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Sarah789

Really Questioning the Garment

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Well there is this new trend I see in life (or maybe it's always been there and I just see it now). Our modern culture has bred such ease and modern convenience that the instant that anything is the least bit difficult, hard, or challenging it's not worth doing.  There is this attitude that life is meant to be easy, we have to shield our children from failures-everyone is a winner, no one can be critical (b/c if you are critical it means you don't love them enough- you aren't being Christlike . . . Christ would only love everyone as they are). When the reality is Christ was extremely harsh, many times.

 

Ultimate love is helping another person reach their full potential.  I hate disciplining my children harshly-I wish there was another way. Unfortunately all human beings are pretty much the same way-we will take the easiest path to achieve our goals. If I child believes it is easier for him to skate on not doing homework vs. receiving discipline he will skate.  It isn't until the discipline overrides ease of skating that he will finally figure out doing homework is good.

 

Unfortunately in our modern day culture, we have a severe lack of personal discipline.

 

Are you suggesting that someone in this thread needs a good spanking? 

 

:twistedsmall:

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So, if that makes Adam a lemming, then I'm happy to be a rodent.  

 

Oh beefche!  I thought you signed up for the Lemming movement to detach themselves from the classification Rodent.  I can't remember all the provisions, but one of them is "we are too cute to be classified with the dirty rotten scoundrels in people's barns and city sewers, therefore, we demand a separation".  I'm pretty sure calling a Lemming a Rodent is now considered a racial slur.

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Yes, Christ was harsh many times, but mainly to the Pharisees who were flat out against him.  I am not against Christ, I am trying to learn more, and I learn more through open discussion and hashing out ideas.  Christ was kind to those who were trying to be faithful but struggling.

 

When I challenged the oft-repeated notion of garments just being a "reminder" and we wear it because we "promised", people got hostile.  That's why I dropped the "lemming" comment.  Too often in the church, we cannot challenge the status quo without being attacked.  I was trying to see if people had any actual deep ideas or testimony about the garment.  Going to the temple is just part of it because it's all in my head there, I find my mind really opens up when I can talk about things with people.  

 

Based on the responses in this thread, I still think a lot of you haven't really given much thought to why you wear the garment and what Christ wants you to get out of it.  Even after I pointed out how terribly some of you were acting, the result was still just disingenuous, backhanded support.  And no apologies.

 

Anatess, you ended with saying you hope I get my testimony, but you couldn't resist pointing out how I "torpedoed" you.  Well, I felt the same way about your comments.  I agree your initial comments were nice, but later you responded with a lot of "that's never been a problem for me", as if that actually proved something, and added a bunch of rude and petty stuff.  Your initial suggestions were useful, but when I challenged some of your viewpoints, the hostility came out.  I started the thread, but I didn't start the hostility.

 

Thanks to those who responded kindly.  

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When I challenged the oft-repeated notion of garments just being a "reminder" and we wear it because we "promised", people got hostile.  That's why I dropped the "lemming" comment.  

 

<snip>

 

Thanks to those who responded kindly.  

 

Except that you dropped the lemming comment as a response to me (I reread my post and there was nothing there that could have been even close to misread as unkind) and torpedoed my "behave" testimony.

 

So, yeah, it would be great if you can respond kindly yourself.

 

But, it's okay.  I'm done with this thread.  Hope you find what you're looking for.

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Based on the responses in this thread, I still think a lot of you haven't really given much thought to why you wear the garment and what Christ wants you to get out of it. 

 

 

Speaking of backhanded. . .

 

 

On the contrary, I have given a lot of thought to the garment. I've had revelation reading in the scriptures (have you done a topical guide search? Moroni 10:31 and 2 Nephi 8:24 really spoke to me at one point in my life). I've had thoughts come to me in 2 different parts of the temple where the garment is specifically discussed. But I'm not going to share those sacred experiences on a public forum, especially not to someone who may or may not be earnestly looking for answers. 

Edited by Eowyn

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Are you suggesting that someone in this thread needs a good spanking? 

 

:twistedsmall:

lol . . . no not at all; I actually hate spanking and I only do it for a few things:

1) physical violence against another human being

2) stealing

3) lying

 

Everything else I take care of with other methods :-). Interestingly enough, a few times I've asked my kids would you rather have a spanking or this other discipline---they will actually take the spanking over my other methods!!

 

I've just noticed that it seems like our society is becoming more child-centered and more child-like. It is happening both on a social individual scale and on a political scale (think all the social welfare programs).

