as a result of discussions on this site? What was belief or opinion and what was the posting that changed it? Do some posters have a greater impact on our understandings and beliefs than other posters? I'm just curious.

 

To answer part of my own question, I can't say that I've had a sincerely held belief changed yet as a result of my participation on this site, but then I'm only a relatively new user. I think for me the main benefit that I have gained from using this site is an increasing awareness of the need to be very specific in how to word a post, the inadequacy of language, and the examples shown of the sometimes impressive depth of knowledge and ability to structure an argument that some of the users of this site display. I'm continuing to watch the lessons that occasionally take place on how to disagree without being disagreeable as how to deal with strongly opposing views is something that I think I will be able to learn from this site.  

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I probably haven't had " a sincerely held belief, or strong opinion" changed from being on this site, but then again most of the posters on this site also have similar theological beliefs as me, thus similarity in many ideas. Even if there is still some disagreement about various things. I have had small nuances changed, or things to consider. Sometimes things I haven't considered myself.

 

Yes, some posters do have a stronger impact on me, i'll keep who to myself though.

 

I agree that disagreeing without being disagreeable is a skill that does develop here, on occasion. I will note, that despite some people not liking the level of disagreement that does take place, I find that this site feels: #1 much less venomous with disagreement more so than other places i've been #2 much more respectful (generally) #3 much more open minded (even if the open mindedness doesn't mean opinions will change) and #4 often fairly logical with construction of opinions (even with disagreements of the premise) Should note that #5 Somewhat judgmental with lines draw by certain individuals (which isn't necessarily bad so long as it is also respectful)

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How often has a sincerely held belief, or strong opinion that you held been changed as a result of discussions on this site? What was belief or opinion and what was the posting that changed it? Do some posters have a greater impact on our understandings and beliefs than other posters? I'm just curious.

 

I enjoy reading people's ideas on this site, and sometimes I have received insight into how to deal with the fairly complex community that makes up my ward and stake. Sometimes I've posted about the social issues I've experienced at church and come away feeling not so isolated or alone in my struggles - relieved to feel 'normal' in fact. I have learned a bit about doctrinal and spiritual issues, and while this hasn't changed my opinions, it has added to my existing understanding of where divergent voices are coming from. I love the wealth of experience and different points of view and I'm grateful that we aren't all in lockstep, because it's those rigorous discussions, individual perspectives and testimonies that make our church so vibrant and alive. 

 

On the flip side (and I don't want to offend anyone), I do sometimes feel isolated on this site because it seems as though there is a core of site members who know each other well and don't tend to post to anyone else in most threads. I've also noticed a bit of 'ganging up' sometimes on new posters who have opposing views to the regular posters here. I could understand that if it was in response to obvious anti-mormon baiters (as a former moderator of an lds discussion forum on another site, I know exactly what those look like). I do feel a bit uncomfortable when I see church members being negative and unfriendly towards other church members (our brothers and sisters in the gospel) here who may have divergent views on certain doctrines. I just think that in these latter-days with so much crap going on in the world, the last thing we need to be doing is tearing down those among us who may be feeling weak in some aspects of their beliefs. 

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I think your question interesting because I think we all hope to persuade others toward our thinking, yet I myself don't look to be changed and have only found myself in generally agreement or opposed to what I consider an extremist view.

 

I find that I am far more moderate than some that post regularly. I am amazed that they have the time to expound so deeply on things I find of little consequence. I am not liberal, by any means, but I am a convert and bring 20+ years of pre-LDS perspective.

 

I am moderate because of my years of missionary work where I see members turned away from (turned off by) a hard line in the culture of the Church. We see it almost daily in the posts in the forum. Yet others feel there is no deviation from what we are commanded. I agree on there being no deviation in the final judgement, but I also believe in the opportunity to learn line upon line and the opportunity for repentance from principles we cannot easily grasp as young members in the Church. And I believe there are principles we will not learn in our mortal life. I don't spend my time on "eternal" mysteries. I have enough to do to get through the day.

 

If there is another principle that separates me from a hard-line, it is that I separate the Church from the gospel. I believe the gospel to be pure and the principles to live by. I believe the Church to be an administrative tool to carry out the gospel. The gospel is infalible. The Church, being run by man, is not.

Edited by pkstpaul

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 I am amazed that they have the time to expound so deeply on things 

 

Me too! Watching and learning the thought patterns and how to put a good argument together and how to respond in the same way are some of the things I hope to learn from here.