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lI've just noticed that it seems like our society is becoming more child-centered and more child-like childish.  It is happening both on a social individual scale and on a political scale (think all the social welfare programs).

FIFY

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Yes, Christ was harsh many times, but mainly to the Pharisees who were flat out against him.  I am not against Christ, I am trying to learn more, and I learn more through open discussion and hashing out ideas.  Christ was kind to those who were trying to be faithful but struggling.

Christ was very kind to the penitent, i.e. those who were humble, kneeled before him and asked for help.

Comments such as "it is ridiculous, impractical, and uncomfortable" (I've counted 4 times the use of ridiculous when speaking of the garments), or things like- if it is as a reminder I don't need to wear them b/c I can do that anyways or things like-I want to know exactly why (when talking about sacred things on a public forum). That is not being penitent, that is not approaching God in the proper attitude to have Him reveal the answers to you.

 

You can't have it both ways, make comments like "it is ridiculous" and then claim you are trying to be faithful and struggling with understanding.  Approaching with a faithful attitude would be something like "I know it is a covenant to wear the garments, and I made one to wear it, but I'm having a really hard time because they are very uncomfortable for me, how can I better understand the garment?"

 

I gave you the answer that underlies every major doctrine and covenant we do in the Church; it is ultimately backed by "because God said so".  Now to get that one must believe and have faith that the Church is lead by a Prophet who himself can talk and walk with God if need be.

 

Just like when I tell my son 630 is bedtime-I have my reasons, but the ultimate authority is simply because I said so. And that is God's ultimate authority, we are His children, He is our Father and what He says goes. Now as my son grows, matures, becomes more responsible I will explain my reasons to him and he will learn wisdom. Until he is ready to learn wisdom the answer is because I said so.

 

Based on the responses in this thread, I still think a lot of you haven't really given much thought to why you wear the garment and what Christ wants you to get out of it.  Even after I pointed out how terribly some of you were acting, the result was still just disingenuous, backhanded support. 

 

I gave you the ultimate answer-you just don't like the answer. I have given the garment lots of thought, I love going to the temple to ponder, pray and think about what it means to me-it means significant things all of which are tied up in the words, covenants, promises and blessings described in the temple; which I have made covenants not to divulge. So no, I'm not going to talk in detail about what the garments mean to me on a public forum except in broad generalities.

 

If you want to gain the same depth of feeling and understanding, rather than complain on a message board-figure it out for yourself.  Take the time to go to the temple, commit to some deep prayer, thought, scripture reading and I promise you the answers and reasons why will come.  Until you are ready to investigate it for yourself (or are willing to ask for scriptural references to help you better understand), the answer remains because God said so. When you are penitent enough to receive more light and knowledge God will help you understand.

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Now The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is asking members for feedback about the fit, fabric, size and style of garments. And many Mormon feminists are cheering — and eagerly sharing their opinions.


"I love the whole idea of the temple garment," LDS blogger Jana Riess writes for Religion News Service. "It delights me that there is no concept of something being irredeemably profane in my religion. ... Even underwear can be sanctified."


However, she does not always love "the garment in practice," Riess says. "In practice, it can feel like a set prop from 'The Itchy & Scratchy Show.' "


Sizes often don't fit an array of bodies, she says, and seams can hit a woman's body in, well, the wrong place. "It's encouraging to know that the church is trying hard to identify people's main issues with the garments," she writes, "and to address those issues as much as they can."


A little change, she says, "could make a big difference."


http://www.sltrib.com/lifestyle/faith/2117286-155/lds-church-asking-mormons-for-input


The survey has been completed.




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Linking to the SL Tribulation is almost always a mistake, and linking to it as an authoritative voice of any kind when discussion LDS issues approaches 100% failure rate. Same is true with Jana Riess.

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I confess to difficulty with sympathy on some of these issues because, well, they can be dealt with.

Depending on the garment top I wear it under or over my bra... generally leaning toward over.

I use different garment lengths and fits with different pants to avoid bunching, lines, etc.

Wear panties with menstrual pads under the bottom.

All these women who complain about garments fitting under clothes seem to be clueless that plenty of people differentiate their underwear with their clothing. Learn how to do it.

Could something else symbolize temple covenants? Sure. But right now it's the garment.

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That was my practical response to practical problems of garment wearing. In short, undergarments beyond tiny bras and thongs are far from uncommon in the fashion world (Leah mentioned Spanx and similar items are oft recommend) so I suppose I see, in a pure sense of just underwear, garments aren't really different from all the other things out there.

Now, testimony and insight

Basic answer: I wear my garments because I've been endowed and it's part of the covenant.

Insight: I like the idea of a spiritual article of clothing, a physical reminder of God. True, it's my job to remember God, but I appreciate the religious item.

I suppose I see it as a special token. I feel connected to other cultures and faiths who wear other spiritual tokens. I do indeed have to apply personal meaning, but when that's done, it's nice.

Edited by Backroads

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Sarah...I would suggest that you do whatever you like and let the Lord be your judge, he is after all going to be anyways. Many of us will have much more to worry about than whether we chose to not wear garments on a particularly hot and humid day or.....

 

Once upon a time, I actually mowed the yard...(gulp) shirtless. Oh...and ran shirtless and went to the gym in a tank top. Before the flaming begins, I do wear my G's 99.9% of the time and of course we all should, but,in the end that really is between you and the Lord.

Edited by bytor2112

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It seems to me Sarah that your struggle with garments is a fundamental question of agency.  "Will we do all the Lord commands?"  The nature of this life is to test us on that question.  We should expect such test to be difficult.

 

I would wager that you didn't expect your test to include something so simple as to what kind of underwear to wear.  :)  Maybe you expected it to be about the Law of Chasity, or the Word of Wisdom, or keeping the Sabbath Day holy or being honest or some other Commandment of God.

 

But that is the nature of this life, the Lord knows us and he is going to challenge us in areas we are weak.  This is to help us become greater in faith and obedience.  Each person is going to have there own set of challenges. 

 

This means for some people the wearing of the garment is not a challenge for them.  They wear it for the same reason Adam offered sacrifices, because the Lord told them to, and they are exercising their agency.  This is the fundamental reason why we are here.  Their struggles will be with other aspects of the Gospel.

 

Now admittedly those that don't struggle with the garment might lack some empathy for those that do struggle.  But to call their honest and heartfelt answer of "Because God said" so lemming like behavior is an offense to the very point of our existence.  Most likely this offense comes from your frustrations, because this is your struggle (one of them anyways) and the reason we struggle is because we lose sight of the larger picture.

 

So let try to refocus you on the larger picture.  The Lord has commanded you to wear the garment.  This commandment enables your agency and the purpose of why we are here.  You need, and this is going to sound very simple, because it is, to make a choice.  You need to choose to wear the garment or not.  Right now you are halting between two opinions, and you can not move forward until you choose a side and press forward with that choice.

 

Its hard because you want it to be an easy choice, (like wearing the garment is for others to whom God has ordained different tests) but that is not your trial.  Your trial is this.  

 

I can promise you from my own experience with trials, that once you make that leap of faith. Once you make that choice to follow God's command in this matter no matter how much you think you might suffer for it that then, you get the promised miracles, then you get your burdens lighten, then the Lord blesses you with the strength and endurance you need.

 

Choose wisely

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It seems to me Sarah that your struggle with garments is a fundamental question of agency.  "Will we do all the Lord commands?"  The nature of this life is to test us on that question.  We should expect such test to be difficult.

 

 

Nothing personal, but this is really really silly.

 

Why did the church conduct a survey regarding garments?  This is not a matter of obedience, but the design of the garment itself so that it meets the comfort needs AND fulfills the function of the garment.  Why do we have two piece instead of the one piece -- why was that change made?

 

A friend of mine has garments with a special design to fit his physical condition.  Should he have simply worn the regular garment "out of obedience", as a "test of his faith"?

 

While we cannot discuss the details, the endowment ceremony has now slight changes for the convenience of the patrons.

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Nothing personal, but this is really really silly.

 

Why did the church conduct a survey regarding garments?  This is not a matter of obedience, but the design of the garment itself so that it meets the comfort needs AND fulfills the function of the garment.  Why do we have two piece instead of the one piece -- why was that change made?

 

A friend of mine has garments with a special design to fit his physical condition.  Should he have simply worn the regular garment "out of obedience", as a "test of his faith"?

 

While we cannot discuss the details, the endowment ceremony has now slight changes for the convenience of the patrons.

 

How does the church taking a survey or offer different types or makes of garment change the fact that wearing the garment is (or suppose to be) an act of faith and obedience?  As it has been testified to in this very thread those who make the choice to follow the commandments are blessed with finding a way to make it work.  This is true of all commandments, just because this one deal with underwear does not some how make it an exception to how God expects us to handle the challenges we face.

 

If someone struggles with wearing the garment, should they show a total lack of faith by waiting until the church 'changes' things enough so that it is no longer a struggle?  That would be an act of agency, but I think you can see why its not the recommended one.