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All the years that I have been coming here there have been a few posters I never cared for but over time I got over it. Of course I also know there are those who can't stand me either. It's kinda funny we get like that because we don't really know the people who come here. Over the years I have only met 3 people on this site. Two of them don't come here. One of them I think lives here and the other one pops in front time to time and the third one never comes around at all.

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I have, distinctly, learned things. That means changing my beliefs, does it not? And, legitimately, that makes sense. I didn't believe what I didn't know. Now I know it. Now I believe it.

 

I have recently learned things from omega (that doctrine has been quite narrowly defined by some leaders of the church), and from askandanswer (the quotes on the priesthood never leaving the earth from Joseph Fielding Smith -- although I haven't entirely reconciled this as to my complete "beliefs" on the matter).

 

I would hope I am continually learning and thereby, line upon line, changing my beliefs. I would hope that is true of all men (and women). I would hope that my intention to share, explain, proclaim, and defend the gospel even in these forums is useful in helping others make needed line-upon-line belief changes to bring them closer to the people they need to be. Although, sadly, I do expect that most people are merely stubbornly set in their ways and never learn much of anything or change their thinking to much of a degree their entire lives.

 

As to some big life-altering paradigm shift in one's beliefs... From a forum? I think that likely exceedingly rare.

Edited by The Folk Prophet

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I don't think I've changed my mind about anything (OK, maybe about being baptized  :D ), but I have enjoyed and learned from others' responses here. As a convert, I often feel like a bear of very little brain when it comes to Mormon culture and doctrine, so I come here to be informed. I can't think where the information has changed my mind on anything substantive, though.

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Have my beliefs changed?  No.  But, I have learned details and history that I wasn't completely aware of.  My testimony has been strengthened, and I hope by sharing mine, I have helped others strengthen theirs.

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Also, to add to what I just said, I have met several people from the forums.  All that I've met are good, wonderful people.  I would like to meet more. I have my favorites, and appreciate those who have such strong unshakeable faith.  I shake my head in dismay at some of the questions, and do all I can to answer to help uplift those in need of help.  I admit, that some questions I leave for the more "learned" members of the forum to answer.  I'm not good at debate and I tend to shy away from anything that might become contentious.  But, if I see a real need, then I'll step in and give my perspective.

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But, if I see a real need, then I'll step in and give my perspective.

 

lol, you're a much better person than me - I'm here mostly for selfish reasons; for what I can learn. However, I will contribute to a post where it looks like the poster is needing assistance and I have something that I think might be helpful

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I quite enjoy this site. There are a handful of members that I find pleasant, helpful, and even sometimes entertaining. I like that there's diversity and that no one is ever alone on a subject. (Even us left wingers.) I have been inspired and have learnt a lot since joining this site. Even if my religious views no longer align with the foundation of this forum, I continue to frequent here for the great discussions, and to share my thoughts on various topics. I guess I should add, my leaving the Church had nothing to do with LDS.net.

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How often has a sincerely held belief, or strong opinion that you held been changed as a result of discussions on this site? What was belief or opinion and what was the posting that changed it? Do some posters have a greater impact on our understandings and beliefs than other posters? I'm just curious.

 

To answer part of my own question, I can't say that I've had a sincerely held belief changed yet as a result of my participation on this site, but then I'm only a relatively new user. I think for me the main benefit that I have gained from using this site is an increasing awareness of the need to be very specific in how to word a post, the inadequacy of language, and the examples shown of the sometimes impressive depth of knowledge and ability to structure an argument that some of the users of this site display. I'm continuing to watch the lessons that occasionally take place on how to disagree without being disagreeable as how to deal with strongly opposing views is something that I think I will be able to learn from this site.  

i've had my view shifted on a few things, but as to what i've gotten from prayer, that hasn't changed.

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I've learned a good deal about LDS beliefs--details and nuances I could not pick up from lds.org, or from the Articles of Faith.  Likewise, it's a bit heady and cool to know that my posts here are getting 10-fold views what they get at sites like facebook or linkedin.  Yeah, I get curious and checked recently.  :-) 

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I've learned a good deal about LDS beliefs--details and nuances I could not pick up from lds.org, or from the Articles of Faith.  Likewise, it's a bit heady and cool to know that my posts here are getting 10-fold views what they get at sites like facebook or linkedin.  Yeah, I get curious and checked recently.  :-)

I am glad your here and always enjoy what you have to say.

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