Edited by estradling75

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I wanted to show a little love to the Original Poster. I love the temple and I love everything that it represents. I'd like to think of her post as similar to a marriage relationship. One can love a spouse and still voice an opinion if there is something that bothers her. Love does not always mean suffering in silence. I have difficulties understanding why the Lord put such emphasis on what is basically underwear and strange, expensive and uncomfortable underwear at that. I have a hard time with the Church's stance that it "stays out of the bedroom issues" when the garments are a shield and a protection from our (maybe not others) sexual intimacy.

 

And it's tough, most of the answers seem to be try harder to get a testimony of them and everything will work out. Faith to act is given in varying degrees for various issues (I doubt many could sacrifice like Abraham) and garments may be a near-breaking point for some. The good news is that often times, the Church changes. I imagine that people were uncomfortable with one-piece garments for some time before the Church made the change and I have hope that someday the Church will update its expectations (they weren't always worn 24/7) for members. Then again, it may never change and this will be an uncomfortable cross to bear.

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I wanted to show a little love to the Original Poster. I love the temple and I love everything that it represents. I'd like to think of her post as similar to a marriage relationship. One can love a spouse and still voice an opinion if there is something that bothers her. Love does not always mean suffering in silence. I have difficulties understanding why the Lord put such emphasis on what is basically underwear and strange, expensive and uncomfortable underwear at that. I have a hard time with the Church's stance that it "stays out of the bedroom issues" when the garments are a shield and a protection from our (maybe not others) sexual intimacy.

 

And it's tough, most of the answers seem to be try harder to get a testimony of them and everything will work out. Faith to act is given in varying degrees for various issues (I doubt many could sacrifice like Abraham) and garments may be a near-breaking point for some. The good news is that often times, the Church changes. I imagine that people were uncomfortable with one-piece garments for some time before the Church made the change and I have hope that someday the Church will update its expectations (they weren't always worn 24/7) for members. Then again, it may never change and this will be an uncomfortable cross to bear.

 

It's not necessarily just about "love" though. Loving a spouse is fine. What about loyalty to that spouse though? What about being faithful to" What about kindness, support, sacrifice, and defense of? Are not those things manifestations of honest, sincere, and true love?*

 

Point being, it's as much about how these things are addressed as it is anything. Loving a spouse but understanding they have flaws and hoping for improvement, and even discussing said improvements in the proper venue and with the proper tone is great. Openly complaining about the spouse in Sunday School is not.

 

As to the garments themselves, I don't doubt that everyone can agree that improvements can be made. But the tone and respect with which we discuss these improvements matters a great deal. And when someone begins to discuss something that is altogether holy and sacred to us in an irreverent and murmuring tone, there's going to be some strong defense put up.

 

The OP's concerns may have some legitimacy. The tone with with they were presented and the disrespect shown to what is, foremost, a symbol of sacredness and a blessing to and privilege for us, is not legitimate.

 

* and even if they are not manifestations of this, they are still, I would say, proper, if not requisite, in healthy marriage.

Edited by The Folk Prophet

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Sarah, I had the exact same problem but with the Word of Wisdom instead of with the garments. I'll explain.

There is nothing evil or sinful about coffee. And yet the Word of Wisdom prohibits me from having any and that annoyed me to no end. I like my coffee. I'm a coffee connesuir. But I promised, by getting baptized, that I would abide by that particular commandment.

In the beginning it was a source of great discomfort for me. It put me in a bad mood. It even robbed me of having the Spirit with me at times. Then I realized that coffee was doing nothing at all. I was putting me in a bad mood, robbing myself of the Spirit. I tried a bit harder.

And, little by little, abstaining from coffee became a sacrifice that I was willing to do, happy to do to enjoy the amazing blessings that the gospel has brought into my life. I didn't understand the relationship between coffee and God but I was on board with the process. Now when I smelled a fine Colombian roast blend it made me think of the gospel and of the joy it brings rather than think of what I was missing and what I had given up.

And that's when I realized the relationship between coffee and God, and between garments and God. It's a daily, constant reminder that I'll give anything to hear His voice, to feel his presence. He asks me, by covenant, to make uncomfortable changes in what I eat, what I wear, how I spend my money, how I spend my time. And with every sacrifice I make He pours out His Spirit on me.

For full disclosure, coffee was never my thing, but it made a better and more relatable example than mine would have.

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I have been endowed for some years now, but lately have really started contemplating the garment.  It started when I was in China for several weeks in a very hot and humid place and wearing them was unbearable.  Then I had the thought, what if I was in a missionary discussion and the missionaries asked me to share my testimony of wearing the garment with the investigator/new member?  I realized then that I would have nothing positive to say, i.e. I have worn garments for all these years and have no idea what blessings it has provided me.  

 

As far as I can tell, the purpose of garments are twofold: First, to remind us of our temple covenants, and second, to keep us from breaking the law of chastity.  But is it really that necessary?  I never had chastity problems before I was endowed, and there are other things we could wear to remind us of our covenants.  Garments seem kind of like a drastic way to achieve these ends.  Just the bottoms would suffice.

 

Even now back in the U.S., in a much less humid place, I still get overheated and irritated wearing them.  They are also not lady-friendly, and I am not talking about fashion.  They bunch up under your bra so you have to adjust it often, the legs roll up when you put on pants and you have to push them back down, and you can't use feminine pads with them because they don't stay in place.  Also, I have broad shoulders so the sleeves don't cover my shoulders like they're supposed to.  I wonder if this means if I can wear sleeveless things?  My thighs are large and the leg openings are often too narrow and tight and bite into my flesh.  To order larger ones would mean something too big in the waist. This begs the argument there are so many different body types out there, they can't design garments that are comfortable for everyone.

 

The fabrics bother me too.  The nylon tops stick to my skin, the cotton tops make me feel too hot, the mesh was like wearing cardboard and incredibly itchy and also hot.  The lace chafes my back.  And don't get me started on the nursing tops.  They are absolutely horrendous.

 

I want to bring these issues up within the church to see if garments can be redesigned to better suit the needs of women and to be more comfortable, but who can I talk to?  My bishop?  Besides the fact that it is ridiculous to have to talk about my UNDERWEAR with a man old enough to be my father, what can he really do?  Just tell me to "have faith" and deal with it?

 

I am wondering if any other people have experienced these problems and how they dealt with them.

I had to tough out hotter and humid climates- ended up showering and doing laundry more. 

have you tried talking to the relief society president? If she directs you to the bishop, you can ask her to be a go between, and write up a letter stating your problems (try to be more on the specific side rather than vague).

I think there are different materials and styles used now, and i'd be surprised if there wasn't some resource available that could provide custom fits. (I would not know off the top of my head where to find it, but that's why i'd start with the relief society pres were I female, or the bishop for the vice versa)

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I don't like to wear my garments, even though I try my best to wear them. I'm not perfect. 

I DO like to wear my Iron Maiden and Megadeth T-shirts over them though. You would not believe the questions I get asked.

"Dude, can a Mormon mosh? What are you doing here?"  

 

My response is "No one moshs like an LDS straight edge" 

Edited by MormonGator

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When I got my garments, I was told to wear them under the bra.  But if you wear them over, then the symbols show through the clothing and make it look like your nipples are showing.  And unfortunately, I am too "well-endowed" to go without a bra.  I don't like the Carinessa material either, like the drisilque, it doesn't breathe. 

 

 

Well, for me, if the symbols OR my nipples were showing through, I'd figure my top was too thin or too tight?

I've never had that problem...

 

Maybe on the days you're menstruating, you could just wear panties or as someone suggested, wear panties under the garment. There is at least one style that is very loose with wide non-fitting legs. It would be more like a slip. Perhaps on those days you could wear a skirt so your clothes weren't so binding? I always used tampons, so it wasn't an issue. 

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Sarah, I had the exact same problem but with the Word of Wisdom instead of with the garments. I'll explain.

For full disclosure, coffee was never my thing, but it made a better and more relatable example than mine would have.

 

Oh man, I miss coffee like crazy!

That's my Achilles Heel.

 

What do you drink for breakfast now?

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I'm not a Mormon, so maybe it's wrong for me to post here.  But, it seems garments are hot and uncomfortable.  Wouldn't a necklace you wore all the time be just as good of a reminder of covenants than undergarments? If you need to wear them to be "in good standing" does that ever make you feel resentful? I don't think I could stand it.  But then, if the "girls" were smaller, I'd probably go braless. 

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I'm not a Mormon, so maybe it's wrong for me to post here.  But, it seems garments are hot and uncomfortable.  Wouldn't a necklace you wore all the time be just as good of a reminder of covenants than undergarments? If you need to wear them to be "in good standing" does that ever make you feel resentful? I don't think I could stand it.  But then, if the "girls" were smaller, I'd probably go braless. 

 

I'm fairly certain I'd be less comfortable wearing a necklace.

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